I've always been a lover of fluffy, brioche doughnuts... and this blackberry cream that's piped in the middle of these puffy clouds makes for the ultimate treat.
- Flavorful Blackberry Brioche Doughnuts
- Brioche doughnuts vs. regular doughnuts
- The Beautiful World of Brioche
- Ingredients you’ll need
- How to make fried brioche doughnuts
- How to make blackberry pastry cream
- How to fill brioche doughnuts with pastry cream
- Assembly & Pastry Cream Flavors
- Tips and tricks
- More doughnut recipes
- Blackberry Cream Brioche Doughnuts
Flavorful Blackberry Brioche Doughnuts
Make all your doughnut dreams come true with this summery, berry-forward recipe for filled brioche doughnuts. This is a lengthy, overnight doughnut recipe but I promise it’s worth it and can be made by anyone. My brioche doughnuts are always fried rather than baked to ensure fluffy, tender results every time. You and your loved ones won’t be able to resist!
Brioche doughnuts vs. regular doughnuts
Brioche is an enriched dough made with lots of eggs and butter. When used for doughnuts, the egg-enriched dough gives the pastry a very rich flavor and a tender crumb. Regular doughnuts, on the other hand, are made with just flour, yeast, water, and salt and don’t turn out as rich tasting.
The soft and buttery texture of brioche dough makes it the perfect choice for lots of baked goods, like babka, french toast, rolls, doughnuts, and bread pudding.
The Beautiful World of Brioche
Brioche is known to be an enriched dough due to the amounts of both egg and butter that have been incorporated during the mixing process and it allows for such versatility! Here are just a few of the many things that you can create utilizing brioche as the base:
- French Toast
- Hamburger & Hot Dog Buns
- Brioche Bread
- Laminated brioche
Ingredients you’ll need
- Active dry yeast - Your brioche dough won’t rise without the yeast! Make sure it’s still fresh and hasn’t expired before you begin to make the dough.
- All purpose flour - This is the best option for fluffy and light doughnuts, so try not to replace it.
- Eggs - You’ll need lots of eggs for both the brioche doughnut dough and the vanilla pastry cream.
- Butter - Again, you’ll need a lot of unsalted butter for the dough and cream.
- Oil - Palm oil shortening works best for frying these doughnuts because it develops a perfect crust and heats up incredibly quickly, which is very convenient when making back to back batches. If you can’t find palm oil shortening, canola oil is your next best option.
- Cardamom sugar - Because who doesn’t love a doughnut rolled in a spiced sugar for an extra boost of flavor?
- Blackberries - Plump, juicy blackberries are best for this recipe! You will be using the blackberries in both the pastry cream as well as a garnish on the tip top of each doughnut!
As I mentioned earlier, this brioche donut recipe is a bit of a commitment. These three pieces of equipment will make your life a LOT easier:
- Mixer with Paddle Attachment and Whisk - Making brioche dough requires quite a bit of kneading and whipping cream takes a lot of mixing to get it nice and fluffy. Give your arms a break with a little electronic assistance!
- Small Fryer - I've recently fallen in love with this little fryer. It doesn't take up too much space in the kitchen and it allows me to fry at a consistent temperature. This is completely optional - a sturdy dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot to hold your oil in will work as well!
- Pastry Bag and Tip - Filling donuts with passion fruit cream can be a messy affair if you don’t have the right tools. In a pinch, you can swap in a zip-top bag with the corner snipped off or make a pastry bag using parchment paper.
How to make fried brioche doughnuts
Step 1: Activate the yeast. Mix the warm water, sugar, and yeast together in a bowl and let it sit until bubbles start to form on the surface.
Step 2: Make the dough. Mix the lime zest, eggs and flour into the yeast mixture until combined. Knead the dough until it looks smooth and glossy.
Step 3: Let it proof overnight. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover it in plastic, and let it proof until the dough has doubled in size. Afterward, punch down the dough with your fist and place it back in the fridge overnight.
Step 4: Shape into doughnuts. After the dough has rested overnight, it’s time to start shaping! Divide your dough using a sharp knife or a bench scraper into even 65-gram pieces. Gently degas each piece by pressing on top of the ball with the heel of your hand before forming into a tight boule. Place each piece of dough onto a parchment-lined baking tray that has been sprayed with oil and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough sit undisturbed in a warm spot to proof until they have doubled in size for about 1.5 -2 hours.
