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(Pillowy-Soft!) Baked Keto Donuts 🍩 gluten free & dairy free

These are easily the softest and tastiest baked keto donuts you’ll ever make… guaranteed! Think pillowy-soft results at just 1g net carb a pop.

Fluffy baked keto donut with a chocolate glaze
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

Suuuuper Soft!

Been working over here for the past few months in bringing you a true grain free and keto donut recipe. I’m talking about truly pillowy-soft baked donuts (rather than cakey and dense ones)!

Turns out the secret lies in making an easy keto choux pastry, which I first used for our keto churros. And with a couple small modifications, you’re guaranteed to end up with the softest keto donuts… ever!

And note that you can also pretty much do your topping of choice! I love a good chocolate glaze, but brushing them with melted butter and sprinkling with cinnamon ‘sugar’ is also sooo delicious.

p.s. don’t miss out on our glazed keto donut holes and the chocolate donuts twist!

Baked keto donut holes with coffee
Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donut Holes

The Method

The batter for these keto donut holes is essentially a choux pastry (used to make anything from eclairs to gougeres). But this is just a fancy way of saying that you first boil together water with sugar, butter (or coconut oil) and salt. Adding in the flour and cooking it until it forms into a ball. And step three, mixing in the eggs off the stove. I also add a bit of baking powder at the end for extra rise!

Now, when you mix in the eggs the dough will be very stiff, and given that we’re also adding in baking powder, the job is best done with a hand-mixer here. The final dough should be very elastic (courtesy of the eggs and xanthan gum).

For the shaping you’ll need a pastry bag (disposable ones are terrific) or simply use a thick plastic bag. You don’t need a tip here! Just to pipe it out onto a donut pan as smoothly as you can (so they rise evenly).

Alternatively, if no donut pan is at hand, line a baking tray with parchment paper and draw circles 3 1/2 inches in diameter. Your donuts will come out flat on the bottom, but will taste the same.

Grain Free, Gluten Free & Keto Churros ☁️ Easy-peasy and 1g net carbs each! #ketodesserts #lowcarbdesserts #ketomexican
Grain Free, Gluten Free & Keto Churros ☁ Easy-peasy and 1g net carbs each! #ketodesserts #lowcarbdesserts #ketomexican
Unbaked keto donuts in metal mold
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts
Freshly baked keto donut in metal tray
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

Top Tips For Success!!

As many of you seasoned bakers know, choux pastry is light, absolutely delicious and honestly very easy… but it is a bit finicky and known to deflateunder certain circumstances, so be sure to check out these tips!

  • The most common reason for deflating choux pastry is excess liquid. This can come in the form of too large eggs (just try using 2 rather than 3!), be sure you’re cooking your dough long enough that it actually forms into a ball (see video), and make sure your oven is calibrated to the correct temperature (or just get a cheap oven thermometer- like most pros do anyways!).
  • You also want to be sure your dough is below 125°F/52°C before beating in the eggs. It can take anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes, depending on your room temperature. Otherwise you could be curdling your first egg (or two), leading to a lack of structure = deflating donuts.
  • Allow your final choux dough to come to room temperature before transferring to a piping bag. I’ve come to realize this is a very important step to keep your donut (holes) from deflating post bake; the donuts will rise a bit less but hold their shape great.
  • And last, but not least, be gentle! Refrain from opening your oven for the first 20 minutes… and if possible don’t open it at all! Definitely be careful to not slam your oven door (I know mine has a tendency to do that), and be gentle when taking them out of the oven. Don’t have your A/C blasting, keep doors closed, etc… i.e. ensure there are no drafts!

What to do if yours deflate?! Turn them into French toast (for real!). During my latest experiments to see what was causing the pastry to deflate, I ended up with a lot of ‘mistakes’… and it turns out that they make the most delicious French toast bites ever (and you’ll come back raving about it either way lol!).

Dipping a keto donut in chocolate glaze
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

The Flours

I like a mixture of super fine almond flour (Anthony’s is awesome) and coconut flour (again Anthony’s, best taste and texture by a mile!). Add a touch of psyllium husk powder and xanthan gum, and we’re golden.

Borrowed from molecular cooking, xanthan gum is the binding agent which makes your toothpaste jelly-like (and your cream cheese, well cream cheese-like). And it’s also the most common gluten-replacer in gluten free baking. And there’s absolutely no skipping it here!

In all honesty, no substituting anything here. You really do need the full combo of grain free flours to get the choux just right.

