Using a super soft and simple yeasted dough, these homemade maple bacon doughnuts are just like a bakery’s version: unapologetically rich and perfectly satisfying! The sweet maple icing is creamy, but sets quickly and the bacon is wonderfully salty. Homemade doughnuts are a lot easier than you think, so let me walk you through the process with success tips, step-by-step photos, and a helpful video tutorial.
Remember when I taught you how to make homemade glazed doughnuts? I said they were the best homemade doughnuts I’d ever had.
Eating my words right now. And more maple bacon doughnuts, too.
Why You’ll Love These Maple Bacon Doughnuts
- Straightforward homemade dough
- Soft, bakery-style taste and flavor
- Perfect at-home weekend project
- Most of the time spent is waiting for the dough to rise and oil to heat!
- Sweet maple glaze & salty bacon
Homemade Doughnut Dough
We’re using the same yeasted dough as my homemade glazed doughnuts and it’s pretty similar to my homemade berry fritters and monkey bread, too. You need a few very basic ingredients and here’s why each are imperative:
- Milk: Liquid activates the yeast. Whole milk is a must for a tender dough.
- Yeast: You can use active dry yeast or instant yeast. If using an instant yeast, your rise time will be a little shorter. You need 1 Tablespoon of yeast which is a little more than 1 standard packet. Review my Baking with Yeast Guide before getting started if you need a little refresher.
- Sugar: Sugar sweetens the doughnuts and feeds the yeast.
- Eggs: Eggs provide structure and flavor.
- Butter: Melted butter promises enhanced flavor.
- Salt & Vanilla Extract: Both add flavor.
- Nutmeg: A little nutmeg is the secret ingredient to that cozy, comforting bakery taste. I never make yeasted doughnuts without it!
- Flour: All-purpose flour is the dough’s structure. You’ll be tempted to add more and more flour as you mix the dough, but don’t. You want a very soft, pillowy dough for soft, pillowy doughnuts. The dough can still be slightly sticky.
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.
Overview: How to Make Homemade Maple Bacon Doughnuts
Homemade doughnuts seem a little intimidating, but I guarantee you can handle this. Let me walk you through the process. The full written recipe is below.
- Prepare the dough. The dough comes together with a mixer or you can mix it by hand. After the dough comes together, knead it for 2 minutes.
- Let the dough rise. It takes about 1.5-2 hours for it to double in size.
- Punch down the dough to release the air.
- Roll & cut into doughnuts. Roll the dough out to 1/2 inch thick. Cut the doughnuts using a 3-3.5 inch doughnut cutter. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Place doughnuts (and doughnut holes, if you want to make those too!) onto the lined baking sheet, then lightly cover and allow to rest as you prepare the oil. Remember these are fried doughnuts. Do not bake this doughnut dough.
- Prepare the oil. Using a heavy-duty pot and an oil thermometer, heat the oil to 375°F (191°C). Place a cooling rack over another baking sheet. As the oil heats up, I usually fry the bacon.
- Fry the doughnuts. Working with 2-3 doughnuts at a time, cook for 1 minute on each side. Remove from the oil and place onto the cooling rack.
- Make the maple icing. It comes together quickly. Dip each warm doughnut into the icing, then top with cooked bacon.
Some step-by-step photos to help guide you:
We’re using a slightly scaled up version of the maple icing from my maple brown sugar cookies. Heat butter and pure maple syrup together, then add the confectioners’ sugar and a little salt. To avoid any lumps, sift the confectioners’ sugar before measuring. If you can find it, add a splash of maple extract too. You can usually find it in the baking aisle with the vanilla extract.
The best part about this maple icing, besides its flavor, is that it eventually sets. You’ll also love it on regular cinnamon rolls or apple cinnamon rolls, crumb cake, and cheesecake carrot Bundt cake. We love making these for special brunches and they’re always fun for Mother’s Day or as part of your Father’s Day recipes, too!
What About Baked Donuts?
Here are my baked maple glazed donuts. Feel free to add bacon on top!Print
Homemade Maple Bacon Doughnuts
- Prep Time: 2 hours
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
- Yield: 12 donuts and 12 holes
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Frying
- Cuisine: American
Using a super soft and simple yeasted dough, these homemade maple bacon doughnuts are just like a bakery’s version. For best success, review the blog post, video tutorial, and recipe notes before beginning.
