Air Fryer Donut Holes are the perfect bite-sized treat. They’re fluffy and tender, and the air fryer allows you to cook them without the need for a big pot of oil. Toss them in a cinnamon and sugar coating for an extra bit of indulgence.

Photo of a hand dipping an Air Fryer Donut Hole into a small white bowl filled with a cinnamon-sugar topping.

AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES RECIPE

These Air Fryer Donut Holes are much simpler than you may expect and taste just even better, than store-bought doughnuts. This recipe can also be used to make traditional donuts, but there is something so delicious about a bite-sized dessert.

The air fryer creates a tender crumb on the inside, and a crisp outer layer. Watch your friends and family gobble this sweet treat up. We think it would be the perfect addition to a fun party or on a platter at a brunch.

Check out a few of our other favorite air fryer baked goods recipes, like Air Fryer Monkey Bread, Air Fryer Churros, and Air Fryer Peanut Butter Blossom Cookies.

Top view photo of all the ingredients to make air fryer donut holes in separate bowls.

INGREDIENTS FOR AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES

Milk – Milk adds moisture and richness to the donuts. I’m using whole milk but 2% dairy or unsweetened almond or soy milk would also work. Make sure to warm the milk so the yeast activates– I recommend 30-45 seconds in the microwave.

Granulated Sugar – Granulated sugar acts as food for the yeast so we end up with really light and fluffy donuts.

Yeast – Yeast helps the donuts rise and gives us the classic yeasted donut flavor.

Butter – Butter adds richness to the donuts. If you use salted butter, you won’t need to add kosher salt.

Egg – The egg enriches the dough and gives it structure. It also adds a bit more moisture to hold the dough together.

Vanilla – Vanilla adds a subtle sweetness to the donuts.

Flour – Flour gives the donuts structure. I recommend measuring using the spoon and level method as adding too much flour can result in dry donuts.

Salt – Salt balances out the sweetness in the donuts. Make sure to use kosher salt, not table salt.

If you have any questions about Air Fryer Donut Holes, please leave a comment below and I will get back to you ASAP!

Collage of photos showing the steps to make Air Fryer Donut Holes.

HOW TO MAKE AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES

  1. Add the warm milk, granulated sugar, and yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk to combine. Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes, or until the yeast is foamy and fragrant.
  2. Next add the melted butter, egg, and vanilla. Whisk again to combine.
  3. Attach the dough hook to the stand mixer and set the speed to low. Slowly add the flour and salt. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. Continue mixing until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and begins to form a ball. If the dough is too wet (sticking to the sides of the bowl) add more flour one tablespoon at a time until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
  5. Knead the dough until the dough is smooth and barely sticks to your hands. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and then place it in a warm spot to rise until doubled in size. 
  6. Punch the dough down slightly and then transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough until it is ½” thick. Cut out large round circles and then use a smaller round cookie cutter to cut out the center of the donuts. This dough is best if not re-rolled so try to cut as many donuts as possible the first time.
  7. Place the donuts and donut holes on a parchment-lined baking sheet and allow them to rise until they have increased in size by about 50%. In the meantime, preheat your air fryer as directed in recipe.
  8. Lightly grease your air fryer with nonstick baking spray and add a few donuts (or donut holes) to the basket. Make sure not to overcrowd the air fryer! Spray the tops of the donuts with nonstick baking spray. Cook the donuts (or donut holes) as directed, or until they are light brown and a toothpick inserted into the donut comes out clean. Continue cooking the donuts in batches. Garnish the donuts with your favorite glaze and enjoy!

WHAT TO SERVE WITH AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES

These Air Fryer Donut Holes are the perfect little bite-sized treat. Serve them at a party alongside White Chocolate Chex Mix and Edible Brownie Batter for a fun movie and game night.

Top view photo of donut holes on a floured baking sheet.

WHAT CAN I TOP MY AIR FRYER DONUTS WITH?

Cinnamon-Sugar Coating – For a cinnamon sugar coating, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and set it aside to cool slightly. In another bowl, stir together ½ cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon. Dip the donuts in melted butter and then in the cinnamon sugar. 

Traditional Glaze – For a traditional glazed coating, mix together 2 cups of powdered sugar with 1/4 of your milk of choice. Dip the donut holes in the glaze until completely covered and set on a rack until the glaze hardens.

Powdered Sugar – For a powdered sugar coating, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and set it aside to cool slightly. Fill another bowl with powdered sugar. Dip the donuts in melted butter and then in the powdered sugar.

CAN YOU SAVE LEFTOVER AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES?

Air Fryer Donut Holes are best if eaten fresh, but you can save them in an airtight container at room temperature for 1-2 days.

CAN YOU MAKE AIR FRYER DONUT HOLES WITHOUT A STAND MIXER?

