Baked Fig-Vanilla Bean Doughnuts


This month’s letter is V… for vanilla! These baked, pillowy doughnuts are moist, tender and just the right amount of sweet.


Most importantly, the yeasted, soft dough and icing are laced with essence of vanilla beans and pure vanilla extract. It’s a double vanilla punch. The sugary, deep flavors of vanilla – in any form – are unparalleled.


Of course, when vanilla is involved, my favorite fruit, the fig, must be incorporated. One-plus cup of rich, organic Turkish figs, to be exact.


Yes, these doughnuts may lack holes (due to an absence of essential kitchen gadgets), but we didn’t miss the annulus aspect one bit: more doughnut surface area to devour!


Even better: there’s a fabulous crew of passionate, talented foodies, located around the country and the globe, joining me in the “V is for Vanilla Bean” challenge.


 Each of them has a unique, scrumptious recipe to share. Check out their recipes and their engaging blogs, below.

Vanilla beans

NYC’s Amanda’s recipe at What’s Cooking: Fine Dining My Way

San Francisco’s Ngan’s recipe at Ngan Made It

Barcelona’s Sofia’s recipe at Papaya Pieces

Minneapolis’ Liz’s recipe at Food for Fun

Vanilla beans in sugar to make vanilla sugar

Who is ready to make some doughnuts? Curls and Carrots is proud to share a healthful yet truly indulgent treat. I love to enjoy these with hot coffee or tea in the morning. This morning, I had my best “pregnant run” ever: just after munching one of the babies with my cup of joe. Coincidence? I think not.

Here’s the recipe in photos and those convenient words, too:



Baked Fig-Vanilla Bean Doughnuts

Doughnut Ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, warmed to 110•F
1 egg, beaten
3 Tbsp. butter or Earth Balance, melted
3 cups unbleached bread flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. fine salt
2 1/4 tsp. breach machine yeast
the seeds of one vanilla bean
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup dried, organic Turkish figs, chopped

Icing Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
the seeds of one vanilla bean
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. butter or Earth Balance, melted
1-4 Tbsp. unsweetened vanilla almond milk


  • Add the almond milk, then yeast, then sugar to a bread machine. Close lid and allow to stand for fifteen minutes, until yeast is frothy.
  • Add the remaining doughnut ingredients to the bread machine according to manufacturer’s instructions. Run the dough cycle.
  • Unplug the machine and allow to sit on the counter, undisturbed, for a couple of hours.
  • Place the dough in a very large, oiled bowl, cover, and allow to proof in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Roll the dough on a floured surface to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut with a floured cookie cutter or doughnut cutter.
  • If you use a doughnut cutter, reserve inner trimmings for doughnut holes.
  • Re-roll trimmings, using all of the dough to make additional doughnuts.
  • Place doughnuts on two cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, leaving plenty of room between each doughnut.
  • Spray the tops of the doughnuts lightly with water and cover with towels.
  • Allow to rise in a warm place for at least at an hour, until doubled in size.
  • Meanwhile, mix the confectioner’s sugar, vanilla bean, vanilla extract, melted butter and enough almond milk to create a drizzling consistency. Cover until ready to use.
  • Preheat oven to 350•F. Bake doughnuts for ten to fifteen minutes, checking at eight minutes, until golden on the bottoms and cooked through. Do not overbake doughnuts.
  • They will continue cooking after removed from the oven.
  • Enjoy warm, drizzled with the vanilla glaze.

©Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, (2013-2014), unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog’s author, Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, and/or owner is strictly and completely prohibited.



46 thoughts on “Baked Fig-Vanilla Bean Doughnuts

  1. This made me laugh: “This morning, I had my best “pregnant run” ever: just after munching one of the babies with my cup of joe. Coincidence? I think not.”
    I read the title to my husband, and he asked if you could mail him some? 🙂 He used to be able to eat a dozen donuts by himself! They look delicious!

    1. Thank you, Merril. I think I had better keep you guys in the doughnut loop, then. You’re getting some of the next batch… I would not want to deprive anyone who can eat a dozen doughnuts. That is serious skill. 🙂

  2. Looks like you and the kids had a great time! They look and sound delicious. I just love vanilla! Warm yeast donuts with vanilla, doesn’t get much better. I can almost smell the yeast and vanilla coming from the oven, must have been torture to wait to eat them!

  3. Wow, Shanna. What an amazing combo. Fig and vanilla. Wow. Love your photo montage with the pop up commentary. I like that these are baked. Way to go still running while pregnant. You are my inspiration for realz.

  4. Now those are some pictures!!! These look fantastic and I love how you combined your fave flavors. Did you come up with the recipe yourself? Appreciate the shout-out 😀 Vanilla bean was a fun ingredient.

  5. All success on your challenge. You have certainly met it as far as I’m concerned. The figs are an inspiration, and the close up of the crumb is an absolutely spectacular image.

  6. I love your photos with your happy little ones and so many doughnuts! You know how I love doughnuts, Shanna, I just cannot do without them in my life. Baked doughnuts rather than fried ones are perfect for me. I bet this recipe so flavorful, and judging by that luminous cross section of the doughnut, it is moist and fluffy too! Great challenge post – I saw you packed three vanilla ingredients in. Love it!

  7. Shanna, a doughnut with no hole is perfectly fine with me! The taste is what matters! I love that you’ve added figs to this, they must be heavenly. Also, you’ve made an optical illusion of a doughnut hole anyway 😉 The most amazing thing is that I bet you this is the most “healthiest” doughnut ever created (apart from being so delicious). As one of my Spanish blogging buddies was saying the other day, if it has fruit, then it’s healthy. See, figs in a doughnut means that this is indeed healthy so we can eat as much as we want. Ngan and I were saying that we should really all be in the same room eating my cookie cake and your doughnuts and Liz’s ice cream with her tea. (And with your adorable children too).

    1. Yes, I thought: keep the hole and add some figs where the hole should be for extra figgy flavor. 🙂 Yes, these are low in sugar and fat and also baked… just enough of the “good stuff” to taste amazing. Fruit never hurts, you are right. Thanks for the lovely, sweet words, Sofia. 🙂 We will have to set up that sweet-treat-date… xx Shanna

      1. Yes, low in sugar and fat and baked! Your children are so lucky to have you baking these delicious good foods for them. Yes, we would have to set a seer-treat-date 🙂 xx

  8. Double vanilla sounds great. And I love the combination of fig and vanilla. I spent more time looking at the kids, enjoying the doughnuts, so they must taste great. I never did ‘pregnant runs’ ever but I did lots of ‘pregnant walks’ Have a lovely day!

  9. Shanna these look scrumptious! I love the icing, dripping down the sides of the doughnuts. I could wish I had one of these right now.

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