I started off this post writing:

It’s always at about this time of year that I start to become a little (or a lot) impatient. At the first sign of spring, I’m desperate for full-on summer. 

And then I went to look at what I’ve posted before and realised that I’d written almost exactly the same thing, pretty much word for word, at the start of May last year. Clearly, I’ve not got any better at not wishing my life away.



Onto doughnut-shaped things!  I’ve shied away from posting a recipe for doughnuts before because, obviously, you need a doughnut pan to make baked doughnuts at home and I know that most people probably don’t have one. That said, I’m a big advocate of investing in one – I’ve found mine to be one of the most used pieces of kitchen stuff that I’ve ever bought. There’s something about doughnuts that makes me feel so stupidly happy. The sight of a batch, cooling on the windowsill, cheers me up like almost nothing else. Plus making (baked) doughnuts is no more difficult that whipping up a dozen muffins. Stir, dollop, bake = done.

These doughnuts are a current favourite – I made three batches the weekend before Easter (and we ate them all). I don’t think you can ever go wrong with the combination of chocolate and buckwheat; throw in a bit of orange and I’m sold. Sticky dark brown sugar and ground almonds keep these pretty rich but they’re pleasingly light and fluffy – a bit of a best-of-both-worlds situation going on. They’re pretty great as-is but I’m never going to say no to a glaze and the chance to sprinkle something (anything!) on top of my doughnut.



chocolate and orange buckwheat doughnuts {gluten free}

Yield: 6 doughnuts

Although I've glazes these doughnuts with an orange icing, I quite like them plain too, especially when they're warm out of the oven. The dark sugar and ground almonds give them a real richness. I've made a non-orange version too and topped them with a passion fruit glaze. That was pretty dreamy too.


    For the doughnuts:
  • 70g buckwheat flour
  • 20g ground almonds
  • 30g cocoa powder
  • 90g dark brown muscavado sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 45ml milk
  • 45ml plain yoghurt
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 orange, zest
  • For the frosting:
  • 115g (1 cup) icing sugar
  • 1/2 orange, juce
  • Extra zest and cocoa nibs, for decorating


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ground almonds, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk together the milk, yoghurt, olive oil, egg and orange zest until smooth.
  2. Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold through until the flour has just disappeared; don't overmix! Set the batter aside for half an hour or so just so that the buckwheat flour absorbs as much liquid as it needs to; you should end up with a fairly air-filled batter once the baking powder has started working. Much the better.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F and grease a 6-hole doughnut pan with a little olive oil (or butter). Spoon the batter into the tin until filled just below the top and bake for 8 - 10 minutes until risen. Check to see if the doughnuts are cooked with a toothpick - it should come out clean. Allow the doughnuts to cool for a few minutes in the tin before transferring to a wire rack.
  4. When the dougnuts have cooled, make the glaze by whisking together the sugar and orange juice. I add the juice little by little until I get the consistency that I want (this glaze was pretty thick). Cover the doughnuts in the glaze and top with whatever takes your fancy!
83 Responses to "chocolate and orange buckwheat doughnuts {gluten free}"
  1. Kate says:

    I need a doughnut pan! Love these with their zesty little pops of orange. And so much healthier than the doughnuts I make on rare occasions (deep fried, button busting, crammed with jam). Here’s to doughnut pans and eating them more regularly! x

  2. I hear you girl – the minute we get a little sunshine, I’m ready for the beach! But alas, it’s still rainy and cold here in New York. Thankfully my donut pan is always in close reach ;) These look perfect!

  3. I feel ya on the whole wishing Spring away for Summer to arrive – must be the desperation for sunshine and not showers of rain! Might have to take you up on the suggestion that a baked doughnut pan is an investment :)

  4. Ooh, these sound fantastic! I have a donut pan but I always forget about it! Might be time to whip up a batch this week. This combination of flavors and textures sounds just amazing.

