Sweet and salty are a wonderful combination and make these maple bacon doughnuts a treat that won’t last long!
I’m getting a little antsy to start posting the fall recipes, clearly. I have a few summer-ish recipes still coming, but the weather is starting to show the first signs of cooling (some days) and college football just started. So… fall flavors it is! And from the looks of it, maple bacon is an any season flavor for many of you. Then there’s the crazy deliciousness that is the homemade doughnut, and lots of people are off today, so you even have time to make this! Forget burgers, let’s celebrate with maple bacon doughnuts!
Actually, that was kind of the inspiration for this recipe in a very roundabout way. The Godfather and I took small one on an adventure out to Baltimore and we happened to pass a doughnut shop selling doughnut ice cream sandwiches. Amazing, right? We split one – we always share desserts – and it happened to be a maple bacon doughnut with chocolate ice cream. I *almost* made that for this post, but the Godfather told me to scale it down a bit. This sentence is me telling you that if you make these, get some chocolate ice cream and have yourself a fresh maple bacon doughnut chocolate ice cream sandwich. Live a little. 😉
Because I was making a mixed batch of doughnuts, I used a rather basic doughnut dough recipe for the base. If I were committing to making strictly maple bacon doughnuts I would swap 1 tbsp of the butter in the dough for bacon grease. If you don’t have any bacon grease, fry up a strip of bacon, use the grease from that,
destroy eat the evidence. I don’t think anyone noticed the milder flavor in the batch I made without the grease, so this step is optional. It’s also great if you’re sharing with those who can’t eat pork. You just omit the bacon topping and you’ll have maple doughnuts. Simple.
I hope you enjoy this recipe! Happy almost fall y’all!
- 1 cup 2 tbsp whole milk warmed (not hot)
- 2 1/4 tsp yeast
- 2 eggs
- 8 tbsp unsalted butter softened (see notes)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 4-5 cups neutral flavored oil for frying
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar sifted
- 1-2 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 4-5 slices crisp cooked bacon crumbled
Combine your warmed milk and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer or large mixing bowl and allow to sit 5-10 minutes until slightly foamy.
Add the butter, bacon grease (if using), maple syrup, and salt to the yeast mixture and stir. Add the flour 1 cup at a time, stirring after each addition. If you're using a mixer, use the dough hook.
You'll see the dough start to pull away from the sides of the bowl cleanly. If it's not and you've added all the flour, add more flour 1 tbsp at a time. Knead until smooth.
Clean out your mixing bowl and grease lightly. Return your dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm draft-free spot for about an hour until doubled in size.
Place the risen dough onto a clean, floured surface and roll to about a 1/2 inch thickness. Use two cookie cutters or a doughnut cutter to cut the dough into circles about 3 1/2" in diameter (with a hole in the middle since these aren't filled). Save the doughnut holes. They're amazing rolled in a bit of cinnamon sugar or you may glaze as well.
Cut the doughnuts as close together as possible to minimize waste. You can re-roll the scraps once and cut again after your initial pass.
Place the doughnuts on parchment paper lined baking sheets with plenty of space between them, then cover with plastic wrap (loosely) or with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rise about 45 minutes until slightly puffy and delicate looking. Plan to prepare your oil and at about the 30 minute mark. If you haven't cooked your bacon yet, now is a good time to do so.
Heat your oil in a heavy bottomed pot to 375 F. Line two baking sheets with a double layer of paper towels and set aside.
Stir together the glaze ingredients in a bowl until smooth. Keep any desired toppings (the bacon, sprinkles, whatever) nearby for easy access.
Use your hands (or a spatula) to carefully transfer the doughnuts one at a time into the hot oil. Don't overcrowd the pan!
Cook on one side for 45 seconds to a minute until the doughnuts are a golden brown, then flip and cook an additional 30-45 seconds. Remove to the paper towel lined baking sheets. Test the first 1 or 2 to make sure they are cooking all the way through and adjust your oil temperature and cooking time as needed.
Continue frying in batches. The best way to glaze is to work as you go and when you've completed about 2-3 batches of doughnuts, take the still warm doughnuts and dip into the glaze. Top immediately with the crumbled bacon and place on a wire rack.
Serve as soon as possible as homemade doughnuts are always best fresh!