Saturday, November 19, 2011

Cooking Light with Giada De Laurentiis: Glazed Italian Donuts

Doughnuts are delicious. I have tried to tell myself for years that I don't really care for donuts that much. Well, that's just a lie. Just the smell of fresh donuts in the morning is pure torture for someone trying hard to avoid such a wonderful treat. They are delicious, yet traditionally...they are not so great for us.
Donuts are one of those things that many of us wish were healthier in some way. It's kinda tough to make something "lean" out of flour, butter and sugar that is fried in oil and smothered in more sugar. My friend Pam and I took a stab at it with a little inspiration from Giada's Coffee-Glazed Italian Doughnuts and this is what we got. Try 'em out and let us know what you think!

Lemon Glazed Italian Donuts
Serves 6

  • 6 tablespoons "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter"
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup SPLENDA with Fiber
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup WHOLE WHEAT flour
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup Original Egg Beaters
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest (1 lemon)
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup Fat Free half-and-half
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the doughnuts: In a medium saucepan, combine the ICBINB, water, SPLENDA, and salt over medium heat. Bring to a rolling boil, stirring occasionally. Boil for 10 seconds. Remove the pan from the heat and add the flour. Using a wooded spoon, quickly stir the mixture until all the flour (whole wheat and all-purpose) is fully incorporated and forms a thick dough. Return the pan to the heat and stir continuously for 2 minutes. Scrape the mixture into a stand mixture fitted with a paddle attachment. With the machine running on medium speed, add the Egg Beaters and egg yolk, 1 at a time until fully incorporated. Beat the mixture for 4 to 5 minutes until thick and glossy. Add the lemon zest and beat until smooth. Refrigerate the dough for 15 minutes.

For the glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together the fat free half-&-half and powdered sugar until smooth. Whisk in lemon juice. If the glaze is too thick, stir in the water, 1/4 teaspoon at a time.

Prepare a mini-muffin pan by spraying with a non-fat cooking spray. Drop in doughnut dough into each muffin cup; filling about 2/3 of the way up. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until dough has puffed up and slightly golden.
Repeat until all of the dough has been used. When they have cooled enough to handle, dip the top halves in the glaze.

Using a hand grater, grate a tiny bit of lemon zest over serving plates. Place 3 to 4 donuts on each plate and garnish with fresh raspberries or lemon twist, if using. Serve immediately.


So, so, SO good! We loved them. To test out exactly how the "lean" version compared to the original, we made both. Now, Giada's version is fabulous! Naturally...she's a Food Network Star and fried donuts are delish. But minus a ton of fat and sugar, our version stood up really well next to the original! I liked how the baking method and use of lemon gave each of our doughnuts such a light and crisp taste. And these are two words not often used to describe the taste of a doughnut. They came out great and gave us proof that doughnuts can be guilt-free!

Here are how they turned out nutritionally speaking...

NUTRITION FACTS (per serving of 4 mini donuts):

4 Mini Glazed Krispy Creme Donuts: 360 calories / 25g fat / 40g carbohydrate / 0g protein / 0g fiber

4 Cookin' Lean Mini Donuts: 254 calories / 9.2g fat / 39.4g carbs / 6.2g protein / 3.5g fiber

SAVES: 106 calories & 15.8g fat 
ADDS: 6.2g protein & 3.5g fiber

Normally I like to figure out the exact nutritional information using the exact original recipe, but it's really tough to figure the facts for fried dishes. For example, Giada just calls for vegetable oil for frying; enough to fill a pan 1/3 of the way full. How much is that? Not all goes into the food? See the issue here. So instead of messing with all of that, I simply found the nutritional facts for an average mini glazed donut from I used the facts from Krispy Kreme to do the comparison this time. As you can see, the baked-made at home version wins again! Next time I make these, I am going to try out this new butter substitute I found from Sunsweet called Lighter Bake. Ever try it? I'm gonna give it a whirl and let you know how it works.

Have a beautiful Saturday! So far I have one Thanksgiving dish makeover request for Sweet Potato Casserole. Any more? Get 'em in quick! Turkey Day is almost here!

1 comment:

  1. As I wait for Santa to bring me my donut pan, I think I need to try these out! Love how you have healthified them!



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