Donut Muffins

Tested & Perfected Recipes

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy.

Sweet, cake-like and scented with cinnamon and nutmeg, these muffins taste remarkably like donuts.

Doughnut muffins on a wire rack.

Sweet, cake-like, and scented with cinnamon and nutmeg, these muffins taste remarkably like donuts. Kids love them because they’re deliciously plain, and adults love them because they’re just plain delicious. Unlike donuts, they’re baked not deep-fried so you can feel more virtuous eating them. They’re a perfect accompaniment to coffee, tea, or milk and if you need one more reason to try them, they’re easy to make with ingredients you probably have on hand. If these are a hit with your family and you want to mix things up a bit, give this powdered donut cake a try. It’s sure to vanish in no time.

“These muffins were perfect! Loved how easy they were to make and that they taste like a doughnut and a muffin at the same time!”


What You’ll Need To Make Donut Muffins

ingredients you'll need
  • Milk: Provides moisture and richness to the muffins’ batter. Low-fat milk is fine.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds acidity to react with the baking soda, helping the muffins rise.
  • All-Purpose Flour: Forms the base of the muffin batter, providing structure.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda: Leavens the muffins, causing them to rise and become light and fluffy.
  • Nutmeg: Infuses the batter with warm, aromatic flavor reminiscent of classic donuts.
  • Butter: Incorporates richness and flavor into both the batter and the topping.
  • Sugar: Sweetens the muffin batter and creates a delicate, slightly crisp topping.
  • Eggs: Act as a binding agent, holding the muffin batter together and providing structure.
  • Vanilla Extract: Enhances the overall flavor profile with its aromatic sweetness.
  • Cinnamon: Adds a warm, spicy flavor to the muffin topping, reminiscent of cinnamon-sugar donuts.
  • Jump to the printable recipe for precise measurements

Step-by-Step Instructions

Begin by combining the milk and lemon juice. This is essentially making your own buttermilk (since you only need 1 cup), which reacts with the baking soda in this recipe to give these muffins a nice, open crumb.

Milk and lemon

Next, combine all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. All that nutmeg is what makes these muffins taste like donuts.

Bowl of unmixed dry ingredients.

Whisk to combine and then set aside.

Whisk in a bowl of dry ingredients.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, a few minutes.

Electric mixer with a bowl of creamed butter and sugar.

Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until well combined.

Egg in a bowl of creamed butter and sugar.

Mix in the vanilla extract.

Vanilla added to a bowl of creamed butter and sugar.

Add a third of the dry ingredients.

dry and wet ingredients

Mix well, then add half of the milk mixture.

Milk with batter in a bowl.

Continue alternating the dry and wet ingredients until the batter is well combined. It will be quite thick.

Bowl of muffin batter with an electric mixer.

Scoop the batter into a greased muffin pan, filling the tins to the rim.

Muffin tin of doughnut muffin batter.

Bake until firm to the touch, 25 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the toppings: melt the butter and whisk the cinnamon and sugar together.

Doughnut muffins in a muffin tin.

When cool enough to handle, brush the muffins with melted butter and roll in the cinnamon-sugar.

Person brushing doughnut muffins with melted butter.

Serve warm out of the oven or reheated in the microwave. I especially love them slathered with jam.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make mini donut muffins? What changes should I make?

Sure, these would be great as minis! The baking temperature will remain the same, but the baking time shorter. Start checking them for doneness at about 12 minutes. All ovens are different though, so keep a close eye on them.

Can I use a non-dairy milk in the donut muffins?

Definitely! The donut muffins will work with any kind of non-dairy milk like soy, almond, or oat milk.

Can I freeze donut muffins?

For sure — the muffins can be frozen in an airtight container or sealable plastic bag for up to 3 months. Thaw for 3 to 4 hours on the countertop before serving. To reheat, wrap individual muffins in aluminum foil and place in a preheated 350°F oven until warm.

