Vegan Maple Donuts

Do you pine for the sweet taste of maple syrup mixed with a fluffy, soft pastry? Well, hold on to your tastebuds because there are two secret ingredients in these vegan maple donuts that will keep you coming back for more. These mystery ingredients add complexity and depth to this beloved treat.

Get ready to discover the unexpected in your favorite pastry!

A stack of maple donuts shows the top one with a bite taken out. The stack sits next to a pink mug of tea. There are more donuts in the background.

What Are Maple Donuts?

As you can probably guess, a maple donut is made when maple syrup is baked right in to flavor the donut and the donut glaze. Maple syrup adds more than flavor; it also creates incredibly soft donuts with a perfect texture.

Over the years, maple donuts have evolved, and many bakeries have put their own spin on the classic treat. The maple donut has become a versatile pastry that continues to delight donut lovers around the world.

Why This Recipe is a Winner

  • TWO SECRET INGREDIENTS — Using both maple syrup and ground nutmeg makes these donuts taste like baker-quality donuts.
  • HEALTHIER — Baking the donuts (rather than frying them in oil) and using whole wheat pastry flour makes them healthier than the average donut.
  • MAPLE GLAZE — Topping these donuts with a maple glaze makes every bite so delicious!

Mystery Ingredients

This maple donut recipe includes two secret ingredients that set it apart from the others. These ingredients add unique flavors to the pastry, but they’re often overlooked or misunderstood.

  • Maple extract is made from distilled maple sap and enhances the maple flavor in baked goods, including maple donuts. Using high-quality extracts made from pure maple sap can make a significant difference in the taste of baked goods.
  • Ground Nutmeg creates a distinctive “donut” flavor and is a must in every donut recipe.

Maple Donuts Key Ingredients

You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.

  • Lemon — We’ll use both the zest and the juice of the lemon.
  • Oats — I used rolled oats for this recipe, but you can substitute instant oats.
  • Chia — We’ll add some ground chia seeds to create a thicker texture. You can use whole chia seeds; I just prefer ground because it creates a smoother finished texture.
  • Syrup — I used maple syrup, but you can substitute agave nectar.
  • Milk — We’ll use almond milk for the best overnight oats! Substitute your favorite plant-based milk.
  • Yogurt — I love adding some plant-based yogurt (plain, unsweetened) for an even more tangy flavor.
  • Protein Powder — I add some vanilla protein powder for increased flavor and nutrients. If your protein powder is not sweetened, you may want to add an extra teaspoon or two of sweetener.
  • Cornstarch — We’ll use cornstarch to thicken the lemon curd topping.
  • Turmeric — A pinch of turmeric makes that lemon curd sunny yellow.
  • Vegan Egg — Use a flax egg or a chia egg.
  • Flour — I recommend whole wheat pastry flour, but you can substitute all-purpose flour or plain flour. For gluten-free maple donuts, use gluten-free flour formulated for baking.
  • Sugar — You’ll need brown sugar and powdered sugar for these donuts.
  • Baking powder + baking soda — Make sure yours is fresh by testing a bit of baking powder in hot water and baking soda in vinegar. If it bubbles, your batch is good to go.
  • Ground nutmeg — A must for every donut recipe, you can use storebought ground nutmeg or grind your own whole nutmegs.
  • Vegan Butter — If using storebought, I recommend Earth Balance or Miyokos, or you can use homemade vegan butter.
  • Maple Syrup — You can use maple syrup or this maple syrup substitute.
  • Milk — Use your favorite plant-based milk, such as almond, soy, or even creamy vegan evaporated milk.
  • Vinegar — To activate the baking soda to make soft, fluffy donuts, we’ll add a bit of vinegar. Apple cider vinegar is preferred because of its mild flavor. You can also use white vinegar or even lemon juice.
  • Extracts — We’ll use both maple and vanilla extracts in this recipe.
A vegan maple donut with a bite take out sits next to other donuts around it and in the background.

How to Make Maple Donuts

Making vegan maple donuts is easy, and it doesn’t require any difficult-to-find plant-based ingredients. Instead of using traditional milk, butter, and eggs, we’ll use vegan substitutes that are readily available in most grocery stores.

  1. Make the flax egg and set it aside.
  2. Stir together the dry ingredients.
  3. Heat vegan butter until melted. Stir in the flax egg, syrup, milk, vinegar, and extracts.
  4. Make the batter by stirring the milk mixture into the flour mixture.
  5. Spoon the batter into the donut compartments.
  6. Bake until the donuts are done.
  7. Make the maple donut glaze by bringing vegan butter and brown sugar to a boil.
  8. Remove from heat, stir in maple extract, and then stir in the powdered sugar. Allow it to cool for several minutes (until cool enough to touch).
  9. Dip slightly-cooled donuts in the maple glaze and set them aside for the icing to firm up.
A hand holds a donut over a bowl of caramel glaze. The donut is dripping the glaze after having just being dipped. There are more donuts in the background.

