Pumpkin Cronuts, Vegan

I ' ve wanted to give cronuts a try after seeing them all over the news this summer and I never got to it…  So when I was working on fall recipes a cronut made with pumpkin first came to mind.  Lovely layers of buttery fall pumpkin, finished by rolling in Chinese 5-Spice sugar and topped with maple pepitas. I'm so happy how these turned out and I hope you love them as much as my family did.

I've made puff pastry once in my life, I wanted to see if I could do it and it did, it was majestic -fluffy, crispy and delicious  ….  And it was a lot of  work so mostly I buy frozen if I’m using it in a recipe, like everybody else.  To make a cronut dough the inventor, Dominique Ansel used the same principles as you would use to make puff pastry (think croissant)  but using a yeast brioche dough instead of a basic flour dough.  This makes a flaky, buttery, crispy and chewy dough when fried. Yum.  Dominique you are a genius!

When I started working on this recipe I thought I’ll  use my vegan brioche recipe and then after it’s risen I’ll follow the technique for making puff pastry and it worked!  (I was slightly skeptical).  The one thing that did not work was cronut hole, they puffed up into kind of an accordion shape and then broke apart in circles but I rolled the dough back into a disc and cut out some more cronuts and they worked great as well, surprise, surprise.


Pumpkin Cronut with Chinese 5-Spice Sugar and Maple Glazed Pepitas


  • ½ Cup Warm Water
  • 1 Package Active Dry Yeast
  • ⅓ Cup Earth Balance Butter, Room Temperature
  • ¼  Cup Soy Milk
  • ½ Cup Pumpkin Puree
  • ¼ Cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla
  • ⅓ Cup Veganaise ( or any soy mayonnaise)
  • 1 tsp. Chinese 5-spice
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 ½ tsp. Salt
  • 4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Sticks Earth Balance Butter, Frozen

5-Spice Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. Chinese 5-Spice
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 Cup Organic Sugar

Maple Glaze with Pepitas 
  • 1 Tbsp. Earth Balance Butter
  • 1 Cup Toasted Pepitas
  • 1/3 Cup Pure Maple Syrup
  • Pinch of Salt

Makes 18 Cronuts

  1. In a small bowl add warm water (110 degrees) and yeast, set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a heavy duty mixer with the paddle attachment  add room temperature Earth Balance, soy milk, pumpkin puree, maple syrup, vanilla and Veganaise, mix on low until combined.  
  3. Add yeast mixture and blend until combined. With the mixer on low add Chinese 5-spice, cinnamon and salt, add one cup of flour at a time into mixer allow flour to be totally combined before adding more flour. After the third cup of flour switch to hook attachment.
  4. Add the last cup of flour and turn mixer up to medium high and mix for ten minutes. Keep an eye on the mixer it tends to move.
  5. Place dough in greased bowl and cover with towel, let rise 1.5 hours until doubling in size.
  6. Lightly flour surface and roll out  dough into the shape of a rectangle about ½ inch thick.
  7. Remove Earth Balance from the freezer and carefully slice into very thin strips.
  8. In the center 1/3rd of the dough place ⅓ of the Earth Balance in an even layer.
  9. Fold over with each side and turn  ¼ turn clockwise.  
  10. Roll out dough to the same size rectangle place the 2nd 3rd of Earth Balance in center and Repeat one more time.
  11. Place in ½ sheet pan, making sure roll out to fit pan and cover  loosely with plastic wrap and then a towel.
  12. Refrigerate overnight.
  13. In a shallow bowl or pan mix together ingredients for 5-spice sugar and set aside.
  14. With donut or biscuit cutter cut out donuts and place on lightly floured ½ sheet pan.
  15. Form scraps into ball, roll out and cut into more donuts.
  16. Cover with towel and let rise 20 minutes .
  17. In a heavy bottom pot with high sides fill with canola oil about half way from the top.  Turn on medium high and add kitchen thermometer to side.  Heat oil to 350 degrees before adding any donuts.
  18. When oil has come to temperature carefully add  3 donuts at a time frying them on each side until golden brown , about 1-2 minutes a side.  Cool on wire rack.  Make sure oil comes back to temperature before adding more cronut dough.
  19. When cronuts cool slightly roll in 5-Spice sugar.

For Maple Glaze I
  1. In a medium size saucepan add Earth Balance Butter, Toasted Pepitas and Maple Syrup cook on medium low until reduced, bubbly and mixture reaches 240 degrees.
  2. Spoon over cronuts and let cool 10 minutes before serving.
Here's How I Did It!!!


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