Monday, March 16, 2015

Carrot Cake Baked Donuts

 This #MMsCarrotCake shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.  #CollectiveBias

It is no secret that I love a reason to bake! In fact, I have noticed all sorts of reasons to put on my apron lately. Spring is almost here, so I am counting down the days till we have ripe strawberries in the field and cherry trees blossoming next to the house. But, I also get excited to create a new and delicious treats to surprise my family for Easter.

One of my husband's all-time favorite cakes is carrot cake. If you have ever made a layered carrot cake, you know they take up a afternoon, at least, to bake, decorate and chill before serving. Though I don't mind making one for him, it is not a spur of the moment kind of dessert.  I was inspired by the seasonal M&M's® Carrot Cake candy I found at Walmart, to create a fast and delicious Carrot Cake Baked Donut that we could enjoy anytime.

Not just create for special occasions.

Spring and Easter mean the days are getting longer and my hens are laying nearly a dozen eggs a day. That is probably why I am more motivated to bake lately. I have eggs coming out of my ears! 

I am a complete baked donut convert. They are so quick and easy to make for my family. I love not having to deal with hot oil or the smell of frying in the house. The only downside is you need a donut pan.

I have to tell you, once you get a donut pan, you will be off and baking donuts often. The possibilities are endless, and you are going to want to start by giving this easy recipe a try.

First, grease the donut pan. I like to use cake release for this, It is a combination of non-stick spray and flour. It really does help the donuts come out more easily. This is especially helpful if you like to put bits of chocolate in the dough... or M&M's® Carrot Cake pieces.

I think a good carrot cake starts with a moist and flavorful spice cake base. I like to add plenty of nutmeg and allspice to mine. It is also a fun place to add in some whole wheat flour. Really, no one will ever know!

After mixing up all my ingredients in the stand mixer, I folded in the finely grated carrot and pieces of M&M's® Carrot Cake. I roughly chopped the candy in half since the donuts are not very big. I wanted to find little nuggets of white chocolate inside with every bite. It was a fun surprise when you first bite into the donut.

Then I created a simple cream cheese frosting with my hand mixer. Isn't that the best part of carrot cake? It also was perfect for keeping my M&M's® pieces in place on top of the donuts.

I just love the colors, too! I picked up M&M's®, including the M&M's® Carrot Cake, at my local Walmart just in time for all my Easter treat baking. I also have enough on hand to add to my son's Easter basket and for adults to munch on while creating all those Easter baskets this year. There was cute displays near the checkout lanes in my store.

Both my husband and youngest child were sneaking candy as I baked. Both are enjoying this seasonal flavor.

Okay, now onto the recipe...

Carrot Cake Baked Donuts

You Will Need:
  • 1 c, pastry flour
  • 1 c, wheat flour
  • 2/3 c. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1/4 c. butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. finely shredded carrots
  • 1/2 c, M&M's® Carrot Cake, roughly chopped
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 tsp. butter, softened
  • 1/2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • more M&M's® Carrot Cake pieces for decorating

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the donut pan with cake release or non-stick spray.

In a stand mixer, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt and spices. 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the butter, eggs, milk and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the mixer and stir to combine. Fold in the shredded carrot and M&M's® Carrot Cake pieces. 

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the tops start to turn golden brown. Let them cool for 5 minutes in the pan before inverting onto a cooling rack. Allow them to cool before frosting.

To prepare the frosting, beat the cream cheese and butter till smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar, vanilla and salt. Spread over the cooled donuts and top with M&M's® Carrot Cake pieces. 


You may also like my Peanut M&M's® Peanut Butter Pie recipe.

Or these M&M's® Cookie Bars or this Captain America Chocolate Chip Cookie Skillet Shield.

Okay, you saw what I created with my M&M's® Carrot Cake candy, what Easter treats do you want to create for your family? Will you be including M&M's® in the fun?

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