Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts

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Stack of delicious Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts resting on a metal tray

Hi, friends! Fall is in full swing over here in our part of the world, so naturally, we have one thing on the mind: comfort food. And nothing spells comfort food like these baked apple cider donuts. Consider them a hug from fall. Let’s bake!

Tray with ingredients for making our gluten-free vegan Apple Cider Donuts recipe

This 30-minute recipe starts with aquafaba!

Aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas, which whips nicely and mimics the properties and texture of egg whites. This not only acts as a binder but also helps the donuts stay light and fluffy!

Once whipped, set aside and prepare your simple batter, which is comprised of wholesome ingredients like almond flour, maple syrup, coconut sugar, and our gluten-free flour blend.

These donuts get infused with apple flavor two ways: 1) applesauce, and 2) apple cider! Throw in some warming fall spices like cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg into the mix and it’s like a baked apple dream.

Using a wooden spoon to stir aquafaba into gluten-free vegan donut batter
Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider donut batter sprinkled with cinnamon in a donut pan

After a short bake in the oven, it’s time to invert and let cool slightly to firm up.

At this time, you can brush your donuts with melted vegan butter (or coconut oil) and dunk them in a cinnamon-sugar mixture! This adds a little more texture as well as sweetness and warmth. Swoon!

Freshly baked Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts resting on a cooling rack

We hope you LOVE these donuts! They’re:

Naturally sweetened
Perfectly spiced
Infused with apple
Easy to make
& So delicious

This would make the perfect slow-weekend breakfast treat. Or you can make them in advance to enjoy throughout the week with coffee, this Healing 3-Ingredient Turmeric Tonic, or a Matcha Latte!

If you like this recipe, also be sure to check out our Chocolate Baked Vegan Donuts, Apple Pie Crumble Bars, Cinnamon Baked Apples, and Caramel Apple Cheesecake Tart!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Stack of our delicious Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts topped with cinnamon and sugar

Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Baked Donuts

Fluffy, apple-cider-infused vegan, gluten-free donuts! Naturally sweetened, about 30 minutes from start to finish, and perfect for fall!
Author Minimalist Baker
Tray with a stack of Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts
4.81 from 72 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 11 (Donuts)
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days



  • 1/4 cup aquafaba* (the liquid in a can of chickpeas)
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil, olive oil, or melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar or organic cane sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or agave nectar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground ginger
  • Pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce (or apple butter for more intense flavor)
  • 1/2 cup apple cider (NOT vinegar)
  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour* (if nut-free see notes*)
  • 1 heaping cup gluten-free flour blend* (1 heaping cup = 1 cup + 2 Tbsp // if not gluten-free use spelt or unbleached all purpose)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda


  • 3 Tbsp melted vegan butter (or coconut oil)
  • 3 Tbsp coconut sugar or organic cane sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and grease two 6-slot (or one 12-slot) donut pans*.
  • To a small mixing bowl, add aquafaba and use a mixer (or whisk) to vigorously blend until soft peaks form – about 1-2 minutes if using electric mixer. Set aside. (If yours doesn’t quite whip up into soft peaks, it’s OK. Just get them as fluffy as possible! A sprinkle of cream of tartar helps them firm up.)
  • To a large mixing bowl, add the oil, cane (or coconut) sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, sea salt, ginger, and nutmeg and whisk vigorously to combine. Then add applesauce and apple cider and whisk once more to combine.
  • Add almond flour, gluten-free flour, baking powder, and baking soda, and whisk gently to combine. Lastly, add in the whipped aquafaba and gently fold in, trying to be as gentle as possible (see photo). 
  • If the batter appears too thin at this point, add 1 Tbsp each almond flour or gluten-free flour at a time until it thickens up. It should appear like a thick cake batter – semi-thick and more scoopable than pourable.
  • Divide batter evenly between donut tins, filling all the way full but leaving room for the center hole to be exposed (this can be done using a piping bag, Ziploc bag with the corner cut off, or just a spoon). There should be 11-12 donuts (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Optional: Sprinkle the donut batter with coconut sugar and cinnamon before baking.
  • Bake for about 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, the edges appear brown, and the tops appear dry and fluffy. Time will vary depending on oven and if you subbed ingredients.
  • Optional: In the meantime, melt vegan butter (or coconut oil) in a small dish and prepare cinnamon-sugar coating by adding cane or coconut sugar and cinnamon to a small dish and stirring to combine. Set aside.
  • Remove donuts from oven and let cool for a few minutes in the pan. Then grab the tins with a towel and tap over a cooling rack to loosen the donuts until they fall out. Let cool (smooth side up – the side that was in the tin) for at least 5 minutes on the rack. The longer they cool, the more they’ll firm up!
  • Optional: While cooling or once cooled completely, brush the donuts with a light coating of melted vegan butter (or coconut oil) and dip in or sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar coating.
  • Best when fresh. Store completely cooled leftovers loosely covered at room temperature up to 3-4 days or in the freezer up to 1 month.



