Vegan Chinese Doughnuts.
Oh, yes. WE ARE SO DOING THIS THING!😎
Have you ever ordered Chinese Doughnuts from your local take-out place?
They’re those fluffy, deep fried balls of dough coated in sugar that get your hands all messy and taste like a carnival in your mouth. They’re not exactly on the list of top health foods, but damn are they good…and unfortunately, very not vegan in their traditional form.
T was the first person to introduce me to the Chinese Doughnuts on the takeout menu, and it is something for which I will be forever grateful. We used to order a big bag of them with our dinner at least twice a month when we first lived together (and way before I ever learned how to cook). I was vegetarian at the time, so I didn’t think to ask what the ingredients were. I just knew one thing: They. Were. Delicious.
When I was doing some research to create this recipe, however, I learned butter and heavy cream are traditionally used to make Chinese Doughnuts. Luckily, those things are easy enough to veganize! I went with a coconut theme: refined coconut oil for the butter and full-fat coconut milk for the cream. And just like that, our favorite indulgence on the takeout menu is now vegan!
With all that coconut going on, you may wonder if these Vegan Chinese Doughnuts have a faint coconut taste. They don’t. Just be sure to get refined coconut oil. With refined, there is no coconut smell or taste – a major win for the coconut cautious everywhere…myself included.
What I didn’t realize before developing this recipe was that these doughnuts are made in a very similar fashion to biscuits! You mix together your flours and dry ingredients, cut in your hardened coconut oil, stir in the milk, knead, cut, and fry!
And if you’re REALLY trying to be healthy here, I included instructions for both the air fryer and deep fryer. Yep, air-fried Vegan Chinese Doughnuts are a very real possibility in your future!
Although the air-fried ones are definitely not as OMG-worthy as the deep fried ones, they certainly hold their own! In fact, this experiment has made me want to try making other baked goods in the air fryer…like savory biscuits!
Side note: If you’re looking for a kickass air fryer, check out this one by Cook’s Essentials. We were given this as a gift from an incredibly awesome friend and cannot imagine life without it! If you’re in the market for a killer deep fryer, we looooove this one. Deep frying normally makes me nervous (all that hot oil – yikes!), but this deep fryer takes away sooo much of that anxiety; it is super easy to use!
So, what are you waiting for?! Get in the kitchen and take care of your craving by giving these Vegan Chinese Doughnuts a try! If you read this whole post (or even looked at the photos), you know the craving has surfaced. It definitely has for me as I wrote it. 😉
Yield: 8 doughnuts
Make these vegan Chinese takeout-style doughnuts in the air fryer or deep fryer for a mega delicious indulgence!
25 minPrep Time:
10 minCook Time:
35 minTotal Time:
5 based on 3 review(s)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 6 Tbsp refined coconut oil (Chilled in the freezer 10 minutes)
- 3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk (from a can)
- oil (for frying)
- Prepare and preheat your fryer to 350F.
- Whisk together flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Use a pastry cutter or fork to cut in the chilled coconut oil. This will create a shaggy dough with little pea-sized balls of coconut oil throughout.
- Next, stir in your coconut milk until fully combined.
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface and lightly sprinkle with more flour. Knead for about 3 minutes. If the dough is still sticking to your hands, knead in a little more flour.
- Use your hands to create a 1/2-inch thick disc and use a 2-inch biscuit cutter or top of a mason jar to cut your doughnuts.
- To deep fry: Add your doughnuts to the fryer basket and fry for 2-3 minutes. The doughnuts will be golden on the outside and soft / dough-y on the inside.
- To air fry: Spray the cake pan and brush each doughnut with a bit of neutral-tasting oil (sunflower and refined coconut both work). Add the doughnuts to your cake pan 3-4 at a time. Fry for 5 minutes, flip, and cook another 3 minutes.
- When the doughnuts are done in the fryer, use tongs to roll them in more granulated sugar and set them aside to cool enough to eat. They taste best warm!