Doughnuts. Ah, doughnuts. Whether you get them from a funfair, your local supermarket or a tiny corner bakery, there is nothing that can go wrong with these doughy balls of heaven, EVER. But what if the thought of all that deep-fat frying puts you off? I have a solution for you – make them in an Actifry!

An Actifry, I hear you cry. What the heck is an Actifry? Well, without plugging the makers too much, it is a nifty machine which “fries” things using only a tablespoon or two of oil. I know, right? I never oven cook chips (fries) any more and theoretically, anything that can be fried, can be thrown in the Actifry.

I am not going to lie, to get this kind of perfection (doughnuts + healthier) does come at a price. They do take a little effort and time. However, when you are stuffing yourself with these beauties, the sacrifice involved in making them will be forgotten in an instant!


  • 100ml (1/4 cup) water
  • 150ml (1/2 cup) milk
  • 60g (1/4 cup) butter
  • 25g fresh yeast (see notes)
  • 400-450g bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla sugar (see notes)
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 60g sugar
  • Nutella
  • Oil for cooking
  • Icing sugar (for sprinkling)


  1. In a pan, heat the water, milk and butter, just until the butter is starting to melt. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until it just lukewarm, and then sprinkle in the yeast. Stir until combined and leave for around 10 minutes to activate.
  2. In a large bowl, mix around 350g of bread flour with the sugar, vanilla sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon. Pour in the wet ingredients and gradually add more flour as necessary (check out my tips on making bread).
  3. Knead for around five minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic and then place back in the bowl and cover with a towel. Leave in a warm place until it has pretty much doubled in size.
  4. Drop dollops of Nutella (around 1-2 teaspoons) on a baking tray lined with grease-proof paper. Place in the freezer for an hour to harden up.
  5. Knock back the dough and briefly knead again and then divide into 8 roughly equal sized balls, pulling the outsides in to make a nice, smooth finish. Take each ball and flatten in the palm of your hand and place one of the Nutella dollops in the centre. Pull over the outsides of the dough so that the Nutella is completely covered.
  6. Place the dough balls on a baking tray lined with grease-proof paper, cover, and leave in a warm place to proof for around 45-60 minutes.
  7. Remove the rotary part of your Actifry, then sprinkle in a touch of vegetable oil. Place the lid on and let it run for a couple of minutes, then gently place several doughnuts in. Brush a little oil over the top. Because the rotary part is not being used, you will manually need to shuffle the doughnuts around to ensure an even cooking. The more doughnuts in the pan, the longer they take.
  8. When golden brown, remove from the Actifry and leave to cool on some kitchen paper. Coat with icing sugar and enjoy while still warm!

Recipe originally appeared on The Culinary Jumble.