Hard Cider Doughnuts

A Perfect addition to the next fall brunch

Hard Cider Doughnuts

Most people have eaten an apple cider doughnut.  I wanted to create something that you could bring to brunch with friends.  Using a Hard Cider gives the doughnut a complex and refreshing touch to a soft, moist, doughnut.

Hard Cider Doughnuts
Hard Cider Doughnuts



Hard Cider: I used Angry Orchard Hard Cider (Crisp Apple flavor), but anything similar will work.  Reducing the beer will increase the crisp apple flavor.

Spices: With the spices already in the hard cider beer, the addition of cinnamon, nutmeg, and a small amount of cardamom bring everything out!

Unsalted Butter:  10 TBS seems like a lot of butter, but it keeps the doughnut moist and rich.  Unsalted is essential.   

Salt:  My go to kosher salt is always Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt.  If using Mortons, cut back by ¼ tsp.  

Baking Powder:  This is your leavening agent.  Make sure this is whisked thoroughly throughout the mixture. 

Sugars:  The combination of brown and white sugar gives a fantastic flavor and texture.  

Flour: All-purpose works best.  Substituting flours may throw off the ratios of other ingredients.  

Eggs: Room temperature eggs will mix better. 

Flavoring: Vanilla extract is a great addition to the flavors.

Success Tips

Dry ingredients need to be whisked thoroughly.  When using leavening agents (such as baking powder) you will need to make sure that is spread throughout.  

Invest in a doughnut pan.  I’ve tried multiple times to make my own out of foil, and it’s just worth it to invest in a couple of 6 cup doughnut pans.  Plus the shape is something very difficult to replicate on our own.  

Give yourself enough time to reduce the beer and let it cool.  You want to make sure it is at room temperature when you add your ingredients together.

If your butter isn’t softened, try grating it with a cheese grater.  This will help it soften faster.

Hard Cider Doughnuts

Recipe Notes

These are best eaten fresh.  If you want to get a head start, measure out the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, kosher salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom).

For a richer glaze, throw in a tablespoon or two of unsalted butter. 

Alternative Topping: Cinnamon Sugar- Mix ½ cup of white sugar with 1 tsp cinnamon.  

Let the doughnuts cool for 5 minutes after baking, ta the pans, brush with 6 TBS melted butter and dredge them in the cinnamon sugar while they are still warm.

Hard Cider Doughnuts
Hard Cider Doughnuts

For the Glaze:

A double boiler is essential to combine the powdered sugar and reduced beer.  

Hard Cider Doughnuts
Hard Cider Doughnuts
Apple Hard Cider Doughnuts

Hard Apple Cider Doughnuts

The flavors of a hard cider gives me all the feelings of fall!  Eating a fresh doughnut, hot coffee, and a sweater is all I need to start out October.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes


  • non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 pinch cardamom
  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 bottle hard cider beer crisp apple flavor


  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3-4 tbsp reduced hard cider


  • Bring hard cider beer to simmer.  Reduce until you get ¾ cup (about 20 minutes)   Separate ½ cup for doughnut batter and leave 1/4 cup for glaze.
  • Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease and flour two 6 cup doughnut pans.
  • In a medium bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, cream 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla extract until combined.
  • Alternate between adding 1/2 cup reduced hard apple cider and dry ingredients.  Fold together until there is no more flour showing.
  • Spoon the batter into prepared doughnut pans.
  • Bake until evenly golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the thickest portion comes out clean, 12 to 15 minutes. Rotate the pans halfway through baking.


  • Using a double boiler on medium low heat, whisk  2 cups powdered sugar and the reduced hard cider one TBSP at a time until desired consistency.
  • Dip cooled doughnuts into mixture and let them harden on a cooling rack.

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