Imagine waking up to a crisp, fall morning and getting a craving for freshly fried, pumpkin old-fashioned doughnuts! The perfect morning you say? AGREED. With a side of hot apple cider of course. In less than an hour and a half, you'll be enjoying some pumpkin old fashioned doughnuts yourself with this recipe!
⭐ Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Indulge in the irresistible charm of autumn with these delectable Pumpkin Old Fashioned Doughnuts! These delightful treats are a celebration of the season's most beloved flavors, combining the warm essence of pumpkin with a classic doughnut recipe.
When summer turns to fall, nothing gets me into the festive spirit like sweet potato, and pumpkin flavored everything like pumpkin affogatos, pumpkin sweet cream cold foam, pumpkin butter, and a loaf of pumpkin bread!
Sink your teeth into their tender, cake-like texture that's complemented by the rich blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove spices. Topped with a delicious glaze, these old-fashioned pumpkin doughnuts promise to be a delightful and comforting treat that captures the essence of fall in every delicious bite.
Most of the ingredients for these Pumpkin Old Fashioned Sour Cream Glazed Donuts are pretty self-explanatory. Here are a few notes to keep in mind, though:
- Cake Flour - With a lower protein content than all purpose flour, cake flour donuts have a tender-crumbed consistency that mimic bakery versions. If you don’t have any on hand, make your own using AP flour and cornstarch. For 1 cup of cake flour, simply measure out a cup of AP flour, remove 2 tablespoons worth, then add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch before sifting.
- Crisco or Shortening - Shortening provides the best texture in donuts, while butter yields more of a chewy result. I don’t recommend swapping them.
- Pumpkin Puree - A classic can of Libby's pumpkin puree or the brand of your choosing should work perfectly.
- Sour Cream - There’s no two ways about it - good donuts have a lot of fat. Be sure to use real, full-fat sour cream for the best results.
- Corn Syrup - Corn syrup helps to prevent sugar crystals from forming, which is important in something like this pumpkin glaze for donuts. In a pinch, try swapping in honey.
📖 Step by Step Instructions
Making these homemade old fashioned sour cream donuts might seem a little intimidating at first, but with a bit of time and a little practice, you’re sure to succeed! Here’s how it’s done:
Mix Dough: Place the sugar and Crisco in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix for about 2 minutes. Then add the wet ingredients, followed by the dry ingredients until mixed.
Rest Dough: Place the dough in an air-tight container in the fridge for an hour – I like to make my dough in the afternoon and let it sit in the fridge overnight before continuing on.
Roll Doughnuts: Dust the top of the dough with flour, and roll out your dough to be ½ inch thick. Cut as many doughnuts and holes as possible using a doughnut cutter or circular cookie cutters of various sizes.
Fry Donuts: Fry for 15 seconds on the first side, then flip to cook for 75 seconds. Then, finally, flip the doughnut to cook for an additional 75 seconds until golden brown before removing from oil and set on your prepared paper towels.
Glaze Donuts: Dip the tops of the freshly fried doughnuts straight into the glaze before setting on a cooling rack to let the excess glaze drip off and the remaining pumpkin glaze to set on the donuts.
👩🏻🍳 Expert Tips
- Chill & Rest the dough. Before you roll and fry your sour cream doughnuts, it is important to let the dough rest for at least an hour.
- Work quickly! It's incredibly important to glaze your old-fashioned doughnuts within moments of removing them from the oil. By dipping the doughnuts into the glaze while still hot, the glaze does not seize, trapping a large amount of icing into the crevices of the doughnut. The glaze will instead evenly coat the doughnuts, creating a thin glazed crust.
- Don’t forget your mise en place! Before you start frying your pumpkin doughnuts, it's important to make sure that you have properly prepared your space to prevent overcooking! Make sure to have your thermometer close by to monitor the oil's temperature, a plate lined with paper towels to place the fried doughnuts on, and your glaze ready for dipping.
- Make sure to consistently check your oil's temperature! It can rise above the target temperature that you should be frying at quite quickly. It also will decrease in temperature after frying a batch of doughnuts. Between each batch of doughnuts, check the temperature of your oil before adding more dough to ensure even and consistent results.
Head on over to my guide for choosing the right oil to fry donuts for more information!
💭 Recipe FAQs
When it comes to donuts of any sort, they are best eaten super fresh. In fact, I find that they are at their tastiest as soon as the glaze just *barely* sets! All that said, feel free to make the dough up to a day in advance of frying. Any leftover glazed donuts will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
The distinguished craggy top, the sour cream tang, dense crumb structure, and the light coating of glaze are some of the defining characteristics of a quality old-fashioned doughnut! This particular style of making sour cream doughnuts and frying them has been around since about 1830 - so the “old fashioned” moniker makes sense!
