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Gluten-Free Vegan Donuts: Food Allergy Recipe Challenge 4

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This week’s challenge, “Gluten-Free Vegan Donuts,” are downright delicious. My son Monte shoved one in his mouth and yelled, “Awesome!” while spraying crumbs. But I’m not satisfied. I think I’ve entered a grass-is-always-greener landscape. Perhaps I chose wrong (for me), but decisions had to be made.

1 of 8

1 The finished product: Gluten-Free Baked Donuts with vanilla glaze and sprinkles!

2 Fill the pan molds 7/8ths of the way. Any more and they'll rise too much!

3 Make sure to rap the pan on the counter a few times. This forces the batter to settle.

4 The donuts cooling on a rack, pre-glaze and sprinkles.

5 Dip the donuts in glaze.

6 ... and let the excess drip off.

7 Here comes the fun part: Sprinkles!

8 Delicious!

Donut Decisions:

When you only have a week, to perfect from start to finish, you’ve got to be decisive, and act fast on those choices. So, first, I had to decide on the type of donut: baked or fried? I settled on baked. Next: cake or yeasted? I settled on cake donuts, because they required fewer ingredients. And so that is what I tackled, a “baked cake donut”, without wheat, gluten, eggs, butter, milk, soy, tree nuts, or peanuts.

And tackle it I did. It took 5 tries. That’s 3 more than last week’s Gluten-Free Chicken Fried Rice , but 5 less than week one’s Gluten-Free Caramel Cupcakes, so I guess I’m doing okay. And these baked cake donuts are undoubtedly yummy, better for us, easier, and less time consuming, so I’ll give them big props, even though they’re not exactly what I wanted. What they made me want, desperately, is the other kind of donut. No, not the kind with gluten! The other kind. So next week, I’m going to try this challenge all over again.

What I realized, through working on this recipe, is that I’m a yeast donut kinda gal. I also discovered I’m a fried donut kinda gal. I like my donuts puffy, and fattening. So come back next week for my attempts at an airy, crispy yeasted fried donut. For now, take comfort in the ease, scrumptiousness, and low-fatness of this one. What kind of donuts do you like best? Let me know by leaving a comment here, and keep the requests coming!

Gluten-Free Vegan Baked Cake Donuts
Makes 6 donuts

If you don’t already have a donut pan, get yourself over to Bed, Bath, & Beyond, or Sur la Table, and buy one! You thought making cupcakes was fun? Wait till you try baked donuts. The perfect sized treat, any time of day. And as an added bonus, these little beauties are low-fat!


  • ¼ cup + 2 Tablespoons rice milk
  • ½ teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend, or my Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix (recipe follows)
  • ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum or guar gum
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon double-acting baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8th teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8th teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ cup Spectrum Organic Vegetable Shortening
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Ener-G egg replacer mixed with 2 Tablespoons rice milk
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Vanilla glaze (recipe follows)
  • Sprinkles (Edward & Sons makes GF sprinkles )


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine rice milk with lemon juice and set aside.
  3. Measure out flour mix by spooning flour into a dry measuring cup, then leveling it off with a straightedge, or the back of a knife. (Do not scoop the flour directly with the measuring cup or you’ll wind up with too much flour for the recipe). Combine flour mix with xanthan gum, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Whisk well. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine vegetable shortening, granulated sugar, egg replacer, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed, until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  5. Sift in the flour mixture in three bathes, alternating with the rice milk, and beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary, about 30 seconds.
  6. Using a teaspoon, spoon the batter into an ungreased non-stick donut pan, filling each donut cup about 7/8th full. Do not overfill them or they’ll rise too much. Smooth down batter with back of teaspoon to even surface, then wrap pan firmly against counter a few times to really settle batter into pan.
  7. Bake 15 minutes in center of oven until lightly golden. Remove from oven and let cool in pan 5 minutes on a cooling rack. Invert onto rack and wrap back of pan lightly to dislodge donuts. Let cool on rack to room temperature. Dip top of donut (the smoother side) into vanilla glaze, then into sprinkles. Set back onto rack to let glaze set. Best when eaten fresh (like all donuts), or they can be frozen and then thawed on counter, on demand.

Vanilla Glaze


  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon rice milk
  • ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth.

Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix

The key to the very best gluten-free baked goods is Authentic Foods superfine brown rice flour; it is the Cadillac, or cashmere, of brown rice flours and is worth its weight in gold. It is not grainy like other rice flours, and bakes the most fantastic cookies, cakes, pie crusts, and so on. If you can’t find it at your local natural foods market or Whole Foods, order it online. Both Ener-G and Bob’s Red Mill brown rice flours will also work in these recipes, but they won’t turn out quite as well. The brands of potato starch and tapioca flour or starch are not as important; I find them all interchangeable. (Please see Resources, page 177, of The Allergen-Free Baker’s Handbook for more information.)


