Are Donuts Vegan? The Complete Lowdown + Recipe

Donuts are an all-time favorite snack for people of all ages. The fried dough is crispy, melt-in-the-mouth soft, and topped with delectable frostings and sprinkles. However, if you follow veganism, you would want to know: are donuts vegan?

That’s what we will share in this article, the complete lowdown and the recipe of vegan donuts. Are you ready to find everything you need to know about one of the most popular desserts? Let’s get started.

Are Donuts Vegan?

It might come as a disappointment, but donuts are not vegan-friendly. However, if donuts are your ultimate love, you don’t have to give up the dessert entirely. You can enjoy a piece or two or maybe an entire box without feeling guilty. 

There might not be many vegan flavors available in the market, but you can always make vegan donuts from scratch and savor the sugary goodness. That way, you can please your sweet palate with your favorite donut flavors and adjust the recipe to your preferences. 

But what if you don’t want to spend hours making donuts and their toppings in the kitchen? In that case, you can buy vegan donuts from the market. Here are some of the brands and bakeries in the US that offer donuts made from cruelty-free ingredients.

What Are Donuts Made Of?

Most of the donut ingredients come from dairy, which shows that it is not made from vegan ingredients. Traditional donuts are made from all-purpose flour, butter, eggs, sugar, milk, oil, and salt. 

However, some toppings might fall under the vegan category, like sugar and vegan chocolate chips. In comparison, plant-based ingredients are used to make vegan donuts. 

Nonetheless, most of the frostings are made from dairy and non-vegan products, so a person following a plant-based diet cannot go for a traditional donut unless the brand offers a vegan alternative or the bakery makes vegan desserts. 

What’s more interesting is that you can use vegan ingredients to make donuts that taste as good as traditional ones. So, let’s move towards how you can make vegan donuts from scratch and enjoy a guilt-free treat whenever sugar cravings hit you.

Recipe For Vegan Donuts

There are two ways to make donuts, fried or baked. Traditionally, donuts are fried; however, what recipe you follow is entirely your choice. The recipe for vegan donuts that we are sharing is a baked variation.

It is not too complicated. You need to follow some steps to have a tray of this sweet, soft, and doughy dessert. Let’s go through the recipe card to cook up a batch of steaming hot vegan donuts topped with finger-licking frosting.

Ingredients for the Dough

Full-fat coconut milk           1 cup

Vegan sugar ¾ cup

Vegan butter 1 tablespoon

All purpose flour 2 – ½ cups

Pure vanilla extract 1 teaspoon

Yeast 1 – ½ tablespoons

Ingredients for Glaze

Vegan butter 1 tablespoon

Full-fat coconut milk           2 tablespoons

Powdered sugar ½ cup


Step 1: Preparing the Dough

  1. Set your oven for preheating at 180 ℃ or 350 ℉. 
  2. Take a small saucepan and melt vegan butter and coconut milk over medium heat. Let it simmer until butter is melted.
  3. Mix flour, yeast, sugar, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl.
  4. Now, add wet ingredients (vegan butter and coconut milk) to dry ingredients and mix them with a wooden spatula to form a firm dough. 
  5. Knead the dough for three-five minutes.

Step 2: Baking Donuts

  1. Place the dough on a bread rolling board or kitchen counter and flatten it with your hands.
  2. Now take a cookie-cutter or doughnut cutter and cut donuts out of the rolled dough. If you don’t have a doughnut cutter, you can use a cup or any circular utensil.
  3. If you didn’t use a doughnut cutter, use a stick to make a hole in the middle of each donut. You can simply use your finger to poke the center.
  4. Line the baking sheets with parchment paper and place the donuts on the sheet.
  5. Let them sit for 60 minutes.
  6. Once the donuts are set, bake them for ten to twelve minutes. 
  7. When they turn golden brown, take them out.
  8. Let the donuts cool down.

Step 3: Prepare Glaze

  1. Take a bowl and mix vegan butter, coconut milk, and powdered sugar.
  2. Pour the glaze over the donuts.

Chocolate Glaze 

If you would rather have a chocolate glaze, follow this frosting recipe:

  1. Mix 3 tablespoons of non-dairy milk with 3 tablespoons of sugar over medium heat. 
  2. Add 2 tablespoons of refined coconut oil. 
  3. Once the sugar is well dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and add 90 gm of vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips. 
  4. Combine well and dip the donuts in the chocolate icing or drizzle it over the donuts.

Fried vs. Baked Vegan Donuts

There are different ways to make vegan donuts. Some people like fried donuts while others prefer baked. Some recipes call for baking powder or baking soda in place of yeast. You can substitute baking powder for yeast. 

The main difference is that fried donuts made from yeast rise higher and are fluffier, whereas baked donuts made from baking powder are a little more dense and smaller. 

Recipe Variations

There are different variations of donuts that are made from cruelty-free ingredients. Whether you coat the donuts with sugar or your favorite frosting, you can adjust the recipe as per your taste and preference. Some people simply dip their donuts in powdered sugar, while others like to top them with vegan sprinkles.

The ideas are endless. You can get creative and look up different frosting recipes to get some inspiration.


Whether fried or baked, vegan donuts can sweeten up bad days. It is the ultimate comfort food that is crispy yet delightfully soft and sweet. The good thing is that you can have donuts even if you follow veganism. 

Are donuts vegan or not? We hope our article answered that question hovering in your mind. Now that you have a simple yet authentic recipe at hand, you won’t have to look for a bakery or brand that makes vegan-friendly donuts. 

So, get ready to whip up a bag of sugary treats that you can delight your family and friends with.

Brett White
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