Gluten Free Honey Lemon Donuts Recipe
Nature has its own interesting way of balancing things out. Just when the temperatures drop and it is cold and flu season, healthy, vitamin C packed citrus is readily available.
When I was a kid, my mom always made a honey lemon concoction for us to drink during cold and flu season, it supposedly helped ward off said diseases and if not, it made us feel better if we did fall ill.
With this in mind I came up with a new way to get a nice dose of citrus and honey – DONUTS!
These Gluten Free Honey Lemon Donuts are pretty darn healthy; they are baked, not fried, contain no gluten, no grain, no starch, no dairy, and no refined sugar and are packed with protein. And as an added bonus, they are absolutely delicious!
If you don’t have a donut pan then you have two options – 1. Go out and get one or 2. Make these into muffins instead. For muffins you just need to bake them 5 minutes longer. And while I am a huge fan of paper cupcake liners for cupcakes and muffins, these really come out better when you bake them in the pan with no liners; the muffins have a tendency to stick to the paper and I also prefer the way the outside of the muffin comes out when baked directly in the pan. Just grease up the muffin tins, sprinkle in a little almond flour then add the batter. They come out of the pans beautifully.
About the ingredients in this recipe:
For years I have almost stubbornly refused to try Honeyville blanched almond flour. They sell Bob’s Red Mills almond flour at my local “regular” grocery store so I don’t have to buy it online and if I am out and the urge to bake with almond flour strikes me, all I have to do is run to the store. Recently, I ordered some almond flour from Honeyville and tried it out. The verdict? It really does bake up better. It is drier which gives baked goods a lighter texture. To my surprise, it was a noticeable difference. Will I still bake with Bob’s if I happen to run out? Yes! It has served me well for many years.
For both the donuts and the frosting I used Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Raw Honey; it is thick and creamy, not runny. It made the frosting very creamy and spreadable. If you use a runny honey, you may end up with more of a glaze than a frosting.
In the donuts I used grapeseed oil, I love it because it is neutral in flavor, bakes well and you can even fry with it as it withstands high temperatures. You could use any neutral flavored vegetable oil instead or even coconut oil but I really wanted to let the flavors of the honey and lemon shine through without even the slightest hint of coconut flavor.
For the frosting I used organic, all vegetable non-hydrogenated, vegetable shortening from Spectrum, it is made with palm oil. It whips up very nicely but again, if you prefer you could use coconut oil. The consistency may be a little different but I am sure it will still be delicious.
I urge you to use organic lemons since you are using the zest which is on the outside of the fruit. You will need about 4 lemons depending on how juicy and big they are. Don’t even think about using that bottled stuff, please just don’t do it!
About the method:
I prefer these made in the food processor; the batter is much smoother and the texture of the final product is finer. If you don’t have a food processor, no worries; you can make these in a blender, mixer, hand beater or even by hand. The batter is very thick and makes it difficult to get it all out of the blender which is why I don’t prefer that method (you could lose as much as one donut!) If you use a mixer, hand beater or make by hand the texture will not be as smooth but if you are not comparing them side by side, you may never notice the difference. In this case, whisk the dry ingredients together in one mixing bowl, beat the wet ingredients in another until the eggs are pale, and then combine the two adding the wet ingredients to the dry.
I used a hand beater for the frosting, there is no way that I have the energy or desire to whisk it long enough by hand to make creamy. If you have killer biceps – go for it!
To get the batter evenly into the donut pans, I put the batter into a large food storage bag, snip off about ½ inch of one corner and squeeze the batter into the donut indentations, much like using a piping bag. I just find it easier but you can always just spoon the batter in and smooth it with a knife or offset spatula.
My honey Lemon Donuts may not be the next penicillin but they sure aren’t bad for you and they are oh so good to eat!
- Gluten free non-stick cooking spray
- 2½ cups finely ground blanched almond flour plus more for preparing the pans
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
- 4 tablespoons honey
- 3 large eggs
- ¼ cup grapeseed or other neutral tasting oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2/3 cup pure vegetable shortening
- 4 tablespoons Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Raw Honey
- 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest finely grated
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 donut pans with cooking spray and sprinkle with a little almond flour.
In the food processor, combine the almond flour, baking soda and salt. Pulse a few times to combine. Add the remaining donut ingredients and process until the batter is smooth, about 30 seconds. Divide the batter evenly among the donut indentations, smooth the tops and bake for 10 minutes or until they spring back when touched lightly. Do not overcook the donuts or they will be dry. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Combine the shortening, honey, lemon juice and zest in a medium mixing bowl and beat with a hand beater until smooth and fluffy. Your mixture may become curdled looking, if so just keep beating until it is smooth. Frost cooled donuts.
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