- 1 cup (240ml) whole milk, warmed to about 110°F (43°C)*
- 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast*
- 1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 6 Tablespoons (86g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups (500g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled), plus more as needed
- 1 – 2 quarts vegetable oil*
- 3 Tablespoons (43g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (120ml) pure maple syrup
- 1 and 3/4 cups (195g) sifted confectioners’ sugar*
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon maple extract (optional)
- 12 slices cooked bacon, cut in half
- Prepare the dough: Whisk the warm milk, yeast, and sugar together in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or paddle attachment. Cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes. The mixture should be a little frothy on top after 5 minutes. If not, start over with new yeast.
- Add the eggs, butter, vanilla, nutmeg, salt, and 2 cups (245g) flour. Beat on low speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add remaining flour and beat on medium speed until the dough comes together and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 2 minutes. If needed, add more flour, 1 Tablespoon at a time, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Don’t add too much flour, though. You want a slightly sticky dough. *If you do not own a mixer, you can mix this dough with a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula. It will take a bit of arm muscle!*
- Knead the dough: Keep the dough in the mixer and beat for an additional 2 minutes or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 2 minutes.
- Let Dough Rise: Lightly grease a large bowl with oil or nonstick spray. Place the dough in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides in the oil. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rise in a relatively warm environment for 1.5-2 hours or until double in size. (For a tiny reduction in rise time, see my answer to Where Should Dough Rise? in my Baking with Yeast Guide.)
- Shape Doughnuts: When the dough is ready, punch it down to release the air. Remove dough from the bowl and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. If needed, punch down again to release any more air bubbles. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out until it is 1/2 inch thick. Using a 3-3.5 inch doughnut cutter, cut into 12 doughnuts. If you can’t quite get 12, re-roll the scraps and cut more.
- Line 1 or 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Place doughnuts and doughnut holes on each. (Feel free to discard doughnut holes if you don’t want to make them.) Loosely cover and allow to rest as you heat the oil. They will rise a bit as they rest. Place a cooling rack over another baking sheet.
- Pour oil into a large heavy-duty pot set over medium heat. Heat oil to 375°F (191°C). Add 2-3 doughnuts at a time and cook for 1 minute on each side. Carefully remove with a metal spatula or metal slotted spoon. Wear kitchen gloves if oil is splashing. Place fried doughnuts onto prepared cooling rack. Repeat with remaining doughnuts, then turn off heat.* (See note for doughnut holes.)
- Make the icing: In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and maple syrup together, whisking occasionally. Once the butter has melted, remove from heat and whisk in the sifted confectioners’ sugar, salt, and maple extract. Dip each warm doughnut into the icing. The icing quickly thickens, so feel free to place it back over heat as you dip the doughnuts. Place dipped doughnuts back onto cooling rack as excess icing drips down. Gently press bacon slices on top of each. (You can also crumble/chop up the bacon for topping.) After about 30 minutes, the glaze will set + harden.
- Doughnuts are best enjoyed the same day. You can store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 1-2 extra days.
- Freezing Instructions: Prepare recipe through step 5. Freeze shaped doughnuts for up to 3 months. On the day you serve them, let the doughnuts thaw and rest at room temperature for about 4-5 hours. Fry as directed. You can also freeze the fried doughnuts (unglazed). Allow them to cool completely, then freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature, then reheat as desired (microwave is great) and top with icing and bacon.
- Overnight Instructions: Complete dough through step 3. Instead of allowing to rise in a warm environment in step 4, place the covered dough into the refrigerator overnight (8-12 hours). The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and allow to rise in a warm environment until doubled. The dough will lightly rise in the refrigerator overnight, so the rise the next morning won’t be too long. After rising, continue with step 5.
- Doughnut Holes: Add holes to hot oil and fry until golden, about 30 seconds, on each side.
- Milk: Whole milk is a must for the most tender dough– or you can try buttermilk. Lower fat or nondairy milks work in a pinch, but the doughnuts aren’t as flavorful or rich.
- Yeast: If using an instant yeast, your rise time will be a little shorter. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
- Oil: The amount of oil really depends on how wide or tall your pot is. You want oil to fill about 1/3 of the pot. I use a little more than 1 quart for my 4 and 1/2 quart Dutch oven.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Large, heavy bottomed pot or Dutch oven, high-heat thermometer (I love this thermometer too), and a doughnut cutter. If you don’t have a doughnut cutter, you can use 1 large + 1 smaller circle cookie cutter (large should be about 3 and 1/2 inches)
- Leftover Oil: Do not pour used oil down the sink drain. Allow to cool, then pour into an empty container and discard in the trash or reuse it.
- Dough adapted from Mark Bittman and Top Pot Doughnuts
Keywords: doughnuts, maple bacon doughnuts
Reader Comments & Reviews
Hey, can i replace the maple syrup for honey? I’m from Brazil and here is so hard to find maple syrupe
Hi Isa, that should work in a pinch, but you will lose some maple flavor. Here are all of our doughnut recipes if you’d like to browse for an option without maple syrup!