Doughnut muffins on and next to a wire rack.

You May Also Like

Donut Muffins

Sweet, cake-like and scented with cinnamon and nutmeg, these muffins taste remarkably like donuts.

Servings: 12 muffins
Total Time: 45 Minutes


For Muffin Batter

  • 1 cup milk (low-fat is fine)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • 2½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

For Muffin Topping

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2¼ teaspoons cinnamon


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Spray a standard muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Combine the milk and lemon juice in a measuring cup or bowl and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the vanilla.
  5. Add a third of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix on low speed to combine. Add half of the milk mixture and mix well. Mix in another third of the flour mixture, followed by the remaining milk mixture, and finally the remaining flour mixture. Mix until evenly combined but don't over-mix. The batter will be very thick.
  6. Scoop the batter evenly into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup to the rim. (I like to use an ice cream scoop with a wire scraper for this.) Bake the muffins until firm to the touch, 25-30 minutes. Let the muffins cool in the pan for a few minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool.
  7. In the meantime, prepare the toppings: Melt the butter in a small bowl. In another small bowl, whisk the cinnamon and sugar together.
  8. When the muffins are cool enough to handle, working one by one, use a pastry brush to paint the top of each muffin with butter, then roll in the cinnamon-sugar. If you have cinnamon-sugar left over, sprinkle muffins again. Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Store at room temperature. Reheat muffins briefly in microwave for that fresh out of the oven taste.
  9. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: the muffins can be frozen in an airtight container or sealable plastic bag for up to 3 months. Thaw for 3 to 4 hours on the countertop before serving. To reheat, wrap individual muffins in aluminum foil and place in a preheated 350°F oven until warm.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (12 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 muffin
  • Calories: 342
  • Fat: 16 g
  • Saturated fat: 10 g
  • Carbohydrates: 46 g
  • Sugar: 21 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 234 mg
  • Cholesterol: 70 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

See more recipes:


  • what is a stick of butter?

    • Hi Carol, One stick of butter is the equivalent of 8 tablespoons/113 grams. It sounds like maybe you use metric measurements? If so, this recipe has metric conversions — To view them, scroll down to the recipe and immediately under the recipe title on the right side, you’ll see a little toggle. If you move it from “cup measures” to metric, you’ll see measurements that will work for you. Hope that helps!

  • I would love to try making these in a low carb version, using Swerve and almond flour instead of all-purpose flour. Swerve has a 1:1 substitution ratio for sugar. How much almond flour should be used? (A 1:2 ratio? 1 cup flour: 2 cups almond flour?) Thank you!

    • Hi Kim, I don’t have any experience with almond flour, so I’m not sure how it will impact the muffins, but this guide from King Arthur flour may help. I’d love to hear how they turn out with these changes.

      • I follow Priscilla Martel’s advice for substituting almond flour. She indicates that almond flour can be substituted 1:1 up to 1/4 of the total flour measurement. But, almond flour absorbs more liquid, so be prepared to add to that. In a very old (150 yr) family recipe for blueberry biscuits, I use 1 c almond flour and 3 c AP flour. Both liquid vegetable shortening and milk are called for in the recipe. I add up to 1/4 c more of milk, not the liquid shortening. Hope this helps.

        With respect to substituting the sugar, the various alternative sweetners such as allulose, monk fruit, erythritol etc sweeten to different degrees. I find allulose is 1:1, but it may alter the texture. Good luck.

        I substituted 1/4 of the flour with almond flour and added more milk. These are wonderful, period.

        • — Hollis on August 10, 2022
        • Reply
        • Thanks so much for weighing in Hollis — I think this will be helpful to others!

          • — Jenn on August 11, 2022
          • Reply
    • Can I multiply this recipe by 3 or 4 for a large group of people (and an industrial size mixer) without the muffins becoming tough? Thanks! I have doubled it before successfully. Such delicious muffins!

