Freshly made brioche dough transforms into these delicious Nutella Doughnuts. They’re sweet, buttery, and perfectly tender doughnuts filled with a delicious chocolate hazelnut spread. It’s the perfect breakfast treat.
Saturdays are for family breakfast in our household. Normally during the week, I feed our children a balanced healthy breakfast to begin our day. But on weekends, it’s a little different. My husband isn’t working and we enjoy making breakfast as a family and on occasion serving a treat. And these Nutella Doughnuts are just that. They begin with a sweet, buttery brioche dough that’s fried to perfection and filled with Nutella.
Before you begin
Take out the following baking equipment.
Digital kitchen scale
Stand mixer fitted with the dough hook
3 small bowls
1 medium bowl
2 baking sheet pans
2 round cutters
Wire cooling rack
1 pastry bag
Small round piping tip
Allow all your ingredients to come to room temperature.
Read the recipe through from start to finish.
All-purpose flour is used to make these brioche doughnuts. Typically you might think that bread flour would be selected. However, because of the lower protein content, all-purpose flour is ideal for this particular recipe. It will yield a doughnut that is soft and tender as opposed to rubbery and chewy.
Salt is an essential ingredient in bread baking. It helps control the speed of the fermentation process. Too much salt and your dough will not rise, and not enough salt will cause the dough to ferment too quickly. It’s important to note that do not keep the salt and yeast together (in the same bowl) once you measure them. The salt will kill the yeast. Instead, add them separately to your bowl with the dry ingredients and mix immediately.
There are a variety of yeasts on the market. There is fresh yeast, instant yeast, rapid rise yeast, and active yeast. Which one to use? I know it can be confusing. To make things easier, I always use instant (here is the brand I prefer). It’s simple to work with compared to other yeast. All you have to do is add it straight to your mixer and mix. No initial hydrating and having to worry about how warm the water is or how long you have to let it sit. Skip all those variables with instant yeast. If a recipe does call for another yeast, make sure to convert the amount to instant yeast (if you prefer to use it).
As an enriched dough, these brioche doughnuts contain both butter and egg. They add a rich flavor and texture to the doughnuts. It’s essential for the butter to be at room temperature so that it can easily incorporate into the dough.
How to fry doughnuts
It can seem a little intimidating to fry doughnuts at home, but with the right setup, it’s actually quite simple and not as messy as you would think.
Begin with pouring about 2 L of canola oil into a large heavy-bottomed pot. Heat the oil to 350°F/177°C. While your oil is heating, place a wire cooling rack over a baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper or paper towels and set aside close to the pot. Fill a shallow bowl with sugar and place next to the baking sheet pan.
Once the oil is the correct temperature, carefully place two of the doughnut into the oil, one at a time, without splashing oil on yourself. Allow the doughnuts to fry for about 1-2 minutes on each side. The brioche should look evenly golden brown. With a slotted spoon, remove the doughnuts from the oil and transfer to the prepared cooling rack setup. Allow the doughnuts to sit for several minutes until cool enough to handle. Transfer to the bowl and coat the entire doughnuts in sugar. Place back onto the wire rack to cool completely.
How to fill Nutella doughnuts
Once your doughnuts are completely cool, it’s time to fill them. Begin by transferring your doughnuts to a 9 x 9-inch square baking pan and set them up vertically (this step is completely optional). Then using a paring knife, chopstick, or large skewer, create a small hole in each of the doughnuts.
Fill a piping bag fitted with a small piping tip (I use this tip or you can omit the piping tip and just cut the tip off the bag) with the Nutella. Insert the tip of the piping bag into the hole you created and fill each doughnut. Add enough filling so that the doughnuts feel heavy and some of the Nutella should ooze out a bit.
Tips and takeaways
- Although making bread by hand is fun and therapeutic, it’s essential to use a stand mixer when making brioche dough. It’s next to impossible to fully incorporate all the butter into the dough by hand (it’s quite messy and much of the butter would end up on your hands instead of in the dough).
