Tag Archives: hanukkah

Cinnamon Bun Stuffed Donuts {Recipe}

Cinnamon Bun Stuffed Donuts | Lil Miss Cakes

Oh my goodness, guys-I think I just won Hanukkah. Now let me start off by apologizing for sharing these the day that the holiday starts, but you really can’t rush greatness! Lucky for us, Hanukkah is 8 days long so there is still time to work these epic donuts into your schedule!

Cinnamon Bun Donut | Lil Miss Cakes

Now I wish I could tell you that this recipe came out perfectly on my first try. I was actually working on another flavor idea and couldn’t get the dough to work. So I thought I would try using my cinnamon bun dough because that recipe is amazing and it’s my most requested dessert. But then once I was using that dough my friend mentioned that I should just fry my cinnamon buns. I wasn’t so into that idea because that is basically just a fried cinnamon bun or coffee roll if you frequent Dunkin Donuts. That’s when the genius hit me! What if I stuff a cinnamon bun inside a donut and fry it?! It was not as easy as I thought. For one thing, my cinnamon bun dough is way to sweet and heavy. Perfect for baking, not so great in the fryer. There goes batch number one, into the garbage right out of the fryer. On to round two: finding a better recipe. I found one that was so similar to my original bun recipe, it just cut down on the amount of sugar and used a little less shortening instead of my butter/margarine. This recipe was similar to Alton Browns recipe but without all the weighing so I  knew I was on to something. This new dough recipe turned out to be perfect! But my method now needed tweaking. I was rolling my cinnamon buns my usual way, cutting them into pieces and wrapping them in more dough. After letting them rest, they would fry up beautifully. But the centers were raw…insert sad face here! I was really going to give up-I was not only 2 batches deep in terrible cinnamon bun donuts, I didn’t even mention the 3 batches of my previously failed attempt at an interesting flavor combination.  5 batches of donuts in, I almost gave up. Aren’t you glad I didn’t?!

Cinnamon Bun Donuts | Lil Miss Cakes

It turns out that you need to bake the cinnamon buns before you stuff them inside more dough and fry them. Otherwise you end up with raw donut centers. I don’t know of anything worse! So, that is definitely a downside of this recipe-they take some time and patience. But here is the good news-you only need to make one batch of dough. And you can plan in advance-make the dough and bake the cinnamon buns. Next day, take your buns, stuff them in some raw dough and fry! The icing is completely optional, but cmon…you got this far-the icing is the easiest part! Here is my dairy-free, perfectly epic cinnamon bun stuffed donut recipe. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Bun Stuffed Donuts {Recipe}
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 2 packets yeast (4½ tsp.) I use active dry.
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • ⅓ cup vegetable shortening
  • ¾ cup soy milk
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 4 cups flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbs. margarine, melted
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 Tbs. cinnamon
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼-1/2 cup water
  1. In a small bowl or measuring cup, mix the yeast with the warm water and 1 tsp. sugar. Stir until no longer lumpy and set aside to proof and bubble up; 5-10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile add the ¼ cup sugar and the salt to the bowl of an electric stand mixer.
  3. In a microwaveable bowl warm the vegetable shortening with the soy milk until the shortening has melted. Pour the shortening/milk mixture over the sugar/salt mixture and stir to melt. Allow to cool until lukewarm.
  4. Add the flour and eggs into the mixer bowl. Then finish off with the yeast mixture. Mix on low using the dough hook until the dough comes together. Once it's pulling off the sides of the bowl, set the mixer to medium low and mix for about 6 minutes.
  5. Grease or oil a large clean bowl and scrape the dough mixture inside.The dough will be sticky, but don't add flour! Grease your hands to better work with the dough.
  6. Cover in plastic wrap and set in warm place to rise for one hour.
  7. Once the dough has risen, cut off ⅓ of the dough (about 12 ounces if you have a kitchen scale) to make your cinnamon buns. Set the rest of the dough in the fridge.
Cinnamon Buns
  1. Grease a 12 cavity cupcake pan and set aside.
  2. On a well floured surface roll out the dough you just portioned off. Roll it into a rectangle about 12" wide and 6" tall.
  3. Melt the margarine and brush over the dough.
  4. Sprinkle the dough with the brown sugar, sugar, and cinnamon. Roll the dough into a log, you are rolling the long side up so your log is still 12" long.
  5. Once rolled up use a serrated knife or bench scraper to cut the buns into 12 pieces.
  6. Place each bun in one cavity of the cupcake pan, cut side up/down.
  7. Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise for 30 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  9. Once the buns have risen, bake for 10-12 minutes until just lightly brown. You don't want to overbake-these will still be fried.
  10. Remove the pan from the oven, let cool for 5 minutes and then carefully pop the buns out of the cupcake pan. The sugar will be extremely hot so your best bet is to flip them out onto a parchment lined cookie sheet.
  11. Allow these to cool completely.
  12. Once the buns are cool, remove the reserved dough from the fridge.
  13. Divide the dough into 12 portions (just under 2 ounces each). Flatten each piece, I used well floured hands but you could use a rolling pin.
  14. Place one bun pretty side down on the flattened dough. Carefullly wrap the dough over the bun and pinch the seams together at the bottom.
  15. Set the donut to rise seam side down on a floured parchment lined baking sheet.
  16. Once all 12 donuts are formed, cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise for 30 minutes.
  17. While the donuts are rising, heat your cooking oil. I use vegetable oil but use any oil with a high smoking point.
  18. Heat your oil to 350 degrees F. Proper temperature is everything: too cold and your donuts soak up all the oil and become greasy. Too hot and your donut is burning but the inside is raw.
  19. I use a deep fryer because it will regulate the temperature for me, if you don't have one-make sure you have a really good thermometer and keep a close eye on it.
  20. Fry the donuts for about 1 minute per side.
  21. Carefully remove from the oil and drain on a sheet pan lined with paper towels.
  1. Once your donuts have cooled (if you haven't eaten them all yet) measure the powdered sugar into a bowl.
  2. Slowly add a bit of water at a time until you have a thick icing consistency. I went thick with these but you can thin the icing out more if you are looking for more of a glaze.
  3. Dip, drizzle, or pour the icing onto your donuts.
  4. Sprinkle with extra cinnamon for an added touch and enjoy!

