Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (How to Cook Fresh Donuts in Minutes!)

Introducing a perfect idea for this fall: Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts!

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After learning that it works well to make and freeze unbaked Giant Breakfast Cookies, Homemade Poptarts, Chocolate Chip Breakfast Bars, and all varieties of Muffins so that we can bake them fresh in the morning without any trouble, I thought, “Why not try this idea with my Whole Wheat Pumpkin Donut recipe?”

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One of these things is not like the the other. Someone, who shall remain nameless,
forgot to cut a donut hole in one of the donuts. Hmmm…

Indeed. We can mix up the pumpkin donuts, roll out the dough, cut the shapes, then freeze the uncooked dough on parchment paper or silicone mat-lined cookie sheets. We transfer the frozen dough into freezer bags, then any time we want fresh donuts (and when would we not want fresh donuts?), we can grab some out of the freezer and fry them up fresh to eat while sipping a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.

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Can you think of a better breakfast treat to enjoy this fall than fresh homemade Pumpkin Donuts?

The best part is that the mixing, rolling, cutting, and clean up will have already been taken care of! Well, clearly the best part is eating the fresh donuts. But eating the fresh donuts without looking at a messy kitchen that you’ll have to clean up afterward? Fabulous.

Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts

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Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (How to Cook Fresh Donuts in Minutes!)
 
Author:
Serves: 15-20
Ingredients
  • 3½ cups whole wheat flour (I use freshly ground hard or soft white wheat)
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ cup sucanat or brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • Oil for frying (I recommend coconut oil or palm shortening for healthy frying)
  • GLAZE:
  • 2 cups powdered sugar (I use unbleached powdered sugar)
  • ⅓ cup buttermilk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Stir together whole wheat flour, baking powder, sea salt, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and sucanat. Add melted butter, eggs, vanilla, buttermilk, and pumpkin puree – mixing until all ingredients are well combined.
  2. Roll dough on a well-floured surface.
  3. Cut out donuts and donut holes (makes about 30 of each).
  4. Lay the cut outs on a parchment-paper lined cookie sheet and freeze for at least 2 hours.
  5. Transfer prepared donuts to a freezer bag to store in the freezer until ready for use.
  6. To Cook: Set donuts out of the freezer at room temperature for about 15 minutes before frying.
  7. Fry dough in hot oil for about 3 minutes or until donuts are golden brown.
  8. Whisk glaze ingredients together and drizzle over warm donuts before serving.

Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (Whole Grain, Low Sugar, Easy!)

Concerned about the fact that these treats are fried? Don’t be! Coconut and Palm Oils can withstand high temperatures without becoming harmful to us. So instead of fearing the fry, we can actually enjoy the healthy fat we’re getting while enjoying these donuts.

Wow. Who knew we would ever be able to say, “I need some healthy fats in my diet. Please pass the donuts.”

But of course, let us not ever eat more donuts than veggies, yada, yada. You know the drill.

WAIT. There are veggies in these donuts (thank you, pumpkin, for being there for us when we need you). So I guess we can enjoy these to our heart’s delight, all while enjoying the fact that you can make them ahead and freeze them for ease in the kitchen.

This is what I call one happy fall recipe!

Some of these links are my affiliate links.

The Best Homemade French Fries (That You Can Pre-Make for Your Freezer)

Homemade French Fries are about the most amazing food in the world, my family loves them, and they’re easy to make except for one little thing: They kind of take forever. (Translation: easy and delicious but time consuming. Super bummer.)

The most amazing homemade french fries

Granted, I have a big family of big eaters. Making French fries is a big deal because I know I’m going to have to commit, you know? Between scrubbing and cutting and frying and cutting and frying and cutting and frying – I’m making fries for at least an hour.

Worth it? Oh my. So much worth it. But not often. It takes too much time.

But guess what I just learned to do? I learned the lovely tricks it takes to make fries ahead of time for the freezer. All the cutting is done ahead so all we have to do at frying time is…fry. Beyond saving me time, I’ve discovered that this method of slightly pre-cooking them before frying is what crispy, perfect fries are made of.

Come closer and learn with me.

The BEST Homemade Fries

How to Make and Freeze the BEST Homemade French Fries

1. Scrub a bunch of potatoes (or if you’re me, you ask your kids to scrub a bunch of potatoes, which they are happy to do because French Fries).

2. Cut the potatoes into fries – your preference on how thick or thin.

3. Put the cut potatoes into a big pot of water. Bring to a boil.

4. Once water/potatoes comes to a boil, remove the potatoes from heat and strain, running the potatoes under cold water to cool and stop the cooking process.

5. Blot the potatoes dry on a towel.

6. Transfer prepped fries into freezer bags for future use (although you might consider frying some immediately and I bet no one will argue).