  • 4 cups superfine brown rice flour
  • 1 1⁄3 cups potato starch (not potato flour)
  • 2⁄3 cup tapioca flour (also called tapioca starch)


1. To measure flour, use a large spoon to scoop flour into the measuring cup, then level it off with the back of a knife or straightedge. Do not use the measuring cup itself to scoop your flour when measuring! It will compact the flour and you will wind up with too much for the recipe.

2. Combine all ingredients in a gallon-size zipper-top bag. Shake until well blended. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix recipe reprinted with permission from The Allergen-Free Baker’s Handbook: How to Bake Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, and Sesame. Copyright © 2009 by Cybele Pascal, Celestial Arts, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA.

Gluten-Free Vegan Baked Cake Donuts

Copyright © 2010 by Cybele Pascal

(Please note that all my recipes are completely free of all top allergens (wheat, dairy, soy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, fish, shellfish, and gluten), so as many people as possible can enjoy them. Additionally, all the ingredients are available at Whole Foods, and online at Amazon.com. If you have trouble finding something, let me know and I’ll help you find it.)

SAFETY NOTE: Because each person's food sensitivity and reaction is unique, ranging from mild intolerance to life-threatening and severe food allergies, it is up to the consumer to monitor ingredients and manufacturing conditions. If manufacturing conditions, potential cross contact between foods, and ingredient derivatives pose a risk for you, please re-read all food labels and call the manufacturer to confirm potential allergen concerns before consumption. Ingredients and manufacturing practices can change overnight and without warning.

Cybele Pascal is the award-winning author of "The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook" and the "Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook." She lives in Los Angeles with her food-allergic family: husband Adam, sons Lennon and Monte, and their dogs, Izzie and Carly (who also has food allergies). Please visit her website at CybelePascal.com.

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Comments (28)

  • I've got another request, inspired by being Mom to boys suffering from the vicious cold virus. I have not been able to find allergen-free chicken noodle soup. It seems that in order for noodles to be able to stand up to long exposure to liquids, they need to include eggs, which are banned from our sensitive household. Is it possible to create wheat and egg-free chicken noodle soup? Would LOVE if you could tackle this one!

  • Time to get a donut pan! :) By the way, I made the banana flax muffins this morning and my 21 month old loved them, you were right about popularity among toddlers. I may have found an unseasoned skillet for the tortillas but have yet to order it so I feel guilty making requests when I haven't tried past weeks' recipes but soft pretzels with homemade mustard (only rice or cider vinegar are what my daughter can have) would be fun. Thank you, as always, for your recipes! They help so much!

  • Cybele, those look awesome! Thanks so much.

  • Request for a sandwich bread that you can actually use for sandwiches (IE: it stays soft the next day) and you don't have to freeze and use it for toast. And cream of mushroom soup. Creamy salad dressing or creamy veggie dip. Pita Pockets. Top 8 allergen free, of course.

  • From: Jennifer Roeder | 5/28/10 at 9:02 am
    I grew up loving oatmeal scotchies (oatmeal cookies with butterscotch chips). Since then I have developed a milk allergy and a gluten intolerance. I'd love to find a way to make these cookies again, but in a way that is safe for me to enjoy!

  • From: Jayne | 6/1/10 at 3:10 pm
    Hi Cybele-

    How about soy-free, dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free mayonnaise?

    Everything commercially available that I find has either egg or soy (or both) - and I haven't found a good vegan recipe for mayo that doesn't contain soy.

    Thanks so much for all of your wonderful recipes!!

  • This recipe, and next week's, would go over well at Canada's Tim Horton's Coffee & Doughnuts.

    Cybele, you might be interested in contacting them to see if they'd be interested in purchasing or leasing your recipies for these doughnuts.

  • I promised my grandson I would try and make donuts he could eat so this is great.

    Is there a way to make a printer friendly version of just the recipe? I hate to print all the excess stuff that follows it.

    Editor's response: Hi Dacy, unfortunately there isn't a printer-friendly version available right now, but we're working on it and hope to have one soon! For now, maybe copy and paste into a word doc to save paper?

  • These look awesome, THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Jayne, this mayo recipe is egg free, nut free, and soy free but it does have milk (so it isn't an option for us but may be for you!). Here's the link: http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives/2010/03/chervil_mayonnaise_recipe_herb.html

  • Jayne, oops, I just re-read your request and you asked for no dairy, I thought you wanted it to be egg free. Sorry!

    I second the mayo recipe request, it would be really useful!

