Easy no-yeast donut holes filled with a sweet cream cheese frosting and rolled in cinnamon-sugar.
To (under)state the obvious, it’s hot outside. The humidity here is bad; it’s like being slapped in the face with a wet towel every time you step outside (and then walking around with said towel still plastered to your face). The air is thick as soup, and yesterday the heat coupled with dark storm clouds and lightning flashes kept me from taking Leia for her walk.
Even with the air conditioning blasting in my car, I shed layers of clothes before driving home from work, and I keep telling Zach we can’t have certain meals for dinner because they’re “too heavy for this time of year” (which he utterly does not understand).
But, evidently, that’s not enough to keep me from heating up a big pot of oil on my stove top and frying donuts to my heart’s content.
Because, no matter how hot it is, it’s never to hot to fry up a big batch of donuts.
I kept the technique pretty easy here: the dough that we’re using is the same one I use for my no yeast cinnamon rolls, my from-scratch monkey bread, and (of course) my fried donut holes. No yeast, no kneading, and no waiting, just mix up the dough, whip up some frosting, and fry away.
These sweet golden-fried balls of bliss are versatile, simple (though some times it demands more flour than you expect, notes about that in the recipe) and utterly addictive.
It’s the cream cheese filling, though, that really takes them to the next level. It’s my no-yeast cinnamon roll recipe with the frosting on the inside, fried to perfection. Every bite (which is about two bites per donut hole) is filled with sweet cream cheese frosting.
Totally worth heating up a big ol’ pot of oil, even in this weather.
Inside Out Cinnamon Roll Donut Holes
- 2 oz cream cheese softened
- 2 Tbsp butter softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar tightly packed
- 1/ 4 tsp vanilla extract
- One batch No yeast Fried Donut Holes
- Vegetable or Canola oil for frying
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
Prepare your filling first.
Cream together cream cheese and butter.
Gradually add powdered sugar, until combined.
Stir in brown sugar and vanilla extract.
Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl and stir again, to ensure everything is well-combined.
Scrape the frosting/filling into a Ziploc bag and snip off a corner.
Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, and pipe 1 1/2 - 2 tsp-sized mounds of frosting (the recipe should make 26 donuts with filling, but if you have extra frosting just keep piping it in case you are able to get more donuts out of the dough).
Place in freezer while you prepare your dough.
Follow directions in Fried Donut Holes Recipe to step 4 (forming dough into cohesive ball).
Transfer dough to a well-floured surface. If the dough is sticky, work in flour until it is manageable.
Tear off 1 Tbsp-sized pieces of dough and roll into a ball. Remove one cream cheese frosting mound from the freezer and press in to the center of the dough ball. Be sure to seal the frosting in well -- rolling the ball in the palms of your hands until no seams exist-- otherwise the frosting may leak out while the donut holes are frying.
Repeat until all dough is used, filled with frosting, and rolled seamlessly.
Fill a medium-sized saucepan 2-inches deep with your oil and set over medium-high heat.
Use a candy thermometer (make sure it isn't touching the bottom of the pot) to monitor your temperature, and heat oil to 350F (you will have to monitor the heat pretty regularly and may need to increase/decrease your stove temperature to keep it consistent).
While your oil is heating, prepare your cinnamon/sugar mix by stirring together cinnamon and sugar in a small dish. Set aside.
Prepare two plates for your fried donut holes by lining them generously with paper towels.
Once oil has reached 350F, very carefully fry your donut holes, about 3-4 at a time, carefully transferring them to the oil with a slotted spoon (don't drop them in or the oil may splash, lower them into the oil instead).
Fry donut holes for 2-3 minutes*, remove carefully with a slotted spoon, and place them on a paper towel laden plate. Allow them to sit for about 30 seconds and then use another spoon to transfer them to your cinnamon/sugar dish, roll them in the topping until fully covered, and then transfer to your other paper towel lined plate.
Repeat until all donut holes are cooked and have been rolled in cinnamon sugar.
*For best results, fry only one donut hole the first time you try this, and gauge how thoroughly it is cooked. After 2 minutes has passed, cut into it to check whether the dough is underdone, just right, or overdone, (the frosting of course will not be cooked, and will be hot so take care when checking) and then fry the rest of your donut holes accordingly.
While these should take about 2.5 minutes under optimal conditions with a consistent oil temperature of 350F, it's still important to check so that you don't end up with 1½ dozen donuts that are still gooey in the middle!
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