Gluten-free cinnamon spice doughnuts

Is anyone up for another mini doughnut recipe? I’m seeing them everywhere, particularly in their baked form. I know they were pretty popular last year, but the trend seems to be continuing.

I’m not getting off the baked doughnut bandwagon yet, either. This time, I experimented with an allergen-friendly version so some of my gluten-, nut- and dairy-sensitive colleagues could enjoy them, too. And, well, because it just meant another fun challenge in the kitchen. I do love challenges.

Gluten-free Cinnamon Spice Doughnuts | A Dash of Compassion

Thanks to Lani at LPK’s Culinary Groove, one of my favourite bakeries in Toronto, I’ve learned to be a little more daring when it comes to gluten-free, vegan recipe development. I participated in her Introduction to Gluten-Free Baking workshop a few months ago and I simply relished my experience working in a professional kitchen alongside her, if only for a few hours.

The keys to successful gluten-free, vegan baking? Use a combination of flours that include rice, bean and two starches. My go-to mix includes brown rice flour, chickpea flour, potato starch and tapioca starch—or a similar combination like in the recipe below. Also, a combination of binding agents is often required to keep things together. For the recipe below, I’ve included both flax and Ener-G powder.

Gluten-free Cinnamon Spice Doughnuts | A Dash of Compassion

One of my favourite treats to bring to parties and to the office, these cinnamon-spice doughnuts have a lovely, fluffy crumb. The deep, spicy flavour is enhanced by the cinnamon sugar topping—a must, as far as I’m concerned. Enjoy!

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Gluten-free cinnamon spice doughnuts

Yield: 2 dozen mini doughnuts


  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/4 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/3 cup Sucanat, ground
  • 1 1/2 tbsp flaxmeal
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup nondairy milk
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • Ener-G egg replacement for one egg
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Cinnamon sugar coating:

  • 1/2 cup cinnamon sugar (ground cinnamon + organic cane sugar)
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance butter, melted


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Lightly oil two mini doughnut pans and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, sift together the brown rice flour, sorghum flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, Sucanat, flaxmeal, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, baking powder and baking soda.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the nondairy milk, sunflower oil, applesauce, egg replacement and vanilla.
  5. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture and stir to combine, making sure there are no more large clumps.
  6. Spoon the mixture evenly into the prepared doughnut pans, filling each about 3/4 full. Lightly tap the pan on the counter to release any air bubbles. Bake at 350F for 8 to 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a doughnut comes out clean. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  7. For the cinnamon sugar topping, simply dip each doughnut in the melted Earth Balance and allow excess to drip off. Then dip in the cinnamon sugar to cover all sides.

To avoid soggy doughnuts, I prefer to freeze the doughnuts for an hour after baking and dipping them while frozen to keep the Earth Balance from soaking right in.



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