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Using my favorite glazed doughnuts recipe, let’s expand the menu and make 3 varieties of homemade frosted doughnuts including vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry.

homemade doughnuts with frosting

First there were these wonderfully delicious and completely homemade glazed doughnuts. Using that exact doughnut recipe, let’s expand the menu and prepare:

Vanilla Frosted Doughnuts
Chocolate Frosted Doughnuts
√ Strawberry Frosted Doughnuts

And all with SPRINKLES.

Quick Overview: Homemade Frosted Doughnuts

We use a basic soft and sweet dough for today’s doughnuts, the same exact dough as my homemade glazed doughnuts. You only need a handful of basic ingredients including milk, yeast, sugar, eggs, butter, salt, vanilla, flour, and a touch of ground nutmeg. A little nutmeg is the secret ingredient to that cozy, comforting bakery doughnut taste. The process is pretty straightforward and I detail it in the glazed doughnuts recipe.

  • Prepare the dough, knead it, then let it rise until doubled in size. After that, punch it down to release the air. Roll the dough out and cut the doughnuts using a 3-3.5 inch doughnut cutter. Cover and let the doughnuts rest as you heat the oil. Fry the doughnuts in a heavy-duty pot 2-3 at a time. Use an oil thermometer to keep the oil’s temperature around 375°F (191°C).

Once they’re fried, you can add your toppings!

Baking with Yeast Guide

Reference this Baking with Yeast Guide whenever you work with baker’s yeast. I include practical answers to all of your common yeast questions.

fried doughnuts

3 frostings for homemade doughnuts

Doughnut Toppings

All 3 frostings are made within about 5 minutes. Melted butter gives both the chocolate and vanilla frostings wonderful flavor. The melted butter solidifies after several minutes and helps the frostings “set” on the doughnuts for that iconic doughnut frosting look and taste.

  • Strawberry Frosting: The strawberry frosting is more like a glaze, but if you double or triple dunk the doughnuts, you’ll have a nice thick strawberry coating. You need pureed fresh strawberries, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and strawberry jam. I add the jam for extra strawberry flavor; it also helps mask some of the confectioners’ sugar flavor.
  • Vanilla Frosting: You need melted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, milk, and a little salt to offset the sweetness. Unlike vanilla icing, this vanilla topping includes butter. It will set as the doughnuts cool.
  • Chocolate Frosting: For the chocolate, you can use milk chocolate, semi-sweet, or dark chocolate chips. I like to use dark chocolate chips for deeper flavor. You also need butter, corn syrup for extra shine, and a little water. Warning: the second those warm doughnuts hit the chocolate glaze, your house will immediately smell like chocolate cake and doughnuts. PERFECTION.

I imagine it would be so much fun to have a Homemade Frosted Doughnuts Party where you prep a big batch of the doughnuts and everyone can dunk and decorate as they please. Set out a bunch of little bowls of sprinkles and let the guests go to town!

homemade doughnuts with strawberry frosting
vanilla frosted doughnuts with sprinkles
chocolate frosted fried doughnuts
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homemade doughnuts with frosting

3 Doughnut Frostings

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 12 doughnuts and 12 doughnut holes 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Here’s how to make homemade frosted doughnuts 3 different ways. Vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry frosting recipes included!



Strawberry Frosting

  • 5 large strawberries
  • 1 and 3/4 cups (210g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon strawberry jam or preserves
  • sprinkles

Vanilla Frosting

  • 3 Tablespoons (43g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (180g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tablespoons (45ml) milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • sprinkles

Chocolate Frosting

  • 3/4 cup (135g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3 Tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • sprinkles


  1. Prepare the doughnuts according to the recipe and directions. Set warm fried doughnuts aside as you prepare the frosting.
  2. Strawberry frosting: Puree the strawberries in a food processor. Whisk the puree, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and strawberry jam together in a medium bowl. Dip the doughnuts into the strawberry frosting 2 or 3 times (it’s thinner than the others), then cover with sprinkles.
  3. Vanilla frosting: Whisk the melted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, 2 Tablespoons (30ml) of milk, and salt together in a medium bowl. Whisk in the remaining 1 Tablespoon (15ml) of milk to thin, if desired. It’s easier to dip the doughnuts if the glaze is thinner. Dip the doughnuts into the vanilla frosting, then cover with sprinkles.
  4. Chocolate frosting: Place the chocolate chips, butter, corn syrup, and water in a medium bowl. Melt in 20 second increments in the microwave, stirring after each time, until completely melted and smooth. Dip the doughnuts into the chocolate frosting, then cover with sprinkles.