While pumpkin puree is a classic fall ingredient, there’s nothing stopping you from trading in sweet potato puree or squash puree instead!
Old-fashioned donuts are cake donuts, meaning they're leavened with baking powder, while yeast donuts are leavened with yeast, resulting in a different texture and flavor.
Using a candy thermometer in your deep fryer or large pot will ensure your oil is at the ideal temperature. Make sure the oil is not too hot to prevent burning the donuts.
A donut cutter or biscuit cutter is perfect for shaping your doughnut dough, and you can use a smaller cutter or the end of a piping tip for doughnut holes.
Incorporating brown sugar and warm spices like pumpkin pie spice and vanilla extract in your doughnut batter will elevate the pumpkin spice flavor, making them the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee.
If you try the recipe for these Pumpkin Old Fashioned Sour Cream Glazed Doughnuts, please leave a 🌟 review and 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! 📧
Pumpkin Old Fashioned Doughnuts
- Air Tight Container
- Doughnut Cutter or Cookie Cutters
- Slotted Spoon
Sour Cream Old Fashioned Doughnuts
- 3 Cups (355 g) Cake Flour
- 2 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 2 teaspoon Pumpkin Spice
- ½ Cup (100 g) Sugar
- 2 tablespoon Crisco or Shortening
- 2 Large Egg Yolks
- ⅔ Cup (165 g) Sour Cream
- ½ Cup (120 g) Pumpkin Puree
- Palm Oil for Frying, or Canola, read notes before using canola
Pumpkin Doughnut Glaze
- 4.5 Cups (450 g) Powdered Sugar, 3 Cups
- 2 teaspoon Corn Syrup, or Honey
- ¾ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Pumpkin Spice
- ¼ Cup (60 g) Pumpkin Puree
- ⅓ Cup (60 g) Hot Water plus more if needed
Mixing & Frying Doughnuts
- Whisk together the dry ingredients – cake flour, baking powder pumpkin spice and sea salt in a medium bowl.3 Cups Cake Flour, 2 teaspoon Baking Powder, 1 teaspoon Salt, 2 teaspoon Pumpkin Spice
- Place the sugar and crisco in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix for about 2 minutes. Then add the egg yolks and mix for an additional two minutes before adding the sour cream and pumpkin puree.½ Cup Sugar, 2 tablespoon Crisco or Shortening, 2 Large Egg Yolks, ⅔ Cup Sour Cream, ½ Cup Pumpkin Puree
- Add the dry ingredients in two separate parts, mixing until just combined.
- Place the dough in an air-tight container in the fridge for an hour – I like to make my dough in the afternoon and let it sit in the fridge overnight before continuing on.
- Place enough oil in a cast iron pot so that you have at least 3 inches of oil in height from the base of the pot. Heat the oil to 330 degrees Fahrenheit.Palm Oil for Frying
- Meanwhile, dust your work surface with flour and place the dough on top. Dust the top of the dough with flour, and roll out your dough to be ½ inch thick. Cut as many doughnuts and holes as possible using a doughnut cutter or circular cookie cutters of various sizes. Make sure to dip the cutter in flour before each cut otherwise it will stick!
- Feel free to re-roll your dough and continue to cut more doughnuts and doughnut holes until you have barely any scraps left.
- Before you start the process of frying, I like to prepare my space by setting a cooling rack or a large plate near my cast iron pot and line with paper towels.
- To test that your oil is ready to go, I like to use a doughnut hole and drop it into our preheated oil. To fry your doughnuts, you’ll fry for 15 seconds on the first side, then flip to cook for 75 seconds. Then, finally, flip the doughnut to cook for an additional 75 seconds until golden brown before removing from oil and set on your prepared paper towels.
- Continue cooking doughnuts and doughnut holes in this fashion until there are none left! Make sure to continually monitor the temperature of your oil and only add doughnuts when the oil reads approximately 330 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Add all ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer, and whisk everything until properly combined. Add more hot water to the glaze if you prefer a thinner glaze.4.5 Cups Powdered Sugar, 2 teaspoon Corn Syrup, ¾ teaspoon Vanilla Extract, ½ teaspoon Salt, 1 teaspoon Pumpkin Spice, ¼ Cup Pumpkin Puree, ⅓ Cup Hot Water plus more if needed
- Dip the tops of the freshly fried doughnuts straight into the glaze before setting them on a cooling rack to set.