This Brioche Donuts Recipe will make the best brioche donuts you’ve ever tasted. Rich, buttery, yet still fluffy, brioche donuts are easy to make and are a delicious dessert or sweet snack at any time of day.
If you love brioche, you should really try these recipes for brioche bread and brioche buns.
Brioche donuts or bread are just a richer version of your standard bread and donut recipes. A standard bread recipe only has water, flour, salt, and yeast, whereas a brioche will contain plenty of eggs, milk, and butter. Hence the term “rich bread.”
Brioche recipes are often used in sweet recipes like my brioche french toast or bread pudding due to their texture and buttery flavor. However, they do not contain much more sugar than most bread or donut recipes. It is common to use brioche bread instead of regular bread. For example, brioche buns are perfect for serving with homemade burgers.
How to make brioche donuts
Donuts can be intimidating, but this recipe will walk you through all the steps for making your own homemade brioche donuts. It doesn’t take very long, but you do have to be patient during the proofing process. Remember, it will be rewarded when you bite into one of these delicious and richly flavored sweets that have got the perfect fluffy texture.
Ingredients for this brioche recipe
- Water- warm, to activate the yeast
- Milk- warm
- Active yeast
- Granulated sugar- to activate the yeast and be added to the dough
- Eggs- give the donuts a richer flavor
- Unsalted butter- adds the buttery flavor brioche is known for
- Flour- all-purpose is best
The steps for making brioche donuts
- Froth the yeast. In a measuring cup, add the warm water and milk to 1 Tbsp. of sugar and the yeast. Whisk. After about 10 minutes, it should be frothy.
- Combine the ingredients. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, salt, sugar, frothy yeast, and eggs. Using the hook attachment, mix together at medium-high speed.
- Add the butter. When the dough starts to come together, add the softened butter and mix again for about 8 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Let the dough rise. Place it in a greased bowl and cover the dough with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel. Allow it to rise in a warm place for about an hour, or until it doubles in size. Do not let it rise too long or it will hurt the taste and texture of the donuts.
- Punch and proof again. Punch the dough down, reshape it, and allow it to rise to twice the size again (about an hour).
- Roll the dough out. Place the dough on a well-floured surface. Dust more flour on the dough and then roll it out with a rolling pin until it’s about 3/4-inch thick.
- Cut and let rise. Cut the dough out with a biscuit cutter and place the donuts on a baking sheet. Allow them to rise for 30 minutes.
- Fry the donuts. Pour about 2 inches of oil into a heavy-bottomed pot and heat it to 360-375ºF. Fry the donuts for a few minutes on each side, until golden brown.
- Let cool. Place the donuts on a paper towel-lined baking sheet (to absorb excess oil) and let cool completely before adding the filling of your choice.
Tips and FAQs to make the perfect brioche donuts
I have experimented with countless brioche recipes like my braided Nutella brioche, brioche bread pudding, and brioche hot cross buns. So, I have learned a few things about making brioche recipes and have some answers for you below.
Can I let the dough rise overnight?
Yes! The best way to make any brioche recipe is to allow it to rise overnight in the fridge. By placing the dough in the fridge it prevents over-fermentation. This donut recipe uses a quicker method to save you time. I leave the covered dough at room temperature until it doubles in size. This usually takes about 1 hour.
Frying oil temperature
You want to make sure that the temperature of your frying oil is between 360-375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- If your oil temperature is too high– then the outside will burn, but the inside of the donut will be raw.
- If the temperature is too low– then you will have to fry it longer to have a nice exterior, but the inside will be dry and overcooked.
Can you freeze these donuts?
Yes, you can freeze these brioche donuts. Wrap them tightly in aluminum foil and then place them in a ziplock freezer bag. When you are ready to eat them, allow them to defrost at room temperature before reheating them in the oven, or in the microwave for about 15-20 seconds, checking for doneness after the first 10 seconds.
Storing brioche donuts
You can store these brioche donuts tightly wrapped and in an airtight container or bag. They will last for 1-2 days at room temperature, 1 week in the fridge, and 2-3 months in the freezer. If you’ve filled your brioche donuts, then they should always be stored in the fridge or freezer, and not left out.
Can I make them in advance?
You can make this donut recipe a day in advance by placing your covered brioche dough in the fridge overnight to rise. Then, on the next day prior to using your brioche dough, make sure to punch your dough down and reshape it. Let it rise once more before rolling it out and cutting out the donuts.
Full Recipe Instructions
Best Brioche Donuts
- 1/2 cup water
- 3/4 cup milk
- 2 tsp dry active yeast
- 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 5 large eggs
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Froth up the yeast mixture
Combine everything in a mixer
- In the bowl of a stand mixer add 5 1/2 cups of flour(spooned and leveled off with a knife), 1 1/2 tsp salt 1/3 cup sugar, the frothy yeast mixture, and 5 large eggs. Mix everything together on medium-high speed using the hook attachment.