  5. Lindsey says:

    yes, i totally can relate to writing the same thing, especially(!) when spring arrives! the beginning of this season can be so exciting, but it also feels like a waiting game – waiting for buds, leaves, and life to surface from the earth. and yes to doughnuts being cheerful! they are that exactly! hope spring is just around the corner where you are, kathryn! xo

    • kathryn says:

      Thanks Lindsey. I love how you can almost see the earth coming to life in front of your eyes at this time of year!

  6. Beautiful! I love how often you use buckwheat. I feel like I don’t see that as much anywhere else. I have a donut pan AND a donut cookbook but I haven’t made any in like two years. Ah! Gotta get on that.

  7. Love this! I have a doughnut pan which I do not use nearly enough. They look delicious, chocolate and buckwheat works so well together…I baked with them both recently. Also chocolate and orange is one of my favourite flavour combos ????????

  8. These are just lovely, my dear! Chocolate and Orange on a doughnut seem like the perfect way to start the day!

  9. Haha I believe I feel the same way each Spring. Its a slow crawl to summer – but I guess we need to learn to enjoy being in the midst of it! I just love these donuts and just recently invested in a pan myself. So stoked to veganize these and give them a whirl. Hope you had a great Easter weekend, Kathryn! (But I mean, how could you not with three batches of these?!)

    • kathryn says:

      Thanks Jessie! I’m excited to see how you veganize them – it’s always fascinating to me given how rubbish I am when it comes to vegan baking.

  10. Erika says:

    I think we all thirst for summer around this time.. :) I have a doughnut pan that I’ve yet to use. I love the orange and chocolate flavors in these doughnuts.

  11. Dang, these look so good! I’ve been gluten free for a few years, but I haven’t tried buckwheat flour. As gorgeous as these doughnuts are, I just might have to try it. Thanks for sharing! :)

  12. Abby says:

    Ooh, I love these doughnuts, Kathryn! I totally agree… a doughnut pan is so worth the investment. I use mine all the time.
    Gorgeous photos, beautiful post. xoxo

  13. Ok. You’ve convinced me. I need a doughnut pan! And, specifically, these doughnuts in that doughnut pan. This combo sounds awesome. I am with you on being impatient this time of year – sometimes I feel I don’t enjoy/appreciate Spring as I should.

  14. Homemade baked donuts are the best, you know what’s up. I love the flavor combination you used for these donuts too! <3

  15. Emma says:

    In lure with the retro colour scheme on these :)

  16. Sherrie says:

    Buckwheat are the way baby! These look and sound divine Kathryn, xo.

  17. These are gorgeous doughnuts! Love the chocolate and orange combo, and the buckwheat.

  18. Katie says:

    You may just have convinced me to buy a doughnut pan, Kathryn! I’ve always felt that for them to be proper doughnuts they need to be deep fried, but I’m starting to think that’s a bit silly, and my husband is a real lover of doughnuts so if I can bake them and make them at home, why not? Thanks for the brilliant recipe!

    • kathryn says:

      They’re definitely different to fried doughnuts but equally good in their own way (plus I’m not one for frying, as I guess you aren’t either…)

  19. I have never thought about wishing for summer as a wishing my life away, but I will now! Totally makes sense. Living in the moment is something I aspire to.
    These donuts are a dream. All of my favorite flavors (buckwheat, chocolate and citrus) are all in here. What’s not to like?! I have a chocolate/citrus/buckwheat cake coming to my blog soon. In the meantime, I am going to make these donuts!

    • kathryn says:

      I’ve been trying to think of time as being more in between seasons than the seasons themselves if that makes any sense – so ‘spring/summer’ and ‘summer/autumn’ rather than ‘spring’, ‘summer’ and ‘autumn’. It seems a little less forward looking and more representative of a better way to live. And hurrah for buckwheat!

  20. Angela says:

    I really want a doughnut pan, but I have madeleine pans, financier pans etc, but I’m running out of cupboard space!

    These look like delicious doughnuts and you’re really tempting me to clutter my kitchen up even more!

  21. cynthia says:

    Oh my gosh how lovely are these doughnuts!! That flavor combination is sublime (and it’d be like an all-natural Halloween treat?! I guess I’m skipping summer and accelerating all the way to fall with that one.) Love these so much, Kathryn!

