Gramma John’s Buttermilk Donuts

As you know, we are Food Network junkies around here. FishPapa’s personal favorite is the show Good Eats, by Alton Brown. It’s very science-based as our good buddy Alton tells you the why and how of cooking. Ever since he cooked up donuts and corn dogs, my husband has been saying that he really wanted a fryer. He’s not one to usually request kitchen appliances, so I figured he had really thought it through. When my dad said that a neighbor had a brand-new, commercial fryer to give away, I said yes. I figured if it wasn’t exactly what Alton recommended, we could probably find a home for it.

As it turns out, it is exactly what FishPapa wanted in a fryer. Yesterday, we took it for a test drive. Since I have in my possession 100 pounds of flour, we have no shortage of the making of golden brown goodness. We made donuts. Two kinds, even.

Of course, we tested Alton’s recipe for Yeast Doughnuts. They were excellent. They puffed up light and fluffy and crisp. FishPapa would recommend that you omit the nutmeg. He wasn’t crazy about that.

We also made a batch of an old family favorite:

They turned out great! We made 3-4 dozen donuts. If any survive today, I’ll pop them in the freezer for snacking at a later date.

Do you make donuts? What’s your experience? What’s your favorite?

Read Newer Post
Read Older Post


  1. Oh my goodness! Those donuts look super yummy! The only way I ever knew to make them was taking biscuit dough and putting a hole in the center. Then fry them up in a pan of hot oil. I will definitely be trying the ones you shared! And way to go on the new FREE fryer! YAY!

  2. Bridgett says:

    Can you make substitute regular milk for buttermilk?

  3. YUM! I have never even thought about making donuts. My mouth is watering right now.

  4. JessieLeigh says:

    My grandma always made fresh donuts and they were out of this world delicious!

    I have made them only once, a cinnamon-applesauce recipe. They were good and my husband was a huge fan, but I burned myself something fierce doing it! Until I can master the technique, I’ll have to live vicariously through you. 😉 Yours looks delicious!

  5. Chawksgirl4ever says:

    wow they look really yummy!nope i have never made donuts before.maybe someday

  6. Stephanie says:

    I have not made donuts in a long long time. We had a fryer but when it died I never replaced it. We were too in love with it, but my waist line wasn’t !

  7. Katie @ 3 Blondes and a Redhead says:

    Oh my goodness, I’m DYING over here. You don’t show a picture of a homemade donut for pregnant gals to see!!! I don’t have a fryer or the energy to try these at the moment, so I may have to make a run to Dunkin Donuts. I. Am. Drooling.

  8. These look very yummy. That is so cool that you got an awesome fryer for free. :)

  9. CountryMama@The Cozy Country Home says:

    Jessica…they look great!! What did you dip them in when they were done? Did you have to dip them in butter and then cinnamon and sugar?
    I made fried donuts once with biscuit dough from a can and they were horrible!! I also bought a donut pan and tried to make baked ones (with a healthy sneaky recipe) and they were worse!! No one ate them and we wasted so many ingredients! But maybe if they tasted as good as yours look they will!

  10. I have worked with my great-grandma’s recipe to make little jelly donut holes for my kids. I love them!! They are so fatty and bad that I make them a rare treat, but I just love homemade donuts!

  11. Yum… my mom used to make doughnuts once and awhile as a treat for us when we got off the bus. She didn’t fry them, but had a handy machine like a waffle maker that made doughnuts… made more of a cakey doughnut.

    thanks for bringing back the memory… now I’ll have to see if they still make those machines so I can do the same for my son when he gets of the bus in a few years :)

  12. Allie Z says:

    Speaking of donuts… we just made donuts this weekend!!

    I followed this recipe:

    I will follow the recipe again if I’m making crumb donuts. If I’m making a regular glazed donut, I’ll omit the cinammon. No complaints from the kiddos or hubby though!!

    What city do you live in? I just stumbled onto your blog!! We live in Phoenix, and there are Albertsons here, but these are owned by the LLC so they run different deals. I figured I’d ask before running to stock up on the flour!


  13. Allie Z says:

    open mouth, insert foot. i just read that you are now in san diego. funny thing, i just moved from carlsbad to phoenix. my feet are wet…


  14. I have a silly question, are you showing us gramma john’s recipe in the picture? Or Alton Brown’s? Thanks.

Thanks so much for participating in this conversation about "a mom's life."

This is a place where moms can be themselves. Remember that each mother's path looks a little different. Please keep your comments respectful and kind. Reasonable minds will disagree in a nice way.

So let's talk about it, using "our big girl words."

Share Your Thoughts