Hey… do you want a fried ball of chocolate every single Friday? Because I do.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

Make sense of this nonsense: these taste like balls of chocolate cake. They didn’t quite imitate those perfect little chocolate munchkins from Dunkin Donuts, but instead tasted like straight up… chocolate cake. So are they donuts or are they cake? The world will never know.

No complaining here. The birthday dessert that was supposed to last all week lasted for about… 24 hours. Whomp whomp.

Totally worth it though.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

The birthday boy even helped me make these, and when I say “helped me make these” I really mean that I asked him to sift and resift the flour and cocoa powder about 37 times while I tried to take a photo. I think this was during a very inconvenient time for him because he was glued to the TV and huffed and puffed quite a bit. Before that he didn’t even know what sifting was and for as long as I made him hold it and at such an awkward angle… I bet he got an arm workout. Happy birthday to him. Now he will probably be even more inclined to cut the sleeves off of three shirts today.

It’s rare that I cook or bake or photograph much when he is home since it is my (let’s use this term loosely) work, and I much prefer to spend the time face planted on the couch or eating all the tacos or exhausting a good 30 minutes googling gangnam style because I have no freaking idea what it is, and after I sort of learn what it is I still have no freaking idea what it is, because I am so unhip and not with it and definitely think my computer is correct when it autocorrects gangnam style to gingham style. Because I certainly know what that is. And it just makes more sense.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

But boy… sort of glad I was able to squeeze these in between googling.

They weren’t the REAL LIFE birthday dessert last night since we consumed them at lightening speed, but I sort of wished they were because it would have at least made the evening a bit more exciting. I mean, it’s not that I don’t consider eating dinner at an unusually early time of 6:30 then passing out while watching Despicable Me exciting… but yeah. It was pretty wild and crazy.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

Our elderliness is concerning. At least we still eat like jerky teenagers.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

Oh and I actually preferred these with sprinkles (because I guess I’m also seven years old inside) AND AND AND they add some texture so yes… totally do that.

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com


Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes

Yield: about 3 dozen donut holes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
vegetable oil for frying

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
4-5 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, soda and salt.
In a smaller bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, sugar, melted butter and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture, stirring with a large spoon until a dough forms. Line a baking sheet with wax or parchment paper, and roll dough into balls just slightly smaller than golfball size.

Add vegetable oil to a large pot and heat over medium heat. Once it reaches 350 degrees F, add 2-3 donut holes at a time, frying for 2-3 minutes. I tossed mine a few times during the frying process, just using a slotted spoon to continually flip them over. One finished, remove with a slotted spoon and let drain on a paper towel. Once all the donut holes have been fried, dip in the glaze them set on wire rack. Allow to set for 10-15 minutes for simple glazed donuts. If you want sprinkled donuts, immediately roll in sprinkles after glazing and let sit until set.

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk well. If too runny, add more powdered sugar. If too thick, add more water about 1/2 teaspoon at a time, whisking well for at least 30-60 seconds.

[slightly adapted from martha stewart]

Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes I howsweeteats.com

These really are so fluffy I’m gonna die.

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143 Responses to “Glazed and Sprinkled Chocolate Cake Donut Holes.”

  1. #
    brandi — September 21, 2012 @ 10:43 am

    how did you know these were my all time favorite donuts?! i would steal every single chocolate munchkin out of the DD box, every time. no sympathy for others – they could have the plain and cinnamon sugar – i wanted all the chocolate.


  2. #
    Meg @ Peaches and Cake — September 21, 2012 @ 10:44 am

    Wow! These are so cute! What a good boy Mr. How Sweet was to sift!


  3. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — September 21, 2012 @ 10:50 am

    fried balls of chocolate with sprinkles on top – oh they look incredible! Moist and fluffy and just everything a donut hole should be!


  4. #
    stacy t — September 21, 2012 @ 10:59 am

    the look like pop’ems from entenmenn’s but much more yummy. so making these on a winter day when the kids don’t have school.


  5. #
    kim@hungryhealthygirl — September 21, 2012 @ 11:02 am

    If they taste half as good as they look, I’m in! Those are the cutest things ever!!


  6. #
    Dana Sixx — September 21, 2012 @ 11:03 am

    wow, these look FANTASTIC!! I totally want to try making these!! <3


  7. #
    joelle (on a pink typewriter) — September 21, 2012 @ 11:12 am

    When I was little, I was obsessed with Dunkin Donut chocolate munchkins, aka donut holes just like THESE. Gaaah. I want some in my office cubicle right now!


  8. #
    Moni @ {Moni Meals} — September 21, 2012 @ 11:54 am

    Hot Diggity dang- these are amazing-fantabulous balls!! I would like one now please, just one, pretty please?? ;)


  9. #
    Jessica — September 21, 2012 @ 11:55 am

    These look so tasty!! I wanna pop five of them right now! (Also, I like how Moni says hot diggity dang…lol).
    You are a genius!!


