These easy, simple and healthy vanilla protein donuts are gluten free, dairy free, and naturally sweetened. Baked to perfection they make a great snack or healthy dessert! Choose from a healthy chocolate glaze or classic vanilla glaze to decorate!
The Best Healthy Donuts
I’ve always been a huge fan of donuts. But over the years I’ve enjoyed them less often because 1. they usually contain dairy, and 2. they are sugar bombs. While I’m all for indulgence in moderation, I just don’t ever feel good after eating a regular donut. (Sorry krispy kremes). These protein donuts are a game changer. If you’ve never had baked donuts before then be prepared because this is the baked donut recipe.
Making homemade donuts is super simple and easy and the end results are incredible. Perfect for any sweet tooth craving. They have a perfect cake-like consistency that’s soft, chewy, light and fluffy and are wonderfully sweet (but not too sweet), and secretly pack a protein punch!
This makes them a great snack during the day (even for pre- or post-workout!), or a nice dessert in the evening that won’t leave you feeling wired before hitting the hay. Sounds delicious, huh?
We make these healthier donuts without refined sugar and in a simple doughnut pan. Making donuts is so easy you can make this a weekend morning tradition. These healthy donuts are pretty good for you but they taste incredible so everyone can enjoy them just the same. This is a great recipe for so many reasons but I’m sure you can spot them for yourself.
Health Benefits of Adding Protein to Desserts
When it comes to protein, there are ample health benefits to this essential macronutrient.
Specifically, adding protein to desserts (like these donuts), is a great idea as the protein helps to balance out the carbohydrate content, slows the release of sugars into the bloodstream (which can help prevent sugar cravings), and lends to the feeling of satiation.
Whether it’s donuts, muffins, chocolate bars, banana bread, or another sweet favourite, the addition of protein is what brings these desserts from just-a-regular-sugary-dessert, to a still delicious soft and fluffy dessert, but healthier take!
What are protein donuts made of?
Protein donuts can vary in ingredients and overall protein content. A simple google search will show you there’s a big variety of protein donuts out there. Some are made with whey protein, others with plant-based protein.
Some protein donuts contain regular all-purpose flour, and others, like mine, use gluten free flour blends. There are also grain-free protein donuts that use other flours like almond or coconut, but these typically have a higher fat content.
How to Choose the Best Protein Powder
When it comes to choosing a good protein powder to make my simple vanilla protein donuts I recommend paying attention to the following, as not all protein powders are created equal!
- Choose a protein powder with no artificial ingredients. Some brands add in artificial sweeteners (like aspartame), or artificial colours or dyes. These are best to be avoided.
- Go with an organic protein powder. Non-organic protein powders can contain genetically modified ingredients, so look for one is specifically organic.
- Pick between natural organic whey protein (if you can tolerate dairy) or plant-based which can include rice protein, pea protein, or a blend of several plant proteins.
My favourite brands include: Orgain, Genuine Health, North Coast Naturals, and Organika.
Ingredients in Simple Vanilla Protein Healthy Donuts
To make these delicious donuts you only need a handful of common pantry staples. You’ll be surprised at how delicious these protein-packed treats taste even with simple ingredients.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Gluten free baking flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 baking flour) You can use almond flour or wheat flour (I have not tested this recipe with oat flour)
- Vanilla protein powder (I used Genuine Health vegan)
- Baking powder
- Pure maple syrup
- Olive oil
- Unsweetened almond milk (coconut milk, oat milk, or regular milk will work too)
- Pure vanilla extract
Steps To Making Baked Donuts:
To make these donuts you need to follow a few simple steps. You’ll also need a silicone donut pan like this one!
1 Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and lightly grease the silicone donut pan with olive oil.
2 Add dry ingredients to a large bowl and whisk to combine.
3 Add in wet ingredients and stir until smooth and no lumps remain (don’t over-mix).
4 Add the batter to a piping bag or large ziplock bag with the corner cut and pipe the batter into the donut cavities to 2/3 full.
5 Bake for 10 minutes, then let them cool.
6 Remove cooled donuts from silicone mold and decorate as desired!
How to Make Healthy Glazes (Optional):
- Cocoa powder
- Coconut oil
- Unsweetened milk
- Organic powdered sugar
- Unsweetened milk
- Whisk together all of the ingredients in a small bowl until smooth and combined.
- Dip donuts into the glaze to coat.
- Place the donuts back onto a wire rack and then repeat with the remaining donuts.
- Decorate with sprinkles if desired. Enjoy your healthy baked donuts.
Tip: If you don’t have a donut pan you can adjust the bake time and just use a mini muffin tin instead. Donut pans work best when they’re silicone and you can find them in Walmart, craft stores, or online retailers like Amazon. Silicone pans help retain the donut shape and are less likely to break the donuts during the removal.
Can you freeze protein donuts?
Yes! Freeze the baked donuts before decorating with icing, glaze, sprinkles etc.
When you are ready to enjoy simply remove from the freezer, thaw on a plate on the counter (or in the microwave) until soft, then decorate as desired and enjoy!
Have you ever tried protein donuts? Tell me about it in the comments and be sure to pin the photo below the recipe to save this one for later! Thank you so much.
More Protein-Packed Desserts You’ll Love:
- Healthy Snickers Protein Bar
- Best-Ever High Protein Banana Bread
- Healthy Cookie Dough Blizzard Recipe