Overhead shot of freshly glazed keto donuts
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

The Sweetener

This choux pastry to make the keto donuts is very lightly sweetened (and fairly bland solo), think just a couple tablespoons. But this is really to accommodate for the glaze or topping of choice.

So to sweeten the keto choux pastry itself you can use anything from erythritol (Lakanto is my fav here), allulose and xylitol (non-corn though to avoid tummy troubles!) . So you’ve got options!

And if just grain freecoconut sugar is your best bet here. And of course, raw sugar works great too.

If you’re opting for the glaze, which comes highly suggested, you can use any of the sweeteners from above- but they must be powdered.

So get your blender out, make sure it’s completely dry, and process your sweetener of choice until powdered. Just make sure you wait a few moments for the dust to settle before opening the blender or food processor.

Or you can always grab a bag of Powdered Lakanto (just keep in mind its twice as sweet).

And if using xylitol, make sure to be careful if you have a pup around the house, as it’s highly toxic to the little guys! 🐕

Extra fluffy keto glazed donut with a glass of milk
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts
Baked keto donuts with a dripping chocolate glaze
(1g net carb!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

Fluffy baked keto donut with a chocolate glaze

(Pillowy-Soft!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: baked donuts, gluten free donuts, keto donuts
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8 donuts
Calories: 140 kcal

These are easily the softest baked keto donuts you'll ever make... guaranteed! Think pillowy-soft results at just 1g net carb a pop.

Oh, and if baking with cups rather than grams is your thing, just click on US Cups for an instant conversion.

Print

Ingredients

For the keto donuts

For the chocolate glaze

Special equipment

Instructions

  1. See recipe video for guidance!

  2. Preheat oven to 425°F/220°C. Grease and flour (with coconut flour) a donut pan. Alternatively, line a baking tray with parchment paper and draw circles 3 1/2 inches in diameter. 

  3. Whisk together in a medium bowl almond flour, coconut flour, psyllium husk and xanthan gum. Set aside. 

  4. Heat up water, butter, sweetener and salt in medium pot (or Dutch oven) until it just begins to simmer. Lower heat to low and add in flour mixture, mixing constantly to incorporate. Continue to cook and stir until the dough pulls away from the pan and forms into a ball, 1-3 minutes. 

  5. Transfer dough back to the bowl and allow to cool for 5 minutes. The dough should still be warm, but not hot enough to scramble the eggs. And if you have an instant thermometer, temperature should be below 125°F/52°C.

  6. Add in one egg at a time, mixing with an electric mixer at medium/high speed until fully incorporated (if using a stand mixer, use the paddle attachment). Be sure to mix the dough for 2 minutes after adding in the last egg; the final texture should be very elastic. Mix in vanilla extract and baking powder. .

  7. Allow the dough to rest until it comes to room temperature (about 15-20 minutes). I've come to realize this is a very important step to keep your donuts from deflating much post bake; the donuts will rise a bit less but hold their shape better.

  8. Spoon dough into a piping bag or plastic bag (no tip needed). Cut out bottom of piping bag 2 cm (3/4 inch) wide. Pipe out dough onto donut pan, or onto prepared parchment paper (staying within the drawn circle). Wet your finger tip and smooth out where the ends meet (for a more even rise).

  9. Bake for 15 minutes at 425°F/220°C, lower temperature to 350°F/180°C and continue to bake for 17-20 minutes until deep golden. Do not open your oven door before the first 20 minutes (or at all if possible!), as choux pastry is notoriously sensitive to drafts. Allow to rest in pan for 10 minutes before removing. Note: if your donuts are browning too much, feel free to tent them with aluminum foil (just be sure it isn't resting directly over them!).

For the glaze

  1. Sift powdered sweetener and cocoa powder onto a bowl. Add in vanilla extract, butter and milk-of-choice (as needed) until desired consistency is reached. The glaze should be thick, but pourable (I like to use our fingertip here to test for thickness!). Glaze donuts by dunking them onto the glaze (if your tops came out a bit wonky, you can always use the rounder bottoms as your new 'tops'!). Alternatively, feel free to brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon 'sugar'. 

  2. These are best enjoyed still warm and freshly glazed, but they keep quite well for a day or two stored in an airtight container at room temperature. 

  3. UPDATE: I've updated the baking temperatures and methodology a tad, and this should keep your donuts from deflatting. But if it happens to you, its generally due to excess liquid (the main reason why baking goods collapse in general). Please note that keto flours vary tremendously from brand to brand, and of course the size of your eggs- so just try using 2 eggs rather than 3!

