Fried Red Velvet Doughnuts

I made the recipe with the edits I noted the first time I published this recipe, and the doughnuts ended up perfect for me! However, I will say that if you want vibrant red doughnuts, use baking powder, rather than baking soda, and leave out the vinegar. Baking soda seems to react with the red food dye to make a deeper red color.

[Revised on Feb, 25, 2018]

Red Velvet Cake Doughnuts


3 c all purpose flour
1/2 c dutch process cocoa powder (a)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
4 eggs
5 Tbsp melted butter, cooled
1 1/2 c light brown sugar
1/4 c sour cream
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp white vinegar
1 1/2 tsp red food dye
2 lb lard (b)
2 pints canola oil
parchment paper, cut into 3-inch squares
piping bag or large zip-top bag

Cream Cheese Glaze Ingredients

4 Tbsp cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners sugar
3-4 Tbsp milk

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and  salt. Set aside.
  2. In a smaller bowl, beat eggs with an electric mixer for 1 minute, until they are lightened. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, sour cream, vanilla extract, vinegar, and red food dye. Beat for an additional minute.
  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together with a large rubber spatula, until they come together. Do not overmix.
  4. Cover and refrigerate the dough for an hour.
  5. Fill a large, heavy bottomed pot or high-sided sauté pan half-way with half lard and half canola oil. Heat over medium until oil reaches 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  6. Fill the piping bag with the dough. Cut off the tip at about 3/4 inch wide.
  7. Pipe the dough onto the parchment squares. Pipe one circle per parchment square. The dough may seem thin, but it will rise while frying.
  8. Prepare glaze while oil is heating.
  9. Once the oil has reached 375°F, begin to add the doughnuts, add two or three at a time to the pot. Use two wooden spoons, or one wooden spoon and one spider, to hold down opposite corners of the parchment square until the doughnut releases from it. Do this for all doughnuts in the pot. Once the doughnut unsticks from the parchment, fry for approximately 1 minute more before flipping it and fry for an additional 2 minutes on the other side. Take doughnuts out of the oil with a spider or slotted spoon. Place the doughnuts on a paper-towel lined cooling rack.
  10. Repeat step 9, frying in batches of 2 or 3 doughnuts, until all are fried. Yield approx. 2 dozen.
  11. After cooling for a few minutes, dunk in the cream cheese glaze.
Cream Cheese Glaze Directions
  1. Beat cream cheese with an electric mixer for 1-2 minutes until light and fluffy.
  2. Slowly add confectioners sugar until it isn’t blending in well anymore.
  3. Then add the milk and continue beating in the remainder of the confectioners sugar.

(a) The closest I could find to dutch process cocoa powder was Ghirardelli Sweetened Cocoa Powder
(b) Half lard and half canola oil is my preferred ratio. It makes for a very crunchy exterior but soft interior. Use all canola oil, if you don’t want to use lard.

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