“OCTOBER, TUCK TINY CANDY BARS IN MY POCKETS AND CARVE MY SMILE INTO A THOUSAND PUMPKINS.” Rainbow Rowell.
Autumn is my favorite time of year and October is my favorite month. The reasons are many. I was born in October. You can trick or treat for your favorite candy in October. Honeycrisp apples are here! The days are still mild. The nights are comfortably cool. Nature’s colors are richer and more vibrant. My cooking becomes heartier. And baking warms my kitchen on a regular basis.
Oh…..and the pumpkins! So many recipes, so little time! But I’ve decided to kick off the season with donuts!
These baked pumpkin donuts are light and airy; iced with a little sweetened cream cheese and topped with crunchy, spiced honey pumpkin seeds. They were also an editor’s pick and featured in Yahoo Shine in Canada!
But speaking of a thousand pumpkins . . . . .
I belong to a fun group called the Theme Weavers. Each month we engage in a week long celebration of …..something. This month it is pumpkins! And I was more than happy to bake with it.
I am finding that there are many ways to create donuts. Baked, cake like, yeast or fried. I love them all! This recipe is basically the baked pumpkin doughnut recipe from King Arthur’s Flour. The only thing I changed up a bit was the spices that I used.
Baking them in a donut pan creates a smaller donut. But they are just as flavorful and I like the petite size!
Level of Difficulty: Very easy
Yields: 1 dozen, soft, pillowy donuts
BAKED PUMPKIN DONUTS:
- 1/2 of a cup of vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon of Vietnamese cinnamon
- 1/2 of a teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- 1/4 of ateaspoon of ground ginger
- 1/8 of a teaspoon of ground cloves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1 3/4 cups of all purpose flour
Preheat your oven to 350°F and light coat 2, 6 doughnut pans with cooking spray.
Beat together the oil, eggs, sugar, pumpkin, spices, salt and baking powder until they are smooth. Add the flour and stir just until all of it has been incorporated. Fill the wells of the doughnut pans about 3/4 of the way full. I actually put the batter into a piping bag. Trying to fill it using spoons or a small ice cream scoop was just too messy! Bake the donuts for about 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before icing.
- 2 cups of pepitas
- 1/4 of a cup of honey
- 1 Tablespoon of unsalted butter
- 1 Tablespoon of light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
- a pinch of salt
Melt the butter in a small saute pan over medium high heat. Add the pumpkin seeds, pumpkin pie spice and the salt. Toast the seeds until some of them just begin to turn golden brown. I like the look of some of the green seeds in the mix. But you can certainly toast them until they are all golden. Add the honey and the brown sugar and stir the seeds to coat. Spread them out on a parchment lined baking sheet to cool. Use these to top the cream cheese icing if you can resist nibbling on them while you bake!
CREAM CHEESE ICING:
- 8 ounces of cream cheese at room temperature
- 1 cup (or more) of powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract
- 4-5 Tablespoons of half and half (or more if needed, and you may use milk)
In the bowl of your electric mixer, whisk the cream cheese until it is smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla. And then add the half and half 1 Tablespoon at a time, until the icing is at your desired consistency. I liked my icing a little thicker and found pouring the icing over the donuts with a spoon to be the easiest way of covering them. Garnish them immediately with the candied pepitas and enjoy!
So, what pumpkin dreams did the Theme Weavers weave?
- Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls from Kirsten @ Comfortably Domestic
- Pumpkin Streusel Bread from Beka @ Kvetchin Kitchen
- Pumpkin Hazelnut Waffles with Cinnamon Honey Butter from Jeanne @ Inside Nanabread’s Head
- Pumpkin Pie Macarons from Carrie @ Bakeaholic Mama
- No Bake Cheesecake Pumpkin Cheese Caramel Cones from Megan @ Country Cleaver
- Pumpkin Marshmallows & Pumpkin Spice Syrup from Allison @ Decadent Phillistines Save The World
- Creamy Maple Bacon Pumpkin Risotto from Shanna @ Pineapples and Coconut
- Marbled Pumpkin Gingersnap Tart from Kat @ Tenaciously Yours
- Pumpkin Spice Cake with Maple Frosting from Mads @ La Petite Pancake
- Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Icing & Candied Pepitas from…..ME!
- Savory Pumpkin Tart from Madeline @ Munching in The Mitten
- Pumpkin Mousse with Candied Squash from Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain
- Pumpkin Scones from Beka (our over achiever with her 2nd entry…you go girl!) @ Kvetchin Kitchen
- Pumpkin Ice Cream from Monica @ The Grommom