Who knew you could make donuts with just 4 ingredients in less than 30 minutes? These pumpkin spice donut holes are the ultimate sweet treat. Just mix a flour and yogurt dough, roll into balls, fry, and then toss through a very delicious pumpkin spice brown sugar mix.
The magical 2 ingredient flour and yogurt dough continues to impress with these gorgeous little donut holes. They’re incredibly moreish so you’ll be hard-pressed to stop at one!
These actually started as a bit of an experiment with some leftover dough and pumpkin spice sugar from making pumpkin spice cinnamon rolls. I couldn’t believe how well they worked – donuts normally need a brioche dough (tricky to make without a stand mixer), multiple rising times and literally hours of waiting around. These take less than 30 minutes and are just as soft and delicious as the originals.
They make a wonderful party bite, and to make them even more delicious, serve them with the ginger cream cheese icing from my pumpkin spice cinnamon rolls recipe!
You only need FOUR ingredients for these donuts (plus oil for frying). If you can’t find pumpkin spice mix, I’ll show you how you can easily and quickly make it yourself.
- Greek yogurt. You want to go for a good, thick Greek or Greek style yogurt here. The plain, natural yogurts tend to be too runny to form a cohesive dough – you’ll end up having to add a lot more flour which will result in a dense, doughy donut. You can use fat-free Greek yogurt, or sour cream at a pinch.
- Self-raising flour. If you can’t find self-raising flour, you can use plain flour and just add 2 teaspoons of baking powder.
- Pumpkin spice. This mix is becoming more readily available to buy, but it’s super easy to make it yourself if you can’t find it. You just need ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground cardamom, all spice, ground nutmeg and ground cloves. You can skip the cardamom if you can’t find it.
- Brown sugar. I love the rich, caramel flavour you get with brown sugar, but you could use regular white sugar if you prefer.
Four tips for deep-frying at home
The donut holes are deep-fried, so you’ll also need oil. Deep-frying is honestly really straightforward to do at home, as long as you follow a few key tips:
- Make sure you use an oil with a high smoke point, like rapeseed, canola or sunflower oil. Olive oil won’t work – it will start smoking and burning before it gets hot enough.
- Only fill your pot about 1/3 of the way up with oil. This will help reduce any hot oil splattering.
- Use a thermometer if possible. This was a game-changer for me. You want to maintain the oil at 180C (356F) so that the donuts cook evenly. If the oil is too hot, the outside will burn before the inside is cooked, and if it’s too cold, the outside won’t crisp up properly and they’ll end up soggy. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can use the handle of a wooden spoon to help you judge the temperature. Place the end of the handle of the spoon into the oil – if oil bubbles up evenly around the handle, it’s good to go. A good rule of thumb is to remember that whenever you add anything to oil, the oil will cool down, so it’s good to keep monitoring the temperature.
- Don’t crowd the pan. These bites are small so you can get away with cooking about 6 at once (depending on the size of your pot). You just want to give them enough space so that they can move around. You’ll want to help them with that too – use a slotted spoon to move them around the oil to make sure they cook evenly.
I know that might seem like a long list but I promise once you try, it’s easier than you’d think. This is a good recipe to start with as well because the donut holes only need a few minutes in the oil as they don’t take long to cook.
Have an air fryer? Just brush the bites with oil and pop them in at 190C/375F for about 8 minutes until they’re golden!
How to make them
Add your flour, Greek yogurt and a little salt into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine, until it starts to form little floury lumps. After this, get your hands in there and press into the lumps, breaking up any yogurt into the flour. Bring it together into a cohesive dough. It won’t be super smooth, but that’s fine.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured, clean surface, and form it into a rough rectangle, about 20cm/8″ long. Cut the rectangle lengthways into 4 strips, then cut each strip into 4 to get 16 small pieces. Roll these pieces into small balls. Cover with a clean tea towel and set aside while you heat the oil, and mix together the pumpkin spice and brown sugar.
Once your oil is at 180C (356F) or your wooden spoon passes the bubble test, carefully lower half of the balls into the oil (the amount you fry will depend on the size of your pot – you want them to have a little bit of room to move around). Fry for about 4 minutes, stirring and turning the balls in the oil with a slotted spoon or spatula as you go. Once they’re looking golden brown on the outside, carefully transfer them onto a wire rack over an oven tray to cool very slightly (literally 30 seconds is fine). While they’re cooling, lower the rest of the balls into the oil. Toss the fried balls through the pumpkin spice brown sugar mix, and serve while warm and delicious.
Got a question?
You want to use a thick Greek or Greek-style yogurt – fat-free is fine. Plain, natural yogurt is too runny for this dough – you’ll end up having to add a lot more flour to form your dough which will mean dense, doughy donuts. You can also use sour cream.
You can just use regular white sugar or caster sugar.
Yes! Just brush them with the oil, then pop them in an air fryer at 190C/375F for about 8 minutes, until they’re golden.
They’re best served right after frying, but they’ll be fine for a couple of days stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Give them a little blast in the microwave for 15 seconds before serving, just to freshen them up.
1 dough, many ways
If you like this recipe, I’ve developed others that use this same, amazing flour and Greek yogurt dough. From quick pizza, bagels and garlic butter dinner rolls to cheese and herb scones, garlic naan and pumpkin spice cinnamon rolls, it’s truly incredible what this dough can do.
Like this recipe? Here are some other sweet ideas you might like
If you make these donut holes, I’d love to hear your thoughts! You can leave me a comment below.Print