35-Minute Pumpkin Spice Donuts with Cacao Glaze (gluten free + vegan)

Updated: May 2, 2019

Ooohh baby. It's that time of year again. Pumpkin Spice Lattes, Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin Muffins, Pumpkin Pie, and last but not least...

*PUMPKIN SPICE DONUTS WITH CACAO GLAZE* (and freeze dried apple crisps on top because I'm #extraAF). Due to the conglomeration of fall ingredients in this recipe, like cinnamon, cardamom, maple, pumpkin and apple, I was torn on what to name the recipe. Fall Donuts? Too boring, not descriptive enough. Pumpkin Spice Apple Crisp Cacao Donuts? A freaking mouthful (pun intended).

So I settled with the less exciting, 90% accurate description of "35-Minute Pumpkin Spice Donuts with Cacao Glaze." Now, you might be wondering where the remaining 10% accuracy has gone? It's not the "35-Minute" part, I can assure you that. That would just be plain evil. I honestly just didn't feel like I could give the name a 100% accuracy rating because it doesn't include the cute and ~innovative~ freeze dried apple crisp topping, which honestly makes the donuts in my opinion. It gives a nice little tangy flavor in every bite, and because I'm a sucker for an insanely healthy baked good, I of course opted for the route of using monk fruit as the only sweetener. I should warn you, this route does make the donuts a little less flavorless and definitely less sweet, but for someone who doesn't consume much sugar in the first place, they are absolutely positivilutely perfect :)

"I'm not bias. You're bias. What's bias?"

Ok enough of my crazy. To.....the.....recipe...!!

PREP TIME: 10 minutes COOK TIME: 25 minutes TOTAL DONUTS: 24

** = See for note below the recipe


  • 4 flax eggs (1 tbsp flaxseed meal + 2.5 tbs water + 5 minutes of sitting = 1 flax egg)

  • 1/4 cup ripe banana (approx. 1 medium banana, mashed)

  • 1/2 cup Lakanto's Maple Monk Fruit Syrup or maple syrup**

  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin purée (equivalent to 15oz can)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil, avocado oil or melted coconut oil**

  • 3/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 3 tsp pumpkin pie spice

  • 1/2 cup water + 1/2 cup unsweetened plant-based milk**

  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free rolled oats

  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour

  • 2 1/3 cup Bob's Red Mill GF Baking Flour or other gluten-free flour blend

  • 1/2 cup Lily's Dark Chocolate Chips (or other dairy free dark chocolate chips, I prefer Lily's because they are sweetened with stevia instead of sugar)


  • 4 tbsp coconut oil (melted)

  • 2 tbsp Lakanto's Maple Monk Fruit Syrup or maple syrup

  • 5 1/2 tbsp unsweetened cacao powder (sifted if clumpy)

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

  • Dried apple crisps (for garnishing, I bought mine from Trader Joes)


  • If using monk fruit syrup, the donuts won't be very sweet. I recommend using 1/4 cup monk fruit and 1/4 cup maple syrup.

  • Olive oil tends to have a very low smoke point and can oxidize (cause free radicals and become carcinogenic) if heated past 325 degrees. I recommend using avocado oil or coconut oil, which have higher smoke points.

  • I used pea milk, but almond or hemp milk will be fine as well. Beware that coconut might add slight coconut flavor.

  • Bake time may vary depending on your donut pan. The donut pans I use are Wilton's Non-stick 6-Cavity Donut Pans.


1. Prepare the flax eggs by mixing 4 tbsp flaxseed meal with 1/2 cup of water. Set aside for 6-8 minutes.

2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly oil the donut pans with Earth Balance vegan butter or coconut oil. Dust with gluten-free flour, shake off excess and set aside.

3. Mash the banana in a large mixing bowl if you haven't mashed it already. Add the pumpkin, maple syrup or monk fruit syrup, sea salt, baking powder, baking soda, oil, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice and beat with a whisk or low speed mixer until combined. Add in the flax eggs and beat or mix at low speed until combined.

4. Add the oats, almond flour and gluten free flour blend and stir with a wooden spoon or whisk. The batter should be semi-thick but pourable. If too thick, add more plant based milk. If too thin, add more almond flour.

5. Mix in the chocolate chips.

6. Scoop the dough into the donut pan, making sure the center of the donut (where the hole will be) is uncovered. Place in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.

7. While the donuts bake, prepare the glaze. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave for 15 seconds in a small glass bowl. Add in the cacao powder, sea salt, vanilla extract, and syrup. Whisk into a glaze. It should be slightly thick, almost like a thick syrup. If too thick, add more oil. If too thin, add more cacao.

8. When the donuts are done baking, let them sit in the pan for 1-2 minutes. Then flip the pan over and so the donuts pop out, and let them sit on a cooling rack for 5 minutes. Once cooled, dip the smooth side of the donut (the side that was on the bottom of the pan — this will now be the top of your donut) in the chocolate glaze. Top with crushed apple crisps.

Viola! I hope you enjoy these yummy treats as much as my family did. They last about 2-3 days in the fridge and 1-2 days on the counter in an air tight container, although they only lasted a few hours in my household due to the scavenger boys (lol).

Don't forget to tag me if you make these! And of course, send in requests for other traditional fall recipes you want to see turned IsaTales style (plant-based, refined sugar free, predominantly paleo)

xx Isa

#plantbased #fallrecipes #veganpumpkindonuts #vegandonuts #veganfallrecipes #veganbaking #plantbaseddonuts #healthyfallrecipes #healthybaking #falldonuts #pumpkinspicerecipes #veganthanksgivingrecipes


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