  • Awesome! Donuts. I wonder if I can make them in my muffin top pan with something small and round in the center? Okay, so I am nuts. My favorite donuts are Glazed Blueberry Cake Donuts and Glazed Chocolate Donuts. Of course, there's always Eclairs - well, maybe not, they do need that pate a choux dough, don't they? I vote for Blueberry Cake Donuts AND a recipe for Lemon Meringue Pie that doesn't use EB. You did say you liked a challenge, right?

  • Laurel, what is EB? Earth Balance? ALl good suggestions. I had a reader suggest mini bundt cake pans for making donuts which I thought was a great idea!

  • As I mentioned, next week's challenge is GF VEGAN YEAST DONUTS. Look for it on Monday.

  • And from this list, I am choosing CREAM OF MUSHROOM SOUP! Look for it a week from this coming Monday. Thanks Alleycat, for your suggestion.

    And Alleycat, can you or your child eat eggs? If so, check out Udi's breads, they are soft and amazing.

    Jill, have you tried using Tinkyada fettucine in your chicken soup? That should work, it stays very firm. Just break the noodles in half.

    thanks for your requests everyone!


  • No, unfortunately my son has dairy (casein), egg, wheat, corn and shellfish allergies. So, finding sandwich bread is really difficult.
    Here's another recipe suggestion...a "Ritz Cracker" type cracker. Kind of a buttery, flakey-type cracker.

  • I love it that these are yeast-free because Hubby Dear is yeast intolerant. Thanks!!
    But where a I going to find donut molds in France...?
    We're baking your cupcakes at home today :-)

    And for another challenge : I'd love to have a basic-but-fantastic pie crust recipe that contains no gluten, no rice, no buckwheat, no corn, no dairy, no egg, no soy, no yeast.
    Thank you Cybele for all the great work you're sharing!!

  • Dear Flo:

    Do you have a mini bundt cake pan? You could use that. Something like this? http://www.amazon.com/Wilton-Excelle-Elite-6-Cup-Bundt/dp/B0000DIX7S

  • Cybele: Sorry, EB is Earth Balance, for some reason all I can ever taste when I bake with the margarine replacements, even if it's 1/4 C is the margarine. My husband has the same problem. It's been a couple of years and I just can't seem to get used to the taste so I use oil but that doesn't always work well. The consistency is generally pretty different. It is NOT stopping me from using your wonderful recipes though, they still turn out better than those from the 12 other GF books I've got!

  • I would love a recipe for a fruit danish. I'm experimenting with making one for my little guy tonight, but I know it's not going to taste as good as a "real" one.

  • my son had his first donut EVER-and he loved it! he liked them plain though (without glaze). we used a mini donut pan. they really did taste like cake donuts from the donut shop. we topped them with glaze and then dipped in shredded coconut. my daughter, who has no allergies and has had plenty of real donuts, wolfed them down quicker than her brother!

    would your 'rice milk chocolate ganache' be a good chocolate version for the glaze?

  • [...] week’s challenge, “Gluten-Free Vegan Donuts” , really pleased my six-year-old son, Monte.  This week’s challenge, “Gluten Free Vegan Yeast [...]

  • [...] week’s challenge, “Gluten-Free Vegan Donuts” , really pleased my six-year-old son, Monte. This week’s challenge, “Gluten Free Vegan Yeast [...]

  • I have tried a few of your recipes and so far I am very happy with the results. Vanilla cupcakes turned out great! I'm going to try the donuts too, and I can't wait for the fluffy fried donut recipe.

    I would also like a SOFT WHITE SANDWICH BREAD recipe that is allergy friendly that can be stored without freezing, and stays soft without microwaving. It would be great when traveling and eating out. I purchased a portable microwave to use on trips so my 14 year old son and I can have soft bread to eat. We feel deprived when the bread basket is placed on the table in a restaurant and everyone else digs in to enjoy...we just sit on our hands. :(

    I can't thank you enough for your wonderful recipes!

  • [...] Food Allergy Recipe Challenge 2 (43)Gluten-Free Cupcakes: Food Allergy Recipe Challenge! (37)Gluten-Free Vegan Donuts: Food Allergy Recipe Challenge 4 (24)Gluten-Free Chicken Fried Rice: Food Allergy Recipe Challenge 3 (22)12 Ways to Reuse Your Old [...]

  • Does this recipe work with a donut maker? I have a machine that makes 5 donuts @ a time; you just pour the batter in the mold and close it. I found that some recipies don't work with the machine (weird). I'm new to the allergy free world, so thanks for any help you can give me.

  • Quick question: Each recipe I read on different blogs includes a flour mix. Each blogger advocates a different mix. Do I need different flour mixes or are there a couple of standbys?

  • How can I make these GF vegan doughnuts chocolate?

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