“In food and in cooking, art is a byproduct in the pursuit of deliciousness.”

Niki Nakayama

For today’s tutorial, we are taking my baked vanilla donut recipe and showing that bakers can paint too. These watercolor donuts are perfect because the creativity with the glaze is just limitless. I can’t wait to see all the tasty watercolor donuts you all make!

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More Donut Recipes You Might Enjoy:

SNICKERS Donuts
Chocolate Sunflower Donuts
Lemon Drizzled Blueberry Donuts

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Be sure to grab the full recipe & check out the full video tutorial in the recipe card below. And if you try this recipe (I mean you totally should be), tag me on Instagram @imancake and use the hashtag #BakingWithMANCAKE.

Watercolor Donuts

Watercolor Donuts

Yield: 1 Dozen
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

For Donuts

  • 1 & 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sour cream at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup milk at room temperature
  • 1 & 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 pinch cinnamon *optional
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

For Glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups powder sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream (see notes)
  • Food gel coloring, assorted colors

Instructions

For Donuts

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease doughnut pans.
  2. Add the ingredients to a large bowl and mix until just combined.
  3. Pipe into butter and floured donut pans
  4. Bake about 10 minutes at 350F, allow to cool on a wire rack.

For Glaze and Decorating

  1. While donuts are cooling, prepare your glaze by whisking powdered sugar and heavy cream in bowl. The goal here is to have a pourable thick glaze. (see notes)
  2. Add 2 - 3 drops of food gel coloring to bowl. This step is entirely up to you as far as execution. If you want multiple colors, use multiple colors. If you want monochromatic color variety, divide glaze between multiple bowls and use your desired food gel colors. There is no limit to the creativity here.
  3. After add drops of food gel coloring, swirl the food gel coloring through the glaze with a wooden skewer (if you have one) or the back of a spoon, straw, fork, etc. Just swirl away.
  4. Dip the top of each donut into the glaze, invert back onto wire rack.
  5. Let the glaze set completely before serving. I find 20 minutes of set time is a good amount of time.

Notes

  • If swapping heavy cream for milk, start with 1/4 cup but be prepared to add more to achieve the honey like consistency.
  • The amount of heavy cream & powdered sugar you use will vary depending on the amount of glaze needed and finding the balance that will give you the thick portable glaze needed.
  • Room Temperature Ingredients: Be sure to allow your dairy ingredients to reach room temperature. Room temperature ingredients not only combine more effortlessly (no over-mixing needed) but they also trap air so much better. This trap air will expand and produce a fluffy texture during your baking process.
  • Prepared Pan: There will always be the "next best way to prepare your pan" article. Simply put however, the most effective way i find in my kitchen is a light rub of shortening around the sides, parchment paper on the bottom of the pan (for majority of baking pans), & a very light dusting of flour (cocoa powder for chocolate baked goods) all throughout.

Kitchen Note(s):

  • If swapping heavy cream for milk, start with 1/4 cup but be prepared to add more to achieve the honey like consistency.
  • The amount of heavy cream & powdered sugar you use will vary depending on the amount of glaze needed and finding the balance that will give you the thick portable glaze needed.
  • Room Temperature Ingredients: Be sure to allow your dairy ingredients to reach room temperature. Room temperature ingredients not only combine more effortlessly (no over-mixing needed) but they also trap air so much better. This trap air will expand and produce a fluffy texture during your baking process.
  • Prepared Pan: There will always be the “next best way to prepare your pan” article. Simply put however, the most effective way i find in my kitchen is a light rub of shortening around the sides, parchment paper on the bottom of the pan (for majority of baking pans), & a very light dusting of flour (cocoa powder for chocolate baked goods) all throughout.

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