If you love freshly baked or fried donuts but hate preparing the dough, you might be tempted to make a big batch and freeze some of the dough/batter.
But can you really freeze donut dough/batter without compromising the flavor and texture of the donuts?
The answer is YES you can freeze both the doughs of cake donuts and yeast donuts and they will still be delicious when baked or fried.
There are many types and variations of donuts but the two most popular ones are cake donuts and yeast donuts.
1- Cake Donuts
Cake donuts are the old-fashioned type donuts, they differ structurally from yeast donuts as they use cake flour and baking powder or baking soda as a leavening agent.
Cake Donuts are made from a thick batter that requires no mixer and the donuts only need to rest for a short while before they can be fried or baked.
How to Freeze Cake Donuts Dough
- Prepare the batter as normal.
- Pipe rings onto parchment paper squares, arranged in a single layer, on a baking sheet.
- Freeze the rings until solid and then wrap each frozen doughnut in a double layer of plastic wrap.
- You can place a bunch of doughnuts in a ziplock bag with the date written on the bag or keep them frozen individually.
- The dough should be good for 1 month.
- Let frozen doughnuts come to room temperature before frying or baking.
Cake donuts commonly use baking powder as a leavening agent. And Baking Powder is made from baking soda, cream of tartar, and cornstarch, starts it’s rising action when combined with moisture such as milk or water.
Freezing cake donut’s dough preserves the leavening action of the baking powder better than refrigerating. Citation.
You can only refrigerate cake donuts for a few hours if necessary. Long periods of time in the refrigerator will cause the donuts to not rise quite as high as normal because the bubbles produced by the first reaction created by adding liquid will have already disappeared.
Whilst freezing the dough defers the leavening process completely until the dough thaws and is at room temperature.
2- Yeast Donuts
Yeast doughnuts are made from a moist dough that also needs to be rollable. It is made from flour with higher protein content and yeast as the rising agent.
This type of dough must be kneaded to develop the gluten in it. Yeast Donut’s dough also takes time to be proofed and may need to be proofed twice. The texture of yeast donuts tends to be lighter and airier.
How to Freeze Yeast Donuts Dough
- Prepare the yeast dough as normal.
- Cut it into doughnut rings, and let it proof on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Freeze the doughnuts, in a single layer for at least 3 hours, until solid.
- Wrap each doughnut in a double layer of plastic wrap.
- Place lots of them in a ziplock bag, writing the date on the bag or keep them frozen individually.
- The dough will be good to use for 1-2 months.
- Defrost frozen doughnuts rings at room temperature for one hour before frying or baking.
You can also freeze the entire dough and then just thaw the dough out at room temperature when you are ready or you can freeze it in smaller balls too and then you can thaw it out when needed.
Dough’s that have yeast as a key leavening agent dough like yeast donuts are best for freezing. The yeast in the donut lies dormant while frozen, just waiting for warmth to bring it back to life once thawed. Citation.
- As a general rule, you should avoid freezing any doughs and batter based on egg whites.
- Doughs that are high in fat such as cookie dough and any yeast-based dough are best for freezing.