How to Make Air Fryer Donuts (Easy Doughnuts Recipe)

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Our Air Fryer Donut recipe makes perfectly tender donuts that are ready in minutes! No fuss, no hot oil – make air fryer donuts with biscuits for an easy and sweet breakfast or afternoon treat. Who knew your air fryer basket could create something this delicious? 

titled collage for air fryer donuts


 

Delicious donuts are within your reach! A little bit of hot air and simple ingredients just might be the best way to create these easy air fryer donuts.

Forget about deep frying, and follow the steps on the recipe card below. 

Air fryer recipes like this are straight forward, easy, and create some of the best flavors. Be sure to give yourself a nice clean work area before getting started.

That way, you can create the donuts quickly, and cook them in the air fryer easily, too. 

overhead: pillsbury biscuit dough and other biscuit donut recipe ingredients

Air Fryer Donut Recipe

Not only does this air fryer donut recipe give you a plate full of soft, pillowy donuts, but you’ll also have crispy donut holes!

I think you’ll love making donuts in the air fryer. It means no messy grease on your countertops, and no pot of frying oil to get rid of when you’re done!

I also have a recipe for homemade churros that you’ll love! The flavor is similar to these air fryer donuts, but the dough is made from scratch.

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Refrigerated Biscuits – Choose your favorite brand of jumbo flaky biscuits without any added flavors.
  • Butter – When melted, this helps the cinnamon sugar coating stick to the surface. Either salted or unsalted is fine.
  • Sugar – Use regular granulated sugar for the best texture.
  • Cinnamon – Adds a hint of sweet spice. Swap in pumpkin pie spice if you’re craving some fall flavor!
dough for air fryer donut recipe

Decorating Air Fryer Biscuit Donuts

For something a little fancier than cinnamon sugar, try using sanding sugar in a variety of colors to match the occasion. 

Be sure to coat each donut well so the color comes through.

Or, coat air fryer donuts in a simple homemade icing instead! You can dip them one by one or simply spoon the glaze over the tops. 

Wait until they have fully cooled first, or the glaze will simply melt into each donut.

Let your treats sit on the wire rack while the icing sets, and place a piece of parchment or foil underneath to catch any drips. 

Enjoy as-is or top with decorative sprinkles!

air fryer biscuit donuts in air fryer basket

Tips for the Best Air Fryer Donuts with Biscuits

  • Keep the dough cold. If it gets too warm, especially in a hot or humid kitchen, your treats won’t turn out as flaky. 

    Put the remaining dough in the refrigerator while you fry the first batch.
  • Don’t flip! Your air fryer biscuit donuts will end up tearing down the middle. They turn out just fine if you leave them alone during the cooking process.
  • Coat with sugar immediately. The combination of heat and butter is what causes the sweet coating to stick to the surface.
  • Want them smaller? These turn out thick and fluffy, but you can easily make them thinner and smaller if you prefer. 

    Simply separate the dough round in half before cutting the holes in the center. Plus, you’ll end up with a double batch!

Storing and Reheating Air Fryer Donuts

While these are best enjoyed fresh, homemade donuts should keep for up to two days in an airtight container. 

Store at room temperature and keep the container tightly sealed so they don’t become hard.

Warm them back up in the air fryer, but keep the temperature low and check them after a minute or two so the sugar doesn’t burn.

Air Fryer Donut Recipe FAQ

Can I use any type of biscuits for biscuit donuts? 

This air fryer doughnut recipe uses the original Grand’s variety, but I’ve also had success with the Buttermilk one as well.

I did try the Butter Tastin’ ones for my Easter air fryer biscuit donuts, but it was clear that they were made with biscuits, so I would recommend avoiding that flavor.

Air-fried donuts taste so much better than a traditional deep-fried donut! 

How do you cut donuts without a cutter? 

Lucky for you, you don’t need to when you make air fryer donuts with biscuits! All you need is a small knife or piping tip to cut out the center.

Otherwise, the open end of a drinking glass or a wide-mouth canning lid are both great substitutes for a round biscuit cutter.

Even if you don’t have a doughnut cutter or a cookie cutter to make this air fryer donuts recipe, don’t let that still you. You can create this easy recipe without it! 

