Apple Filled Donuts

These Apple Filled Donuts are made with yeast for a light and airy crumb. Fresh apple filling & a secret ingredient gives these luscious donuts an amazing apple pie flavor.

a stack of apple filled cider donuts

This recipe is an adaptation of my favorite Apple Cider Donuts. It’s basically the same donut stuffed with delicious apple filling.

I love both versions so you can’t go wrong either way.


ingredients for apple filled donuts in glass bowls.

Ingredient Notes

  • Apple Cider – By boiling down the cider to 1/4 of its original volume we loose a lot of the water and none of the flavor. So we’re able to add a lot more cider flavor to the donut dough.
  • All Purpose Flour – AP Flour has a medium protein content which gives these donuts a nice chewy texture but they’re not at all tough.
  • Yeast – Any dry yeast will work for this recipe.
  • Apples – You can use any type of apple for this recipe.

How to make Apple Filled Donuts

a bowl of chopped apples with sugar.
  • Toss the apple cubes with sugar to macerate.
  • Cook the apples with the sugar and cornstarch to make the filling. This can be done a day ahead.
a bowl of apple donut filling
  • Allow the apples to cool before filling the donuts.
a sheet of dough with circles cut
  • Roll the dough to 1/4″ thick and cut 4″ circles.
a tray of dough rounds, rising
  • Allow the donuts to rise at room temperature if you want to fry the same day.
  • Refrigerate them over night if you want to fry the next day.
Donuts frying in oil
  • Maintain the oil temperature at 350°F while you fry the donuts.
  • If you fry them too hot they won’t rise as much and if you fry them too cool they’ll absorb too much oil.
a skewer poking a hole in the end of a cider donut
  • Use a skewer to poke a hole in one end of the donut. Move the skewer around to make a pocket for the apple filling.
a pastry bag piping apple filling into a cider donut
  • Pipe the apple filling into the warm donuts.


Apple Filled Donuts are best eaten slightly warm from fryer or within a few hours of frying. They will keep at room temperature for a day. Leftovers can be frozen. Rewarm previously frozen donuts in a low oven to revive the texture.

More Donut Recipes

Now that you know about the flavoring power of reduced apple cider, you should try these amazing Apple Cider Caramels!

Hey apple lover, try some of the my other recipes using fresh apples: Apple Maple Pie, Apple Cinnamon Bread, Apple Cider Caramels, Apple Bourbon Pot Pie, Apple Frangipane Tart, Apple Upside Down Layer Cake, Apple Walnut Linzer Tart, Dutch Apple Tart, Iced Apple Oatmeal Cookies, Skillet Apple Cobbler.

a hand holding an apple filled cider donut

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

three apple filled cider donuts on a plate
Print Recipe
4.48 from 17 reviews

Apple Filled Cider Donuts

Apple filled cider donuts are made with yeast for a light crumb and fried for a crisp texture. The fresh apple filling give these luscious donuts an apple pie flavor.
Prep Time1 hour
Bake Time20 minutes
Additional Time12 hours
Total Time13 hours 20 minutes
12 large donuts
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Apple Filling

  • 1 ½ pounds apples (peeled, cored and cut into 1/4″ cubes)
  • 2 oz brown sugar (¼ cup)
  • 4 oz apple cider (½ cup)
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch


  • 32 oz apple cider (4 cups)
  • 2 oz unsalted butter (cold)
  • 4 oz warm water (½ cup)
  • 2 ¼ tsp instant yeast
  • 18 ¾ oz unbleached all-purpose flour (3 ¾ cups, see note)
  • 1 large egg (room temp)
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 quart vegetable oil (for frying)

Coating Sugar

  • 8 oz granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom


Make the Apple Filling (day 1)

  • Combine 1 ½ pounds apples with 2 oz brown sugar,4 oz apple cider, ⅛ teaspoon salt,½ teaspoon ground cinnamon½ teaspoon vanilla extract. Set aside to macerate for at least 1 hour and as long as 3 hours. Drain the apples, saving the juice. Combine 1/4 cup of the juice with 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Set Aside.
  • Put the apples and the rest of the juice in a large saucepan. Cook over medium-high until the juices begin to boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue cooking until the apples are crisp-tender, stirring often. The apples should still hold their shape. The exact time will depend on the type of apple, estimate 10 minutes.
  • Add the corn starch mixture to the apples. Increase the heat to medium-high and return to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook until the juices are slightly thickened and become translucent. Transfer the apple filling to a container and cool to room temperature. Chill until ready to use. The filling can be made 2-3 days ahead.

