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Vanilla Cream-Filled Doughnuts

These decadent doughnuts from chef Joanne Chang's "Flour" cookbook quickly sell out every time she makes them at her Boston-based Flour Bakery + Cafe.

  • Yield: Makes nine 4-inch doughnuts
Vanilla Cream-Filled Doughnuts

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, January 2011


  • 1 package (2 1/2 teaspoons) active dry yeast, or 2/3 ounce fresh cake yeast
  • 2/3 cup milk, room temperature
  • 3 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for baking sheet
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into 6 to 8 pieces
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • Pastry Cream, chilled


  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, stir together yeast and milk; let stand until yeast is dissolved, about 1 minute. Add flour, 1/3 cup sugar, salt, and eggs; mix on low speed until dough comes together, about 1 minute. Continue mixing on low 2 to 3 minutes more. Add butter, a few pieces at a time, mixing after each addition and until butter is fully incorporated and dough is soft, 5 to 6 minutes.

  2. Remove dough from bowl and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 6 hours and up to 15 hours.

  3. Lightly flour a baking sheet; set aside. On a well-floured work surface, roll out dough into 12-inch square about 1/2 inch thick. Using a 3 1/2-to-4-inch round biscuit cutter, cut out 9 doughnuts. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap; let stand in a warm spot until they've doubled in height and feel poufy and pillowy, 2 to 3 hours.

  4. Fill a large heavy-bottomed saucepan with oil to a depth of 3 inches; heat over medium-high heat until it reaches 350 degrees on a deep-fry thermometer. Working in batches, place doughnuts in the hot oil, taking care not to crowd them. Fry until golden brown on one side, 2 to 3 minutes; turn and continue frying on remaining side until golden, 2 to 3 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, transfer doughnuts to a paper towel-lined baking sheet until cool enough to handle.

  5. Place remaining cup of sugar in a small bowl. Toss doughnuts in sugar, one at a time, to evenly coat. Return doughnuts to paper towel-lined baking sheet to cool completely, 30 to 40 minutes.

  6. Meanwhile, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in pastry cream; you should have 3 cups of filling. Transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip; set aside.

  7. Poke a hole in the side of each cooled doughnut and fill with about 1/3 cup filling; serve immediately.


Reviews (6)

  • MunaalTanveer 23 Dec, 2013

    Hi, kindly tell how to store the raw doughnut dough. If preserved through refrigeration will it give the same results like the fresh dough? For how long it can be preserved and whats the process for reusing the refrigerated dough especially for the vanilla cream filled doughnut as you have to give 15 hours to the dough to rise. Thanks

  • Idiosyncratic 24 Mar, 2012

    Post part 2:
    Oil ur clingfilm or it will take top off ur donut or ruin the shape as u pull n tug it off! Whilst frying the first few batches were good but keep an eye on oil temp as it keeps getting hotter and then the next batches are going in oil that's too hot so cook on outside but stay soggy in midle. Other than adjusting that I didn't have high hopes for my final product considering all my botch ups!But they tasted like heaven, soft snowy inside with nice outer crust n puffy round donut

  • Idiosyncratic 24 Mar, 2012

    I mAde these very tentatively. The dough was very sloppy and I worried that I did something wrong but as I followed the recipe I refrained from chucking in lots of extra flour! I don't think it rose as much as it should overnight ( prob not very active yeast) but when I rolled it out it was soft but manageable, and after cutting circles I left then in very warm room. In hindsight maybe it was too warm as I had trouble getting the donuts in frier! Ps: oil ur clingfilm or the top of ur dough

  • Ilovebakingmorocco 17 Nov, 2011

    I do not have active dry yeast so i would like to replace this recipe with 2/3 ounce fresh cake yeast... Do i need to proof it? Do i simply crumble the fresh cake yeast into the milk and continue on with the recipe? Or do i do it otherwise?
    Thank you!

  • jdevine 31 Jan, 2011

    To DJY, whenever to dough doesn't rise properly, all roads lead back to the yeast process. That's why proof is so important.

  • DJY 29 Jan, 2011

    After watching yesterday's show, I decided to make these for my family. They were almost perfect. The cream filling and the taste of the doughnut were awesome. The part that I can use a little help or work on is getting the doughnuts to puff up when frying. They were flat and very difficult to get the cream in. I made the dough the night before and then rolled them and let them rise the next morning. They rose in about 1 1/2 hours. Maybe my oil was too high? Help??

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