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

As many of you seasoned bakers know, the batter for these keto donuts is inspired by a traditional choux pastry. It's light, fluffy, absolutely delicious, and honestly very easy... but it is a bit finicky and known to deflate under certain circumstances, so be sure to check out these tips!

  • The most common reason for deflating choux pastry is excess liquid. This can come in the form of too large eggs (just try using 2 rather than 3!), be sure you're cooking your dough long enough that it actually forms into a ball (see video), and make sure your oven is calibrated to the correct temperature (or just get a cheap oven thermometer- like most pros do anyways!). 
  • You also want to be sure your dough is below 125°F/52°C before beating in the eggs. It can take anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes, depending on your room temperature. Otherwise you could be curdling your first egg (or two), leading to a lack of structure = deflating donuts. 
  • Allow your final choux dough to come to room temperature before transferring to a piping bag. I've come to realize this is a very important step to keep your donut (holes) from deflating post bake; the donuts will rise a bit less but hold their shape great.
  • And last, but not least, be gentle! Refrain from opening your oven for the first 20 minutes... and if possible don't open it at all! Definitely be careful to not slam your oven door (I know mine has a tendency to do that), and be gentle when taking them out of the oven. Don't have your A/C blasting, keep doors closed, etc... i.e. ensure there are no drafts

What to do if yours deflate?! Turn them into French toast (for real!). During my latest experiments to see what was causing the pastry to deflate, I ended up with a lot of 'mistakes'... and it turns out that they make the most delicious French toast bites ever (and you'll come back raving about it either way lol!).

Please note that nutrition facts were estimated for the donuts only (so you accommodate for your topping of choice), and we found a batch to yield 8. Still, most toppings add very little (i.e. negligible) carbs.

Oh, and apologies for the awkward yield number, but every time I tried to yield 6 it simply didn't work the same.  

Nutrition Facts
(Pillowy-Soft!) Baked Gluten Free & Keto Donuts
Amount Per Serving (1 donut)
Calories 140 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Fat 11g17%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Cholesterol 76mg25%
Sodium 155mg6%
Potassium 22mg1%
Carbohydrates 4g1%
Fiber 3g12%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 265IU5%
Calcium 31mg3%
Iron 0.7mg4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

152 comments

  1. Jacky says:

    These were delicious bit completely deflated. I think they deflated qt minute 15 when I opened the oven to cover them with foil….? Or because I dis not use a donut tray just a cookie tray with parchment paper?? Please help

    • Paola says:

      Hi Jacky! This has happened to a few people (and it happens quite a bit with choux pastry in general, keto or not). Have you checked out the note at the end of the post? General culprit is too much liquid, so it could be that your donuts hadn’t yet sealed the rise and covering them did cause them to deflate. Did you weight your ingredients? Can also try using one less egg next time and not covering them. Hope this helps!

  2. Sam B says:

    I’d like to make these into mini-doughnuts, as I recently received a pan as a gift. Should I modify the baking time much?

    • Paola says:

      Hi Sam! You will want to reduce baking time, though in all honesty I can’t give you an estimate without seeing your pan. Just keep an eye out for them after minute 10 xo

  3. Amanda says:

    Just made these. Delicious! Mine also deflated. After watching the video again, I think my dough was too wet.
    I tried it in a whoopie pie pan, making 6 donuts without the holes. They turned out like a cross between pancakes and pie crust, so I turned them into mini Boston cream pies/cakes. I filled the “crusts” with a vanilla egg custard and topped with the chocolate glaze (mine turned out way too sweet and not chocolate enough so I added some black cocoa powder). Served with raspberries. That really hit the spot!
    Thanks for another awesome recipe!

    • Paola says:

      LOL! Well that sounds like a fantastic way to salvage deflated donuts! Try using one less egg next time and making sure your oven is running at the correct temp 😉 xo!

  4. Desiree Severidt says:

    Hi there! These look delicious, but yours look professional and mine keep deflating. I’ve ground my psyllium husk and used only two eggs, but still they fall after coming out of the oven. I’m wondering if it’s my convection oven?? Any thoughts on how to adjust baking times with a a convection oven? Thanks!!

    • Paola says:

      Hi Desiree! It’s my understanding that convection ovens aren’t the best when it comes to choux pastry (which is essentially what this is). I just did some googling and sources are slightly conflicting. Though some do suggest to decrease the temp by 25 degrees for choux? Maybe worth a try? xo!

