The Inescapable Hole–Part I

Donuts. There is something about them (especially for those of us with a voracious sweet tooth) that draws us in with a relentless force of confectionary greatness. It is as if they have their own gravitational field that lures us near enough to the point where we cannot turn back after the first…or the second…or the third…until we have obliterated that last crumb in the box of one dozen. It is without a doubt that donuts are the black holes in the universe of pastires.

All cosmic forces aside, however, they do not need to be bad news for the mindful and/or high-volume eaters.


The last time I recall consuming an entire dozen donuts was years ago. As much as I imagined it would be a good idea at the moment of sinking my teeth into that initial ring of sweet glory, my stomach felt much less than glorious once I was finished. Although conquering every last donut in the box can be a truly satisfying feat for one who enjoys feasting their way to the moon and back, by the time that final one had seen the light of day, I realized it would have been best to abort the mission after one or two.

Unfortunately, the ill-natured aftermath was not enough of a deterrent. My persistent sweet tooth still invoked the desire for every donut in the batch, though my tendency toward mindful eating caused a longing for indulgence without a sugar headache and an unsettled stomach. I realized one day, it was time for the proverbial dozen donuts to receive a Bottomless Stomach makeover.

I replaced several traditional donut ingredients with some less conventional ones in order to create my own “better-for-you” version. Beans, as I use in several other dessert recipes, provide many nutrients such as protein and fiber. They also add moisture without the need for butter or oil. Rice protein powder boosts the protein content even further (I have dubbed this recipe Pronuts). Including only a small amount of of all-purpose flour (gluten free in this case) in combination with high-quality fiber supplements for the dry ingredients allows for a classic cake donut texture while keeping the calories low. In order to profoundly reduce the sugar content, I used my a combination of erythritol and stevia. Finally, cocoa powder and sugar-free dark baking chocolate make for a smooth, ultra-rich icing that brings everything together like a dream.

If you are hesitant to go near a batch of donuts for concern that thier gravitational pull will be too great to escape before that last sugar-saturated supernova of deliciousness has passed your lips, fear not. In the case of this recipe, not one within the entire dozen need be off limits, and this luxury is well-worth the preparation effort. Trust me!

But wait! I have not entitled this article “Part I” for nothing, so please stay tuned…

High-Protein Donuts

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Makes: 12 donuts

Equipment: Standard sized donut pans (enough to equal 12 donuts); small food processor or immersion blender; electric mixer; cooking spray, waxed paper

Donut Ingredients:
Scant 1/2 cup (100 grams) granular erythritol
6 tablespoons (51 grams) gluten-free all purpose flour
2 1/2 tablespoons (16 grams) rice protein powder
1 1/2 tablespoons (9 grams) acacia fiber
1 tablespoon (5 grams) psyllium husks
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon xanthin gum
1/8 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 cup (60 grams) egg whites
1/4 cup (35 grams) cooked beans

1 teaspoon vanilla extract
30 drops liquid stevia

Icing Ingredients:
1/4 cup (50 grams) powdered erythritol
1 1/2 squares (21 grams) no-sugar added baking chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons (15 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons almond milk
10-20 drops liquid stevia
Dash of vanilla extract
Multi-colored sprinkles (optional, but definitely a cosmic addition)

For the donuts, combine the erythritol, flour, protein powder, acacia fiber, psyllium husks, baking powder, nutmeg, xanthin gum, and salt in a large bowl; whisk together and set aside.

Coat donut pans generously with cooking spray; set aside. Preheat oven to 350°.

In a food processor (or separate bowl if using an immersion blender), combine the egg whites, beans, vanilla extract, and stevia; blend thoroughly.

Add the blended wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Add water if needed 1 tablespoon at a time. The mixture should have a consistency somewhere between cake batter and cookie dough.

Empty the batter into prepared donut pans and place on the middle oven rack. Bake until an inserted toothpick comes out nearly clean (approximately 20 minutes). Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. When the pans are cool enough to touch, cover the tops of the donuts with plastic wrap to avoid excess drying; continue to cool for approximately one hour.

For the icing, combine the powdered erythritol, chopped baking chocolate, cocoa powder, milk, stevia, and vanilla in a microwave-safe bowl with a circumference slightly larger than the donuts (so they will fit inside when dipped); whisk thoroughly. Add more milk or water if needed, one teaspoon at a time until fairly runny. Heat in microwave on 50% power for 30 second intervals, proceeding to whisk in between. Continue until all chocolate is melted and the consistency is smooth. Cover and let cool slightly.

Once the donuts are completely cool, carefully remove them from the pans. Dip into the icing one at a time, placing on waxed paper to allow for runoff of any excess. Apply sprinkles if using. Allow icing to harden for approximately 20 minutes, then store in airtight containers until ready to eat.

Nutrition Facts:
Per 12 donuts – 537 calories (144 from fat); 16g total fat (13g saturated fat); 0mg cholesterol; 902mg sodium; 759mg potassium; 75g total carbohydrate (46g dietary fiber, 7g sugar, 29g net carbs); 47g protein; Bonus: Calcium (17% dv); Iron (76% dv)

Nutritional information provided by



9 thoughts on “The Inescapable Hole–Part I

  1. Your protein donuts sound amazing! In most “sweet” recipes, can you substitute liquid stevia for white sugar? If so, what conversion rate (how much stevia replaces how much sugar)?

    Liked by 2 people

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