Sometimes, all you need is a donut. Sweet and delicious, my recipe creates fluffy donuts topped with the iconic bright pink glaze and rainbow sprinkles of Homer Simpson’s donuts and are easily recognized anywhere!
There are some iconic foods in television and movies. Some foods in cartoons look irresistible, but unfortunately, they are impossible to eat! This includes Sponge Bob Square Pants’ crabby patties, the namesake from Disney’s Ratatouille, Garfield’s lasagna, and, probably the most famous of them all, Homer Simpson’s Donuts. For 32 seasons and over 700 episodes, Homer Simpson has been delighting in his favorite food, the humble donut.
I decided I needed to try them myself – Homer does love them after all, so they must be good – and I came up with this fantastic recipe for Homer’s donuts, covered in a sticky raspberry icing and decorated with sprinkles. If you are intrigued to try one of the most famous foods on TV, read on to find my donut recipe!
Donuts from Krispy Kreme, Dunkin Donuts, and all the bakeries worldwide are so light, fluffy, and addictive, so why make our own? Surely it must be difficult?
Absolutely not! My recipe for homemade donuts makes it easy, requiring only a few ingredients and a little bit of patience, and they are also delicious, covered in a crisp shell of icing hiding a soft fluffy center. And afterward, the sense of accomplishment is so satisfying!
So what do you need to do to make these eye-catching Homer Simpson Donuts?
First, gather your ingredients. You will need:
Active dry yeast – this yeast needs to be stirred into warm milk to be activated, but it gives you a head start on the baking as the yeast will be ready for action!
Flour – use bread flour as it has added gluten, strengthening as you knead the dough. All-purpose flour will not give you the same fluffy results.
Sugar – granulated sugar to give the dough some extra sweetness and fuel the yeast.
Eggs – for the donuts’ rich flavor and a lovely fluffy rise.
Butter – you may already think donuts are fattening enough, especially as they are cooked in simmering oil. However, butter adds a wonderful full-bodied flavor to the dough and keeps them moist as they cook.
Milk – yeast needs warmth and moisture to develop, and gently warmed milk is the perfect solution, especially as it brings extra fat to the dough.
Vanilla extract – the dough needs a touch of flavor, and vanilla is perfect!
As you can see, the list of ingredients is not particularly long, so don’t feel intimidated! The first thing is activating the yeast.
How to Make Homer Simpson Donuts
Haven’t you always wanted to know how to make Homer Simpson donuts? I know I have. These delicious, fluffy donuts are topped with a bright pink glaze and rainbow sprinkles. They’re easily recognizable anywhere and perfect for any occasion!
No worries, it is very easy to make Simpson donuts at home with just a few simple ingredients. So let’s start!
In a small bowl, stir together the yeast and milk until the yeast has dissolved. Let it sit for about five minutes so that it can start to work its magic.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, eggs, butter, milk, and vanilla extract until everything is evenly combined.
Once the yeast has had a few minutes to activate, add it to the large bowl of wet ingredients and mix everything together until you have a soft dough. Knead the dough for about ten minutes— this will develop the gluten in the flour and make your donuts extra fluffy! Knead the dough until soft.
Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a damp towel, and let it rise in a warm place for about an hour. The dough should double in size.
Once the dough has doubled in size, roll it out onto a floured surface until it’s about ½-inch thick. Use a donut cutter or two different-sized biscuit cutters to cut out as many donuts as you can.
Place the donuts on a greased baking sheet and let them rise for another ten minutes.
While the donuts are rising, heat up some oil in a large pot or Dutch oven until it reaches 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Fry the donuts.
Once the donuts are golden brown, remove them from the oil and let them cool on a wire rack.
Once they have cooled, top them with your favorite glaze or frosting! I like to use a bright pink glaze made with food coloring and rainbow sprinkles for that authentic Simpson’s donut.
By the way, if you’re planning a Simpsons party celebration, check out Holly’s Ultimate Party Planning Guide!
HOW DO I BAKE WITH YEAST?
If you have made bread, beignets, cinnamon rolls, or any other kind of dough, you will have worked with yeast before. My Homer Simpson donut recipe only requires a teaspoon of dried yeast or the contents of one sachet.
You will need to activate your yeast by mixing it into warm milk. The milk should not be too hot; otherwise, it will kill the yeast, so if you can dip your finger in and feel pleasantly warm, that is a good gauge.
After 15 minutes, you will recognize that the yeast has developed because the milk will become frothy and smell yeasty, like the inside of a bakery. Add melted butter, egg, and vanilla and beat to combine. Pour all the wet ingredients into the dry (the flour, salt, and sugar) and stir with a wooden spoon until it forms a soft, messy dough.
Now, tip it into a clean, floured surface and knead it!
HOW DO I KNEAD DOUGH?
Kneading dough is a good workout and justifies eating all the donuts afterward! However, you may have a food mixer that can do all the work for you, and if that’s the case, then excellent! Sit back with a cup of coffee!
If you are kneading by hand, the best way to knead dough is to use the heel of your hand – basically, the bottom of your hand where it meets your wrist. This gives you enough force to push the dough backward and forwards.
Alternate between each hand and push across your body – once to the top-right, once to the top-left, then repeat, and you’ll find you’re kneading a heat-shape on the table!
Knead the donut dough for 10 minutes until it is soft and stretchy, then put it in a clean bowl, lightly greased with oil, and leave the dough to rise until doubled in size.
