Warming up with these Healthier Baked Hot Chocolate Doughnuts. Made with coconut oil, sweet maple, whole wheat flour, and one top-secret ingredient that no one would guess. Then baked, dipped, dunked, and glazed generously in a rich and creamy coconut hot chocolate glaze. There’s really nothing not to love about these cute (and just perfectly sweet) doughnuts. The true secret? Plenty of vanilla extract and a splash of almond extract to highlight the flavors within the chocolate. These easy baked doughnuts are best enjoyed with a sweet mug of hot chocolate… the perfect way to warm up this winter!
Look, just because it is “healthy January”, doesn’t mean we can’t have our sweets too. Especially in today’s world, we need a little chocolate to help bring in the cheer. Cheesy, but it’s actually so true. As I mentioned in Sunday’s Favorite’s post, one of the silver linings of this past year was watching so many of you grow a love of baking. It was so fun to see!
And let’s be real, with many of us at home these days…and taking one zoom call after another, a hot chocolate doughnut is exactly the afternoon snack we need.
I mean, right? Yes, yes. Of course!
All that said, I know some of us are still looking to eat a little cleaner, this month. So I baked these doughnuts and made them just a touch healthier, but still so delicious. Trust me, these took some serious testing, but they were worth it. These are every bit as delicious as they sound. The one key? Lots of chocolate, which we all know is full of so many good for you antioxidants!
To be honest, I’ve had this idea since way back in November. I also thought about making these in December, but I had an idea that I might be able to adjust the recipe to make them a touch healthier. So I stored the concept away for a few weeks…and then totally forgot about them.
That is until little Miss Asher (who’s more like an adult these days), texted me looking for an easy hot chocolate recipe to make. Her text came in at the perfect time…just as I was brainstorming healthier sweets to share with you guys.
So I did as I do with most chocolate recipes, I ran the idea by my mom. She was sold the second the word hot chocolate came out of my mouth. And then the rest was up to me. I spent an entire day testing and retesting these doughnuts., but I finally got them just right!
Here are the details – these are easy.
Start with the doughnuts. Since I wanted these to be made on the healthier sides, I had three goals. No added processed sugar, less white flour, and one sneaky ingredient that gives everyone an extra boost of vegetables.
The batter is simple. Mix coconut oil with maple or honey to sweeten, then add in some eggs. And then…the secret ingredient…a little pumpkin puree, which I promise is not detectable in any way. The pumpkin only adds moisture to these doughnuts, and of course, some added health benefits as well.
And the next key…vanilla with a splash of almond extract. If you don’t have almond extract, that’s OK, but it does add something special to these doughnuts. It helps to highlight the rich chocolate flavors in the glaze.
For the flours, I like to use mostly whole wheat flour with just a touch of all-purpose. You could also use a gluten-free flour blend, if needed. The whole wheat flour is not only healthier, it actually helps to create a really nice texture and crumb that’s similar to a real-deal fried doughnut.
Once the batter is ready to go, just bake it up in a doughnut pan. Or if you don’t have a doughnut pan, make doughnut holes using either a regular muffin pan or a mini muffin pan. Either option works just the same, but be sure to really grease the pan before adding the batter. This is a stickier batter, so greasing the pans is essential.
Now that hot chocolate glaze….
Oh, this glaze. It MAKES these doughnuts and is nothing like your average doughnut glaze.
For starters, it’s made with real chocolate as opposed to just cocoa powder for an intense chocolate flavor. And to keep the glaze rich and creamy, a splash of coconut milk, vanilla, and just a touch of espresso. The espresso is optional, but I always add a shot to my hot chocolate recipe. It’s delicious.
Once the doughnuts have baked, I like to let them cool completely, then dip them in the warm glaze. So make the glaze just after you pull the doughnuts out of the oven. Then enjoy a few doughnuts with the glaze still warm…and ideally with a side of creamy hot chocolate. Trust me, tis’ very very good.
And what’s even better is that these are pretty healthy too. So you see? They’ll make a cold January Tuesday warm, cozy, and delicious.
Oh! And I do have to tell you that mom and Asher greatly enjoyed these. Asher did hers up with the largest mug of hot chocolate topped with mounds of whipped cream. She’s a smart little girl.
Looking for other healthy desserts? Here are my favorites:
Lastly, if you make these Healthier Baked Hot Chocolate Doughnuts, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Baked Hot Chocolate Doughnuts
Servings: 12 dougnuts/doughnut muffins
Calories Per Serving: 184 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/2 cup real maple syrup, or honey
- 1/2 cup canned coconut milk (or milk of choice)
- 1/3 cup pumpkin puree (plain Greek yogurt or applesauce also work great)
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour (or all-purpose flour)
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease a 6-cup doughnut pan or 12-cup muffin pan with butter or melted coconut oil. 2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut oil, maple syrup, milk, pumpkin, eggs, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) until combined. Add the whole wheat flour, flour, baking powder, and salt, mixing until just combined. 3. Spoon the batter into a zip top bag and snip the corner off. Pipe the batter into each donut cup, filling 1/2-2/3 the way full. Bake 12-15 minutes, until the tops are set. Remove and let cool 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edges to release, invert the doughnuts onto a cooling rack. Repeat with the remaining batter. If using a muffin pan, fill 2/3 the way full and bake 12-15 minutes.4. To make the hot chocolate glaze. Combine chocolate chips and coconut milk in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave, stirring every 45 seconds, until melted. Stir in the vanilla and coffee powder. Let cool 5 minutes. 5. Dip or drizzle the doughnuts in the glaze. Top with chocolate shavings, if desired. Highly recommend eating a few warm…with a rather large mug of hot cocoa 🙂
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Storing: store in an airtight container for up to 5 days at room temperature. To Bring Eggs to Room Temperature: place the eggs in a bowl and fill with warm water. Let sit 5 minutes. To Make Gluten Free: Use an equal amount of your favorite gluten free flour blend in place of the all-purpose flour. I recommend Cup4Cup gluten free flour. Doughnut Pans: this is the doughnut pan I recommend. Muffin Pans: this is the exact 12-cup muffin pan that I have. Mini Muffin Pans: this is the exact 12-cup muffin pan that I have.