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healthier baked gingerbread doughnuts recipe

So a few weeks ago, I had a request for some healthier Christmas morning breakfast options that could be made in advance, and I decided to plan a sweet and a savory (coming soon). Christmas morning is all about spending time with family, presents, capturing all the sweet little “Christmas” moments, and not being in the kitchen. But breakfast is important, and it would be great to have something you can make the day before in less than 30 minutes, and just pull out in the morning.

But it’s a holiday, and you don’t always want healthy to seem “healthy”. Sometimes you want to feel like you’re enjoying a treat without as much guilt… and that was the inspiration behind these doughnuts. One way to make your baked goods healthier is to swap out some of the higher fat ingredients with better alternatives – like Greek yogurt. By using this as a substitute for butter, I increased the protein content, lowered the fat, and added enough moisture to ensure the doughnuts would still taste fabulous the next day! I know… we tested this morning. Hard work this food blogging business. 😉

Baked doughnut batter

Gingerbread doughnuts ready for baking

What I love about these doughnuts is that there’s just the right hint of gingerbread spice, and the slight tartness of the plain yogurt helps keep the sweetness in check, keeping all the flavors beautifully balanced.

baked gingerbread doughnuts

topping conundrum for baked doughnuts

The biggest challenge for me was deciding how to top the doughnuts, and as you can see, I couldn’t choose! I didn’t want to go for the full “all over” glaze, as these are supposed to be healthier after all, but I wanted something a little more festive than a plain doughnut. So I’m leaving you with two equally delicious alternatives. You can do the glaze and just drizzle enough on the doughnuts to give you a bit of flavor with less sugar than an all-over glaze, or you can simply sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving.


This recipe makes a half dozen doughnuts, and they smell heavenly, so if you’re planning on making them for Christmas morning, I might recommend waiting until the kids have gone to bed. Otherwise they may not make it until morning! Enjoy my darlings!

Gingerbread baked doughnuts recipe

This recipe was made with Chobani Greek Yogurt as part of the #MadeWithChobani campaign.

Baked Gingerbread Doughnuts
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A healthier sweet holiday breakfast treat made with Greek yogurt for extra protein and minimal refined sugar.
Serves: 6 doughnuts
  • 1 c all-purpose flour (you may also use ¾ c wheat flour and ¼ cup all-purpose)
  • 5 ounces plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 T honey*
  • 2 T molasses
  • 2 T buttermilk
  • 1 egg**
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ⅛ tsp salt
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Spray a baked doughnut pan with nonstick spray (or rub with coconut oil or butter) and set aside.
  2. Combine all your dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  3. Add all the wet ingredients (yogurt, egg, molasses, honey, buttermilk, and vanilla) at once and mix until just combined. The batter will be very thick.
  4. Spoon the batter into a zip top plastic bag or piping bag and snip off a corner, or the tip of the piping bag. Pipe the mixture into the doughnut pan. If you have extra, you may either wait and bake a second batch, or make some "doughnut holes" in a mini-muffin pan.
  5. Bake for 8-10 minutes until the doughnuts are baked through and spring back to the touch. Be careful not to over bake. Remove immediately and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  6. If you plan to glaze, make the glaze while the doughnuts are cooling. Mix together the powdered sugar and water in a small bowl, then drizzle over the top of the doughnuts and wait for it to set.
  7. If you are using the powdered sugar topping, top the doughnuts just before serving. If not serving the doughnuts after baking, store completely cooled doughnuts in an airtight container at room temperature. They are best consumed within a day or so.
*You may also substitute 3 T granulated sugar
**If you have an egg allergy in your house, you may substitute 2 T avocado, canola, or other light vegetable oil for the egg.

No compensation or product was received in exchange for this post. To read my experience with this campaign, please visit my business advice article here.

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This Post Has 12 Comments
  1. I’ve never seen anything like this! I thought all donuts were fried. Seriously! These look delicious – and just so you know, I’m about to raid your kitchen. First, you post a pic of those awesome tartan mugs from Old Navy, and now donut baking tins!? 🙂

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