Cinnamon Caramel Apple Pie Donut Holes

I have a confession to make. I have a sweet tooth, and it is a really big sweet tooth. As the seasons change, so do the cookies, cakes, pies and quick breads I bake to satisfy my sugary addiction. Cinnamon Caramel Apple Pie Donut Holes combine two favorite sweets of mine – pie and donuts. And the mini size makes them the perfect poppable treat.

A basic cake batter of flour, sugar, butter and eggs is the basis for the bite-sized spheres. The addition of tart diced apples cooked in homemade caramel sauce and warm fall spices of cinnamon and nutmeg epitomize the donut holes as a fall sweet.

Unlike traditional deep-fried donuts, the spiced cake donut holes are baked. A special donut hole pan is not needed as a mini muffin pan bakes the batter into perfect round cakes. Because of their small size only a few minutes of baking time is required.

After cooling for about 5 minutes, the donuts are dipped in melted butter and rolled in a coating of sugar and cinnamon. As with all donuts, they are best enjoyed as soon as they are ready. All that is needed is a steaming cup of coffee or an ice-cold glass of milk.

Cinnamon Caramel Apple Pie Donut Holes

Cinnamon Caramel Apple Pie Donut Holes
Recipe type: dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
  • 7 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cinnamon, divided
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced in small pieces, about 2 cups
  • 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a large 24-count or 2 small (12-count) mini muffin pans and set aside.
  2. In a large sauté pan over medium high heat add 3 tablespoons of butter, the brown sugar, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and the salt. Bring to a boil. Stir in the diced apples and continue boiling for an additional 3 minutes or until the apples just barely beginning to soften. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, ½ cup sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, and ½ teaspoon cinnamon.
  4. In a small bowl, stir the milk, eggs and vanilla extract together.
  5. Stir the milk mixture and the cooked cinnamon apples into the dry ingredients until just combined.
  6. Fill the prepared muffin pan with about 2 tablespoons of batter for each donut hole.
  7. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden brown and the donuts spring back when lightly touched. Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pan then remove to a cooling rack.
  8. In a small pan over medium heat melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining ½ cup sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon.
  9. Dip the donut holes in the melted butter and roll in the cinnamon sugar. Place on large platter and serve.
  10. Note ~ the donut holes are best served within a couple hours of baking.
Recipe by Amy Casey ~ 2017

© 2017 amycaseycooks



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