These tasty Pumpkin Donut Holes are packed with real pumpkin and warm spices, baked up in the air fryer, and rolled in cinnamon sugar. They are a perfect fall treat for breakfast or dessert!
Why You Will Love This Recipe
Warm Fall Flavors - Pumpkin recipes are one of my favorite things about the fall season! The warm cinnamon and nutmeg spices are so comforting!
Easy to Prepare - You don't even need an electric mixer! Just whisk the ingredients together, put them in a pan, and bake them up in your air fryer! They cook pretty quickly so it's as easy as making pancakes or waffles!
Great for Breakfast or Dessert - These air fryer donut holes will get your kids out of bed happily in the morning! Balance the sweetness with a simple hash brown casserole. And with a cream cheese dipping sauce, they also make a decadent dessert!
Here are a few more recipes to enjoy during pumpkin season!
See the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the full list of ingredients, including measurements.
Pumpkin Puree: Be sure to get 100% pure pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling (which has added sweetener and seasonings).
Spices: 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice can be used instead of the individual spices that are listed. If you like a little extra peppery taste in your pumpkin desserts then add ¼ teaspoon of allspice or ⅛ teaspoon of black pepper.
Brown Sugar: Brown sugar adds a rich caramelized flavor, and also helps with browning. Light or dark brown sugar may be used.
Egg: The egg helps with texture, making the donut holes soft and tender!
Buttermilk: Buttermilk adds moisture and flavor. If you do not have buttermilk then add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to a measuring cup and then fill it with enough regular milk to equal 1 cup.
1) Whisk the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
- Either weigh your flour or measure it by scooping it with a spoon from the flour bag into your measuring cup.
- Once the dry ingredients are combined, set them aside.
2) In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk the melted butter with the brown sugar, egg, and vanilla extract.
- The egg should be completely mixed into the other ingredients with no visible streaks.
3) Add the pumpkin puree and the buttermilk.
- Whisk until smooth.
4) Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients.
- Stir it just until you no longer see the flour. Do not overmix.
5) Portion the batter into the donut hole pan.
- Spray the pan with a little bit of nonstick cooking spray.
- Use a small 1-tablespoon cookie scoop for consistent portioning.
- I used this egg bite mold. But a mini muffin pan would also work if you do not have a donut hole pan.
- Place the pan in your air fryer basket and bake at 350°F (177°C) for 6-8 minutes.
- Once they are done, let them cool on a wire rack while you cook the remaining donuts.
6) Dip the donut holes.
- Mix the granulated sugar and ground cinnamon in a small bowl.
- Melt the butter in a separate bowl.
- Working with one donut hole at a time, roll the hole into the butter, then into the cinnamon sugar mixture.
- Make sure they are completely coated. This is the best part!
- The butter and cinnamon sugar will make the donut holes soggy over time, so plan to serve them on the day that they are prepared.
- If you want to serve them over multiple days then simply store them without the butter and sugar coating, and dip them right before serving.
- If you are using an oven-model air fryer, place the rack on the bottom slot.
- Serve the donut holes with a cream cheese dipping sauce for an extra delicious treat!
- Instead of coating them in butter and cinnamon sugar, try tossing them in powdered sugar while they are still slightly warm.
- Give them an extra kick by adding ¼ teaspoon of allspice or ⅛ teaspoon of black pepper.
- Make them pumpkin-nut donuts by mixing in ¼ cup of chopped walnuts or pecans.
- If you have a donut pan you can make air fryer pumpkin donuts. Cook them at 350°F for 8-10 minutes.
How long do Air Fryer Pumpkin Donut Holes last?
These donut holes are best enjoyed on the day that they are prepared. If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container, with a paper towel, for up to 2 days.
Can I freeze Pumpkin Spice Donut Holes?
Yes, pumpkin donut holes freeze wonderfully! Freeze them without the butter and cinnamon sugar coating by placing them in a single layer on a tray that is lined with parchment paper. Freeze them for 2 hours, then remove them to a freezer bag or freezer-safe container. Place them back in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw on the counter overnight, then coat with butter and cinnamon sugar before serving.
Can I bake donut holes in the oven?
Yes, donut holes can be baked in the oven. Spray a mini muffin pan or donut hole pan with nonstick baking spray. Then bake at 350°F for 10-12 minutes.
What air fryer did you use for this recipe?
I used the Cosori 5-Qt Air Fryer. Some air fryers cook differently, so the bake time may be slightly different for your fryer.
Let me know how you like this recipe by leaving a review! And follow along on Instagram @stateofdinner for behind-the-scenes and to be among the first to know when new recipes post!
Air Fryer Pumpkin Donut HolesRecipe by:
Pumpkin Donut Holes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (260 grams)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ cup melted butter (4 tablespoons, 28 grams)
- ½ cup packed light brown sugar (110 grams)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup pumpkin puree (169 grams)
- ½ cup buttermilk (125 ml)
Cinnamon Sugar Coating
- ½ cup melted butter (57 grams)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices in a medium bowl, then set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk the melted butter with brown sugar, egg, and vanilla extract. Add the pumpkin puree and buttermilk and whisk until smooth.
- Stir in the dry ingredients and whisk until there is no visible flour remaining.
- Spray a donut hole pan, small miniature muffin pan, or silicone egg bite pan with nonstick spray. Scoop about one tablespoon of batter into each cup.
- Bake in the air fryer at 350°F (177°C) for 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the air fryer and cool for several minutes in the pan. Then turn the donut holes onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
- When ready to coat the donut holes, melt the butter in a shallow bowl. In a separate shallow bowl, mix the granulated sugar and ground cinnamon.
- Roll them one at a time in the melted butter and then in the cinnamon sugar.