Homemade Doughnut Recipe--A Halloween Tradition!

Every year when I was growing up, one of my favorite Halloween traditions was making and eating homemade doughnuts. My mom always cooked up a huge batch of doughnuts on Halloween night and we helped her deliver plates of doughnuts to neighbors. And of course, we ate a lot ourselves! I have kept up the tradition with my own children and friends. Today we had 16 little kids over, ages 5 and under, along with their moms, to make doughnuts. I did all of the frying in my electric skillet and then let the kids and moms do their own decorating with chocolate glaze, regular glaze, sugar, and sprinkles.

Below I have shared with you our family recipe for homemade doughnuts. Some people also call these doughnuts "spud-nuts" because they have mashed potatoes in them. Just a warning, though--unless you are hosting a big party or planning on delivering these to a LOT of neighbors, do not make the whole recipe. The recipe as written below makes 100 doughnuts. The doughnuts are delicious but they don't keep well--they are best served and eaten fresh. So if I am not having a huge group over, I will usually divide the recipe in 1/4.

Homemade Doughnuts


1 c. warm water
2 T. dry yeast (dissolved in 1 c. water)
1 c. shortening
6 eggs, beaten
4 t. salt
3 c. milk
1 c. sugar
2 c. mashed potatoes (my mom uses instant, I usually just make mashed potatoes for dinner the night before our doughnut party and set some of the mashed potatoes aside for the doughnuts.)
2 t. lemon juice
2 t. grated lemon rind
½ t. nutmeg
12-13 c. flour
oil (I use canola oil)

Combine milk, shortening, salt, sugar, and mashed potatoes. Heat to lukewarm.
Add beaten eggs and yeast that has been dissolved in water.
Add 6 c. flour and beat until well blended and smooth.
Add lemon juice, rind, and nutmeg.
Add flour to make soft, but firm dough (firm enough to roll)
Knead until smooth.
Cover and let rise until double in bulk (abt 1 hour)
Punch down and divide dough in half
Roll out ½ inch thick and cut with cutter into doughnuts shapes.
Cover, and allow to rise until double, usually 30-40 minutes.
Fry in deep fat oil at 375 degrees. (I have made this in a pan over a gas stove, monitoring the temperature with a candy thermometer, but I find that they are MUCH easier to make in an electric skillet which you can just set to a certain temperature)
Drain on paper towel and dip in prepared glaze, sugar, or chocolate.
Use chopsticks to turn.

Makes 100 doughnuts.

Doughnut Toppings


1 ½ c. powdered sugar
¼ c. warm water (1 T. at a time)
1 t. vanilla
¼ t. cream of tarter
1 T. karo syrup

Put in bowl. Dip completely. Drip above bowl


1 ½ c. powdered sugar
1 T. warm water (or more)
2-3 t. cocoa
1 t. vanilla
¼ t. cream of tarter
1 T. karo syrup

Dip top only. Optional: add sprinkles.


Instructions: Put sugar in a brown bag. Cool doughnut, drop and shake in bag (You could also do cinnamon sugar the same way, too).

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