*We tried using flax seed in place of aquafaba and it didn’t turn out nearly as fluffy. If not vegan, you could also sub egg whites for the aquafaba.
*We recommend using Wellbee’s brand almond flour as it works best.
If you are nut-free, you can try subbing another seed meal, such as a blend of flax, sesame, and sunflower. We don’t recommend oat flour – it turned out a little gummy. If using coconut flour, halve the amount, as it is quite absorbent. We haven’t tested anything other than almond flour though and can’t guarantee the results.
*You can substitute an equal amount of our NEW 1:1 gluten-free flour blend for the gluten-free flour blend in this recipe.
Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with avocado oil, coconut sugar, and maple syrup and without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 11 servings)

Serving: 1 (Donut) Calories: 231 Carbohydrates: 27.1 g Protein: 4 g Fat: 12.8 g Saturated Fat: 1.2 g Sodium: 206 mg Potassium: 153 mg Fiber: 2.4 g Sugar: 12.7 g

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  1. Leslie says

    Made these today for my son’s 3rd birthday and they were amazing. Wonderful flavor, great consistency, just perfect. He ate 3! The only change I made was using melted ghee instead of oil. Thank you so much ❤️

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Holly, we think so as long as you butter and flour the pan, but we haven’t tested it! Maybe 45 minutes – 1 hour? Let us know if you try it!

  2. Sarah says

    Minimalist Baker appreciation post! Wheat, egg & milk allergies here and I use your recipes to make SO many safe things that the whole fam enjoys.
    I made 6 donuts in a donut pan & the rest in mini muffin tin. Both for 20 mins. The mini muffin ones had really good crispy edges!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, thank you so much for letting us know, Sarah! We’re so glad our recipes are helpful! xoxo

  3. Kim says

    So I made these last night. When I went to add the nutmeg, I didn’t realize (until too late) how big the holes were on the shaker top so mine were more like Nutmeg Apple Cider donuts. They were still delicious. I intended to put the topping on them but most were eaten before that could happen. Anyway, I’m going to make them again, watching the nutmeg…lol

    I was wondering, do you think I could I replace the cider with unsweetened almond milk or something to get a more “plain” donut taste?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Oh no! Glad they were still delicious though! Thanks for sharing, Kim! And yes, we do think that would work.

  4. Veronica says

    absolutely delicious!!! fluffy and not too sweet. I followed the exact same recipe except for the flaxegg I used white eggs from 2 chicken eggs = 1/4 cup and mixed it for 2 min to make it fluffy. I used silicone donuts mold and greased them a bit with butter to really make sure they don’t stick and it was perfect ! I cooked them for 22 min but 20 min would have been better. I sprinkled with coconut sugar and cinnamon before cooking. didnt do the butter-sugar step after.
    Thank you for this delicious donut recipe!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed them, Veronica! Thank you for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications! xo

  5. Diane says

    These were delicious but they all stuck to the pan but one. I used olive oil…maybe better to use vegan butter. Just didn’t work to keep them from getting stuck.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Oh no! Sorry to hear that happened, Diane. Were you using a non-stick pan? Did you make any other modifications?

      • Diane says

        It was a nonstick pan. No other modifications…I didn’t have the flour brands you suggested but no other modifications. Everyone thought they were great, just disappointing that they stuck.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Hi Diane, it’s possible the brand of flour made a difference as it can change the texture. Which brand was it?

          • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

            Ah, the Bob’s Red Mill all purpose gluten-free flour (red bag) is likely the issue. It has a different absorbency and can lend a strong bean flavor to baked goods. We don’t recommend it for baking and prefer the Bob’s 1-1 GF Baking Flour (blue bag) over the red bag.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Rebecca, it might work, but we think they would turn out more dense. Another idea would be plain Culina yogurt (or another thick, plain dairy-free yogurt). Hope that helps!

  6. Nicole says

    Am I missing the option to bake in a muffin tin? I’m seeing some commenters went this route. Would love to know how to do this as I don’t see justifying a doughnut pan purchase for me personally at the moment…

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Nicole, while we haven’t tried these in a muffin tin, other readers have had success baking them as muffins by increasing the bake time to 30-40 minutes total. Hope this helps!