- This dough tastes best when fermented in the refrigerator overnight. Doing so allows the flavors of the dough to develop for a longer period of time as well as allows the gluten to fully relax.
- As you can see, the fermentation process is long, but the results are worth it. Make sure you plan according to your schedule before beginning this recipe.
- For the initial fermentation stage, I often turn my oven on for about one minute then immediately turn it off just to slightly warm it up. I then place my bowl with the dough into the oven and allow it to ferment. I usually do this when our kitchen feels on the cooler side. Using the oven will help create the ideal proofing temperature for the dough.
- This dough is very versatile. In addition to doughnuts, you can use it to make smaller rolls (dinner-size), a large loaf, or even a braided loaf. As a loaf bread, you can add a filling for an extra boost in flavor.
- Other fillings that would go well with these doughnuts include lemon curd, thickened caramel sauce, butterscotch ganache, and almond cream filling.
Love these doughnuts? Try these other breakfast recipes
Make sure to tag me @thesweetoccasion on Instagram and leave me a review below if you make these Nutella Doughnuts. I’d love to see your creations and read your feedback. And if you would like to make this recipe later, be sure to pin this recipe using the button on any of these images. Let’s make every occasion a sweet occasion!Print
- 525 g (3 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
- 5.1 g (2 teaspoons) instant yeast
- 55 g (1/4 cup) granulated sugar
- 4.8 g (1 teaspoon) salt
- 180 g (3/4 cup) whole milk, at room temperature
- 150 g (3 large) eggs, at room temperature
- 85 g (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons and at room temperature
- 2 L canola oil
- 110 g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt and mix to combine evenly. Add the eggs and milk mix on medium speed for 5 minutes. Using a spatula or dough scraper, scrape the dough from the sides and bottom of the bowl. Continue to mix on medium speed for an additional 10 minutes, or until dough is soft and smooth.
- Reduce the mixer to low speed and add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, making sure that it is fully incorporated before adding the next piece. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Once all the butter is fully incorporated, mix on medium speed for an additional 5 minutes, or until dough is soft, elastic and shiny.
- Transfer dough to an oiled medium bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rest at room temperature for about 1-2 hours or until the dough doubles in size.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Stretch and fold the left side of the dough over to the center as well as the right side over to the center. Repeat process with the top and bottom portions of the dough. Place seam side down in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight to ferment.
- Line a baking sheet pan with a silicone mat or parchment paper and set aside. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough out to a 1/2-inch thick. Using a 3 1/2-inch round cutter, cut the dough into nine doughnuts and carefully transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Use a 1-inch circle cutter to cut mini doughnuts with the scraps. With the remaining scraps, gently re-roll the dough and cut out additional mini doughnuts.
- Loosely cover the doughnuts with a piece of plastic wrap. Allow to proof at room temperature for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. When you poke the doughnuts gently with your finger, the small indentation should spring back.
- Meanwhile, pour the canola oil into a large heavy-bottomed pot. Heat the oil to 350°F/177°C. Place a wire cooling rack over a baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper and set aside. Place the sugar in a shallow bowl or plate.
- Carefully place two doughnuts in the oil, one at a time, without splashing oil on yourself. Fry each doughnut for 1-2 minutes on each side, until the doughnuts are golden brown. With a slotted spoon, remove the doughnuts from the oil and place them onto the cooling rack. Allow doughnuts to cool for several minutes before transferring to the bowl of sugar. Coat the entire doughnuts in sugar and place onto the wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts and doughnut holes.
- Fill a piping bag fitted with a small round piping tip with the Nutella. Using a paring knife, chopstick, or large skewer, make a small hole in the side of each doughnut. Fill each doughnut with the Nutella. The doughnuts should feel heavy, and some of the Nutella should ooze out a bit.
- These Nutella doughnuts are best enjoyed the same day they are made.