7. Freeze prepped French fries in freezer bags for up to two months.

8. At frying time, get the fries out of the freezer a few minutes before you want to cook them.

9. Fry until crispy perfection has been reached. (I have a fryer similar to this and I love it. I use Palm Shortening for healthy and safe frying.)

WARNING: Watch that the fries aren’t holding extra water as they will splatter when frying! Blot prepared fries with a towel before frying if necessary.

How to Make and Freeze the Best Homemade Fries

You’ll never go back to making fries any other way after experiencing these.

Other fun Make-Ahead Recipes I’ve shared recently:

That list looks like a bunch of junk food, but it’s not! How great that we can make all of our favorites with healthier ingredients!

I also recently shared these gems:

Did you find some of these recipes to be helpful? Slowly but surely we can get ahead in the kitchen!

Easy Homemade Poptarts for the Freezer

Just like our Giant Breakfast Cookies, it would seem that a fresh, hot homemade poptart beats a pre-baked, room temp poptart any day.

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Let’s not even talk about the kind that come out of a box. For all of the reasons, let’s just not talk about it.

Now regarding Homemade Poptarts (that are very easy to make, by the way): My family could eat the entire batch in one meal. I prefer to make them stretch though, and I prefer us to eat more balanced instead of filling up on carbs in the morning.

That’s why, just like the Giant Breakfast Cookies, I’ve been making these poptarts and freezing them before I bake them. On a day I declare to be a Poptart Morning, I pull a few out and bake enough for each person to have a couple with our eggs and fruit. They taste amazingly better this way and help my poptart making efforts stretch into several meals.

Frozen Poptarts

Can I tell you how delicious a warm, fresh poptart tastes with a cup of coffee? It’s one of my favorite treats (and it’s naturally very low in sugar!).

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I encourage you to double this recipe so you can make a couple bags full of frozen, unbaked poptarts for quick breakfasts and snacks!

Easy Homemade Poptarts for the FreezerYum

Easy Homemade Poptarts for the Freezer
 
Author:
Serves: 15-20
Ingredients
  • 3½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • About 5 ounces of 100% fruit jelly or jam - any flavor you like!
Instructions
  1. Begin by mixing the flour, salt, butter, and yogurt.
  2. Knead the dough just a little bit to make it nice and workable.
  3. Roll out the dough on a large, well floured surface.
  4. Use a knife to cut the dough into the desired poptart size you would like.
  5. Place about a ½ teaspoon of jelly on ½ of the dough rectangles (squares?).
  6. Spread the jelly around, leaving the edges free.
  7. Find a second square or rectangle or thingamajigger that matches closely with each jellied one.
  8. Place it on top and use a fork to seal the edges.
  9. Lay each poptart in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  10. Bake in a 350° oven for about 25 minutes or until the crust is lightly browned.
  11. TO FREEZE UNBAKED:
  12. Create poptarts as directed, but instead of baking right away, freeze them on a baking sheet for about two hours. Once frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag.
  13. At baking time, pull desired number of frozen, unbaked poptarts out of freezer and bake as directed, allowing for a few additional minutes of baking time.

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Here’s to one of the most delicious breakfast treats ever!

The Easiest Way to Make Muffins, Plus 23 Delicious Muffin Recipes

The Easiest Way to Make Muffins

I love it when I order something and then I forget about it. When a package comes I get to be surprised! What did I order? What did I get? What’s in the box?

It is especially silly that I do this even when ordering with Amazon Prime two day shipping. There are just too many things to remember from a Wednesday to a Friday, apparently.

Remember when I told you about the fun-shaped silicone muffin cups for a great price? I got me some of those, then I surprised myself with them two days later when the package came. “What’s in the box?” asked the boys. I have no idea. And then this was inside:

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I think I squealed.

The 12 regular Muffin Rounds together with a set of 12 Stars is still on sale. You, too, could surprise yourself with a package.

Early this week I went with the freeze muffin batter for easy breakfasts ideaThe easy idea just got easier with these cups!

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See how easily the frozen batter pops out?

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To clean these, I simply rinsed them well in very hot water.

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I put all of the frozen batter shapes into a freezer bag for another day.

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Then I baked a few muffins for a snack. Not only do I sometimes forget what I order online, I also sometimes forget I have muffins baking in the oven. This is what timers are for, Laura. Ah well. So they are only slightly overdone. This is what milk is for, Muffins. But are those cute, or what?

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Well, I for one am very excited about my new toys. I also love the bright colors. Silly as it is, the rainbow of muffin cups made the stirring and the freezing and the baking more fun. It doesn’t take much for me, apparently. After all, I’m the one who squeals when I open a package that I ordered for myself.

Did you get yourself some of these? Check out all the varieties I found, along with the coupons some of them offer. (These circles and stars are the best deal though.)

