I know I just posted a donut recipe last week, but I wanted to post another one because I love them. I call these pumpkin spice biscuit donuts my cheater donuts because you only need 3 ingredients to make them. Yes you heard that right – 3 ingredients. I don’t think there are that many recipes in the world where you can make great food with just 3 ingredients. These biscuit donuts are flaky, pillowy soft in the center, and coated with warm fall spices. It’s all you want in a fall inspired donut!
Ingredients, Substitutions & Adjustments
- Pillsbury biscuits – This is the main ingredients in these biscuit donuts. There’s no need for yeast or flour or anything. I like to use the original Pillsbury biscuits because they make for donuts that are the perfect size, flavor, and texture. However, I think any version of their biscuits should work.
- Granulated sugar & pumpkin spice – These two ingredients combine to make the coating. Pumpkin spice is a combination of all spice, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. This coating works with only cinnamon as well.
- Vegetable oil – Any kind of neutral oil works for this recipe. I would recommend vegetable or grapeseed oil.
Making my pumpkin spice biscuit donuts
Heat vegetable oil to 350 degrees F in a dutch oven. Use a candy thermometer for consistency. While the oil is heating up, prepare the biscuit dough by cutting a circle in the center of each biscuit. You can use a small cookie cutter or a knife. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Set the biscuits aside after cutting. Combine pumpkin spice and sugar in a shallow bowl. Mix and set aside.
Now it’s time to fry your donuts! Once the oil reaches 350 degrees F, fry donuts for 1-2 minutes each side until golden. Fry in batches, so you don’t overcrowd the pan. Cool donuts for ~1 minute before coating them in pumpkin spice sugar. I would recommend coating the donuts while they’re still hot, so the sugar sticks better.
Tips on how to make the perfect pumpkin spice biscuit donuts
- Make sure to cut the circle in the center – Cutting out the center portion of the biscuit is not just for show. I fried a batch of these without cutting out a circle, and the donut did not fry evenly. The outside was golden, but the inside was still raw. That opening in the center allows the heat from the oil to penetrate the donut on all sides, allowing it to cook evenly.
- Use a cast iron pot for frying – The container you use to fry these donuts does matter. A cast iron pot like a dutch oven works best because it has great heat retention which helps your donuts fry evenly. Alternatives to a cast iron pot are any kind of stainless steel or enamel pot.
- Use a candy thermometer to keep the oil temperature consistent – I found using a candy thermometer really useful in getting consistent color on my donuts. Too high the outside will fully cook while the inside stays raw. Too low the donut will absorb more oil since you will need to cook the donuts longer.
- Coat donuts while they’re still warm – The key to getting the coating to stick to the donut is to coat it while it’s still warm. This can be difficult because the donut is pretty hot when it comes out of the oil. I would recommend using 2 forks if that is the case.
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Pumpkin Spice Biscuit Donuts
- Heat vegetable oil to 350 degrees F in a dutch oven. Use a candy thermometer to keep a consistent temperature throughout the process.
- While the vegetable oil is heating up, prepare biscuit dough by using a knife to cut a circle in the center of each biscuit. Set aside.
- Next combine pumpkin spice and granulated sugar in a bowl. Mix and set aside.
- Once the oil reaches 350 degrees F, fry donuts for 1-2 minutes each side until golden. Fry in batches, so you don’t overcrowd the pan. I did mine 3 at a time.
- Cool donuts for ~1 minute. Coat each with the pumpkin spice sugar from step 3. I would try to coat the donuts while they're still hot, so the pumpkin spice sugar sticks better.