  1. Quantity: Each frosting recipe is enough for the 12 fried doughnuts and doughnut holes from my basic homemade doughnuts recipe. If you want to make all 3 frostings for the 12 doughnuts, you will have some of each frosting leftover. You can always halve each frosting recipe instead. Or you can make the doughnut dough twice so you have more. (I don’t recommend doubling the doughnut dough– for best taste and texture, make two separate batches.)
  2. Baked Donuts: Instead of frying doughnuts, you can make these baked cinnamon sugar donuts, but skip dipping them in butter and the cinnamon-sugar topping. You’ll have a little extra frosting if using the baked donuts recipe (which makes 8), but if you double the baked donut recipe (to make 16) you will certainly have enough frosting for each.
  3. Corn Syrup in Chocolate Frosting: Corn syrup adds a little smooth sweetness and beautiful sheen to the chocolate frosting. You can leave it out completely or substitute with honey or agave instead.
  4. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.

Keywords: frosted doughnuts, doughnuts

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. I’m making a doughnut cake this weekend – would this frosting recipe work on a cake or would it be too runny to spread? I’m thinking a buttercream icing would be too thick to get the look of a doughnut.

    1. Are you making a cake shaped like a giant donut? If so these might be a bit thin (especially the strawberry). Buttercream could work but if you are looking for chocolate a simple ganache on top would give it the smooth shiny look of a real donut 🙂

  2. My niece is having a doughnut birthday party this year and I cant decide if I should make the homemade or baked doughnuts. Is there one that you prefer more than the other?

    1. What a fun theme for a party! It’s really personal preference if you want to make fried or baked donuts (and what equipment and ingredients you have!). I love an authentic fried donut but sometimes it’s quicker and easier and just as tasty to bake them in my donut pan 🙂

  3. We are doing a National Donut Day Playdate at our Toy Store and do not have much more than a small microwave for prep at the store. Is the frosting something that can be chilled and then reheated in the microwave right before the event?

    1. So fun! I think that should work – I wouldn’t even refrigerate them, I would cover tightly and leave at room temperature if you aren’t making it more then a day in advance.

  4. Does this frosting set up enough to where you could stack them? I’m having a donut party this weekend and would like to be able to stack them…

    1. It sets and the donuts are definitely stackable, but will still get a little sticky from the pressure of the donuts on top of one another.

  5. Your vanilla doughnut glaze is heavenly. I made a double batch of doughnuts for my daughter’s class. I frosted half with my usual dark chocolate glaze and half with your vanilla glaze, so the kids could chooose. Well, I wish I had made your glaze first, as I would have done them all in vanilla, it was that good. I love how the butter adds richness, while the salt cuts the sweetness. Have you ever tried it on sugar cookies? The usual damming/flooding powedered sugar frosting, while pretty, is cloyingly sweet.

    1. I’m so happy you enjoy it, Kristin! I actually haven’t used it on cookies but I’m sure it would taste delicious!

  6. We love the flavor of your frostings! and I am planning a DYI Donut Bar for my son’s graduation. If I keep the frosting warm, will it stay liquified? In an attempt to prevent licking of the frosting/fingers, I would like to have the frosting in a “condiment type squeeze bottle? Do you feel this would work? Or suggestions…

    1. Hi Deb! The frosting will stay “liquid” when at room temperature during a party or event. It would also work out nicely in squeeze bottles for squeezing on the donuts, too. You could also set up little bowls of toppings like coconut, sprinkles, chocolate chips, etc. Sounds like a fun party!

  7. Good night, do the chocolate hardens? I want to use the chocolate covered dougnts as cake toppers.

    1. Hi Monique, the chocolate glaze sets but can still be a little sticky. It does not harden.

  8. My mother use to make these all the time. She made the glaze with coffee. The School would ask her if she would make them for the School basketball games. She did and everyone loved them. They were served during half time.

  9. I LOVE YOUR WEBSITE AND YOUTUBE!! Do you have somewhere on your website where you share what brand/kind of sprinkles/food colorings etc?

  10. Hi Sally!

    I just had a quick question about the vanilla frosting – I’m doing a donut baking session at a childcare centre for the kids. Can I make the frosting ahead of time and take it with me ready to go? For example if I made it the morning of the class and took it with me. Or does it need to be made on the spot? Just trying to save time and prepare what I can before the session!

    1. Hi Sabah, It would be best to make this icing right before you use it. As it cools it will begin to set making it very difficult to dip the doughnuts. We hope your class enjoys them!

  11. If I don’t use all of the glaze, how long will it last if refrigerated?

    1. Hi Joe, the glaze should last for just a few days in the refrigerator. It may begin to separate a bit, so give it a stir before reusing.

  12. All delicious glazes for our doughnuts! The vanilla is our favorite.