Thank .you for the fried doughnut recipe! Looking forward to making them! Any suggestions on using maple flavoring with the icing? I’ve tried a maple syrup recipe before also tried a maple flavoring. Found the flavoring recipe gave me the taste I was looking for. Only tried recipes for each once.
Hi Jennifer, you can add an optional 1/4 teaspoon of maple extract to the topping. Or, feel free to add a bit more than that if you’d like an even stronger flavor. We recommend keeping in the maple syrup.
A-MAZING! I’ve been trying to make donuts for awhile and these are by far the best. I just have one question. When I make these a day ahead, the glaze seems to soak into the pores of the donut and there’s very little evidence of it left after about 15 hours. Do you know what I am doing wrong? I use homemade maple syrup. Could that be too thin? The glaze is staying great on the donuts when I initially dip them though. And we are generally fine eating most of the donuts right away anyway, so it’s not a huge problem. But just for the ones we don’t finish, I’d like the glaze to not soak in.
Hi Sally! I would love to try these doughnuts but maple syrup is not available in my country. Do you have any other ideas of what to use as a substitute for the maple syrup? Can I just use normal sugar syrup?
Hi Marilie! I recommend using the plain glaze from the original glazed doughnuts recipe instead. You can still top with bacon if desired.
Hi Sally, can i use bread flour instead? Will it make the donuts softer? If yes, what is the replacement ratio to AP flour and same amounts of milk? Your advice is much appreciated. TQ!
Hi JT, Bread flour works like a charm! Use the same amount with no other changes to the recipe and you’ll have chewier and even softer doughnuts.
Ten out of five stars, Sally…these are AMAZING I could just keep eating and eating – not just the donuts, but the maple glaze is genius, and the combination of the three flavours is delicious! Thank you ♥️
Is it okay to use salted butter for the icing ?
Hi Hannah, you can use salted butter here. Feel free to slightly reduce (but not omit completely) the salt a bit if desired. Enjoy!
Made these this past weekend. Easier than I expected and the family loved them! How about a recipe for a cream-filled doughnut?
Can you store these, or any baked goods, with the bacon on top at room temperature without worrying about the bacon since it’s cooked?
Hi Melissa, these doughnuts are best enjoyed the same day, but you can store them (cooked bacon included) at room temperature for 1-2 days longer. That said, you can also store them in the refrigerator if you prefer — use your best judgement / what you are most comfortable with!
Oooooh my goooosh! These maple bacon donuts are seriously THE BOMB! I candied the bacon, which makes it even better, I think. The donut is so soft and the combination of the sweet maple glaze and the sweet and salty bacon is truly amazing.
I was so afraid of frying the donuts, though. The first and only time I had ever tried to fry something previously, the oil caught fire and I almost burned down the kitchen. But the frying thermometer helped immensely to know when the correct temperature was achieved.
Thank you, Sally, for this spectacular recipe.
Hello, I have a sourdough starter. Wondering if I could use this for the either of the donut recipes. Looks delish! can’t wait to make them.
Hi Christine, We have not tested our donut recipes with sourdough starter, but let us know if you try anything!
I have been terrified of using yeast ever since I moved to the US 6 years ago. I could never make a yeast dough work even tho I had made many back home. So I gave up…
This recipe, with the step by step instructions and the video had put me back in my yeast dough game . Thaaaaaank you! These donuts are delicious!!! Will have to bake my way through all your other donut recipes and I already have my eye on the cinnamon rolls too.
Lots of love, Anja
Hi Sally! Would it be ok if I halve the recipe or would the texture of the donuts change? I made these (the whole recipe) and they are DELICIOUS! Fluffy, flavorful, so good!
Hi Sheila, Yes, you can cut the recipe in half. Thrilled you enjoyed them!
Made these donuts today
They turned out to be amaaaazing
Can you follow this recipe but bake the donuts instead of frying?
Hi Nicole, this dough isn’t ideal for baking– see right above the recipe for our baked version!
Looking for suggestions from Sally or anyone who has made these 🙂
DYING to make these donuts, but I need to make them the night before I am having a party. Obviously, bacon can’t sit on the counter overnight, but baked goods tend to harden and get stale faster in the fridge, especially fried stuff. What if I fried the donuts the night before (left on the counter), and then glazed them and added the bacon topping before serving? Looking for optimum taste/quality here 🙂
Any suggestions welcome!
Or any texture/taste comments from people who kept donuts in the fridge overnight?
