Hazelnut chocolate mini donuts

hazelnut chocolate donutsChocolate donuts just got a new reputation. The good kind of reputation. The healthy kind. Yep, these might be some of the naughtiest looking photos on my blog but the recipe is one of the healthiest! How can donuts be healthy you might ask yourself. Well, if you skip the white, processed flour, the animal milk, the super-refined nasty sugar and the frying part, you can actually pull it off and make a healthy treat. But then, what’s left if you take out all those ingredients and the ever so praised frying cooking method? Bare with me while I tell you how these donuts came to be.

hazelnut chocolate donutsYesterday evening we came back from a wonderful road trip in the South of Western Australia. There was so much love, laughter, rest and more love crammed into just a couple of days, I honestly thought I couldn’t handle it all. Yes, we are lucky and blessed. We’re lucky to have found each other and blessed to live a good life. On our trip we also enjoyed lots of good food, tasty gourmet pizzas, we met wonderful welcoming people, took pictures of many cows, sheep, deers, emu, alpaca, trees, dogs and pretty much everything green. We enjoyed all that could be enjoyed and I cannot wait to spam you all with tones of pictures!

hazelnut chocolate donutsOn our trip I did not have any dessert though! The longest 2 days of my life. Why, you ask? Because while I compromised and enjoyed a pizza with a white flour crust or a piece of white bread for breakfast (due to lack of other alternatives), I never compromise when it comes to sugar and over-processed, bad for you sweets. Never. Ever. So I endured. In silence. Or not so silent. Ok, I complained a lot and taught B. a useful lesson of how to practice patience for the sake of having a good time. In return, he taught me a lesson or two about photography. I’d say fair exchange.

hazelnut chocolate donutsFirst thing I did today? A healthy sweet treat. These donuts. There’s not a single nasty ingredient in them! White, processed flour is replaced by nutritious, protein rich quinoa flour and yummy hazelnut meal. Cooking chocolate is replaced with pure cacao powder and cacao nibs. For healthy fats I chose avocado. For sweeteners I opted for a whole apple, dried sultana (oil free, sweetener free) and some dried cherries. And instead of frying them, I lovingly placed them in a hot oven. The result is moreish! They’re dense and rich, just how I wanted them to be; I was never a fan of fluffy, spongy baked treats. Somehow, they don’t appeal to me at all. These healthy donuts are also bittersweet, just how I like my chocolaty treats. This way, having one or two in the morning with my cup of coffee or tea will not be a bad thing at all!

hazelnut chocolate donutsSo there you have it. Healthy. Mini donuts. That are good for you. Have a go at them and let me know what you think. I’m sure the recipe can be improved in so many ways! I very much look forward to hear what happens in your kitchens, as always.

Hazelnut chocolate mini donuts

Prep time:  10 mins
Cooking time:  approx. 17-19 mins
Serves: 18 – 20 mini donuts
  • 270g quinoa flour
  • 200g hazelnut meal
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 2 generous handfuls of cacao nibs
  • 10 TBSP cacao powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • pinch sea salt flakes
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • couple of handfuls of whole dried cherries or sultana
  • 3 TBSP linseed
  • 8 TBSP water
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 TBSP coconut oil
  • 1 small sweet apple, cored
  • 150g sultana (oil free, sweetener free) – if you want your donuts medium sweet or quite sweet, you will need to add 200g or more of sultana
  • 1 cup (250ml) water


  1. Preheat the oven to 190C and line a tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl: flours, hazelnut meal, cacao powder and nibs, cinnamon, salt, baking powder and dried cherries/extra sultana. Set aside.
  3. Mix linseed with 8 TBSP water and set aside.
  4. Add ‘wet’ ingredients to a blender: avocado, apple, sultana and water. Blend until you have a smooth mixture.
  5. Add avocado mix and linseed mix to the dry ingredients and mix well by hand until you have everything incorporated. The mix should be slightly sticky, yet firm.
  6. Wet your hands and make balls slightly bigger than a ping pong ball. Flatten them a bit and make a whole in the middle of each. Alternatively, if you have a silicone donut tray, use that.
  7. Arrange the donuts on the baking paper in the tray and place them in the oven. They should be ready in about 17 minutes. Poke them with a skewer and if it comes out clean, they’re ready. If they begin to burn on the outside but the inside is not done yet, cover them with aluminium foil and continue to cook for few more minutes covered.
  8. Allow them to cool (tough task!) before glazing with more dark chocolate. You can grab a chocolate recipe here.

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