      • — J.G. on March 3, 2023
      • Reply
      • Hi J.G. I would think it would work. I haven’t used an industrial-sized mixer, but as long as you follow the recipe instructions for mixing the batter, it should be fine.

        • — Jenn on March 6, 2023
        • Reply
  • Hi Jen, can I use ground nutmeg instead of grated? thanks.

    • Sure, Diane. Enjoy!

  • This were easy to make and delicious. Will definitely make again.

  • My kids loved these muffins, and my kids are adults! Yummy recipe. Wouldn’t change a thing.

  • Hi, has anyone used GF flour for these amazing looking muffins?!

  • Your measurements of ml. and g. Confuse me How do I convert to cups etc?

    • Hi Doreen, It sounds like your measurements are defaulting to the metric ones. To view traditional measurements, scroll down to the recipe and immediately under the recipe title on the right side, you’ll see a little toggle. If you move it from “metric” to “cup measures,” you’ll see measurements that will work for you.

  • Please add the nutritional info.

    • Done- hope you enjoy them!

  • Can you tell me how much butter in a cup measurement- in Canada our butter usually comes in a 1lb block rather than sticks.

    • Hi Marina, 1 pound of butter is just shy of 2 cups. (And I’ve added metric conversions to the recipe if that’s helpful to you.) To view them, scroll down to the recipe and immediately under the recipe title on the right side, you’ll see a little toggle. If you move it from “cup measures” to metric, you’ll see measurements that will work for you. Hope you enjoy the muffins!

  • These are the best! I made these for my kids for a special treat and they devoured them. Also they are surprisingly easy to make!

    • — Christina Copenhaver
    • Reply
  • Could I make this a loaf bread?

    • Sure Lynda, I think that will work. I’d love to hear how it turns out!

  • Made these for a bake sale and was a huge hit. Most had never had a doughnut muffin before except for one person who had one at an upscale bakery and liked these a whole lot better.

  • I would like to make this recipe as mini muffins…how should I adjust the baking time?

    • Hi Pattie, I’d start checking the muffins for doneness at about 12 minutes. Hope you enjoy!

  • Do you know how long to bake if you use a baked donut pan?

    • Hi Susan, I’ve never used a doughnut pan, so I’m really not sure. There are a couple resources online that may help; you may want to check here and here.

  • Jenn, I work with 24 ppl. and I only have one muffin pan but I have 2 muffin top pans. Would making one batch of batter but double the topping work? Also is making the batter the night before and baking in the morning an option? Love your site!
    Thank you, Ann

    • Hi Ann, I haven’t tried the recipe with muffin top pans, but I think those amounts should work. And while I think you could refrigerate the batter, you could make the muffins the night before. (But they definitely are best right from the oven :).

      • Yes, it did work and were devoured! Thank you very much. ?

  • Can I make these and then freeze individually? Would love to have fresh muffins that the family can take out from the freezer.

    • Definitely! Although I think they are best right from the oven, they will freeze nicely too.

  • Hi Jenn, I just made these and they were easy and delicious. One question though, and it is the crumbliness of them. I found them a little crumbly on the first day. Today, they are less easy to fall apart. Maybe I put too much of something in or not enough. Any tips for the muffins being a little crumbly when they are first out of the oven? Thanks for the help, and yum! Jane

    • Hi Jane, it could be that you used too much flour (did you use the spoon and level method?) or that they were a bit overdone.

  • I love all the muffin recipes on this website. My go to recipe has to be this one. I always have the ingredients and my kids love them. Thank you!!

  • Hi Jenn,

    These look so amazing and I want to make them tomorrow, however, I’m lactose intolerant. Can I use almond milk or rice milk instead?

    • Almond milk should work fine, Ana. Hope you enjoy, and please let me know how they turn out.

  • I can’t wait to try these muffins today. Can these muffins be frozen, as I have company coming later in the week and am trying to get baking done in advance? I am guessing they are probably best made the day of… Thank you!