    • kathryn says:

      So true! I didn’t even think about it but maybe I should serve these at our wedding (which is on halloween)?!

  22. I am going to try and make these for my friend’s little person who can’t have gluten! She always seems to feel left out at birthday parties and stuff…sometimes it fun to have something different then cake! Thank you for sharing they look fun and Delicious!!

    • kathryn says:

      Absolutely! I hope you liked them if you got a chance to make them. I feel really passionately that so many gluten free recipes are so boring – there’s no reason why people should miss out on more fun treats!

  23. Kari says:

    I definitely need that pan in my life. So cool!

  24. Jodi says:

    I hope the weather has been as sunny in London for you as it has been here in France this past week! It’s just got me dreaming for those summer days! We ate dinner outside last night and it just felt so right, maybe a little early but who cares. Love these donuts, Kathryn – ok, you’ve convinced me, I think I’m just going to cave and buy a good donut pan now! Happy sunny weekending to you xo

    • kathryn says:

      We were in France a couple of weeks ago and we managed to have a few meals outside too – it was cold but so worth it. And hurrah for more donut pans in the world!

  25. I think I hit a wall every year, excited for the new season and impatient when it doesn’t come fast enough. That impatience seems as sure as the seasons themselves. And my wanting these doughnuts is a sure thing as well! I’m a sucker for the chocolate orange combo any time of year!

  26. Allison says:

    Yes, yes, yes! It’s been so terribly cold where I live in Canada… I was wearing my winter parka walking my dog yesterday. I’m desperate for some sunshine and summer! Bring it on. I’m with you.

    I recently bought a donut pan and think it’s just the coolest thing. I’m a big fan of the cake donut, which they’re ideal for. I LOVE the combination of icing sugar and orange juice for some reason––it’s one of those morish things :) These are absolutely gorgeous!

  27. I don’t have a donut pan at home and have never really wanted one, until lately. I see baked donut recipes everywhere and they all look so amazing, just like these! Buckwheat flour and almond flour is currently my favorite flours when it comes to gluten free baking so I’m pretty sure that these donuts are delicious. :)

  28. I can’t wait for summer to come, too! Spring is only just arriving here in Toronto but seriously… I am so ready for summer and patio weather! These donuts look amazing- I was about to head to a donut shop for some, only to realize that they were already closed. Serious donut craving now!

  29. Ooooh I’d so love a doughnut pan… doughnuts are all the rage and I’m missing out! Yet there are so many other gadgets higher on the list than a doughnut pan! These look so scrumptious. I love chocolate and orange together.

    • kathryn says:

      I know, it’s tough to know whether to invest in a pan or not but I’m so glad that I did. So many gadgets, so little space!

  30. I know exactly what you mean with the impatience that seems to arise at this time of the year. All those signs of spring: the light, spring produce, all that green! And I want more. Why wait? Bring it on, nature! Last night I felt like the luckiest girl on earth while eating pasta with ramp pesto and pan-fried, delicate green asparagus. I want more of these simple yet tasty meals. Preferably outside with a glass of rosé or white wine in good company.

    But let’s talk about these baked doughnuts for a while. I’m pretty scared of deep-frying things (don’t want to burn down my house or anything), so baked doughnuts feel like the perfect solution. They are not only less fussy to make (and more healthy) but damn delicious as well. I love the flavor combination in these babes! And the cacao nibs on top. Going to add this to my must-bake list!

    Happy spring week, Kathryn! xoxo

    • kathryn says:

      That kind of meal = perfect. That’s pretty much all I want in life at the moment. Baked doughnuts are the best too, I hope you like these if you get a chance to make them xo

  31. Sophia says:

    I usually get the same impatience this time of year but I think living in Rome has taught me to enjoy spring for what it is rather than wishing summer would come quicker (which in Rome involved week on week of almost unbearable heat and humidity). Also, right now is the perfect time to enjoy baked these doughnuts – before the hot temperatures just have me craving ice cold watermelon slices. Love the flavours in these – chocolate and orange is such a good combo!

