These are heavily inspired by the freaking adorable kitty donuts from Japanese donut store Floresta. Saw the image and immediately was thought to myself, yes. This is something I need to do.

So I made bunny versions, though I feel the ears aren’t tall enough. I used the donut holes for the little cotton-tails, and frosted them with white chocolate chips thinned with shortening. The whole process can take up to two days, but that’s because the donut dough needs to chill in the fridge for at least 8 hours.

I have a pretty poor track record when it comes to working with yeast, and I still didn’t do too well this time around. I had to try twice before I could get the dough to rise to a decent height, and I still feel as if it falls short. But they can’t all be winners, and I’ll keep on trying until I have a better grasp of how to handle bread.

On to the recipe!

Donut Dough

This recipe is right out of The Pioneer Woman’s post on her homemade glazed donuts. She goes through each step thoroughly and with beautiful accompanying photos.

  • 1-1/8 cup milk, warmed
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons (one Package) instant or active dry yeast
  • 2 large Eggs, beaten
  • 1-1/4 stick (5/8th of a cup!) unsalted butter, melted
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Canola Oil
  1. Heat up your milk on the stove to about 110F, if you have a thermometer. Yeast loves warmth!
  2. Yeast also loves sweetness, so stir in the 1/4 cup of sugar into the milk, and then pour the mixture into a bowl with the yeast.
  3. Beat two eggs thoroughly.
  4. Melt the butter so that there are still some butter chunks left, and stir to melt the rest. This ensures that the butter isn’t too hot when you add it to your eggs, or else you’re going to cook them.
  5. Add your butter to the eggs and beat to incorporate. Add this mixture and the yeast mixture to a stand mixer bowl with the dough-hook attached, or stir with a spoon in a big bowl.
  6. Gently stir the ingredients together for a few minutes.
  7. Measure out your flour and stir in 1/4 teaspoon. Add this to the wet ingredients 1/4 cup at a time, stirring (or kneading with hands) to smooth in between each addition.
  8. After all the flour is added, let your mixer (or hands!) continue kneading for 5-10 minutes, and then remove the dough hook and let the dough sit for a minute.
  9. Move the dough to a greased bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let it chill in the fridge for 8 hours or overnight.

In the morning, roll the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough to about 1/2″ thickness. Use a 3″ donut cutter to cut out your rings, or do like me and MacGuyver a situation together where you’re tracing around a tiny bowl with a paring knife. You can also use a cookie cutter.

Cut out the holes of the donuts with a 1″ round whatever, and then transfer the rings to a floured baking sheet.

Let them rise in a warm, humid place, covered with a tea towel for at least an houe. What I do is turn my oven on to 400F for one minute, and then turn it off. Then I put a dish of boiling water in the oven, and the donuts on the rack above. As I mentioned before, I don’t have much luck with rising, but this helped.

After the donuts have risen for at least an hour, begin heating up your oil. Get the oil to between 350F and 375F. Having a thermometer for this really helps, but you can also test the heat of the oil by dipping some dough scraps in and seeing how quickly everything sizzles. Lots of sizzling = ready to fry!

Fry the donuts one or two at a time, because they cook pretty quickly so small batches are easier to mind. Fry them for one to two minutes on each side, and flip when you first see the edges browning.

Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a paper-towelled surface to dry. Try to get as much oil off as possible, or else the donuts will get soggy.

Come here, my delicious, artery-clogging friend.

At this point you can just glaze them with a simple mix of icing sugar and milk, or with chocolate sauce or sprinkles or cinnamon and sugar, or you can go all the way and make crazy animal food.

Note: After tasting the bunnies I made I feel they’re a little dry. This could be attributed to me messing up the dough rising, or it could be that the donuts just really need some glaze. So I suggest dunking the donuts in a thin glaze and letting the excess drip off before continuing with the frosting, just for an extra delicious, moist donut.

Ok, so, for the decoration you need:

  • 2 almonds for every donut, for the ears
  • at least 2 bags of white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • Clean paintbrush or pastry brush
  • red food dye
  • icing sugar
  • water or milk
  • 2 oz milk chocolate
  • donuts, glazed
  • donut holes, glazed
  • toothpicks
  1. Melt the shortening and chocolate chips together over a double-boiler and whisk till really smooth.
  2. Gently press the almonds pointy-side down into your donuts to be the ears.
  3. Trim the toothpicks so they’re small enough to go between the donut and the donut hole.
  4. Stick one end of the toothpick into the donut hole, and the other side into the back end of the donut.
  5. The easiest way to cover the donuts that I have found is just to enrobe them with the chocolate. So, place your bunnies on a cooling rack above a heat-safe bowl, and pour your chocolate fluidly and quickly over top. Like this!
  6.  If the chocolate doesn’t seem even to you, or is lumpy in places (like mine are), then you can gently smooth everything out with a paint brush or pastry brush. Be careful to do this before the chocolate begins to set.
  7. Put the bunnies in the freezer for 20 minutes. Microwave the milk chocolate so it’s all liquidy, and take the bunnies out and paint on the eyes.
  8. Make a thick icing, almost a paste, out of icing sugar and milk or water. Tint it pink with food colouring, and paint on the ears and cheeks of the bunnies.
  9. Back into the fridge to set everything!
  10. Eat. The chocolate will melt in your hand, so grab some napkins.

Cute, but optional: if your enrobing is still wonky and lumpy, like mine, then while the chocolate is still wet, cover the bunnies in flaked coconut. They’ll be all cute and fuzzy, and hide whatever errors there may be.
Don’t sweat it if things don’t work out as planned. Cooking, above everything, is fun. So, have fun with it, and just get back up and try again if you stumble.

That’s it! Go out and make some bunnies, or dogs, or cats, or giraffes.