Banana Bread Donuts with Browned Butter Caramel Glaze
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I love banana bread anything and could eat it every day and not tire of it.
I have 40+ banana bread and banana recipes but no banana donuts. So I dusted off my donut pan and make some.
The last time I made donuts was early 2014 so I was overdue. These baked donuts are just like making muffins but you use a donut pan instead. Less than $10 bucks and a fun way to change up banana bread or most any quickbread and baked donuts are so much healthier than fried.
I only have one donut pan and made 6 donuts and used my mini muffin pans to make 18 donut holes. Mix and match with whatever pans you have available.
It’s a fast and easy recipe that uses oil rather than butter so there’s nothing to cream and no mixer to dirty. Oil keeps quickbreads softer and springier than butter and sour cream (or Greek yogurt) is extra insurance for soft, springy, bouncy, fluffy donuts.
The glaze is adapted from this Vanilla Caramel Glaze. It makes the donuts go from great to totally fabulous. I’ve made variations of the original glaze many times but this is the first time I’ve browned the butter. If you’ve never browned butter, read this tutorial. It’s the best 5 minutes you’ll spend all month.
The glaze soaks into the donuts and donut holes and makes them even moister, softer, and more irresistible. Between the scent of warm banana bread and browned butter caramel, your house will smell like a bakery.
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil (liquid-state coconut oil may be substituted)
- 1/4 cup cup sour cream (lite is okay; or Greek yogurt may be substituted)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large bananas)
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, browned (half of 1 stick)
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 3 tablespoons half-and-half or cream, plus more as necessary for consistency
- 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted (must be sifted)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
- Donuts – Preheat oven to 350F. Spray one 6-count non-stick donut pan and two mini muffin pans with floured cooking spray, or grease and flour the pans; set aside. Alternatively, use the pans you have available including mini donuts, full-size muffins, etc. and adjusting baking times accordingly.
- To a large bowl, add the the egg, sugars, oil, sour cream, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
- Add the bananas and stir to combine.
- Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and fold with spatula or stir gently with a spoon until just combined; don’t overmix.
- Turn batter out into prepared pans, filling each cavity about 2/3 to 3/4 full. I dollop the batter into the donut pan with a spoon but you can transfer to a large ziptop back, seal, cut one of the corners with a scissors, and pipe into the pans if that’s easier. For the donut holes, I use a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop filled with about 1 heaping tablespoon batter.
- Bake for about 13 to 14 minutes, or until donuts and donut holes are cooked through, set, and springy to the touch. Both the donuts and donut holes each baked for about 13 1/2 minutes in my oven but all pans, climates, ovens, etc. vary so bake until done. Allow donuts and donut holes to cool in the pans while you make the glaze.
- Glaze – This is a fast moving recipe. Have everything in place before beginning. Brown the butter (click for a detailed tutorial) by cooking butter over medium heat in a medium saucepan until it’s amber to brown in color, about 5 minutes depending on pan size. I swirl the pan in the last minute or so to make sure I can really see the color changes. Butter will go through stages of hissing, sputtering, and making noise until the water cooks off at which point the browning occurs. Butter will smell nutty and aromatic.
- Turn the heat to medium-low, add the brown sugar, and cook for about 1 minute, stirring nearly continuously.
- Remove the pan from the heat, allow it to cool for about 1 minute, and add 3 tablespoons cream, vanilla, and salt, taking caution because the mixture will bubble vigorously. Whisk aggressively to incorporate the cream and calm the bubbling.
- Add the confectioners’ sugar and whisk to combine. I absolutely recommend using sifted sugar so the glaze whisks up smooth, silky, and free from lumps. As necessary, add additional cream (or confectioners’ sugar) to reach desired glaze consistency.
- Dip the top of each donut and donut hole in glaze and allow to cool momentarily before enjoying. The glaze sets up fairly fast so you’ll want to dip fairly quickly, adding a splash of additional cream if necessary to thin it out. Donuts and donut holes are best warm and fresh but will keep airtight at room temp for up to 4 days. Extra glaze will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Reheat gently before using.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 604Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 65mgSodium: 352mgCarbohydrates: 98gFiber: 2gSugar: 74gProtein: 5g
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