Step 5: Fry the doughnuts. Heat the oil to 340ºF in a large pot. Fry each doughnut for 2 to 3 minutes per side, then remove with a slotted spoon and leave to rest. Repeat until you run out of dough.
Step 6: Coat in sugar. Roll the hot doughnuts in cardamom sugar once the excess oil has drained, then leave them to cool completely.
How to make blackberry pastry cream
Step 1: Process the blackberries. Place the blackberries into a blender or food processor and pulse. Strain out the blackberry juice and set it aside.
Step 2: Temper the pastry cream. Whisk the sugar, cornstarch, blackberry juice, and salt in a saucepan. Whisk the eggs together in a separate bowl. Cook the milk and sugar mixture over medium heat until it starts to boil. Slowly pour the milk mixture into the bowl with the eggs while constantly whisking.
Step 3: Smooth it out. Pour the cream back into the saucepan and bring it to a boil again. Keep whisking, then lower the heat and whisk until it’s smooth. Strain it into a clean bowl and finish by stirring in the butter.
Step 4: Let it thicken. Place a layer of plastic over the cream, making sure to press it right on top to prevent a skin from forming. Leave it in the fridge until it thickens slightly.
How to fill brioche doughnuts with pastry cream
Step 1: Fill the piping bag. Transfer the blackberry pastry cream from the bowl to a piping bag.
Step 2: Fill each doughnut with cream. Pierce a doughnut with the tip of the piping bag and squeeze the cream in the center until it feels heavy in your hand and starts to slightly ooze out. Add a blackberry for decoration, then serve and enjoy!
Assembly & Pastry Cream Flavors
What's so fun about this pastry cream recipe is that you are able to play with the flavor by omitting the blackberry puree and adding another option. Throw in some plum puree, nectarine puree, raspberry puree to make your own version of these brioche doughnuts!
To store: I highly recommend eating the doughnuts the same day they’re made as they tend to dry out quickly. However, if you do have leftovers, you can store the unfilled doughnuts in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Pastry cream will keep, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 5 days.
Tips and tricks
- DON’T skip the overnight rest. The dough continues to ferment slowly overnight within the low temperatures, which is essential to developing flavor.
- Use a thermometer to consistently check the oil’s temperature. It can rise and lower as you move through the frying process. Keep a close eye on the temperature to ensure it stays at 345ºF for even and consistent doughnuts.
- Be prepared before you start! This recipe moves quickly, so have your thermometer, a plate lined with paper towels, and your sugar coating ready before you begin frying.
- Have fun playing with the pastry cream recipe! Try omitting the blackberries and replace them with another flavor option, like plum puree, nectarine puree, raspberry puree, cocoa powder, or your own infusion.
More doughnut recipes
- Chocolate & Espresso Doughnuts
- Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Rose Pastry Cream
- Coconut Cream Baked Doughnuts
- Lemon Poppyseed Old Fashioned Doughnuts
As always, I love seeing your creations and hearing from you! If you try this recipe, please share your creation with me on social media! You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Youtube and Pinterest - for more delicious recipes sent straight to your inbox, sign up for my newsletter!
Blackberry Cream Brioche Doughnuts
- Piping Tip & Bag
- Slotted Spoon
- ¾ Cup (175 g) Warm Water
- ¼ Cup (50 g) Granulated Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon Lime Zest
- 3 ¾ Cup (500 g) All-Purpose flour
- 3 Large Eggs
- 1 ¼ teaspoon Salt
- ⅓ Cup + 1 Tbsp (100 g) Unsalted Butter, room temperature
- 2 liters Palm or Canola oil, for frying
Blackberry Pastry Cream
- 1 ½ Cups (216 g) Blackberries
- ½ Cup (100 g) Granulated Sugar
- ⅓ Cup (40 g) Corn starch
- ½ teaspoon Sea Salt
- 4 Large Eggs
- 2 Cups (500 g) Whole Milk
- ¼ Cup (50 g) Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature
- ½ Cup (100 g) Granulated Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Ground Cardamom
- Mix together the warm water, sugar and yeast together in your stand mixer’s mixing bowl. Let this mixture rest undisturbed for 5-10 minutes until you start to see bubbles start to form on the surface.¾ Cup Warm Water, ¼ Cup Granulated Sugar, 1 teaspoon Active dry yeast
- Add your lime zest, flour, and eggs to the active yeast mixture using the paddle attachment. After one minute of mixing on medium speed, the ingredients should be well combined. At this point, switch to using the dough hook attachment and knead for 6-8 minutes before adding salt and butter one tablespoon at a time. Continue kneading with the dough hook for another 5-8 minutes until the dough looks smooth and glossy and you notice that the dough is not sticking to the sides of the bowl. This means that your dough has been well developed and we can stop mixing.1 teaspoon Lime Zest, 3 ¾ Cup All-Purpose flour, 3 Large Eggs, 1 ¼ teaspoon Salt, ⅓ Cup + 1 tablespoon Unsalted Butter
- Place the dough in an oiled bowl and allow to proof for 1.5 to 2 hours covered in plastic wrap. You’re looking for the dough to have about doubled in size before moving on to the next step. If your kitchen tends to run quite cold, try to find a warm spot to leave the dough for this resting period. Then, remove the plastic wrap, and degas the dough by punching it down before recovering and placing in the fridge overnight. This overnight rest of about 12-14 hours is essential in order to develop flavor as the dough continues to ferment slowly within low temperatures.
