If you like popcorn and you like donuts, then you will love these Kettle Corn Donuts topped with an indulgent salted caramel icing and topped with sweet and salty kettle corn. The combination hits just the right salty-sweet note and these are the perfect donuts to celebrate National Donut Day!
Seriously, how decadent are these donuts?!?
These yeast donuts take a bit of time to make (in order to allow the yeast to rise), but the recipe is easy and the reward is worth it. I like to make them on a lazy Sunday morning, or if I’m going to someone’s house for brunch, I’ll make them the night before and decorate the donuts in the morning.
Here’s the recipe for the yeast donut base:
- • 5 tsp. active dry yeast
- • 1¾ cups milk
- • ½ cup granulated sugar
- • 2 large eggs
- • 5 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- • 1 tsp. salt
- • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature, cubed
- • non-stick cooking spray
- • 48-96 ounces vegetable oil
•Prep and measure out your ingredients: sift the flour and prep a large mixing bowl with non-stick spray.
•Warm half of your milk on the stove, bring it to a simmer, then add the other half of cold milk. Milk should be 110 degrees F.
•In your stand mixer fitted with the hook attachment, add your yeast, warm milk, and a pinch of sugar, then whisk together.
•Add the eggs and mix on low for 1 minute.
•Add your sifted flour, sugar, and salt (make sure to add the salt last as salt kills yeast) and mix on low for 4 minutes.
•Add your butter and mix for about 5 minutes until the dough is one piece and slapping against the sides of the bowl.
•Transfer the dough to your prepped mixing bowl, spray the top of the dough with non-stick spray, cover with plastic wrap, and let the dough proof (rise) for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
•Use this time to prep your next phase: start warming up your oil, set up cooling racks with parchment paper underneath, set out cookie sheets lined with parchment paper and dusted with flour, prep your work surface with flour, and get ahead on the dishes.
•Once the dough has doubled in size, transfer the dough onto your work surface (I use a pastry board dusted with flour), coat with flour, and cut the dough in half, setting aside half to use later.
•Take half and roll out to ½ inch thick.
•Cut out your donuts with round cookie cutters, dipping the cookie cutter into a bowl of flour before each cut to prevent sticking. Don't forget to save the donut holes! Place the donuts and donut holes onto the cookie sheets lined with parchment paper to proof a second time for about 15 minutes.
•Repeat with your second ball of dough.
•Gather all the scraps, knead together, re-roll, and cut out more donuts.
•Once the oil is at 350 degrees F, you can start frying. Use a skimmer to place a donut in the oil. Flip the donut after 10 seconds so both sides have been in contact with the oil (to prevent further proofing and odd-shaped donuts). Once one side has reached a golden brown color, flip and cook the other side to the same color and then remove. Don't overload your fryer as the temperature of the oil will drop. I only cook 3-4 donuts at a time.
•Let the donuts drip and cool on the cooling racks.
•Once cooled, top with the following icing and toppings recipes
And the recipe for the Kettle Corn Donuts:
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tb water
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Kettle Corn
- Chocolate Caramel Popcorn
Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Do not stir. Continue cooking until mixture turns an amber color. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and slowly stir in the butter, heavy cream, and vanilla. Stir until smooth, then let cool.
Once cooled, combine the confectioner’s sugar and salt and then mix into the caramel mixture until smooth.
Allow to cool more, then ice your donuts with the salted caramel icing and top with two types of sweet kettle corn.