  10. #
    Captain Micah — September 21, 2012 @ 12:23 pm

    I absolutely love that movie, but I probably shouldn’t because I’m 30 now.

    I am eagerly awaiting the day when computers have the ability to produce in-person what we get to see on the screen. Because a chocolate donut cake hole sounds just about perfect right now.


  11. #
    Bethany @ Accidental Intentions — September 21, 2012 @ 12:26 pm

    Bonus points to you for including my favorite movie quote of all time.

    I feel like it goes without saying that every time I read your blog I’m all, “How does one woman create so much food goodness on a regular basis?” and since 23049 other people are going to be all, “OMG DONUTS LAHHHHHVVVEEEE,” I’ve got to say that what stuck out to me the most in this post is the PHOTOGRAPHY. Like whoa, girl. I did appreciate the behind-the-scenes explanation of the sifting photo, because I was struggling to get my mind around how on earth one two-armed woman accomplished such a task (I was betting on self-timer until you revealed your secrets. Still impressed, though). But the one with the donut holes on the cooling rack with the glaze all drippity-drip down on the paper towel? Legitimately beautiful. No sarcasm involved. I want to print it, frame it, and hang it in my kitchen. Your photography skills are seriously bomb.


  12. #
    AllieNic @ Frisky Lemon — September 21, 2012 @ 12:44 pm

    When I first read the title of this post, I thought it said “chocolate donut cake holes.” It made me laugh…and now, after reading this, my day is brighter. These look so good…definitely a good weekend project…


  13. #
    Aly — September 21, 2012 @ 12:54 pm

    Even though I am scared of frying things, I might have to try it for this!


    • Tim — September 22nd, 2012 @ 11:30 am

      Aly, do not be scared, if you want get a can or two of biscuits heat the oil like as stated above, poke a whole in the middle of the biscuits and widen it a little then drop them in the hot oil and fry them about a minute on each side. You do this to practice the frying, this way no inicent chocolate is harmed :-)


  14. #
    Erika — September 21, 2012 @ 1:03 pm

    Makes me feel better every time you talk about nomming on yummy food and then…staying in and watching TV. Because sometimes (often) that is just the way to go. These look so. Incredibly. Good. I don’t know if I can handle deep frying but this makes me want to go out and just eat ALL the doughnut holes.


  15. #
    Claire @ Live and Love to Eat — September 21, 2012 @ 1:13 pm

    I was in love with this recipe even BEFORE I saw the sprinkles. Now I want to leave work and make them immediately.


  16. #
    Phi — September 21, 2012 @ 2:01 pm

    I would want these for my birthday. Really, I would. It’s kind of not around the corner so I should have plenty of time to try and make it.


  17. #
    Kristen {bites & sights} — September 21, 2012 @ 2:15 pm

    Just stop it! I’m afraid to make these – surely I’ll eat all 3 dozen in one sitting. Yum yum yum!!!


  18. #
    Mara @ martialartsnchocolate.blogspot.com — September 21, 2012 @ 2:39 pm

    Oh, those look so hard to resist!!! But, if I made all the recipes on your site that I really WANT to make, I’d be like 400 lbs! I don’t know how you can make all these delectable yums and stay so freaken skinny! You MUST have the metabolism of a 7 yr old too! Lucky!!!! not fair!


  19. #
    Shanna — September 21, 2012 @ 3:53 pm

    We love Despicable Me in my house. My 2 year old runs around yelling ” OH YEAH!!” like Vector does and both of my girls love the end disco dancing scene so much that they made me ( er i willingly made) a Bee-Gee’s pandora station and we have nightly disco dancing parties on the nights my husband works. Which are great for burning off the calories of inhaling chocolate cake donut holes. And great for not having my husband see me teach my girls sweet dance moves, like the sprinkler.


  20. #
    Katie @ Blonde Ambition — September 21, 2012 @ 4:29 pm

    I don’t care if these are chocolate cake balls or chocolate donut holes, I want them in my mouth. Amen.


  21. #
    nancy k — September 21, 2012 @ 7:08 pm

    These look yummy but I don’t fry food so I am wondering…do you think this recipe could be used for baked donuts? I read it over and it seems like it wolud be fineg. I might just half everything and give it a try.


  22. #
    Adriana @FoodCocktail — September 21, 2012 @ 7:22 pm

    I actually used that last phrase on my blog a few days ago…I’m glad to find another…let’s say adult, who enjoys Despicable me that much :)


  23. #
    Rachel — September 21, 2012 @ 7:22 pm

    you just made my night with this recipe!!! i have a feeling these will be a staple in my house come tomorrow morning;) I have a very passionate love affair with donut holes, so I thank you so much in advance:) You also take gorgeous pictures!!!!


  24. #
    Kristen @ notsodomesticated — September 21, 2012 @ 7:46 pm

    Oh man, I would seriously gain like 1,000 pounds if I lived near you!