How to Serve Maple Donuts

You can serve donuts on a platter with your favorite plant-based beverages, such as this vegan turmeric latte.

This is great for your next breakfast or even vegan brunch!

But why not go the extra mile and make it more special by making a maple donut bar? You can set out some unglazed donuts with toppings in a bowl nearby.

Then your guests can dip their donuts in the glaze and add their favorite toppings. Here are some favorite maple donut topping ideas:

  • Large flakes of sea salt will make salted maple donuts.
  • Colorful sprinkles to make them festive.
  • Chopped bacon-flavored almonds would add bits of crunch and smoky flavor, which is always amazing combined with maple syrup.

Storage Tips

Store donuts in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 10 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.

More Vegan Donuts

If you love these vegan maple donuts, you’ll definitely want to try even more vegan donuts:

In conclusion, the secret ingredient in maple donuts is not just maple syrup but also ground nutmeg. These two together create the best donuts ever!

So the next time you take a bite of a vegan maple donut, remember the history and complexity behind it.

As Julia Child once said, “People who love to eat are always the best people.” So enjoy every delicious bite, and appreciate the secrets that make eating with friends and family so memorable.

A hand holds a vegan donut with a bite taken out. It hovers over more donuts in the background.
A closeup of a stack of vegan maple donuts. the top one has a bite taken out. There is another donut and a coffee mug visible in the background.

Maple Donuts

These baked maple donuts are such a treat you'll want to make a double batch! That's because every bite is infused with caramel goodness.
5 from 4 votes
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Resting Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 332kcal


  • 1 flax egg
  • 1 ¼ cups whole wheat pastry flour (substitute all-purpose)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup vegan butter
  • cup maple syrup
  • cup plant-based milk
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon maple extract

Maple Glaze

  • ½ tablespoons vegan butter
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon maple extract


  • Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C and coat a regular-sized donut pan with vegetable spray.
  • Prepare the flax egg and set it aside.
  • Add the flour, brown sugar, spice, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Stir to combine.
  • Heat vegan butter in a microwave-safe bowl for 20 to 30 seconds, until the butter is melted. Stir in the flax egg, maple syrup, milk, vinegar, and extracts.
    A hand holds a measuring spoon with maple extract over a small bowl with icing in it. There is a bottle of maple extract beside the bowl.
  • Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture.
    A hand holds a spatula, stirring flour with milk ingredients in a glass mixing bowl.
  • Stir until just combined. It should be a thick batter without lumps.
    A hand holds a spatula, stirring donut batter in a glass bowl.
  • Use a tablespoon to carefully distribute the batter into the donut compartments, filling them generously and equally. Use 3 tablespoons of batter per compartment for smaller donuts and 4 tablespoons of batter for thicker donuts. Bake for 12 to 16 minutes, until the donuts are done.
    A hand uses a spatula to spread donut batter into a donut pan.

For the Maple Glaze

  • Heat vegan butter, maple syrup, and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat until it comes to a boil. Stir and boil for up to a minute.
    Looking down on a saucepan full of brown sugar and vegan butter that has come to a low boil.
  • Remove from heat and stir in maple extract. Allow it to cool for about 5 minutes, then add the powdered sugar and stir to combine. This glaze will thicken as it sits, so be prepared to stir in a teaspoon of cream as needed.

Glazing Donuts

  • Once the donuts are done, remove them from the oven and allow them to cool slightly. Once they're cool enough to handle, dip the top part of each donut in the caramel icing.

Recommended Equipment

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*Make this gluten-free by using 1:1 gluten-free baking flour.
To make 12 smaller donuts (based on 6-compartment donut pans) distribute approximately 3 tablespoons of dough into each compartment.
To make 9 larger donuts, distribute approximately 4 tablespoons of dough in each compartment.
Sprinkle the top of donuts with flaked sea salt to make salted caramel donuts.
Calories: 332kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.05g | Sodium: 367mg | Potassium: 268mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 435IU | Vitamin C: 0.01mg | Calcium: 98mg | Iron: 1mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.


3 Responses to Vegan Maple Donuts

  1. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlySusie Reply

    5 stars
    Delicious Donuts!

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      So glad you liked the donuts, Susie!

  2. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyFerdous Zaman Reply

    5 stars
    The thing is, if you have a batch of this whole grain ready you can do much with it .
    Here some favourite recipeis that use brown rice. Crispy orange, vegan Chorizo with lentils and brown rice.
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