Baked Chocolate Cake Doughnuts With Sprinkles

Obsessed.IMG_1939

That’s how I now feel about making doughnuts.

I also keep accidentally spelling them as “donuts,” which I’m pretty sure is not a real word unless you’re Homer Simpson (and I never even watched “The  Simpsons” as a kid…. I don’t know).

Anyways, after seeing baked doughnuts popping up all over the place in the last couple years, I’ve  been looking for a good excuse to buy a doughnut pan and make some myself. photo 1-3

Because hey, why not?!

Alas, I figured this Easter was finally my moment.

I made some chocolate cake doughnuts to keep my guests on a sugar high while I made brunch, and, well, they worked like a charm. And I whipped them up in a flash right before church.  In other words, they’re really easy to make!

But OMG. IMG_1934

Talk about unleashing a monster.

Ironically, I don’t even really like regular doughnuts, yet I was fascinated about the idea of making some from scratch. Sort of like that time I made homemade pretzels. Considering they’re baked, not fried, makes me feel like they’re also almost healthy, even if they do taste exactly like chocolate cake.

Plus, everything is more exciting with sprinkles on top. Am I right?
photo 2-2

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Baked Chocolate Cake Doughnuts with Rainbow Sprinkles

*adapted from Joy the Baker

Ingredients

For the doughnuts:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (the measuring cup should not be filled to the top)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 extra large egg
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 heaping tsp vanilla extract
  • rainbow sprinkles

For the glaze:

  • 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • small pinch of salt

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 325′ F and spray a doughnut baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and brown sugar. Set aside.

2. In a smaller bowl, whisk together milk, egg, butter, and vanilla until combined. Pour wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold together until well combined.

3. Portion batter into the prepared doughnut pan, filling approximately 2/3 full.  Bake doughnuts for 13 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into one comes out clean.  Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.  Repeat until you’re out of batter (makes 10-11 doughnuts).

4. While doughnuts are cooling, start to make the glaze! In a medium bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt, making sure to get rid of all lumps. Add vanilla and milk, one tablespoon at a time, whisking to combine.  (Mixture won’t be too thick, but shouldn’t be thin.)

5. Once completely cool, dip each doughnut into the chocolate glaze, shaking off any excess.  Return to the wire rack and sprinkle with color jimmies, and allow to harden (should only take a couple minutes).  Enjoy!

Makes 10-11 doughnuts.

Workouts Lately

Hello, hello!

Let’s talk about working out. This fibula stress fracture has been a bit of buzzkill on the cardio front, you guys. It is helping push me to do more strength workouts, though, which is a good thing!

IMG_1895Lately, I’ve been getting my fitness fix with:

  • Body Pump classes
  • Barre workouts a la Pure Barre (I bit the bullet and bought a class package since I’m limited in what I can do to workout nowadays)
  • Walks outside {a slow to moderate pace}
  • Yoga
  • Elliptical and stationary bike, in very limited spurts

I’m not always great at being patient when it comes to myself and my own limits, so I’ve been semi pushing the threshold of doctor-approved workouts while waiting on this stress fracture to heal {which is not necessarily the smartest course of action – remember, I’m not a medical doctor or licensed fitness trainer}. I’ve been mindful to stop whatever activity I’m doing if I notice it in any way starts to hurt my leg, though, or results in pain afterwards.

I actually had to stop putting in much time on the elliptical or stationary bike because I noticed they both cause my foot to be tingly afterwards if I’m on either for too long. A physical therapist I know mentioned this might be due to aggravating the fractured fibula, which has a nerve attached to it. In other words, I need to remember that my orthopedist said to take it easy.

I’m trying, I’m trying. ;-)

If anyone has other suggestions for some good low-impact workouts, do tell! I’ve been considering adding swimming into the mix, but I  sort of feel like a flailing gorilla in the water.

Now I’m off to try and not eat the rest of these darn doughnuts (recipe probably coming this week). Have a good one!

 

Low-impact workout suggestions – go! 

Run For Boston

Morning!

Did you all have a nice weekend/Easter? I played hostess for a lovely brunch and ate far too many {homemade! by me!} sprinkled doughnuts. photo 1-3All my fellow runners out there, you probably know today is more than just a sleepy Monday after a holiday weekend. It’s the iconic 118th Boston Marathon! For so many people, running itself is synonymous with freedom and resilience – the two very things that were tested when the two bombs went off at last year’s Boston Marathon. Running in itself is a sacred, personal experience, one that creates an unspeakable bond between runners everywhere, and that makes “Boston strong” words of motivation and love for runners everywhere. 

A few of my friends are running Boston today, including a sorority sister/former fellow D.C.-er (and rockstar runner), Melani. She actually ran it last year too, safely passing the finish line before the bombs went off.

When Melani returned to D.C. after Boston, she and her friend Lauren (who had also run the marathon) felt compelled to do something in light of the heartbreaking tragedy. Using an online crowd-funding site, they created and sold a custom-designed running jersey dedicated to being Boston strong:run4boston front & back

Ta-da! Their Run4Boston jerseys.