Here’s a list of the 23 wholesome muffin recipes we have listed here at Heavenly Homemakers:

23 Kid Friendly Muffin Recipes

What are your favorite muffins? Please tell me you’ve tried the “freeze the muffin batter” idea. Did you get some of the fun silicone muffin cups? Think of all the fun we’ll have!

This post contains affiliate links.

A Very Manly Menu Plan

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Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole (recipe in Healthy Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook)

For the first time in a couple of months, the six of us are all been home together again! All four of the boys are now home from camp. We’ve enjoyed some catch up time and heard lots of stories of adventures from the boys being away. We’re doing tons of loads of laundry and getting caught up on work we are behind on. I can’t tell you how nice it is to have all of us back under one roof, even if it is just for a couple of days.

So what does this week hold? Well, since this is the summer of crazy, you can bet it holds more excitement. I’m heading out tomorrow for a traditional “Sister Symposium.”  (More on that for Gratituesday.)  Then the two younger boys will be heading to Kansas to spend several days with grandparents. Left at home will be Matt and our two oldest boys.

Since Asa and Justus have been at camps for weeks and weeks this summer, they’ll likely be spending quite a bit of time this week catching up on sleep. They’ll work with Matt on some house and garden projects. And what will they eat?

Well, I’m guessing they’d be just as happy as can be if I simply left them several pounds of bacon and some steak. :)  For the most part, they’ll be fending for them selves. But I did have the chance to do some freezer cooking in preparation for my being away. Here are some food choices I left for them:

Breakfasts:

Eggs, bacon, hashbrowns, sausage, homemade instant oatmeal, and plenty of fresh and frozen fruit for sides and smoothies

Lunches and Dinners:

Sandwiches, Meat and Cheese Burritos, Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole (recipe in Healthy Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook), Tuna Salad or Tuna Casserole (they can easily make either one on their own), Spicy Avocado Dip, and plenty of fruits, veggies, and salad fixings.

My guys do great figuring out food when I’m away. I love it that they can all cook! I’m pretty sure they’ll even keep up with dirty dishes. :)

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Asa makes a great guacamole. I grabbed some avocados at the store so he can whip some up. Here’s the recipe!

Here’s to a great new week. Hope your summer has been awesome so far!

Funky Fresh Kitchen Challenge #2: Get Ahead ~ Do a Little Something Extra

Well, how did our first challenge go? Did you Toss Something Out and Make a Switch? I was super impressed when I read all of your comments sharing what you were planning to do and what you actually accomplished. Way to go!

This weekend, I’d like to extend challenge #2. (If your weekend is full, that’s perfectly okay. Maybe you can find time early next week to do a little something extra?)

You all know how much I love making food ahead of time and putting it into the freezer for busier days. Not only do I love doing this…I have found that this practice has almost become a necessity for me. Having healthy, pre-made foods in the freezer makes putting nourishing meals on the table so much easier. It’s also a perfect way to save money and time.

Your new challenge is to simply do one extra little something in the kitchen. Maybe you are making a casserole, so you can just go ahead and make a second one for the freezer. Maybe you can prepare some vegetables to have on hand for snacking. Maybe you want to spend several hours making a few different types of healthy convenience foods for your freezer or to feed your family next week.

Me? I’m feeling desperate to have some easy breakfast foods in my freezer. With soccer practices and/or games most evenings and school work beginning first thing each morning – I just need some healthy breakfast items that can quickly be warmed up in the mornings. This weekend, I plan to squeeze the following in between soccer games and…life in general. :)

I know the challenge is just to do one thing, but I’m hoping to get on a roll and knock out a bunch of these so that I’ll be ahead for the days upcoming. Feel free to do more than one thing for this challenge if you would like. :)

So are you ready? Pick something – anything that will help you get just a little bit ahead in the kitchen. It likely won’t take you long. If you’re already making a mess in the kitchen, just go with it and get ahead!

Feel free to look through all of my Make Ahead Meals posts to see if you might can find a recipe or two that will inspire you.

Or maybe you just need to do a little extra cleaning in your kitchen to continue to make it more functional. Did you get your copy of Do the Funky Kitchen yet?

Whatever you choose, leave a comment here with your ideas.  Each comment entered gives you another chance to win one of our Heavenly Homemakers Gift Certificates. If you have a blog, feel free to share with your readers about this challenge and about how you plan to participate, then come over and link up with us below. Or…want to share with us more about how Challenge #1 went for you? Please do!

I will be sharing an update on my “getting ahead” progress on Sunday, September 9, and will at that time give you an opportunity to share as well. Can’t wait to hear!

You all are so inspiring with all you are getting done in your kitchens to make them Funky and Fresh! Let Challenge #2 begin!