Vegan Chai-Spiced Apple Cider Doughnuts Recipe

November 30, 2018


Photos by Emily Caruso

I love the idea of apple cider doughnuts, but whenever I’ve gotten them, they’re far too cakey and dense for my liking. I want my doughnuts to be soft and pillowy! About a year ago, I set out to devise my own apple cider doughnut recipe and I came up with this one; the doughnuts are tender and moist, and they freeze beautifully too. Last fall, I kept bags of them on hand in the freezer for quick snacks and desserts.

After moving cross-country and then feeling under-the-weather for a while, I decided it was the perfect time to revisit this doughnut recipe because I needed a little fall comfort food — and this time, I made the doughnuts vegan. I used a tablespoon of ground flax and warm water as a substitute for the egg and almond milk for the regular milk. While you can use any oil you like to bake with, I like coconut oil because I think it results in more tender baked goods. Also, if you bake with coconut oil, everything you make is healthy and coconut oil cures every ailment known to man. (Ha ha, not really.)

Vegan Chai-Spiced Apple Cider Doughnuts
Now, if you don’t have doughnut pans, don’t worry — you can make these in muffin tins too. I’ve tested it! You’ll only fill the muffin tins with about 1 inch of batter. Your muffin-doughnuts (moughnuts?) will be the height of a regular doughnut, but without a hole in the center. But no hole means you have more doughnut to enjoy and more doughnut is always a plus, right?


Vegan Chai-Spiced Apple Cider Doughnuts

Vegan Chai-Spiced Apple Cider Doughnuts Recipe

Whether you have them for breakfast or dessert, these vegan apple cider doughnuts are sure to be a new favorite.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 18 standard-sized doughnuts or 48 mini doughnuts


  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 3 tablespoons warm water
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup apple cider (the refrigerated kind!)
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil (or any neutral-flavored oil you have on hand)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large apple, peeled and chopped (Fuji works well)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Spray doughnut tins with oil or cooking spray.
  2. Whisk the flaxseed and water in a small bowl; set aside.
  3. Combine the flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom and cloves in a large bowl. Stir together the apple cider, sugar, milk, oil, vanilla extract and the flax mixture in a medium bowl. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the chopped apples.
  4. Transfer the batter to the doughnut tins and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until doughnuts are beginning to brown on the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center comes clean.

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