100% net proceeds from the Run4Boston campaign are donated to The One Fund, the non-profit established to support the 2013 Boston Marathon victims and their families. They ended up selling over 100 Run4Boston jerseys last year to supporters all over the United States, donating over $3,000 to The One Fund! Rad, huh?

Melani and Lauren just re-launched a new site in the hopes of raising more money for The One Fund, as well as continuing to raise awareness that contributions are still helping the victims of the bombings.  You can click here to read a press release about that.capitol lauren & lani copyIf you’re interested in ordering a Run4Boston jersey or learning more information about Melani and Lauren’s efforts, please visit their campaign website, or check them out on Facebook.

Sending best wishes, positive thoughts, and lots of carb-loading love to Boston today. :-)

Be Kind

Hi friends!photo 2 (2)(source)

Yesterday, I was at a very looooooong doctor’s appointment, and basically falling asleep atop my laptop (I was trying to get some work done while at my appointment). Out of the blue, a warm coffee cup was handed to me by a nurse who I’d earlier been commiserating with about feeling sleepy.

He’d walked upstairs to the hospital cafeteria and bought me a coffee (and brought packets of sugar and cream, just in case I didn’t take my coffee black). Ummmm, what?photo 1 coffee

This person I barely know, other than some hellos and how-are-yous. I was floored, in the best way.

Enough so that I wanted to tell you guys about it! Kind, thoughtful people may seem few and far between in today’s world, but that little gesture was enough to restore my faith in humanity. A solid reminder that there is good in the world still — people with full hearts and positive intentions.

Since Easter is coming up this Sunday, it seems even more timely to share a message of kindness and paying it forward. I know not everyone celebrates Easter and that’s cool, but in my own life it’s always been a symbol of hope and love and renewal. Hand in hand with spring, really. And regardless of any religious foundation, those are all good things.

Soooooooooo.kindness

(source)

As you head into this weekend and onward, don’t be afraid to let a little kindness pour out of your heart. Just a reassuring word or small action does the trick. Sounds totally goobery, but just go with it. You never know who you’ll help without even knowing it.

 

What are your plans for the weekend? Anything fun for the holidays?

Review: Kodiak Cakes

Someone recently told me that if I was a food, I’d be a pancake. It just about made my day.

photo 1

Honestly, there is not much I love more in life than pancakes. I mean, certain people and running and sunshine top the list of things I love too, of course, but pancakes…. Gah.

We go waaaay back.

Needless to say, I was beyond excited when Kodiak Cakes asked if I’d be interested in reviewing one of their new pancake mixes. I nearly leaped for joy when their special delivery arrived on my doorstep. Better than Christmas, you guys.photo 1

Although homemade pancakes are always number one in my heart, I’ve been a fan of the original whole wheat Kodiak Cakes mix since I first learned about them about a year ago. They’re truly one of the most nutritious (and tasty) boxed mixes I’ve ever tried, and I’m no stranger to the pancake/waffle mix aisle in the grocery store. Let’s be honest – mixes require a whole lot less bowls to wash after you’re done cooking.

As you may recall, I ate pancakes just about every week on the nights before my long runs for my past two half marathons.  90% of the time they were made using Kodiak Cakes mix (that I bought with my own money, unbeknownst to the Kodiak Cakes powers that be).

Pancakes = running fuel. Even Ryan Hall agrees with me on that.

The mix that Kodiak Cakes sent me last week, though, were for their new “power cakes,” aka pancakes packed with protein – 14 grams per three-pancake serving. photo 5Um, awesome! Even more perfect for pre-long run fueling.

To be honest, I was a little nervous about trying the mix, because a lot of times products that promise to be jam-packed with protein actually taste like chalk. These power cakes (<–catchy, right?), though, do not taste the teeniest bit like chalk. Quite the opposite actually. They’re pretty darn delicious! My boyfriend even enjoyed them and he usually says he hates pancakes (I know, I KNOW).

In fact, I think I like this protein mix even better than their regular, old fashioned one! The pancakes are definitely more filling per serving, and the taste was a little bit more complex. And per usual, just the right fluffiness level and flavor — not too sweet, not too dry.

photo 3

I made a batch on Saturday morning after going to Body Pump class and devoured my stack  within seconds, paired  with a runny egg and some syrup.  I used unsweetened almond milk per the alternative directions on the back of the box for even more protein and flavor, and added some banana slices into a couple of the ‘cakes, just because. Breakfast Brunch of champions.

Big thank you to Kodiak Cakes for sharing their new product with me! As always, all reviews are 100% my own honest opinion. (Full disclosure: I even told the kind Kodiak Cakes folks that I had to try it and like it before I’d recommend it to you guys. :-) )

Have you tried Kodiak Cakes mixes before? FYI, they’re running a special 25% discount on orders if you use promo code SHARKTANK through May 4! 

a writer with a hearty appetite & an active lifestyle