These protein donuts are fluffy and cakey, you won’t believe that they are actually healthy! Made with just 6 ingredients, they pack in over 12 grams of protein and have less than 100 calories each!
I love it when my desserts have protein secretly in them, and some of my favorite recipes to make are brownies, cookies, and these protein donuts.
Recently, I’ve been working out late at night and am not a fan of whipping out the blender to make a protein shake after. Instead, I’ve been finding alternative ways to get my protein in. I was recently inspired by Dunkin Donuts’ new protein muffin, which boasts a whopping 16 grams of protein. While I didn’t go the muffin route, it did inspire me to make donuts!
Why this protein donut recipe will become a post-workout staple-
- 6 ingredients. I dare you to name an easier recipe that this! You also get an option for the chocolate or vanilla glaze, but honestly, these taste perfect on their own.
- No eggs, yeast, or dairy. None of the traditional donut ingredients are needed but they are just as fluffy and cakey as the rest of them.
- 15 minutes. From start to finish, you’ll need just 15 minutes. The hard part is waiting for them to cool down before you glaze them.
- Low calorie. These donuts clock in at under 100 calories each- Have three for breakfast if you want to be fancy!
What I love about these protein donuts is that they actually taste like real deal donuts. The secret to the perfect recipe is to use either brown rice or casein protein powder- These two blends have fantastic baking capabilities which mimic flour!
What are protein donuts made of?
For the donuts
- Protein powder– Vanilla, chocolate, or unflavored protein powder. Opt for a brown rice protein powder or casein protein powder, as these two blends have the best baking qualities.
- Self rising flour– Already has the leavening agents mixed into it. Don’t have any on hand? Easily make your own.
- Cocoa powder– Unsweetened and sifted, to ensure there are no clumps throughout.
- Granulated sweetener of choice– I used a brown sugar substitute, but monk fruit sweetener, coconut sugar, or even white sugar can be used.
- Oil– Any neutral-flavored oil. I used canola oil.
- Milk of choice– I used unsweetened almond milk, but coconut or soy are both also great.
For the glaze
- Confectioners sugar substitute– Homemade keto powdered sugar has no calories or carbs but the exact taste and texture of real powdered sugar.
- Cocoa powder– Like the donuts, be sure to sift it very well to ensure there are no clumps throughout.
- Milk of choice– To thin the glaze out.
How do you make protein donuts?
Start by mixing together your dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Next, add in the oil and milk and whisk together, until a smooth batter remains. If the batter is too thick, add a little extra milk.
Now, transfer the donut batter into a piping bag. Pipe out the batter into a lightly greased 12-count donut pan. Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until they bounce back slightly. Let the donuts cool in the pan for 10 minutes, before carefully transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, glaze the donuts.
To make the glaze, combine the confectioner’s sugar substitute with cocoa powder. Slowly add milk until it becomes thick and glossy. Moving quickly, dip each donut in the glaze and place them on a wire rack for it to firm up. Add some sprinkles, if desired.
How many calories does a protein donut have?
These homemade protein donuts have 100 calories per donut and pack in over 12 grams of protein in each one. Compare that to store-bought ones which can pack in over 300 calories each!
Tips to make the best protein powder donuts
- Do not overbake the donuts, as they continue to cook as they are cooling down.
- For a vanilla frosting (as pictured), omit the cocoa powder and add 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
- If you don’t have a donut pan, you can easily make these as muffins.
Storing and freezing tips
- To store: Donuts should be stored in the refrigerator, covered. They will keep well for up to 1 week.
- To freeze: Place donuts in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months.
More recipes using protein powder to try
Frequently Asked Questions
The protein powder you use is very important. I recommend brown rice or casein protein powder, as they are generally good blends to bake with. Whey protein can be very tricky and dry out the donuts. To test this out, make a protein brownie and see how it turns out. If it works out well, your protein powder will be perfect for this recipe!
This recipe has only been tested with self-rising flour. If you’d like donuts with almond or coconut flour, try keto donuts.
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Protein Donuts (Under 100 Calories!)
- 1/4 cup protein powder I used chocolate plant based
- 1 1/4 cups self-rising flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup granulated sweetener of choice
- 6 tablespoon sunflower oil any neutral flavored oil
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons milk of choice I used unsweetened almond milk * See notes
For the glaze
- 3 cups powdered sugar substitute
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup milk of choice
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Grease a 12-count donut pan with cooking spray and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add your dry ingredients and mix well. Then, add your wet ingredients, and mix until a thick batter remains. If it is too thick, add extra milk.
- Transfer your batter into a ziplock bag. Cut one corner of it and distribute the batter evenly amongst the donut holes. Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
- Let the donuts cool in the pan for 10 minutes, before carefully transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, glaze them.
- To make the glaze, combine the powdered sugar substitute with cocoa powder. Slowly add the milk until thick and glossy. Dip each donut in the glaze then place them on a wire rack for the glaze to firm up.
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Do you have a basic vanilla protein donut recipe? Thanks! Looks awesome!
Hi Christina! I do in my first cookbook 🙂
Hi!!! so excited to try this recipe…..just curious, why do they need to be stored in the refrigerator?
They can spoil quickly when left at room temperature.
Could I sub almond or coconut flour in this, as my son needs to eat keto?
Thank you I love your recipes!
Not that I’ve tried, but almond would be the best of the two.
Can I sub half the flour with Almond flour to cut carbs even more? I do dirty keto but I want more of a cake donut!
I haven’t tried 🙂
Is there an alternative to using oil please?
Do you use whey protein or a blended whey/casein?
You can use a blended whey and casein as whey on its own is not the best.
I just wanted 2 come on here to say I LOVEEEEEE ALLLLL your recipes. I feel I’m making the best of yummiest, healthy ones, I’m proud to give my family without all the “junk”! Thank you for all these recipes you create!!!!
These were phenomenal! They tasted like excellent chocolate cake. Me and the kids scarfed them down.
Thank you, Amy!
So I subbed the coco powder with sugar free chocolate pudding a little less than asked for in coco powder (because that’s all I had) and cut back the sugar 1/4 cup and oil by 1 tb some also. It was very good and very moist think I will do that on purpose again
Apologies if I missed this in the recipe summary, but might these be made in the air fryer? Thank you!
I haven’t tried but I don’t see why not
Can you use paleo flour or gluten free self rising flour? How would you make them keto friendly?
Only tried these as written.
These are absolutely amazing. Thank you for sharing!
Color me a fan! Made these with Garden of Life plant protein powder for my grandkids and watched the picky eater consume an entire donut. Used .5 C PureCane zero calorie sugar sub and added stevia sweetened chocolate chips instead of icing them. Tender crumb with a great flavor! Just enjoyed one with a cup of coffee.
Do you have a vanilla protein donut recipe ??
Easy to make, good taste.
Pretty awesome recipe! I made a chocolate crumb topping instead of icing .