Make the dough (day 1)

  • In a large saucepan, bring 32 oz apple cider to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the 4 cups of cider are reduced to 1 cup. Transfer the reduced cider to a bowl and add 2 oz unsalted butter to the cider so that it melts. Set the bowl aside until the reduced cider is cooled to about 110°F (a little warmer than body temp).
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl combine 4 oz warm water, 2 ¼ tsp instant yeast and ½ cup (2 ½ oz) of the flour. Mix until it forms a thick batter. Cover the bowl and set it aside for 30 minutes (while the cider is cooling).
  • With the mixer running on low, add 1 large egg, 1 teaspoon cardamom, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon table salt and the reduced cider to the batter. Add another 2 cups (10 oz) of flour and mix until it forms a thick batter.
  • Switch to the dough hook and add the remaining 1 ¼ cups (6 ¼ oz) of flour. The dough will start out quite sticky. Knead on medium low speed for 5 minutes (speed 2 on my stand mixer) until the dough clings to the hook and clears the sides of the bowl. If working by hand mix in as much of the flour by hand as you can then turn the dough out onto a floured surface and continue kneading in the remaining flour. Knead for 5 minutes. If you have a hard time working with the sticky dough you can sprinkle a few more tablespoons of flour as you knead.
  • Knead into a smooth ball. Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat the dough. Cover and set the dough aside at room temperature for 1- 1 ½ hours until it's doubled in volume.
  • Without kneading the dough (kneading will cause it to spring back as you cut) roll to ½" thick on a lightly floured surface.
  • Use a 4" round cutter to cut donuts. Line the donuts on a well-oiled baking sheet, leaving space between the donuts for the dough to rise (I used 2 baking sheets). Reroll the scraps of dough and continue cutting donuts until all the dough is used up.
  • Brush the tops of the donuts lightly with oil. Cover the sheet pans with plastic wrap. If you'd like to make the donuts in the morning refrigerate the donuts overnight. If making the donuts the same day, continue with the next step now.

Make the Donuts (day 1 or 2)

  • Allow the donuts to rise until almost doubled in size, about 1 hour. The time will vary based on the temperature of the room and the temperature of your dough (if you refrigerated the dough overnight they may take longer to rise).
  • In small bowl combine 32 oz apple cider with 2 oz unsalted butter and 4 oz warm water. Set the sugar aside.
  • Meanwhile, heat 1 quart vegetable oil to 350 °F in a large heavy pot. Fry the donuts a couple at a time, about 2-3 minutes per side, until golden brown and puffy.
  • As you take each donut out of the oil, immediately roll in the cinnamon sugar to coat. Set on a cooling rack while you fry the rest of the donuts.
  • Once the donuts are cool enough to handle, use a skewer to poke a hole in one end of the donut. Push the skewer until it's in the center of the donut and move it around to create a pocket in the donut. Use a piping bag with a large round tip to pipe the filling into each donut.
  • Best eaten warm or within a couple of hours of frying.

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If measuring the flour by volume use the “dip & sweep” method. That is, dip the measuring cup into the flour bin, overfill it, then sweep away the excess.


Serving: 1donut | Calories: 416kcal | Carbohydrates: 78g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 84g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 46g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 232mg | Potassium: 238mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 3mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!


  1. Hi there,
    I’m super excited to try making these for Hanukkah! I just wanted see about skipping on the filling – I’ve got picky kid eaters and maybe just doing a jam on the side for dipping? Any ideas for a flavor that would go well? And would it change how I make / fry the dough? Thanks!

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