- After the dough has rested overnight – it’s time to start shaping! Divide your dough using a sharp knife or a bench scraper into 65 gram even pieces. Gently degas each piece by pressing on top of the ball with the heel of your hand before forming into a tight boule. Place each piece of dough onto a parchment lined baking tray where the parchment has been lightly sprayed with baking spray and cover with plastic wrap that has also been sprayed ( so the plastic wrap doesn't stick to the dough). Let the dough sit undisturbed in a warm spot to proof until they have doubled in size for about 1.5-2 hours.
- Approximately twenty minutes before the doughnuts have finished their final proof, it’s time to start heating your frying oil! Grab a large Dutch oven or your preferred container for frying. Add the oil, ensuring that you have at least 3 inches of height from the bottom of the Dutch oven to the top of the oil. Turning the stove on medium high, heat the oil to 340° F. Prepare your cardamom sugar while the oil is heating – simply combine cardamom and sugar and mix to combine.2 liters Palm or Canola oil, ½ Cup Granulated Sugar, 1 teaspoon Ground Cardamom
- I always do a “test” doughnut before moving on to the remaining doughnuts. Fry the test doughnut for 2-3 minutes on each side before removing from the oil with a slotted spoon and placing on a cooling rack lined with paper towels. Then, coat in cardamom sugar before letting cool completely. Continue this process by gently dropping four pieces of proofed dough into the oil at a time, making sure not to crowd the doughnuts too much! Make sure to check the temperature of the oil after each batch, in case you need to reheat the oil back to 345° F.
BLACKBERRY PASTRY CREAM
- Next, onto the blackberry pastry cream! First off, place the blackberries into a food processor or blender and blend. Strain the blackberry puree through a strainer to get rid of the seeds and set aside.1 ½ Cups Blackberries
- Whisk together the sugar, corn starch, milk, blackberry juice and salt in a saucepan. Whisk together the eggs in a separate bowl. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil, then slowly pour the milk mixture into the eggs while whisking.½ Cup Granulated Sugar, ⅓ Cup Corn starch, ½ teaspoon Sea Salt, 2 Cups Whole Milk, 4 Large Eggs
- Return the mixture to your saucepan bringing to a boil again while constantly mixing. Lower the heat and cook for one minute while whisking. Remove from heat and strain into a clean bowl before adding the softened butter, mixing so that it naturally incorporates due to the heat.¼ Cup Unsalted Butter
- Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic onto the top of the cream so that you do not get a skin.
- Place in the fridge where it will start to thicken and solidify a bit. Before using the pastry cream, whisk to ensure a smooth texture!
- Fill a piping bag with your blackberry pastry cream. Pierce the doughnut with the tip of the piping bag and fill the center of the doughnut with the blackberry cream. Enjoy!
Could you make the blackberry pastry cream a day before and leave in the fridge?
You certainly can! Pastry cream will keep covered in the refrigerator, for up to 5 days.
Hi there, can I substitute milk for water? Also, I am having a hard time shaping into boules. Would you be able to explain your technique?
Hi there Caitlin - thanks for reaching out! I haven't tested this recipe with that specific substitution so sadly I'm not sure if that would work. As for the shaping, I actually have a video of the doughnut making process that I'll link below for you to reference. I hope this helps! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgMuJ8ajWIo
Thank you so much for your reply!! I will watch the video!