When it is light and puffy, you can cut out rings of donut dough and let them rise again.
SHOULD I FRY OR BAKE DONUTS?
While baked donuts are delicious, and of course, healthier, you cannot beat a deep-fried donut.
A baked donut is much more like a cake, while a fried donut emerges with an incredible crispy crust, yet the center stays perfectly fluffy, tender, and soft.
Plus, it’s unlikely Homer Simpson ate baked donuts!
Take a bite of the unknown food of the cartoon world and try my Homer Simpson donut recipe, which is all covered in sticky raspberry glaze, and finally, you’ll see what the fuss was about!
CAN I USE AN AIR FRYER TO MAKE DONUTS?
If you want to make donuts in an air fryer, you can! The cooking time will be shorter in an air fryer, so keep a close eye on them. The benefit of using an air fryer is that it doesn’t require any oil, so the donuts won’t be as greasy. I have tried it many times and I have to say that the donuts come out just as good as if you fried them in oil!
A few tips to make the perfect donuts
- Take the time to let the donuts rise after you cut them out. This will give them a nice fluffy texture and prevent them from becoming heavy and greasy.
- As you can see in the picture below, I cut little quarters out of baking paper and put the donuts on them. This prevents them from sticking to the baking sheet and makes it easier to transfer them to the pan when it’s frying time!
- Make sure your oil is at the right temperature (375°F/190°C) before frying the donuts. I would even recommend using a deep-fry thermometer to check. If the oil is too hot, the donuts will cook too fast on the outside and be doughy in the center. If it’s not hot enough, they’ll absorb too much oil and be greasy.
- Use a slotted spoon or spider strainer to carefully transfer the donuts to the oil.
- Do not overcrowd the pan when frying the donuts, otherwise, they will not cook evenly. You should be able to fit about six donuts in a standard-sized pan.
- Allow the donuts to cool before glazing or frosting them. This will help the glaze or frosting stick to the surface and prevent it from running off.
- Chocolate Frosting: Chocolate frosting is always a classic and goes well with any flavor of donut. Simply melt some chocolate and pour it over the donuts. You can also add some sprinkles or other decorations if you like!
- Cinnamon Sugar: This is a simple but effective decoration for donuts. Just mix together some sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it over the donuts while they are still warm. The heat will help the mixture stick to the surface.
- Lemon Glaze: A lemon glaze is a refreshing way to top off a donut. Stir some powdered sugar, lemon juice, and milk until you have a thick but pourable consistency. Then, just drizzle it over the donuts and let it set.
- Strawberry Frosting: If you want to go all out, try strawberry frosting! Start by cooking some strawberries until they are soft. Then, blend them until you have a smooth puree. Mix the puree with some whipped cream and icing sugar until you have a thick frosting. Add pink food coloring if you like.
- Vanilla Glaze: A vanilla glaze is a classic and goes well with any flavor of donut. Just whisk together some powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla extract. Now, you’re ready to glaze your donuts!
- Coconut Glaze: This glaze is made with some simple ingredients, but it tastes delicious! Mix together sugar, cornstarch, and unsweetened coconut milk. Cook slowly until it thickens. Then, carefully dip your donuts into the glaze and let them cool. Use some shredded coconut to decorate.
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HOMER SIMPSON’S DONUTS
- 1 cup Milk + 2 tablespoons
- 1 tablespoon Active dry yeast
- ⅓ cup White granulated sugar
- 3 1/2 cups Bread flour
- ¼ cup Butter
- 2 Eggs
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 cup Vegetable oil
- 1 cup Powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Pink food color
- 1 tablespoon Water
- Rainbow sprinkles
- Warm the milk gently until lukewarm – you can place your finger in it, and it should feel pleasant. Pour the yeast and sugar into a jug, add the milk and leave to rest for 10-15 minutes until the yeast is bubbly.
- Sieve the flour and salt into a large bowl.
- Melt the butter and leave to cool slightly. Add the melted butter, egg, and vanilla to the yeast mixture, stir together, then pour into the dry ingredients. Using a wooden spoon, mix to combine until you have a soft sticky dough. If you are using a food mixer with a dough hook, follow the same instructions, however, turn on the machine at a slow speed to combine the ingredients.
- Tip onto a floured work surface and knead, covering your hands in flour to stop the dough from sticking. Knead until soft and stretchy – approximately 10-20 minutes.If you are using a food mixer with a dough hook, this can do the job for you. Knead the dough for 10 minutes on medium speed.
- Place the dough in a clean greased bowl and cover with cling film. Leave to rise for an hour to 2 hours, depending on how warm an environment is.
- Once the dough is doubled in size, roll it out to 1-inch thick and cut out circles using a 4 inch round cookie cutter. Place the circles on a greased sheet tray and then cut a 1-inch circle out of the center of each donut.
- Cover the tray loosely with plastic wrap and set aside for another 45 minutes, allowing the dough to rise again.
- Towards the end of the dough's prove, pour the oil into a large pot and heat over medium heat until it has reached a temperature of 375°F/190°C.
- Once the dough has puffed, gently lower the donuts one or two at a time into the hot oil.
- Fry the donuts for 1-2 minutes, then flip and fry the other side for another 1-2 minutes. Remove the cooked donuts from the hot oil and place them on a cooling rack.
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, pink food color, and water until you have an icing of thick dropping consistency.
- Dip the top of each donut into the icing mix then place it back on the cooling rack and sprinkle with the rainbow sprinkles. Enjoy while nice and warm!