Pistachio Doughnuts

I have made many many pistachio desserts. I LOVE PISTACHIO.

I wanted to make another pistachio-ee thing…so here we are, pistachio doughnuts woohoo.

These were SO SOFT AND FLUFFY, that’s all I have to say. They were so soft and fluffy I loved them.

The pistachio doughnuts on a plate.

Video Tutorial

Milk bread dough

Every time I make doughnuts, or just any dough to be honest, I like to make a Japanese milk bread dough.

I do add a few additional ingredients, so it’s kind of like a mix between milk bread and brioche. But it started as a milk bread dough so I’m calling it that.

I loooooove milk bread.

It’s always so soft, so light and so fluffy. So this is why I always use a milk bread dough as a base.

I would say the main difference between a milk bread dough, and other kinds of dough is the addition of a tangzhong.

The tangzhong

A tangzhong is just a mixture of flour and a liquid (I used milk) that has been heated together until it thickens.

This is then mixed into your dough. 

This makes a huge difference to your bread, it makes it so much more softer and fluffier.

I don’t know the exact science behind why it work, but it does make a huge difference so I don’t question it.

It is an extra step, but it’s so worth it just trust me.

The ingredients needed to make the dough.

The ingredients

These are the ingredients you are going to need to make the dough:

  • Bread flour – plain flour/all purpose flour does work too BUTTT bread flour will give you the best results. Your doughnuts will be fluffier with bread flour.
  • Granulated sugar – caster sugar works too.
  • Salt
  • Milk powder – this is going to give your doughnuts extra flavour and softness. It is optional, but a nice addition.
  • Instant yeast
  • Eggs – I used 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk. The extra egg yolk is gonna give the doughnuts more richness.
  • The tangzhong
  • Whole milk – you want this to be warm, NOT HOT, but warm. So just heat it for about 30-60 seconds in your microwave.
  • Unsalted butter
The dough in a bowl, before being left to rise.
The dough in a bowl, after being left to rise.

The instant yeast

I wanted to talk about the yeast for a minute…so let’s talk about the yeast.

Whenever I make anything with yeast in it, I prefer to use instant yeast just because I find it easier to use.

With instant yeast, you don’t need to activate it, you can add it straight into your bowl with the rest of the ingredients. So it just saves some time.

But if you only have active yeast, you could use that too. You will have to activate it first though.

To do this, just add your yeast into your warm milk, along with a tablespoon of the sugar. Give this a mix, then leave this aside for about 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, the mixture should look foamy. This means it is ready to use.

Now you can add it into your bowl with the rest of the ingredients, then make your dough.

The doughnuts on a tray before being fried.

Frying the doughnuts

We’re going to fry the doughnuts in vegetable oil. Or just any flavourless oil, but I like to use vegetable oil.

You want your oil to be at 160c, then fry your doughnuts until they are a deep golden brown colour on both sides.

If you don’t have a thermometer THIS IS OK DON’T WORRY.

The best way to test if your oil is ready, is by adding a small piece of dough into it.

If the dough starts gently bubbling, your oil is ready.

If the dough doesn’t bubble, your oil needs to be heated up for long.

But if the dough starts aggressively bubbling IT IS TOO HOT. Lower the heat or turn it off, then let the oil cool down for a few minutes.

You want the doughnuts to be gently bubbling throughout the whole frying process.

4 of the doughnuts being fried.

The pistachio spread

Once the doughnuts have been fried, we’re going to coat them in some sugar, and then fill them with pistachio spread.

I used a pistachio spread from a brand called ‘Pisti’.

It’s actually called pistachio cream, but I’ve been calling it spread all this time so I feel like it’s too late to stop now.

Anyway Costco sells it, or you can also get it from Amazon.

With that being said, any pistachio spread works, use whichever you like or whichever you can find.

But once the doughnuts have been filled, you can finally dig in.

Here are some other pistachio recipes you need to try:

Pistachio Doughnuts

5.0 from 2 votes

Makes: 8-10 Doughnuts

  • For the tangzhong:
  • 20 g bread flour

  • 100 ml whole milk

  • For the dough:
  • 330 g bread flour

  • 60 g granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 30 g milk powder

  • 12 g instant yeast

  • 1 egg

  • 1 egg yolk

  • The tangzhong

  • 120 ml whole milk, warm (just heat it in your microwave for 30-60 seconds)

  • 60 g unsalted butter, softened

  • Extras:
  • Vegetable oil, to fry (or any flavourless oil)

  • Some extra sugar, to coat the doughnuts with

  • Some pistachio spread, to fill the doughnuts


  • Making the tangzhong:
  • Add the flour and milk into a pot. Mix these together.
  • Place this onto medium heat and heat this mixture, whiles constantly stirring, until you get a thick paste. This doesn't take long so don't walk away.
  • Leave this to cool down in your fridge for 5 minutes.
  • Making the dough:
  • In a large bowl, add all the ingredients for the dough, except the butter. Make sure to remember to add the tangzhong you just made.
  • Mix this until a dough forms, then add the butter and knead for 15 minutes.
  • After the dough has been kneaded, place it into a slightly greased bowl, cover and leave to rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours, or until doubled in size.
  • Forming the doughnuts:
  • Once your dough has risen, you can form your doughnuts.
  • Get 80g of the dough and form this into a ball, then slightly press this ball down. This dough is sticky, so have some flour next to you to help.
  • Place this onto a tray, on top of a square piece of baking paper. Repeat until you have used all of your dough.
  • Gently cover these and leave in a warm place to rest for about 45 minutes. You don't need them to double in size, they should just look slightly puffier and feel softer when you touch them.
  • Frying the doughnuts:
  • Once the doughnuts have rested, you want to fry them in oil that is at 160c. Fry them until they are a deep golden brown colour on both sides. Also make sure to fry them in batches, you don't want to overcrowd your pot.
  • Once fried, leave them on a wire rack so any excess oil can drain off.
  • Whiles they are still warm, coat them in some sugar, then place them back onto your wire rack so they can cool down.
  • Once cooled, fill them with the pistachio spread. To do this, fill a piping bag, that has been fitted with a round tip, with the pistachio spread. Poke a hole into the side of a doughnut, then shove the piping bag into this and squeeze some pistachio spread into it. Repeat until you have filled all of the doughnuts.
  • Now you can enjoy!

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