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© David James Di Pardo 2011

These donuts are quite decadent, but not unreasonably so if you leave out the glaze. The donut itself isn’t over the top in terms of sweetness but be forewarned the glaze, does tend make these quite sweet. However in my opinion, even with the glaze they’re not sweeter than your typical chocolate glazed donuts. You can control the added sweetness from the glaze by adjusting its thickness. If you want these a little less sweet, thin out the glaze so the coating left on the donuts will be much thinner, or you can leave it out altogether… but why would you want to do that…
As for the wonderful chai flavor, two chai tea bags are used in this recipe, but I promise the chai flavor won’t overpower the chocolatey-goodness of your donuts. That being said, if you’re still concerned, you can always use one tea bag instead of two.

Chocolate Chai Donuts

Makes about 15-18 donuts
  • 1/3 cup canola oil, plus more for brushing the donut trays
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • 1 1/4 cups + 2 teaspoons unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons hot chai infusion (see below)

Preheat oven to 325°F and brush 3 six-mold donut trays with canola oil and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa power, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the apple sauce, canola oil, vanilla, and hot chai infusion and mix with a rubber spatula just until the ingredients are combined.

Using a small scoop or tablespoon fill each donut mold with 2 1/2 tablespoons of batter and spread evenly.

Bake for 16 minutes rotating the trays halfway through the baking time.

If you plan on coating your donuts in powder or granulated sugar let them cool in the mold for 5 minutes. If you plan on dipping or glazing your donuts let them cool in the molds for 5 minutes before un-molding and transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely, about 15 minutes longer.

Once dipped in the glaze, allow the the glaze to set for 15 to 20 minutes before serving. Glazed donuts will keep at room temperature in an airtight container separated with layers of parchment paper for up to three days.

Chai Infusion

  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 chai tea bags

Place the tea bags and boiling water in a small bowl and allow to steep for 10-15 minutes depending on the strength of the tea being used. Set aside and reheat when ready to add to the donut batter.

Chocolate Chai Glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups of powdered (icing) sugar
  • 3-5 tablespoons chai infusion
  • 2 tablespoons dark cocoa powder (unsweetened)

Combine the sugar, 3 tablespoons of the chai infusion, and cocoa powder in a small bowl and whisk to combine. If the glaze is too thick, add half a tablespoon of the remaining chai infusion at a time until the desired thickness is reached. If the glaze is too thin, add a 1/4 cup additional sugar at a time until the desired thickness is reached. Glaze can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to three days.