Hi! I made these donuts and left them on the counter overnight. The doughnut still tasted very good the next day (though of course not as fresh as when they were just made). I really don’t think they would taste good if you left them on the fridge. I think your best bet is to do what you said — fry them the night before, glaze and add topping before serving
Replying to the thread I started LOL. Also thanks Fern! Made these twice so far, and both times they have been fabulous. I usually do a recipe and a half to make a slightly bigger batch for work. Once I left them unglazed overnight, then glazed and bacon before serving. Amazing. Once I fried and glazed them day before, served without bacon. Amazing. They are totally delicious the next day or two. I never use a donut cutter (I hate the waste and extra work lol) I just roll it out and cut it into squares, like beignets. Fry up perfectly. Thanks Sally!!
Made the maple frosted ones yesterday. Absolutely awesome tasting.
Only question I have is …. my frosting started cracking and falling apart when I bit into one. What did I do wrong? I went by the exact measurement of butter, maple syrup and confectionary sugar.
Hi Viraja, so glad you tried these! The frosting sets and hardens into a crackly texture when you bite into it. (Because it’s made with butter, which is solid at room temp!). Hopefully you still enjoyed it all.
Made these today for my husband’s birthday, at his request. They were great! We left off the topping on a few and rolled them in powdered sugar or sugar & cinnamon for those in our house who don’t like maple. But overall it was very popular! The donut could stand to be just a bit sweeter and less bread-like, in my opinion. But it was a great donut and everyone raved about it! Thanks Sally!
I have recently begun a Food blog and would like to ask for a tip or two 🙂
I am currently adding new convenient things to my website, so that it hope fully improves! I was just wondering how do you make a “Recent” page and “Recipe” page, as for my blog you need to find a category for category… any advice for a new blogger?
Also wanted to thank you, you are a wonderful roll model! Love your recipes and cannot wait to try this one
PS I don’t use wordpress
Congrats on your new venture! You can find all of my posts about blogging here. I hope you find them helpful!
I have to be honest, this is the first time I made doughnuts and the first time I heard of adding something like bacon in it. And I am glad I did. It tasted like heaven and I had a lot of fun making it. Thank you so much!!!
These were delicious! Made for Father’s Day and were a hit!! Mine made about 2 dozen so I was thrilled to have leftovers! This about the dozenth or so recipe I’ve used of yours and they are all great! Thank you so much!
I made these for Father’s Day and they were a huge hit! My dad loved them and kept eating them. Nearly every bite he said “Mmmmm, these are delicious!” These were honestly the best ever! It is kind of a weird combination, but these flavors are a match made in heaven! Also don’t skip the nutmeg, I honestly think its magical in donuts.
Thank you so much, Sally! This is the best recipe on your blog!
Looks so yummy! I suppose we can replace the bacon by any toppings we like!
Can these be fried as squares, like beignets, instead of round donuts?
I can’t see why not!
I plan to halve this recipe. This Recipe calls for 4 cups of flour but the instructions only use 2 cups. Is the extra 2 not needed? So if I only want half the amount, then do I actually only need 1cup of flour?
Hi Jane, you add the 2 cups of flour at first, then the rest where it says “Add remaining flour” 1-2 lines down.
Hey Sally!Do you have donut recipes that use a donut pan?
Hi Kathy, I do! Here are all of my donut recipes– most of my baked donut recipes use a donut pan.
Hi Sally- I was wondering if you have an estimate of how long the dough would need to rise in the morning out of the refrigerator if I follow the overnight instructions. I love that I can make this dough the night before and want to get as much sleep as possible 🙂
Hi Janie, the dough will take a couple hours to rise in the morning out of the refrigerator!
OMG Sally – I have been looking for a good donut recipe. So glad to find this one! Question – Can I skip the center hole and fill these donuts instead?
Sally, is it possible to bake these in the same manner as your other fabulous baked doughnut recipes or should I just season the dough from one of those recipes in this manner and then make this glaze? Thanks!
Hi Ella, this dough isn’t ideal for baking– see right above the recipe for my baked version!
Hi Sally, Can you taste the nutmeg in it? I’m not a nutmeg fan and usually swap it for cinnamon. So curious if it adds a hidden flavor or actual nutmeg flavor? These look delicious by the way!! My mom and I were just talking about making homemade doughnuts. She’s still in lockdown and doesn’t want me to pick her any up from the local bakeries… but she’s craving some maple doughnuts. I think she’ll love your recipe!! Thanks!
The nutmeg adds a little flavor and will definitely remind you of doughnuts from a bakery. You can leave it out if desired though. Feel free to swap with cinnamon.