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sticky date doughnuts

Sticky Date Doughnuts with Salted Caramel Sauce

Sticky Date Doughnuts! Delicious dough is a dream to work with, caramel date filling and a delicious salted caramel sauce on top.

Course Dessert
Keyword Doughnut, Winter
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Rising Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 9 doughnuts



  • 250 g plain flour
  • 30 g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon dried yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 75 ml warm water
  • 60 g butter, softened
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

Caramel Date Filling

  • 150 g dates
  • 150 ml water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon or whisky
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar
  • Cream

Salted Caramel Sauce

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 30 g salted butter
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt


  1. To make the doughnuts, place all the ingredients except the butter into a large bowl. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, work on a low speed for about 4 minutes, or until combined and elastic. With the mixer still running, add the butter one piece at a time until it is fully incorporated. There should be no visible pieces. This will take about 5-8 minutes.
  2. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a clean tea towel, and set aside in a warm place to rise until doubled in size.
  3. In the meantime, make the date filling. Place the dates, water and vanilla into a small saucepan and simmer over a low heat for 10-15 minutes or until softened. Using a stick blender, blend until smooth. Add bourbon, cinnamon, salt and icing sugar and blend again. You might need to thin out the consistency to make it easily pipe-able so add cream 1 tablespoon at a time and blend until smooth. Place into a piping bag and set aside.
  4. To make the salted caramel sauce, place the brown sugar, butter and cream into another small saucepan and stir until combined and the butter has melted. Cook over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes until slightly thickened. Stir through salt and allow to cool to room temperature.
  5. When the dough has risen, punch it down, and scrape it out onto a well-floured surface, pat the dough into a rectangle, about ½ inch (just over 1cm) thick, and cut out 9 donuts using a 2.5inch (5cm) round cutter. Place onto a lined baking sheet, cover with plastic or tea towel again, and set aside to rise for another 45 minutes, or until puffy.
  6. Place about 5cm of oil into a saucepan or use a deep fryer and heat over a low flame, until it reaches 170°C ( °F). To test, place a small piece of dough in the oil, and when it bubbles and rises to the surface, the oil should be the right temperature.
  7. Fry the donuts a few at a time (don't crowd the pan) for about 1 minute each side or until they are golden brown and cooked through. Drain the donuts on paper towels and allow to cool slightly.
  8. Use a chopstick to make a hole in each doughnut. Pipe the date filling inside until each doughnut feels heavy. Drizzle salted caramel on top of each doughnut (best done over a cooling rack with a tray or plate underneath) and serve immediately or allow caramel to set slightly. Doughnuts taste best on the day they are made but can be stored in an airtight container and heated in the microwave.

Recipe Notes

(Adapted from The Sugar Hit)