Candy Cane Donuts

Can you believe Christmas is less than two weeks away?! We've had such a fun season so far. We have done breakfast with Santa (no pics to share because she couldn't get far enough from him and we didn't even actually go see him!), gingerbread house making, Nutcracker cupcake baking, we've seen The Nutcracker (our first trip to the ballet!), gone to Zoo Lights, we're enjoying her first advent calendar, and of course, the season's highlight is tomorrow-- Olivia's first ballet recital. Anyone out there think I'll make it through with dry eyes?! We are beside ourselves with excitement.

We've got a couple other fun things planned as we get closer to Christmas, but I'm also starting to think about Christmas morning itself. We've got our jammies ready and I can hardly wait to see her sweet little face when she sees some of the goodies waiting for her by the tree. Christmas with a three year old is just so fun and I have been thinking about a morning treat I can make that's easy and festive that will add to the magic.

You may remember that donuts are one of the only treats Olivia enjoys. I made these darling minis for Valentine's Day earlier this year and thought I'd try them with a Christmas spin. They are so delicious and really easy to make. They're perfect for the holidays since they don't require a ton of time.

For these festive treats you'll need:

For the Donuts:

1 box of cake mix. I picked vanilla

1/2 c. vegetable oil

1 c. water

3 eggs

I used a mini donut pan, but of course a regular sized one would work just fine.

For the Glaze: **I used half of the batter for donuts and half for cupcakes (see below!) If you're doing the full box for donuts, I would double this recipe for the glaze.**

2 c. granulated sugar 

2 tbsp soy milk

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract 

Candy Canes (You can buy whole candy canes and break up your own, or you can buy a pre-made container of candy cane topping)

To make these cuties:

1. Pre-heat oven to 350.

2. Make cake according to the box. Mix water, vegetable oil, eggs and cake mix in a large bowl. Grease the donut pan and the pour mixture into it. I used one of these which made it really easy to get the batter in the teeny donut holes. Bake for 12 minutes until golden brown. Remove from pan and let cool.  (Continue filling and baking each tray until your batter is gone.)

3. In a separate bowl, combine the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla extract. Mix thoroughly. 

4. Once the donuts have completely cooled, dip them into the bowl of glaze. Be sure they are nice and cool to ensure your glaze doesn't get warm and runny. Set aside the glazed donut and add your candy cane topping. Eat one, then repeat. I added toppings after dipping 3-4 donuts. Otherwise they will harden and the candy cane won't stay well. And embrace the imperfections- they are more charming that way!

I used about half of the batter to make cupcakes which are a really fun option too if you don't want to deal with making your own icing. You can just buy frosting and add your crushed candy canes.

I am so happy with how they turned out. Super easy, delicious, and adorable! I think for Christmas I'll plan to make the donuts the night before and then just do the glaze and topping in the morning so I have more time for snuggles by the tree.