If you don’t have a stand mixer, don’t worry– this recipe can be easily made by hand. Follow the instructions as written in Steps 1 and 2 and then use a wooden spoon or dough whisk to incorporate the dry ingredients. Knead by hand for 5-7 minutes and continue with the recipe as written.

Top view photo of an air fryer basket filled with golden brown donut holes.

MORE DELICIOUS AIR FRYER RECIPES

I found this recipe for Maple Syrup-Soaked Donut Holes that I have to try!

Pinterest collage of photos of Air Fryer Donut Holes

Have you made this recipe? Please leave a comment AND rating below! It helps other readers!

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Photo of a hand dipping an Air Fryer Donut Hole into a small white bowl filled with a cinnamon-sugar topping.
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Air Fryer Donut Holes

Air Fryer Donut Holes are the perfect bite-sized treat. They're fluffy and tender, and the air fryer allows you to cook them without the need for a big pot of oil. Toss them in a cinnamon and sugar coating for an extra bit of indulgence.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Rise Time1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 12 donut holes
Calories: 120kcal
Ken

Equipment

Ingredients

  • ½ cup whole milk warmed to 100-110 F
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter melted
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt

Instructions

  • Add the warm milk, granulated sugar, and yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk to combine. Allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes, or until the yeast is foamy and fragrant.
    Top view photo of a glass stand mixer bowl with milk, sugar, and yeast in the bowl.
  • Next add the melted butter, egg, and vanilla. Whisk again to combine.
    Top view photo of the dough for air fryer donut holes, in a glass mixing bowl, and ready to shape for its rise.
  • Attach the dough hook to the stand mixer and set the speed to low (Kitchenaid #2). Slowly add the flour and salt. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
    Top view photo of the dough for air fryer donut holes, in a glass bowl, and fully risen.
  • Continue mixing until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and begins to form a ball. If the dough is too wet (sticking to the sides of the bowl) add more flour one tablespoon at a time until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
    Top view photo of air fryer donut holes dough, in a donut shape, on a floured baking sheet.
  • Knead the dough (on low speed for 5 minutes if using a stand mixer) until the dough is smooth and just barely sticks to your hands. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and then place it in a warm spot to rise until doubled in size– about 1 hour. 
    Top view photo of donut holes on a floured baking sheet.
  • Punch the dough down slightly and then transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough until it is ½” thick. Cut out large round circles (3”) and then use a smaller (1”) round cookie cutter to cut out the center of the donuts. This dough is best if not re-rolled so try to cut as many donuts as possible the first time.
    Top view photo of an air fryer basket filled with uncooked donut holes.
  • Place the donuts and donut holes on a parchment lined baking sheet and allow them to rise for an additional 30 minutes, or until they have increased in size by about 50%. In the meantime, preheat your air fryer to 350ºF/176ºC for 5 minutes. parchment-lined
    Top view photo of an air fryer basket filled with golden brown donut holes.
  • Lightly grease your air fryer with nonstick baking spray and add a few donuts (or donut holes) to the basket. Make sure not to overcrowd the air fryer! Spray the tops of the donuts with nonstick baking spray. Cook the donuts (or donut holes) for 5 minutes, or until they are light brown and a toothpick inserted into the donut comes out clean. Continue cooking the donuts in batches. Garnish the donuts with your favorite glaze and enjoy!
    Photo of a hand dipping an Air Fryer Donut Hole into a small white bowl filled with a cinnamon-sugar topping.
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Notes

Cinnamon Sugar Coating
  • For a cinnamon sugar coating, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and set it aside to cool slightly. In another bowl, stir together ½ cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon. Dip the donuts in melted butter and then in the cinnamon sugar.
Traditional Glaze
  • For a traditional glazed coating, mix together 2 cups of powdered sugar with 1/4 of your milk of choice. Dip the donut holes in the glaze until completely covered and set on a rack until the glaze hardens.
Powdered Sugar Coating
  • For a powdered sugar coating, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and set it aside to cool slightly. Fill another bowl with powdered sugar. Dip the donuts in melted butter and then in the powdered sugar.
Directions for Without a Stand Mixer 
  • If you don’t have a stand mixer, don’t worry– this recipe can be easily made by hand. Follow the instructions as written in Steps 1 and 2 and then use a wooden spoon or dough whisk to incorporate the dry ingredients. Knead by hand for 5-7 minutes and continue with the recipe as written.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 120kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 54mg | Potassium: 53mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 104IU | Vitamin C: 0.004mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg
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Air Fryers can vary greatly. Please take the time to learn your specific air fryer. You may need to adjust times and temperatures based upon your air fryer. All though this website attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, the information should only be considered an estimate. Varying factors such as different product types, different brands, etc. can change nutritional information. It is your responsibility as a consumer to read all labels to make sure the ingredients fit your dietary needs as well as calculate your own nutritional information as a double check.

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