Can you make donut holes in the air fryer? 

You didn’t think we’d let those biscuit centers go to waste, did you?

Simply follow the air fryer doughnut recipe below, but reduce the cooking time by at least half for the holes. Be sure to add the doughnut holes in a single layer so that the hot air circulates around the air-fryer basket to cook them all evenly. 

What should I decorate these air fryer doughnuts with?

You can literally add any toppings to these golden brown goodies. A nice chocolate glaze, a bit of cocoa powder, powdered sugar, vanilla glaze, or even some cinnamon sugar is all that you need. 

If you’re making these fluffy doughnuts during the holidays, be sure to add sprinkles! 

stack of cinnamon sugar doughnuts

Enjoy!
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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closeup: air fryer donuts with cinnamon sugar

Other Breakfast Sweets

pillsbury biscuit donut close up

How to Make Air Fryer Donuts (Easy Doughnuts Recipe)

Donna Elick
Our Air Fryer Donut recipe makes perfectly tender donuts that are ready in minutes! No fuss, no hot oil, just fluffy soft donuts and holes!
5 stars from 2 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Method Air Fryer
Servings 8 donuts

Equipment

  • air fryer Different brands and sizes may require different cooking times, so be familiar with your model and make adjustments as needed.
  • mixing bowls I like to have a variety of sizes on hand, and this set has them all.
  • donut cutter If you don’t have one, use any round 1-inch tool like an apple corer, a small cookie cutter, or the back of a large piping tip.
  • heat safe spatula or Tongs for transferring the air fryer donuts in and out of the basket.
  • cooling rack Great for cooling all kinds of baked goods.

Ingredients
 

  • 16.3 ounce can Grand Flaky layers Pillsbury biscuits
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter, salted or unsalted it is not important

Instructions
 

  • Separate all of the biscuits and place them on the cutting board.
  • Use a 1-inch cookie or donut cutter or similar to cut a hole in the middle of the biscuits. If you do not have a 1-inch donut cutter, you can cut with a knife, use the back of a piping tip.
  • Place 4 donuts in the air fryer and 4 donut holes. (I have a Cosori 5,8 QT) and I can cook 4 at the time with the donut holes.
  • Bake at 350°F for 5 to 6 minutes or until golden brown.
  • If you have a hot kitchen place the remaining 4 donuts and donut holes back in the fridge.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium size (large enough to fit a donut) bowl combine the sugar and the cinnamon. Set aside.
  • Place melted butter in a medium bowl large enough to fit a donut.
  • When your donuts are nice and golden brown, take them out of the air fryer and place them on a plate. One at a time place the donuts in the butter and flip to coat both sides. Let the excess butter drip off and then transfer them to the bowl with the sugar cinnamon mixture. The cinnamon mixture will stick to the donut due to the butter coating.
  • Let the donut rest on a rack.
  • Repeat with the last four biscuits.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 261cal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 567mg | Sugar: 8g | Fiber: 1g | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 2mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled collage for air fryer donuts recipe

Originally published September 2021. Updated and republished February 2024

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9 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These are so easy to make, they’re a great treat for kids or just as a late night snack. Will be keeping biscuits on hand for these!

    1. Hi Pat,
      We have not tried that with this recipe, if you do please let us know how it goes!
      TSRI Team Member,
      Holli

  2. So ironic to just run across this recipe as I’ve been thinking about making some glazed donuts at home for the last 2 days with my biscuit dough. New to my Air fryer all together, I’m definitely excited to start after sending this; So thank you!!! I’m curious if Cresent dough could be a possible tasty alternative. Has anyone tried this?

  3. Upon making this recipe, if I do cut the biscuits in half for a thinner donut as mentioned, would I need to adjust to a different cook time or just use same instructions of 350 deg at 5-6 min?

  4. I know these are very good because my mom made them for us when we were younger. Mom used a sewing thimble to cut the holes out of the biscuits. Although the sugar cinnamon mix was my favorite, some of them were tossed in a bag with powdered sugar. Since there were no air fryer around then, she fried them in hot oil.

  5. 5 stars
    I’ve made these for years. I use a small pill bottle to cut the hole. If the biscuit gets stuck in the pill bottle I just easily use a sharp knife around the edge. Easy

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