  25. #
    Karly — September 21, 2012 @ 8:29 pm

    Deep fried balls of chocolate. I think you are speaking my language.


  26. #
    The Meaning of Me — September 21, 2012 @ 10:32 pm

    Sprinkles go on everything. Especially fried chocolate.


  27. #
    Sandra — September 22, 2012 @ 7:35 am

    Ya killing me smalls…….


  28. #
    susan — September 22, 2012 @ 8:10 am

    so good to hear you found such a willing participant – and such a great sifter at that! I have 3 boys and my house is all about the “gangnam” style! Very, very cute little balls!


  29. #
    Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking — September 22, 2012 @ 9:54 am

    Mmmm! Donut holes! I watched Despicable Me the other night too. Love the allusion to the movie in the last line. So cute!


  30. #
    Ellen @ Wannabe Health Nut — September 22, 2012 @ 10:45 am

    Is Mr. HS sore from his strenuous arm workout? Lol. These look beyond delicious!


  31. #
    Becky — September 22, 2012 @ 10:52 am

    I…I think I just fell in love with photographs.

    Dunkin Donuts’ munchkins have literally held a special place in my heart since I was a widdle tot. And you bet I’ll be making these as soon as I can in tribute.


  32. #
    Mary Helen (@MaryMakesDinner) — September 22, 2012 @ 11:27 am

    My goodness, those are so pretty!! Chocolate donut holes just happen to be a childhood favorite anyway. Yum!


  33. #
    Brittany — September 22, 2012 @ 11:49 am

    These are so adorable and Im sure they taste amazing! Where are your white bowls from? LOVE them!


  34. #
    Tim — September 22, 2012 @ 12:24 pm

    Another great treat Jessica! These are definitely donuts as they are fried not baked. With the fall season upon us today I was wondering if you might be able to adapt this recipe to say Apple Spice donut holes?


  35. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — September 22, 2012 @ 5:04 pm

    Oh dear Lord give me one of these right now please!!!


  36. #
    Kelly — September 22, 2012 @ 7:50 pm

    You’re trying to kill me, aren’t you?! :P


  37. #
    Emily @ Life on Food — September 23, 2012 @ 6:21 am

    These are the only donuts I will eat…mostly. Perfect birthday dessert.


  38. #
    tania@mykitchenstories.com.au — September 23, 2012 @ 8:39 am

    Crazy doughnut girl!!


  39. #
    Megan {Country Cleaver} — September 23, 2012 @ 11:30 am

    Fried doughnut holes are the only true doughnut hole. On another note – is it doughnut or donut? Seriously this questions perplexes me. I think it depends on one’s mood. I use them interchangeably. Woman’s prerogative or something like that…

    And I need 47 of these myself. ½ with sprinkles ½ without. Yeah, I know I said 47.


  40. #
    Monica — September 23, 2012 @ 6:44 pm

    I’m definitely going to bookmark this for the near future. My little one loves those chocolate munchkins and I’d love to make this for him one day. Thanks for posting this. Your pics look so scrumptious! : )


  41. #
    Milisa @ Miss in the Kitchen — September 23, 2012 @ 9:59 pm

    No words to describe how badly I need these!


  42. #
    Miguel — September 23, 2012 @ 10:28 pm

    Wow! I’ll definitely have to cook this recipe one of these days.


  43. #
    Colette @ JFF! — September 24, 2012 @ 12:49 pm

    You know I had NO idea what “gangnam” was either. So don’t feel bad.
    Now that I know these are “so fluffy,” i SO must try this recipe.
    There goes my diet. Bye-bye.


  44. #
    Connie the Cookie Monster — September 24, 2012 @ 10:17 pm

    YES! these are yeastless donuts!
    ps: i also eat for texture :)


  45. #
    Cookie and Kate — September 25, 2012 @ 9:59 pm

    I want, like, ten of these right now.


  46. #
    Chris @ Family Meal Ideas — September 26, 2012 @ 6:04 am

    I’d like to try making my own chocolate ~ has to be healthier than what we buy! ;-)


  47. #
    Tasha @ ThatsSoYummy — September 26, 2012 @ 7:47 pm

    These are my ultimate favorite kind of donuts.. swooning!!!!!


  48. #
    Christine @ Cooking with Cakes — September 27, 2012 @ 1:39 pm

    I had no idea these could be so simple, especially the glaze!! I suddenly have the urge to start glazing every baked good I’ve ever made lol


  49. #
    Amber @ Slim Pickin's Kitchen — September 27, 2012 @ 8:18 pm

    OMG, I don’t even like donuts, but I totally love to tear up so donut holes, especially ones that are chocolate and sprinkled. Yes to the ma’am, I’ll be testing this recipe out for sure!


  50. #
    Kimmi Ann Rea — September 28, 2012 @ 12:55 pm

    YuM! I want to make these tomorrow….my only hiccup is that I don’t have a cooking thermometer. Can I just crank the stove up full blast ( I have a natural gas stove) and hope for the best??



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