  7. Steph says

    So so good! Just made these! I used avocado oil. I added the aquafaba right away instead of waiting to the end of the recipe on accident and they still came out amazing. I used coconut sugar for the recipe but then rolled them in a cane sugar coating and they were 10/10. Seriously such a good recipe. Thank you for catering to the DF/GF people out here- we appreciate you.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! So glad this recipe still worked out for you, Steph. Thanks so much for the great review!

  8. Shea Wyman says

    These are soooo soft and yummy! I made them without the aquafaba adding an additional 1/4 cup apple sauce. I didn’t have apple cider so I just used regular apple juice and added extra cinnamon. They were mmmm mmmm mmmm *chefs kiss*! Will be making again!

  9. Caroline says

    These are perfect. I used 1/2 monkfruit and 1/2 coconut sugar and did not use the optional topping. They are perfectly cakey, a slight “crust” on the edges, and subtly sweet.
    I feel so good about feeding these to my family.
    Thank you for making my donut dreams come true!

  10. Alyssa says

    I made this back in November but didn’t get around to rating it yet. This has all of the flavor but none of the heaviness of your typical apple cider donut, which makes it great for anyone craving fall flavors but not wanting to overload on sugar and carbs. It was fairly easy to make and still retained its freshness for a couple days afterwards. I did have some leftover cinnamon sugar at the end of making this, but I saved it for another use later.

  11. Vytautas says

    The recepy sound soooo amazing. But i have one question, its written
    1/2 cup apple cider (NOT vinegar)
    So, the cider – is it apple cider from the can whick i can get in every shop, or is it some liquid of apple cider extract which is used in bakery and cider making process?
    Thank you in advance :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Vytautas, Apple cider is similar to apple juice. We haven’t seen it in a can! Hope that helps!

  12. Jess says

    This recipe is phenomenal, I baked it up as muffins and they came out so fluffy and delicious! Also didn’t have gluten free flour, so I used the same amount of oat flour, with great results. Only other changes were chicken eggs instead of flax and I omitted the coconut sugar because I wanted them less sweet for breakfast. So yummy, can’t wait to make again!

  13. Alayna says

    I’m wondering if I use almond flour by itself and not a combination would it still turn out alright? I used all-purpose flour and they were a bit heavy, still good but not the texture I was looking for

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Alayna, we wouldn’t recommend using only almond flour as they’ll likely be very crumbly. If using regular all purpose flour, we’d suggest using a lesser amount to replace the GF blend, as it’s more drying. Hope that helps!

  14. Gillian says

    Delicious, fluffy, moist, spiced filled donuts! We used Bob’s Mill 1:1 Baking mix to replace the almond and gluten free blend. It very well! Another recipe for the win. :D

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! Thanks as always for the review, Gillian. So glad these were a success for you! xo

  15. Minh says

    Delicious! I made mini donuts and my family loves them. I used 1 egg, and some of them couldn’t quite hold together (still delicious though!) Do you think it’s better to use 2 eggs? I realize I don’t always have ingredients for aquafaba. Thank you!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Minh, we haven’t tried with eggs, but would suggest using 1/4 cup egg whites for the closest substitute.

  16. Joelle Gisenya says

    This is the best recipe ever! I have made it exactly as is, made them with cocao, still amazing!
    Question can I make them using regular flour as recipe is written?

  17. Sean says

    In the recipe, for gluten-free flour it reads in parentheses to add “2 extra Tbsp as original recipe is written.” What does this mean? I don’t see an original recipe. I just made them without the 2 extra tablespoons and they were fluffy and fantastic. Just wondering what the parentheses directions mean.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Sean, we’re so glad they still turned out well! The recipe for 11 donuts should include 1 cup + 2 Tbsp flour, but we couldn’t write it that way when we made some formatting changes. The original recipe refers to at that batch size (11 donuts) – you can change the number or servings and it will adjust the measurements, but it does not adjust the 2 Tbsp part. But we can definitely see how that is confusing and we’ll see if we can find a way to improve clarity.

  18. Holly says

    These donuts are SO good! I’m not vegan but I am GF & DF. Instead of using the aquafaba I whip up 2 egg whites. I’ve made these 4 times now & they turn out great every time. You really need to make sure your donut pan is well greased & let them cool enough to get them out easily. Every person who has tried them has loved them! Thank you for the awesome recipe!!

  19. Michelle Simmons says

    Made three versions of these and they were all amazing! They didn’t last very long. I’ll be making another batch this week.

    Notes: I found that using the KitchenAid stand mixer to whip the aquafaba didn’t work as the whisk didn’t reach the bottom as it needs to. My aunt said she contacted the company and adjusted it several times and it was the best it was going to be.

    Whipping by hand is torturous. My advice is to use a hand mixture. That way worked the best.