- When the brioche dough begins to come together add 1/2 cup of softened unsalted butter. Continue mixing on medium-high speed for about 8 minutes or until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.
Let the dough rise in a bowl
- Place the donut dough in a greased bowl and cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Then let it rise in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until it doubles in size.
Punch and Proof a second time
- After the brioche rises, punch it down, reshape it, and let it rise again until it becomes twice the size (about an hour),
Roll, cut, and proof the donuts again
- Now remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a well-floured surface. Dust some more flour on top and roll it out using a rolling pin. You want the dough to be about 3/4 inch thick.
- Now cut out the donuts using a biscuit cutter and place them on a baking sheet. Then let them ride for about 30 more minutes.
Fry the donuts
- Pour about 2 inches of corn or vegetable oil in a heavy-bottomed pot and let the oil come to 360-375 degrees Fahrenheit (I used this instant-read thermometer). Now fry each side of the donut for a few minutes per side or until golden brown.
- Transfer to a baking sheet lined with paper towels to absorb any extra oil. Let them cool before filling with Nutella, raspberry jam, or Boston cream custard.
Storing brioche donutsYou can store these brioche donuts tightly wrapped and in an airtight container or bag. They will last for 1-2 days at room temperature, 1 week in the fridge, and 2-3 months in the freezer. If you've filled your brioche donuts, then they should always be stored in the fridge or freezer, and not left out. Love brioche recipes? Then try these brioche buns!
- Strawberry Feta Spinach Salad - May 27, 2023
- Breaded Chicken Skewers - May 24, 2023
- Mango Smoothie - May 22, 2023
Annie W. says
These are delicious! I doubted my baking abilities to do this recipe, but it worked perfectly. I halved the recipe and made about a dozen donuts. I tried air frying one of them and it didn’t work. They simply baked like a roll, whereas frying them created an air pocket in the middle for the filling and a light fluffy texture. The dough is definitely stickier than I expected. I filled them with chocolate pastry cream. Thanks for a great recipe!
Hi Annie 🙂 So happy to hear you loved these brioche donuts! Love the chocolate addition! The dough is a bit sticky but that is what makes them so delicious! Thank you so much for your feedback and support! I hope you find many more delicious recipes on my blog! 🙂
Penny Ronk says
Can these donuts be fried in an air fryer? What temp and how long?
Hi Penny, I recommend cooking them in a preheated air fryer at 345 degrees F for about 5-6 minutes. I hope you love this recipe!
Cyndi G. says
I was wondering if I could use Instant Yeast instead of dry, active? And would the process be any different?
P. S. Thanks so much for the metric measurements!
Hi Cyndi, yes you can use instant yeast. All that you would need to change is skip the first part where you let the yeast mixture froth up in the milk. All you need to do is throw everything into the mixer bowl and that’s it 🙂
just wondering how to reheat the donuts after freezing?
Hi Natasha 🙂 First, you want to let them thaw out fully at room temperature. Then you can reheat them in the microwave, oven, or air fryer. Hope that helps 🙂
Hi! I’m excited to try this recipe but I’m wondering if it can be done in the airfryer? Thank you
Hi Debbie, I have never tried this specific donut recipe in an air fryer so I am not too sure. I can’t give any advise on this without testing it out myself.
D. Laughlin says
Can you possibly add ounces or grams to your measurements? I t would be a major help.
Hi Dave 🙂 I just added metric conversions to the recipe card. You can click on that option just under the ingredient list. However, it is an estimated number. I didn’t weigh them out myself. I have noticed slight discrepancies in the conversions. I hope that helps. Let me know how it goes 🙂
Can these donuts be baked instead of fried?
Hi, I believe it should work in the oven 🙂 I wish I could tell you the exact time and temperature. But I have personally never baked them before.
these. are. amazing. i ended up proofing them once in the bowl for an hour and then punched the dough, cut the donuts, and let them rise for about 45 minutes (i forgot to do the second proof) and they still turned out unbelievably good. i filled mine w chocolate pudding, vanilla pudding, and lemon whipped cream. sooo good!! i think a visual aid for the brioche dough would’ve been nice though, since i was worried about how sticky the dough was. overall absolutely wonderful! thanks for this recipe 🙂
Yay! So happy to hear that these brioche donuts were such a hit Emma!! Love all the fillings you used 🙂 Yes, this dough is a bit stickier than normal, next time I will keep that in mind for those kinds of pictures 🙂 Thank you so much for your awesome feedback and I hope you find many more delicious recipes on my blog 🙂
These are sooooooo good! I filled half with Nutella and half with raspberry preserve. First time making these and they are already gone. Now everyone is asking for more, so i’ll be making them again this weekend!! Thanks for the awesome recipe, Dina! I seriously feel like a professional baker now!!
OMG thats awesome Carina!! 🙂 I totally know the pro-baker feeling after mastering any kind of yeast dough recipe. Anyone who tries these becomes obsessed… and about 2 pounds heavier lol. Totally worth it though!