Lemon Donuts

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These baked Lemon Donuts with lemon glaze are flavored with fresh lemon juice and zest. They’re easy to make and perfect for summer!

Baked Lemon Donuts with lemon glaze

These Lemon Donuts are super easy to make because they’re cake donuts which means they’re baked, not fried! They’re soft, fluffy and covered in a simple lemon glaze. Plus they’re made with fresh lemon juice and zest to pack in tons of bright citrus flavor!

Looking for more lemon recipes? Try my Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookies, Lemon Sweet Rolls or Small Batch Lemon Curd!

Ingredient Breakdown

All-purpose flour – this gives the donuts structure.

Baking powder and baking soda – unlike traditional donuts this recipe doesn’t use yeast so it relies on chemical leaveners to rise and get fluffy.

Butter – melted butter adds both flavor and moisture! I always recommend using unsalted butter but salted butter works if that’s all you have on hand, just be sure to omit the 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

Granulated sugar – sweetens and softens donuts.

Lemon zest – adds extra lemon flavor by rubbing zest and sugar together until it looks like wet sand. This releases lemon oil from the zest.

Buttermilk – adds flavor and moisture! Whole milk also works if that’s all you have on hand.

Lemon juice – gives the donuts their lemon flavor. Always use fresh lemon juice for the best flavor!

Egg – helps bind the ingredients.

Salt – enhances flavor.

Baked Lemon Donuts

How To Make Lemon Donuts

1. Make the Lemon Donuts: in a small bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, rub together the granulated sugar and lemon zest until it looks like wet sand. Then whisk in the buttermilk, lemon juice, melted butter and egg until smooth and well combined.

3. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.

4. Use a piping bag or a zip-top bag to pipe each donut ring 2/3 full. Do not fill to the top, the donuts will rise as they bake.

5. Bake the donuts at 350°F for 10 minutes. Allow to cool in donut pans for 5 minutes then unmold and finish cooling on a wire rack.

Lemon Donuts in a donut pan

6. Make the Lemon Glaze: In a small bowl whisk the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice until smooth. Immediately dip cooled donuts and top with lemon zest. These Lemon Donuts are best enjoyed the day that they’re made but can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days at room temperature or up to a week in the fridge.

Pro Tips For Lemon Donuts

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate; baking is a science after all!
  • Do not over mix the batter after adding the dry ingredients otherwise the donuts will be tough.
  • Don’t over fill the pan! Only fill each donut ring 2/3 full.
  • If your donut holes closed up while baking you can use a small round cookie cutter to cut out the middle. The smallest ring from this set fits perfectly.
  • Wait until the cake donuts are COMPLETELY COOLED before dipping in the glaze otherwise it will melt.
Lemon Donut with a bite in it

If you try this recipe then please leave a rating/comment below to let me know how you liked it and feel free to ask any recipe questions you may have! 🙂

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5 from 1 vote

Lemon Donuts

These baked Lemon Donuts with lemon glaze are flavored with fresh lemon juice and zest. They're easy to make and perfect for summer!
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 10 donuts
Calories 194kcal
Author Maria Azzarelli

Equipment

  • Donut pan
  • Piping bag or zip-top bag

Ingredients

Lemon Donuts

  • 150 g (1 1/4 cups) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • tsp baking soda
  • 75 g (1/4 cup + 2 tbsp) granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) buttermilk
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) lemon juice
  • 56 g (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 egg

Lemon Glaze

  • 150 g (1 1/4 cups) confectioners' sugar
  • 30 g (2 tbsp) lemon juice

Instructions

Lemon Donuts

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly grease donut pans.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, rub together the granulated sugar and lemon zest until it looks like wet sand. Then whisk in the buttermilk, lemon juice, melted butter and egg until smooth and well combined.
  • Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.
  • Use a piping bag or a zip-top bag to pipe each donut ring 2/3 full. Do not fill to the top, the donuts will rise as they bake.
  • Bake the donuts at 350°F for 10 minutes. Allow to cool in donut pans for 5 minutes then unmold and finish cooling on a wire rack.

Lemon Glaze

  • In a small bowl whisk the confectioners' sugar and lemon juice until smooth. Immediately dip cooled donuts and top with lemon zest.

Notes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
 
 
  • Buttermilk: Whole milk also works if that’s all you have on hand.
 
 
  • Butter: I recommend using unsalted butter. You can use salted butter, just be sure to omit the 1/4 tsp salt.
 
  • Lemon Donuts are best enjoyed the day that they’re made but can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days at room temperature or up to a week in the fridge.
 
  • Nutrition: the provided nutritional information is an estimate per serving. Please read my Nutrition Disclaimer for more information.

Nutrition

Calories: 194kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 118mg | Potassium: 42mg | Fiber: 0.5g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1mg

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