These cream-filled doughnuts are what coffee break dreams are made of. They are soft pillows with a super easy cream filling. The yeast doughnuts are deep-fried to perfection and then the filling is piped inside for a delightful treat.
For a bit of a shortcut, use instant vanilla pudding. Feel free to fill them with homemade vanilla pudding or homemade pastry cream. Rich chocolate pudding or thick jam would be excellent in the doughnuts as well. Or fill half with one filling and half with another for some variety.
- For the Doughnuts:
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 2 packages active dry yeast
- 2 large eggs (beaten)
- 6 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour (approximately)
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- Optional: confectioners' sugar (for topping)
- For the Filling:
- 4 cups cold milk
- 2 packages instant pudding (3.4 ounces each)
Gather the ingredients.
Scald 1 1/2 cups milk in a medium saucepan. Stir in the granulated sugar, salt, and butter. Remove from heat and cool to lukewarm.
Measure the warm water into a large mixing bowl; sprinkle the yeast over the water, and then stir the mixture gently until the yeast has dissolved.
Add the eggs and half of the flour and beat until smooth.
Stir in the lemon zest and remaining flour to make a soft dough; mix well.
Turn the dough out onto the floured surface and knead for about 8 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
Place in a buttered bowl, turning to grease all sides. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place, free from drafts, for about 45 minutes, until doubled in bulk.
Punch the dough down and turn out onto the lightly floured surface. Divide it in half.
Roll out half into a large round about 1/2 inch thick.
Cut with a floured doughnut cutter with the center section removed so that it's a whole circle (or use a biscuit cutter).
Place the doughnuts on a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining half of the dough. Cover with a lightweight kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a deep, heavy, large pan until 365 F. Once the dough has risen, fry the doughnuts, several at a time, until golden brown, turning once to brown both sides.
Drain on paper towels and repeat with the remaining dough. Cool the doughnuts thoroughly before filling.
While the doughnuts are cooling, pour the cold milk into a deep bowl. Add the pudding mix and beat until well blended and thick, about 1 minute. Refrigerate for at least 5 to 10 minutes.
Spoon the pudding into a pastry tube with wide nozzle and pipe it into the cooled doughnuts.
Sift confectioners' sugar over the filled doughnuts. Keep them refrigerated until serving time and store leftovers in the refrigerator.
- Lukewarm should feel slightly warm on your wrist, or about 100 F.
- Pick your choice of filling from the vanilla pudding that's in this recipe to jams, chocolate pudding or whatever you'd like for a filling.