Donut Muffins

This recipe is very very old, at least 80 years old. It was created by a cook with leftover donut batter who didn’t have time to deep fry them. She added a little milk to make the batter thinner, and cooked it in muffin cups instead of deep frying it. The nutmeg is the secret ingredients which gives these muffins their special old fashioned donut flavor. Necessity is the mother of invention, and bless the cook who invented these. My family is grateful.

Donut Muffins
  • ⅓ cup shortening
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1-1/2 cups flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¾ cup milk
For The Topping:
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup melted margarine
  1. In a mixing bowl mash together the shortening and sugar.
  2. Add the egg and whisk it all up until it is smooth. Make sure you use shortening, Not Margarine. The shortening gives this recipe it's special texture.
  3. Measure the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg into the bowl. Pour in the milk. Mix the batter with a whisk until it is smooth.
  4. Drop the mixture into 12 oiled muffin cups. Make sure not to over fill the muffin cups, ½ to ⅔ full is full enough.
  5. Bake the muffins at 350F for 25 minutes, or until the muffins are brown on top.
  6. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool slightly.
  7. Mix the powdered sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.
  8. Take the muffins out of the pan. When they are cool enough to handle, dip the tops of the muffins into the melted margarine. Then dip them into the powdered sugar/cinnamon mixture.


Arrange the prepared muffins on a large plate and serve while still warm. Makes a dozen. Very good for breakfast and after school or midnight snacks.


Donut Muffins

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  1. Cassandra says

    Oh my goodness! These muffins are so simple to make and so incredibly delicious. My very picky toddler devoured hers and the rest of the family loved them too.

  2. Meredith says

    These were a huge hit with the man in my life. He refuses to call them muffins – “they’re big donut holes.” I used butter-flavored crisco, since it’s what i had on hand. as for subbing the nutmeg, you could use cinnamon instead. i bet apple or pumpkin pie spice would be fab too.

  3. Dona Yoder says

    I made baked donuts out of these and they were awesome-better than the greasy store bought ones. I’ve even made them gluten free for my daughter who misses having donuts and they are so easy and much less expensive than the store bought gluten free ones.

  4. Jen says

    I have a large family and these are awesome and always a hit. I double the batch and there is never any left. I like that it is made of ingredients I generally keep on hand and so if we want something fast and easy we make these. Our foster son absolutely loved these and said “mama your the best baker I know!” Thanks for a terrific recipe.

  5. Stacy says

    So I really want to make these but I always like making things in bigger batches so that I can freeze some … do you think that these would freeze okay?? Thanks :)

  6. Lisa says

    Stacy – I make a similar recipe in my restaurant (my recipe calls for buttermilk AND milk). I make about 200 at a time. I do not use muffin papers, I just bake them in a non-stick mini-muffin pan (has to be a good-nonstick pan). Once they are cooled, I place them in a large container and freeze them…PRIOR to coating them. As I need them, I take out what I need from the freezer, thaw them completely, then dip in melted butter (I use real butter) then in a granulated sugar/cinnamon mixture, coating the entire muffin – not just the top. They are a HUGE hit at my restaurant. Hope that helps!

  7. Kristi says

    These are REALLY good!!! I made them exactly as written and they were fabulous (although, I personally don’t care for the nutmeg, everyone else in my house did) My kids devoured 24 muffins in under 24 hours. Breakfast, afterschool snacks, just because!!! Today, I wanted to make these again but was out of white sugar, so I made a few changes. They turned out even better than before!!! Here’s the substitutions I made:
    1/3 c brown sugar in place of the white sugar
    1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice in place of the nutmeg
    Everything else remained the same. These are SOOO yummy, even without the topping (confession: fiance and I ate 6 between the two of us as soon as they came out of the oven) I made a “small batch” of 12 incase the brown sugar wasn’t a good idea, but now, I’ll be mixin up another double batch of 24 here in a few minutes!!! :)

  8. erin says

    These were wonderful… my husband wanted something sweet so I made a veganized version of these. They were quick and tasty. Plus what a bonus that they didn’t require any expensive or unusual ingredients!!

  9. Laura says

    These are very good not to sweet, I made with the brown sugar suggestion and added just a little maple extract (happened to have it). My husband had been wanting to try bacon maple donuts so this was an option. I frosted with a maple glaze and topped with some bacon bits (real ones). They turned out very good!!! My husband was happy.

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