In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients for the doughnuts (flour, sugar, baking cocoa, baking soda and baking powder) except the espresso powder.
In another bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (melted butter, egg, peppermint extract and milk) until just combined.
Add the espresso powder and allow to sit until dissolved.
Whisk in dry ingredients.
Use vegetable shortening and a paper towel to grease your doughnut pan.
Fill a piping bag with the doughnut batter and pipe it into the doughnut pan until each cavity is about 2/3 full.
Bake the doughnuts at 350F for 8-10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the doughnuts comes out clean.
Allow to cool in the pan for 1-2 minutes before turning them out onto a baking rack.
In a small saucepan, combine the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla extract for the glaze.
Cook over low-medium heat, whisking occasionally, until the glaze is warm and starts to form a crust on top. Remove from heat.
Dip each doughnut into the glaze, gently shaking it to allow any excess glaze to drip off. Immediately sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies.
Stir the glaze between each doughnut to keep it from crusting.
Use a piping bag to pipe your doughnut batter into your doughnut pan. This is a lot easier and less messy than trying to pour from the bowl.
Doughnuts are easiest to remove from the pan while they’re still warm. Whenever the pan is cool enough to handle, simply turn it over and gently shake until the doughnuts come out.
Be sure not to over-cook the glaze. Over-cooked glaze loses too much liquid and becomes too hard and thick to work with. The best way to make sure your glaze doesn’t get over-cooked is to cook it over low heat and remove it immediately once a crust starts to form. If your glaze becomes over-cooked, simply add more water in 1/2 tsp increments until the glaze breaks up enough to use.
Why we cook the glaze: You may be wondering why we’re cooking the glaze. After all, there are lots of doughnut recipes on the web that don’t require this step. Here’s why: cooking the glaze causes a chemical reaction that results in a glaze that hardens quickly and becomes a shell (rather than a soft glaze). It’s perfect for locking in moisture and making life easier if you need to pack these doughnuts.
This recipe will make more glaze than you’ll use, which will keep your doughnuts from hitting the bottom of the pan leaving them glaze blotchy.
Leftovers: Baked doughnuts don’t keep well and tend to dry out faster than the fried variety. If you end up with leftovers, the best way to store them is in a paper bag. Whatever you do, don’t refrigerate them or put them in plastic.
Reviving stale doughnuts: If you wound up with leftovers and they’ve gotten stale, no worries! You can soften them back up by microwaving them in 5 second increments until soft. Just watch out for melting icing.
Serving Size:1 doughnut
Keywords: peppermint mocha, baked doughnuts, how to make donuts