Are you looking for the perfect doughnuts?

Look no farther!

Last week I shared how to make delicious doughnuts. Simple, but critical tips were addressed to ensure your doughnut-making experience is a success. Creating the perfect doughnut depends on a recipe that includes the right amount of fats, and allows your doughnuts to rise to perfection- not too little or too much. Once you have those two aspects addressed, then you’re ready to learn the tricks to fry your doughnuts to perfection.

Today, we’re going to talk about making perfect doughnuts by avoiding some of the most common mistakes.

Oh! If you haven’t already done so, make sure you pick up your copy of my Doughnut making e-book. I share my favorite recipes for doughnuts and glazes.

Once you have that task accomplished, let’s get started.

Doughnuts Mrs. Joseph Wood

How to make perfect doughnuts

To create the ideal doughnut, we need to pay careful attention to the process of frying the doughnuts. There are three factors to frying that I consider critical.

  • Type of Oil
  • Temperature of Oil
  • Time in Oil

Type of Oil

The kind of oil you use is critical in the taste and texture of your doughnuts. I have used a wide assortment of oils to test the difference for myself.

My first choice is peanut oil. It has a high smoke point of 400 degrees and a neutral taste, making it a favorite among bakers. Learn more about why peanut oil is excellent for frying by visiting Serious Eats to learn what they have to say.

I also enjoy using expeller pressed coconut oil even though it’s smoke point isn’t as high. Many people may suggest that coconut oil is too expensive to use for frying, but I’ve found that I can get it for a reasonable price from Azure Standard.

Both Peanut Oil and Coconut oil are considered healthy fats compared to lard or shortening. I love knowing the oil I’m using has healthy properties (it makes it easier for me to justify eating one more doughnut).

Like I mentioned, I’ve used all kinds of oils. Natural flavor, high smoke point and light Vegetable oil and shortening are common oils new doughnut makers use by mistake. These oils might do in a pinch but tend to leave your doughnut feeling heavy and oily so stay away from using them if possible.

Temperature of Oil

The temperature of your oil fluctuates through the doughnut-making process, so it’s going to be vital that you check the temperature before you start frying and each time you cook another batch.

Heat your oil to 375.

Heating your oil can take a while. I typically heat my oil and start my frostings as soon as my doughnuts begin their second rise.

Once your oil is at the correct temperature, testing a doughnut is recommended. I check my oil by frying my doughnut holes first, so if I make a mistake, it’s not an entire doughnut that went to waste.

You might be tempted to not “waste” any oil and use less than I recommend. Keep this in mind, if your oil isn’t deep enough your doughnut won’t have the freedom to fry correctly so make sure you don’t overcrowd your pan with doughnuts or add too little oil.

Don’t go overboard with your oil either. Remember your oil level in the pan will rise as you add doughnuts so be careful not to overfill the pan.

Keep this in mind as you work:
  • Doughnuts fried in oil that is too cool will cause your doughnut to be weighed down with oil.
  • Doughnuts fried in oil that is too hot result in doughnuts with uncooked centers and overdone on the outside

Time in Oil

If all goes well with frying the doughnut holes, then I test my temperature again and fry a single doughnut to make sure it’s what I want. I use this time to count how many seconds to fry on each side. Remember, I’ve been doing this for 30 years, so I know the look I am wanting. If you’re new to doughnut making, I encourage you to count 30-45 seconds for each side. You’re wanting them to have a golden brown appearance

Counting is a useful tool. As you go along, your oil will cool slightly after each batch, or if you take too long switching batches, it can get too hot. By checking the temperature with each batch and counting while you fry, you know you’re keeping your doughnuts consistent.

Take the time to test your temperature

When you remove your doughnuts from the oil, make sure you let the excess oil drip off before placing your doughnuts on a paper towel. A two-step process to remove excess oil is another bakers tip to produce the perfect doughnuts.

After this, then set your doughnuts on a cooling rack before frosting. Next week, I’ll share all of my tips on creating the best glazes for your doughnuts.  

Here’s a recap

To ensure your success for perfect doughnuts make sure you do the following.

  • Use peanut oil
  • Use a large 8-quart stock pan and fill with 2-4 inches of oil
  • Heat oil to 375 degrees
  • Use a candy thermometer to ensure the oil temperature doesn’t get too cool or too hot.
  • Test your oil throughout the process not just the start of the process.
  • Remove excess oil from doughnuts.
Well, that’s it for today’s insider’s tips.

Have you started making your doughnuts yet?

Do you have some suggestions to add?

I’d love to hear from you, make sure you leave a comment below.

Don’t forget, next week we’ll be talking about frostings and glazes. I’ve listed our family favorites in, The Doughnut Handbook. Make sure you pick up your copy and start making these treats for you and those you love.

Until our next chat,

Mrs. Joseph Wood

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