    Also, Bob’s cup-4cup works quite well, but if you happen to be left with not quite enough, DON’T use garbanzo/chickpea flour to sub. It was ok, but not fantastic.

    I’ll probably be making a batch of this woman’s flour because I really like her recipes.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed them. And agreed- garbanzo/chickpea flour isn’t our favorite in baking. Thanks for sharing your experience, Michelle!

  20. angie says

    My daughter made these and they were amazing ! We didn’t have ginger so she used a dash of cardamon. This might be my favorite recipe and I love so many of yours.

  21. jessica says

    These are so good and easy! I think I actually forgot the maple syrup and they turned out great, not too sweet. I also used the 2 egg whites- they were VERY fluffy, and I made mini donuts, one is very filling and took about 11-15 min to bake.

  22. Paula Fastuca says

    I’ve made this recipe twice now! And we love it! Both times we replaced the Aquafaba with an egg and followed the same steps. We would like to bring these to thanksgiving but my brother in law is allergic to nuts. We were wondering if there is an alternative flour to almond flour that you suggest we try.

      • Jen says

        First off every recipe I try from you is amazing! U are my go to for weeknight recipes!!! I know I always ask this but can I make the batter this morning and bake off later tonight?

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Aw, yay! We’re so glad you enjoy our recipes, Jen. We haven’t tested that, but it might be okay. The only thing is the baking powder won’t be as active the next day, so they could turn out more dense.

    • María says

      These donuts are so tasty!!
      Not sure why but every time I bake them, they fluff up in the oven, and then fluff down. They do not rise very well. I use aquafaba, fresh baking powder, and follow instructions correctly. :/
      Any advice?

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        Hmm, interesting! Do you make any other modifications to the ingredients? It might also be helpful to get an oven thermometer to check that your oven temperature is accurate.. if the temp is too high it might cause the donuts to rise too quickly and then sink. Another note would be to avoid opening the oven during baking. Lastly, you could try the recipe with cane sugar (if you’ve used coconut in the past) and it should help the aquafaba stay fluffier. Hope this helps!

  23. Anna says

    I have never made donuts before or even considered I could. But all it took was like $20 for the donut pans and a few minutes to make these. They were so easy and delicious. I wonder if you’ll come up with more donut recipes, you know, so I don’t let my donut pans go to waste… ;)

  24. Northerner says

    These are mind-bendingly good, and not difficult at all despite the long ingredient list. I made three modifications, all successful:

    1) I used all-purpose wheat flour, which worked great.

    2) I didn’t even know a donut pan was a thing before this recipe. So I used an ice cream scoop to drop blobs of batter onto some regular baking sheets. Once baked, they resembled scones or drop biscuits.

    3) I was rushing a bit by the end and mistakenly mixed all the coating ingredients together. So I just spooned a little coating mix over each one, popped them in the oven, and crossed my fingers. They crisped up really nicely!

  25. Mare says

    I have another question! I’m going to make this using AP flour. Do I still need to use almond flour for that portion? Or can I use AP for the whole thing?

  26. Cara says

    WOW! Double the recipe, you will be happy that you did! We absolutely loved these! I am so happy we followed your recipe for homemade apple sauce, we left it a tad lumpy and made the donuts even more delicious. Thank you for another great recipe.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Shantal, we’ve only tried with our DIY blend, but Bob’s 1-1 is similar! Let us know if you try it!

    • Michelle Simmons says

      These are freaking phenomenal!
      I’ve used the flour mix and Bob’s 1-1 and there’s no noticeable difference. DO NOT USE bean flour of any kind. It goes odd. Ran out of Bob’s for the full amount and subbed a little garbanzo bean flour. Not a lot, but it was… different. Edible, but different. Just avoid if possible.

      I’ve used coconut oil and avocado oil, not sure if I have a preference.

      First and most recent batch were in donut pans using pastry bag. This is seriously the best way to go. So, so much easier. Worth cleaning the bag (unless you use disposable).

      Also made these as mini-bundts and donut-shaped cookies when no donut pan was available. All amazing, moist and edible.

      Also, I used honey in one rather than syrup, turned out fine. And this latest batch cut the sugar to 1/4 cup. Also, delicious. And, in every batch, I ignore the measurements for spices and add a lot more. I love cinnamon and ginger. I’ve also used Trader Joe’s pie spice mix. And my personal seasonal blend which includes cardamom and cloves.

      Today’s was probably the first time I followed it 99% because I had everything. I only played with spice and took the sugar down a touch.

      Thank you for a lovely GF/DF/VG donut recipe.

  27. Rami says

    I want to try this by substituting aquafaba with eggs. For this recipe how many egg whites would do? Please let me know!! I can’t wait to try, my little ones would love these.