With 12g of protein, these delicious protein donuts make a fabulous keto snack. Tender and sweet, these baked vanilla donuts are easy to make and fun to eat!
What do you do when you’re craving donuts but you really know your body needs some protein? You make these keto protein donuts, of course!
I recently published an article on the advantages of a higher protein keto diet, along with a number of low carb high protein recipes. Most of us find it pretty easy to get protein at lunch and dinner. But breakfast and snacks can be harder to figure out.
So I am working on a series of higher protein keto snack recipes. I already published some delicious protein muffins and now I am adding protein donuts to the list. Because who doesn’t want a tender, sweet donut that actually gives you energy and doesn’t cause a sugar crash?
I know I can’t be the only one!
Why you will love them
What’s not to love about keto donuts? They fill a void left by cutting out carbs and sugars. And while you don’t NEED them, they sure are a fun indulgence.
But I believe in making even your keto treats work for you. Because there’s nothing better than feeling like you are indulging and knowing that you’re getting a blast of nutrients at the same time.
And these protein donuts are super easy to make, too. They take 40 minutes, tops, and that includes the baking and the frosting. So you can easily make this sweet breakfast or snack before the rest of your family has even gotten out of bed!
Ingredients you need
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- Greek yogurt: Whole milk Greek yogurt works well in keto baked goods to provide moisture and tenderness. You could also use sour cream.
- Almond flour: I used almond flour for these donuts and I have yet to experiment with coconut flour in a protein recipe like this. So at this time, I can’t recommend a nut-free substitute except for sunflower seed flour.
- Whey protein: I recommend getting a whey protein isolate, as it contains more protein and has fewer carbs than many whey powders. You can also use egg white protein.
- Sweetener: As always, my favorite brand is Swerve Sweetener. You are welcome to use your favorite sweetener but I do want to note that allulose may make the donuts brown very quickly. You need a granular sweetener for the donuts and a powdered sweetener for the frosting.
- Cream cheese: I like to use a little cream cheese in my keto frosting recipes to give it more structure without having to use tons of powdered sweetener.
- Butter and oil: I specify avocado oil for the donuts, but you can use melted butter. Just make sure that if your eggs and yogurt are cold, you whisk the butter in quickly so it doesn’t clump up. You will need butter for the frosting as well.
- Vanilla: While I made vanilla donuts, you are certainly not limited to that. You could have a lot of fun with flavors here, like lemon donuts, caramel donuts, etc. Just switch up the extracts as you see fit!
- Keto Sprinkles: You can make your own sugar free sprinkles, or you can purchase pre-made sprinkles online.
- Kitchen Staples: Eggs, baking powder, heavy cream, salt.
Step by Step Directions
1. Prepare the batter: In a large bowl, whisk together the the yogurt, eggs, oil, and vanilla extract until well combined. Add the almond flour, whey protein, sweetener, baking powder, and salt and whisk until smooth. Add just enough water until you have a thick but pourable consistency.
2. Bake the donuts: Divide the batter between 8 greased wells of a donut pan, filling to about three quarters full. Bake 10 to 15 minutes at 350ºF, until the tops are just firm to the touch. Let cool in the pan.
3. Prepare the frosting: In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter together until very smooth. Beat in the powdered sweetener. Beat in the cream until you have a spreadable consistency, then beat in the vanilla extract.
4. Frost and decorate: Spread over the tops of the cooled donuts. Sprinkle with sugar-free sprinkles, if desired.
Protein options: This recipe uses whey protein isolate, but you do have other options. Egg white protein should work well, and some plant-based protein powders may as well. But they won’t necessarily have as high a protein content. I don’t recommend collagen here, as it will make them gummy. It needs a very different approach for baking.
Donut pans don’t come in standard sizes and some are bigger than others. So you may get 7 donuts or you may get 9 donuts. It’s hard to say! If you don’t have a donut pan, you can bake them as muffins. You should get at least 7 or 8.
If you prefer, you can skip the frosting and make a lighter glaze or dust them in powdered sweetener. I personally feel that they need a little something to jazz them up a bit.
Frequently Asked Questions
The main ingredients in these vanilla protein muffins are almond flour, whey protein powder, Greek yogurt, eggs, and sweetener. They do not contain any added sugars and have 12g of protein per serving.
Many protein donut recipes are quite high in carb because they contain wheat flour and added sugar. But these keto protein muffins have only 4.7g of carbs and 1.5g of fiber, so they have a net carb count of 3.2g.
You can easily make the donuts in advance and freeze them unfrosted, then frost them when you plan to serve. You can freeze the frosted donuts as well, but you will want to flash freeze them first. Lay them out on a baking sheet in a single layer until frozen solid. This way, the frosting won’t smear when you place them in an airtight container.
More delicious keto donut recipes
Keto Protein Donuts Recipe
- ½ cup Greek yogurt
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoon avocado oil (or melted butter… not hot)
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup almond flour
- ½ cup unflavored whey protein powder (protein isolate preferred)
- ½ cup Swerve Granular
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 to 4 tablespoon water
- 2 ounces cream cheese well softened
- 2 tablespoon butter well softened
- ¼ cup Swerve Confectioners
- 2 to 3 tablespoon heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- keto sprinkles if desired
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF and grease 8 wells of a donut pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the the yogurt, eggs, oil, and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Add the almond flour, whey protein, sweetener, baking powder, and salt and whisk until smooth. Add just enough water until you have a thick but pourable consistency.
- Divide the batter between the wells of the donut pan, filling to about three quarters full. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until the tops are just firm to the touch. Let cool in the pan.
- In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter together until very smooth. Beat in the powdered sweetener.
- Beat in the cream until you have a spreadable consistency, then beat in the vanilla extract. Spread over the tops of the cooled donuts.
- Sprinkle with sugar-free sprinkles, if desired.
Patty Marks says
I made these because of the protein content and their simplicity however I have to use Botha Sweet because my husband can’t tolerate the other sweeteners. Does this measure equally with the other sweeteners? I haven’t had an issue with other recipes but I felt I could taste the sweetener in these donuts using the same amount. I love all of your recipes!
Jan Lewis says
These donut pans are extremely expensive. If I look for another what do I need to look for or avoid? I was thinking the Wilton donut pans look good. I can’t wait to make these!
I have the Wilton pans, bought them in 2018, and they work well. I think I paid around $15.
They are… but they are FAR better than any other brand and will last you years. I’ve had the Wilton ones and had to toss them within a year or two. The USA Pans are also non-toxic, whereas Wilton are not.
Patty Marks says
Great recipe but my Wilton pans are terrible! Everything sticks to them even when I use oil. Maybe I’m using the wrong type of oil? Good thing I don’t need to take photos of them , just eat them!
Hi, Carolyn. Thank you for all your free recipes! There is a well-known keto blogger who says protein powders do not contribute to the total daily protein intake…even when combining foods to make complete proteins! While I understand complete vs. incomplete protein, would you please address this issue of protein powder? As a menopausal woman (keto for over 6 years) who tries to prioritize protein, I was very disappointed to hear this. I simply can’t eat that much meat. Thanks!
Did they back it up with any science? Because the vast majority of clinical studies indicate that whey protein does indeed count toward daily protein intake.
I can’t find the particular interaction (months ago) between she and I in order to answer your question, but she is one who keeps up with the science. As of today, she now does recommend egg white protein and whey protein on her website, though! Thanks so much for your answer! That is helpful!
I believe its collagen protein that is not complete and doesn’t count towards daily total. Whey has all 9 essential aminos and is complete.
Nancy Primm says
Would sour cream work in place of yogurt?
Yes… please read the full blog post as I always address questions like this. 🙂