  5. Roslyn says:

    I love this recipe. This is the best donut recipe that I have tried in almost 8 years. I’m allergic to gluten and I’m Keto. I was a little skeptical when I saw that you cooked the dry ingredients. But this is the only donut recipe that I will use from now on. Thank you so much for sharing your recipes!!!!

  6. Francesca says:

    Hi

    Do you think that if the sweetener and vanilla extract were omitted, they could be bagels?

    Regards
    Francesca

    • Paola says:

      Hi Francesca! Unfortunately that wouldn’t work, as the donuts are very soft in texture. I’m working on a bagel recipe (and about 10 other bread recipes!) that will be published throughout the coming months. In the meantime the focaccia is a more bagel-like sub! xo!

  7. Dunia says:

    Oh my goodness! I haven’t had a donut in over a year and so looking forward to making your recipe. I’m going for the donuts as I haven’t had them in so long and these are much better for me. Thank you so much Paola, your recipes are awesome!

  8. Jessi says:

    These are so yummy! But mine went flat. I made them on parchment paper and I yeilded 6, is that what did it? Yummy either way though!

    • Paola says:

      Hi Jessi! I think you maybe made them too big? Also keep in mind that if you baked them on parchment they’ll be flat on the bottom. I’m posting a recipe this weekend for churro donuts (which don’t rise so much, and hence are way more forgiving than these). AND, they’re meant to be baked in parchment 😉 So happy you enjoyed them either way! xo!

  9. Amanda says:

    These look amazing! I have to try these. We recently went keto and hubby is having a hard time missing bread. I have to learn how convert all my baking to be keto friendly now.

  10. Relissa Nightingale says:

    Just made these, with a twist!!!
    I baked them in a muffin tin, once cooled I filled them with whipped cream!! 😀

    • Paola says:

      Hi Julz! I actually fell and injured both my wrists (!!), so I’m running a bit behind on extra work for the blog. Already on the mend so should be posted soon (don’t want to give a date as it depends on my hands feeling up to the task!). Thanks for hanging in there xo!

  11. Rachelle Goode says:

    Made these and there awesome!! They are actually better the next day, so make a double batch. I glazed mine with a frosting of equal part carob powder, Coco powder and then dipped them in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar free substitute. It tasted like a Mexican chocolate donut. Thank you so much for the indulgent recipe that works, you rock!

  12. Debra says:

    Hi, I’ve made these 2 times and both times while they are wonderfully round and fluffy in the over they fall flat within a few minutes of removing them. The 2nd time I made them I left them in the over with the door cracked open for 10 minutes, thinking the slow cool down may address the problem but I ended up with the same result. I live at sea level so I don’t believe its an altitude problem. Any suggestions on what I may be doing wrong?

    • Paola says:

      Oh no! Is the texture inside slightly too moist Debra? Could it be that your oven temperature is not high enough to seal the rise? Another thing could be too much moisture, are you using normal large eggs and cooking the dough for a couple minutes until some of the moisture has evaporated? It’s generally very hard to diagnose issues without being in the kitchen with you, but these are some of the other options as to why they are deflating so much. xo!

  13. Krystyna says:

    These were quite good! If I was craving a donut this would certainly hit the mark, but like a lot of baked keto goods, they were a bit eggy for a frequent treat. With enough cinnamon “sugar” it was absolutely irresistible! It seems like a lot of baked keto goods have a strong egg flavor, is it because the flours absorb so much extra moisture? Could I sub an egg for something else like milk?

    • Paola says:

      Hi Krystyna! I’m sorry I missed your comment(s!) earlier! A few things could’ve happened here but the most likely is that you’re using larger eggs than I am. The easy solution is just to use 2 eggs, they’ll rise less but will still be great xo!

  14. Amanda says:

    Omg Paola!!! These are like the real thing!!! So rich and yummy!! Mine deflated a bit, so turned out a little ugly, but sure tasty!!! Thank you, thank you for bringing real doughnuts back into my life! Can’t wait to try the churros now!!!

    • Paola says:

      Hi Min, without being there with you it’s hard to pin point a reason. Having said that, did you cover them as a sort of dome or just lay the piece down directly over them? When you cover things with foil it’s placed as a sort of dome to prevent them for over-browning. Other possible reasons are that your oven temperature was not high enough and didn’t ‘seal’ the rise (ovens are most often mis-calibrated). Hope this helps!