    • Yes Megan, they are best right out of the oven, but you can definitely bake them in advance and freeze them.

  • Ok these look so easy to make, I have a function to go to at work and will try them and let you know how they work

  • Can you substitute regular McCormick nutmeg for fresh and if you can how much should be used? Thanks!

    • Hi Abbie, Yes that’s fine — use the same amount.

  • My family doesn’t like nutmeg – any suggestions for a replacement spice? More cinamon?

    • Hi Bonnie, Yes, cinnamon would be a good substitute. But they won’t taste like doughnuts — you need the nutmeg for that.

  • I just made these this morning and my family loved them!! We have celiac disease, so I used my GF baking mix and left out the baking powder and soda (since they’re included in my baking mix). I also happened to have buttermilk, so I used it. They were wonderful!!

  • I made these doughnut muffins this morning and my boys really liked them. My kindergartner grabbed one to put in his lunchbox. 🙂

  • Instead of milk and lemon juice can i just use buttermilk? Or half milk half buttermilk? Thanks!

    • Hi Sylvia, Yes, buttermilk would work well.

  • I have made these several times now and they are delicious but I like to add jam to them before they go in the oven so I fill each muffin hole half way add a good helping of jam then add the remaining mixture to each of the holes

  • Thank you so much for the recipe! I made them and they tasted just like the donuts my mom made when I was a small girl~

  • YUM! These muffins will always be on my short list when I’m craving something sweet for breakfast (which is always).

  • I made the doughnut muffins twice and they were delicious both times! I loved the flavor the nutmeg added.

  • I’m preparing for a large family breakfast Sunday morning, and found this recipe on Pinterest. Made them today and OH MY! Muffins – that taste like donuts! How can you go wrong? LOL Thanks for sharing this recipe. If they last until tomorrow morning (glaring at husband), I think they’ll be the hit of the day.

  • Made these for my Godson when he visited from London and he adored them. He has already asked that I make these gorgeous muffins for his next visit.

  • Made this exactly as printed and they were delicious! Especially with coffee!

  • I absolutely LOVE to bake. And to eat it!!! 😀 Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Out of this world!

  • Great recipe, easy and sooo tasty! Thanks for a great recipe for my collection!!

  • Thanks for another great recipe. Delicious!! I would love to win the giveaway.

  • Wow do these look great, or what!!? Comfort food at its best!

    • — Elizabeth C. in Kansas
    • Reply
  • These are delicious…I will be remembering this recipe in the fall for sure with some hot mulled cider }:>)

  • Wow these are wonderful!

    • — Teresa Cochran
    • Reply
  • These muffins are a fun compliment to a brunch/breakfast gathering. They turn out perfectly and look pretty as well. They are definitely best served warm out of the oven, but do stay nice if you make the day before.

  • Made these for my daycare kids today and we all LOVED THEM! I served them with fresh blueberries and milk.

  • I am in love with this muffin recipe! I would not change a thing. It’s easy to make and comes out perfect!

  • These came out great.

  • Oh. my. goodness. There are no words to describe the wonder of these muffins. I followed the recipe exactly and they were perfect. My husband even made a comment about how my baking seemed to have crossed a threshold into gourmet territory! This is a muffin not to be missed! Already planning to make them every time I have house guests!

    Thanks for this gem!

  • My husband will not eat doughnuts…but he will eat muffins!

  • My family loves these muffins! I make them for my neighbors kids too, these muffins are requested all the time around here!

  • I love your ideas & recipes. I have not tried them all yet but they are saved for future use!! Thank you for sharing your ideas & recipes with us.

  • I’ve made these 2x’s already and each time have just flown out the window. My family loves these! Great with coffee in the morning or just with a cold glass of milk. Thank you for sharing it!

  • My family enjoyed these muffins. They came our perfect. Definitely hits the spot in the Fall with a warm cup of cider.

Add a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.