    • kathryn says:

      Yeah, I can absolutely see why that kind of weather would make summer less appealing. Hopefully the weather will be a little more temperate where you are now!

  32. Joanne says:

    I’ve actually owned a doughnut pan for YEARS but have never used it. BAD ON ME. I feel like these chocolate whole grain beauties are the kick in the butt I needed!

    • kathryn says:

      Never?! You need to get on that Joanne! I can’t wait to see what beautiful doughnut creations you’ll come up with.

  33. The orange is such a good addition to these donuts; it adds just the right touch. :) Yummy!

  34. kristan says:

    You are so funny! I have totally done that before. I star writing a post and then I realize what I’m writing is so similar to things that I have written the year prior. Makes sense, right? Anyway, these doughnuts look INCREDIBLE, like I seriously wish I could taste one right now. I have yet to work with buckwheat flour, which is a type of flour I have been thinking about lately, so thanks for the inspiration on how I can use it. Also, I am pretty sure the addition of cocoa nibs makes this even healthier, right?? Hope your garden is doing well!


    • kathryn says:

      Thanks Kristan, having the story of the last couple of years documented on my blog has definitely make me realise how I go through different phases throughout the year and it’s always the same! I hope you get to play with buckwheat flour soon too – I’m sure you’ll love it!

  35. Elizabeth says:

    These are so pretty and festive; and, yes, a good way to keep us occupied as we wade through the well-worn blog post territory of waiting for produce. Seriously, that’s basically been the subject of everything I’ve written for the past four weeks. But you know, just as we like to think of warmth and cheer during the winter holidays, waiting for sun and warmth (and fresh produce) typifies spring.

    • kathryn says:

      Ha, isn’t that the truth! And you’re so right – I’m kinda coming round to enjoying the anticipation of this time of year. It feels so exciting and renewing.

  36. Yvonne says:

    I followed your recipe and the result was awesome!! I already have done two batches, and the third is on its way.
    Thank you!

  37. Holy moly! These are the best gluten-free doughnuts I’ve seen – and chocolate + orange? Sign me up for a dozen! Also – I totally feel you, but mostly because spring in the Bay really means it’s FINALLY cold outside and I’m much happier when it’s an even 65 degrees in the summer:)

  38. These look really pretty! I have a baked doughnut mould but not used it for ages, I should get it out again.

  39. Sarah B says:

    Is there any chance you have an easy US conversion for the recipe? My 8 year old is having a donut themed birthday party in a few weeks and I like to keep her gluten free. Thank you for this beautiful recipe. Amazing!!!

    • kathryn says:

      Hi, I’m so sorry for the delay in replying to your comment. In terms of a rough conversion, I would use:
      1/2 cup buckwheat flour
      1/4 cup ground almonds
      1/3 cup cocoa powder
      1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
      1 teaspoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      3 tablespoons milk
      3 tablespoons yoghurt
      1 tablespoon olive oil
      1 egg
      1 orange, zest
      I’m not a huge fan of US measures so I can’t guarantee that you’ll get the best results unless you use a scale. I’ve not tested the recipe with volume measurements.

  40. Alice says:

    Love this recipe! So delish :-) I’m keen to make baked vanilla donuts as well. Do you have any suggestions for tweaking your recipe to make vanilla donuts?

  41. Melanie says:

    I made these doughnuts this weekend, minus the orange, and I liked the flavor, but I had a couple problems with the recipe. I used Greek yogurt, which I figure probably has less moisture than regular yogurt, but I ended up having to add 150 mL extra milk to the doubled recipe to make the batter anywhere close to the right consistency. Once I did that, things went fine. Also, I cooled these completely on a rack and then put them on wax paper, and they got condensation on the bottom after a few hours. Weird. Lastly, can you tell me how you did your passionfruit glaze? Sounds heavenly. I put Alton Brown’s chocolate doughnut glaze on these. A chocolate addict’s dream.

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