      • Cheri says:

        Mine deflated after I took them out of the oven. I guess I didn’t cook them long enough. I did 19 minutes. But that said, they were delicious! These are the closest thing I’ve had to real donuts since I went low carb 7 years ago! Thank you for this great recipe!

        • Paola says:

          Hi Cheri! So happy to hear you loved them! I’m not sure how much yours deflated, but keep in mind that mine also deflated a bit (I’m Mexico City based so this is a normal occurrence though!). But like you said, just bake them a little longer next time and that should help seal the rise! xo!

  15. Lorraine Burnham-Levy says:

    These worked and were easy to make! I used the cookie sheet method but I should have made them thicker. I am inspired to get a donut pan.

    • Paola says:

      Hi Melina! In all honesty I’ve not baked much with Truvia, but I have with Pyure (same ingredients- erythritol and stevia). So you should be fine for the donuts themselves. For the glaze, however, I found Pyure to give a stevia after taste in glazes so maybe go for swerve or xylitol here? xo

    • Paola says:

      Hi Estefanie! I have a few readers who have reported back on using sunflower seed flour in my recipes (sometimes known as sunflour). It has a very similar fat etc content to almond so it’s a very good sub! xo

      • Julie says:

        My son has a tree nut allergy and we are just starting to explore exactly this, since we avoid keeping almond flour in the house. It is difficult to find sunflower seeds that are processed in a nut free facility. I have finally found some on Amazon but they are pretty pricey since I am in Canada and they are coming from the states.

  16. Jane Augustine says:

    I just made these, they are good! Just like you said, pillowy soft! But I got eleven doughnuts. Lucky me! Do you think these could be fried like yeast doughnuts? I would fry in lard. What do you think?

    Thanks, you have the best recipes!

    • Paola says:

      Hi Jane! I had another reader in social media report back that she got 10!! I’ve no idea (maybe I over-fill my donut pan?!). That’s awesome though, each donut would come out to a little under 1g net carb then ;)!

      Regarding the frying, you can definitely do it! Check out the recipe for the churros. I might try adding just two eggs instead of three though, so the dough holds its shape better. And doing donut holes might be easier than full-on donuts here.

      And thank you for your lovely comments! So happy you’re enjoying the recipes! xo!

    • Paola says:

      I’m actually editing it as I type LOL! I’m trying to get better at posting videos with the recipes, but since gnom-gnom is not my full time job I do as much as I can 😉 It’ll be ready by the weekend! So happy you’re enjoying xo!

  17. Ninel says:

    Hi Paola,
    I plugged in all the ingredients into My Fitness Pal and I’m getting 9g of carbs, 3.7g of fiber, and 1.2g sugars.
    How do you calculate only 1 net carb?

    • Paola says:

      Hi Ninel! Did you take out the Swerve from your calculations (it’s a sugar alcohol, not a regular carb). Off the top of my head that would account for the difference? Also some softwares show xanthan gum as having quite a bit of carbs (even though it doesn’t). Hope this helps xo!

      • Jennifer F says:

        I also ran my own calculations (no offense!), and I got 1.17g net carbs per donut. I’m assuming you nutrition table rounds up or down (I’ve noticed this before). But I’ve also seen flours with different nutrition values.

        • Paola says:

          No offense taken whatsoever! Double checking values is very important. Product values can vary widely (and I’m human and mistakes do happen!). xo!

  18. Stephanie says:

    I’m interested in making these I’m just curious how long would I bake to make mini muffins? I’m thinking of making 6 regular sized ones and with the additional 2 make them into minis for my minis 🙂

    • Paola says:

      Hi Stephanie! In all honesty I’ve not tried to bake them as muffins yet, but I would assume that the more compact shape will up the baking time (3-5 mins more depending on the oven?). Just don’t open the oven door before the 15 minute mark to help them rise nicely! P.s. unfortunately you cannot test these with a tooth pick or you’ll deflate them. Enjoy! xo

  19. Jennifer F says:

    I made them as well already and they’re AMAZING! I simply brushed with butter right after baking and sprinkled the suggested cinnamon sugar topping (I used xylitol as the sweetener). I haven’t had an actual donut in about a year, but I can swear that these taste just like regular donuts! Honestly cannot believe it. Maybe one of your best recipes to date? Very impressed!! Cannot wait for the bf to come home and try them!!

    • Paola says:

      Hi Emma! You actually need the slightly higher temp here so they rise better (and stay risen!). I’m also based in Mexico City (super high altitude) and baked goods have a tendency to collapse, so yours might come out even better 😉 xo

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