Apple-Cinnamon Buttermilk Cake Donuts

Yesterday (Saturday) was the one good day in Hayley’s Colossally-Bad End-of-Week.

Shall I give a recap? If I must.

On Wednesday, I bombed an American Lit quiz because my puny mind could not understand Puritan language and I didn’t absorb any information whatsoever about the previous night’s readings. Just so you know, Puritans are awful story-tellers. If you ever have the opportunity to read a Puritan story, don’t. You will burn less brain cells watching Jersey Shore.

I also found out my petition to never have to take Algebra 2 was denied. Hey, it was worth a try, but I was seriously bummed. The school is corrupt.

Then on Thursday, the cupcake factory let me go. It was totally out of left field and I was kind of disappointed, obviously. Although (temporarily?) being unemployed is allowing me to fulfill my dream of being a housewife, I’m already kind of bored. I was hoping that when I became an actual housewife, I’d, you know, have a husband to help out with the finances. Asking my mom for gas money is not exactly what I was hoping for in this luxurious career of housewifery.

And on my first day of unemployment, I enacted my housewifery and cleaned the house top to bottom. So that was kinda cool. Except because I was on a mad cleaning rush, I got a bad headache and briefly turned into the person I hoped I wouldn’t become while being briefly unemployed: the lazy, TV-watching, bon-bon eating girl. Except instead of bon-bons, it was jalapeno tortilla chips. And my outfit was almost verging on muu-muu territory. It was bad, you guys.

Then, this morning, I had this awesome idea of making donuts. So I got up bright and early, put on my baking cap (metaphorical, but a real one may be nice) and got to work. But my donuts fell apart, and my donut pan was scorched in the baking process, and I burnt my hand while attempting to pour my black tea into a pitcher…but poured it everywhere but into the pitcher.

Needless to say, I was a liiiiittttle depressed about it.

But yesterday, yesterday was the golden moment in this crap-storm week. My lovely boyfriend Jessie took me up to Apple Hill, this awesome nook of apple farms in El Dorado County, about an hour away from home.

Growing up, my family and I went to Apple Hill every autumn to go on hay rides, pick apples, and obviously, eat anything and everything apple-related, especially their freakin’ delicious homemade pies.

Apple Hill is kind of like a mixture between a craft fair, a pumpkin patch, and a fall festival. There’s the awesome food, the sweet farmer’s market, the hay maze and pumpkin train, and then the craft booths that sell anything from delightfully tacky merchandise featuring different breeds of dogs, to homemade magnets made of dried fruits, to the most creative: Imaginary Sticks.

Wanna know what an Imaginary Stick is?

Well, according to the merchant, it basically appears to be a stick (yep, any ol’ stick) painted with craft glue and puffy paint with a couple sequins glued on for good measure, sold for the purpose of “using it for your child’s endless imagination.” For $4.

Jessie and I paid no mind to the weird grandma craft booths and instead, took pictures of cool things like buttons and caramel apples.

Isn’t he cute? And slightly creepy… but that’s overpowered by its cuteness.

And of course, there were lots of apples.

And I thought that maybe, just maaaaybe, I could try to recreate Apple Hill’s signature apple donuts.

It was crazy–maybe Imaginary Stick crazy–but it was worth a try.

I was almost hoping they wouldn’t taste good so I couldn’t be stuck at home on this crappy day, eating fistfuls of donuts while watching Bravo reruns and hating my life. But they were moist, flavorful, spicy and delicious, and were gone in seconds, thanks to my starving family of apple-donut-eaters, eliminating my need for pulling out the muumuu and wallowing in my own self pity.

My family is so supportive.

Anyway, wanna know how to make these super yummy donuts? So simple.

Apple-Cinnamon Buttermilk Cake Donuts

2 3/4 cups spice cake mix
3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
2 eggs
2 tsp melted butter
1 tsp cinnamon, plus 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 cups finely diced baking apples, peeled (I used Golden Delicious)
Glaze (recipe and ingredients follow)

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease donut pans with cooking spray.
2. In a large bowl, add cake mix, buttermilk, eggs, melted butter and your spices and blend with a mixer on low-speed for about 2 minutes. Stir in your chopped apples. Carefully pour batter into a large gallon-size ziploc baggy, seal out the air, and snip the tip off of one of the baggy’s corners (make sure your cut is large enough to squeeze out the apple pieces!) Pipe batter into donut cavities, filling about 2/3 full. Bake, approximately 7-9 minutes, or until golden brown. Do not overbake. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes in the pan, then carefully invert the donut pan and wiggle it gently to allow donuts to fall out onto a wire rack.
3. Prepare glaze, and dunk slightly cooled donuts into glaze, turning to coat completely. Remove from glaze, and allow to dry, about 10-15 minutes. Or, if you prefer, instead of dunking donuts in glaze, roll them, while still-warm, in a mixture of cinnamon sugar and allow to set for about 5 mins on a wire rack. <–also a yummy alternative!

Quick Glaze

2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. In a medium saucepan, bring above ingredients together and whisk until smooth. Allow to cook on medium-low heat until thin and warm. If mixture begins to boil or thicken, briefly remove from heat and whisk to thin out again.
2. Dunk slightly-cooled donuts into glaze, turning with a fork or spatula to coat with glaze. Allow donuts to cool on a wire rack after being glazed for about 10-15 minutes to harden glaze.

I reeeeeally enjoy these donuts warm, but they are excellent at room-temperature for a lunch-time snack. The cinnamon sugar ones are my number one, but my family seemed to enjoy the glazed ones, too!

If you’re a NorCal reader, you MUST visit Apple Hill soon! And if you’re not a NorCal reader, make these donuts and pretend you did!

Happy Fall (and here’s to better days!)

xo, Hayley

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  1. cheeriosandlattes1 says:

    These look amazing! We would love to invite this apple recipe and other other of your favorite apple recipes in this week’s Iron Chef Mom link up contest!
    The Iron Chef Mom Team 🙂


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