These delicious cake mix donuts are perfect for when you want a tasty treat. Learn how to make this easy baked cake donut recipe in minutes!
Scroll down to the bottom of the post to see a video of the cake mix donuts in action! You’ll see how easy they are to make.
Who here loves donuts (raises hand)? Me!! It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t love donuts – but it’s also equally as hard to find someone who has a fryer at home.
I personally don’t have a fryer, and I have no interest in dealing with oil. That’s where this super easy baked cake donut recipe comes in.
These baked donuts are made with cake mix! Can you believe it? I suppose technically the fact they are baked instead of fried makes them something other than donuts, but I’m going with it given the fact that they are doughy, round (with a hole in the middle), and frosted. Looks like a donut to me.
The nice thing about these donuts is that once you get the cake mix, you likely have everything else in your cabinet to make them. There’s no firing up a fryer and using gallons of oil.
Your kids can help make these as there are minimal ingredients. I really love how easy these baked cake mix donuts are to make!
How Do Cake Mix Donuts Compare to Fried?
I’m not going to say that these take like Krispy Kreme because they don’t. Yet, they are delicious in their own right! I actually don’t love fried foods as much as I love baked, so these are perfect for me.
These cake mix donuts are a bit more dense than original, fried donuts. The consistency is a slightly different overall but ultimately, you’re going to love them. Especially with the frosting.
Cake vs. Cake Mix
You might think the biggest difference between cake donuts and cake mix donuts is that one is fried and one is baked (the mix). However, the truth is you can bake or fry either of these ‘nut styles.
The difference is actually that cake donuts use all the ingredients from scratch (flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, butter, milk, egg, spices) and the cake mix donuts use the cake mix as a shortcut.
Do they taste different? That depends on the mix and preparation (fried vs. baked). I would, generally speaking, expect the mix version to be more dense and taste more “cakey” than “donut-y.” I don’t prefer either one; they are both delicious.
Do you need a donut pan to bake donuts?
No – you don’t HAVE to have a donut pan. However it’s going to help you immensely if you do. I do understand this might be a “one and done” situation and therefore you might not want to make the commitment to a particular pan. If this is the case, use aluminum foil balls in a cupcake pan as I describe in the recipe below.
Are you ready to get the recipe? Find it below!
Cake Mix Baked Donuts
- 1 box yellow cake mix (you could use chocolate cake mix too!)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp. melted butter
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp. milk
- 1/2 tsp. water
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 1/2 cup powder sugar
Mix the wet ingredients together in a large bowl until just combined. You don’t want to overbeat because this will keep your recipe from being light and fluffy. Take a Ziploc bag, fill it up with the batter, and cut off a corner.
The next step to your easy cake mix donuts is done with a donut pan . . . but if you don’t have one: I saw this cool trick from Pretty Providence. You’ll use a muffin pan. Roll small pieces of foil into about 1/2 inch balls and place them into the center of each cup then spray the entire pan with cooking spray.
Take your batter and pipe around the foil ball in your baking pans. You’ll fill each compartment about halfway, but you can use less if you want them to really look like donuts.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool in the pan for 2-3 minutes. Remove the donuts from the pan and place on a cooling rack for about 5-10 minutes. Now while you wait for them to cool, make your glaze.
Mix all the ingredients for the glaze in a medium bowl. Then dip the donuts and return them to the cooling rack. Add some sprinkles to the top if you’d like.
As you can see, it really didn’t matter that these little babies weren’t real donuts. This baked donut recipe is such a cute mini wannabe version that I just had to gobble them up.
If you want to make these for the holidays, add appropriate colored sprinkles or jimmies. No one will know they aren’t “real” fried donuts!
They’ll be asking you for your recipe and will be surprised when you tell them they are baked donuts using cake mix.
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 egg(s)
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1 cup water
- 2 T butter, melted
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 2 T milk
- 1/2 tsp water
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Mix wet ingredients together in a large bowl. Add the cake mix and stir until just combined.
- Take a Ziploc bag, fill it up with the batter and cut off a corner. Fill up each donut pan mold about halfway.
- Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Allow to cool in the pan for 2-3 minutes.
- Remove the donuts from the pan and place on a cooling rack for about 5-10 minutes. While you wait for them to cool, make your glaze.
- Mix all the ingredients for the glaze in a medium bowl. Dip the donuts in a little bit, and return them to the cooling rack.
- Add some sprinkles to the top to finish.
You can add anything you like to the batter: chocolate chips, nuts, sprinkles . . . feel free to get creative with this recipe.
Serving Size:1 donut
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 254Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 341mgCarbohydrates: 42gFiber: 1gSugar: 24gProtein: 3g
If you enjoyed this baked cake donut recipe, I’d love for you to check out some of our other favorite dessert recipes:
- Funfetti Mini Cakes Recipe
- Baked Apple Cider Donuts
- Baked Maple Chai Donuts
- How to Make a Mug Cake
- Cream Cookie Lemon Bars Recipe
Photography by Patty from The PKP Way