Elegant Hanukkah Cookies

Elegant Hanukkah Cookies | Lil Miss Cakes

The first time I ever ever made this sugar cookie recipe I was small, and made them with my mom for Hanukkah.  This cookie recipe is a holiday family tradition!  But every year I like to design new ways to use this perfect cookie dough.  A few years ago I made stenciled cookies that came out cute, but the colors were much darker than I intended.  My favorite design to date is my standing menorah made from cutters that I designed!

Menorah Hanukkah Cookies | Lil Miss Cakes

I wanted to make some elegant Hanukkah cookies so I chose a simple color palette of blue, white, and silver.  I used some cute shaped cutters to cut out these shapes.  This small plaque cutter is actually available in my shop.  I iced these cookies with white royal icing, and then swirled in some silver airbrush color to give them a marbleized look.  I used an amazing tutorial from Amber of SweetAmbs which you can see here!  Once the cookies dried overnight, I piped simple menorahs on top.

Happy Hanukkah Cookies | Lil Miss Cakes

These cookies gave me a hard time.  I had an idea that just flopped, twice.  I covered the cookies with light blue royal icing, that was easy.  I had an idea that I saw in the latest  issue of JCreate Magazine to use silver and stamp out the dreidel shape.  I could not get it to look good in edible form!  So I needed a new idea fast.  I decided to stencil these cookies using silver airbrush color.  The only problem was that  I had no stencil!  So I designed one and had my husband print it out using our 3D printer.  It is the best gadget we have ever gotten; we keep coming up with new uses for it!  Once my herringbone stencil was printed, I airbrushed the cookies.  My next idea was to pipe some dreidels, but every design I tried just looked gross.  I was starting to get frustrated.  Then I remembered that I had a “Happy Hanukkah” stencil and tried that.  Now my simple and elegant cookies were actually simple and elegant!  Happy Hanukkah!  Here are some great holiday recipes from some of my best blogging buddies!

How To Decorate 3D Menorah Cookies {Video}

3D Menorah Cookie

I hope you get really creative when decorating the 3D menorah cookies I designed.  Get the kids involved, they will absolutely love decorating their own cookies and truly enjoy standing them up!  Here’s a simple way I decorated my cookies…I made you a little video!

For a picture tutorial and my sugar cookie recipe, go here.
Head to my shop for the cookie cutter I designed for this project.

Standing Menorah Cookie {Tutorial}

3D Menorah Cookie

I’m so excited to share all my tips and tricks for creating perfectly rolled sugar cookies. All these tips will help to create these super cute menorah cookies that stand on their own! This is the method I use to roll out all my shaped sugar cookies.  Rolling out the dough my way takes a little more time, but each shape will be exactly perfect, the days of crooked cookies are over!  I definitely recommend using my recipe (which can be found at the bottom of this post) since that is the only recipe I have ever used; it’s tried and true.  But if you have a favorite recipe, go for it!  My method will still help create perfect shapes.

Floured parchment paper

Cut a piece of parchment paper about the size of your baking/cookie sheet.  Place your parchment paper on your work space and lightly dust with flour.  You want your dough to stick a bit to the parchment paper!Cookie dough dusted with flour

Place a round piece of dough on the lightly dusted piece of parchment paper and dust with flour.  Using a rolling pin, roll out your dough making sure you do not roll over the edges.Rolling out sugar cookie dough

Rolling out cookie dough

Do not lift your dough off the parchment paper!  Turn your whole piece of parchment paper 90 degrees and continue rolling out your dough.  Turn your dough 90 degrees again and continue until your dough is your favorite thickness.

Tips for rolling out cookie dough

To make the standing menorah cookies, your dough needs to be 1/4 inch thick or less.  If it is too thick, the pieces will not fit together.  The menorah cutter can be found here.Measuring your rolled out dough

Once the dough is rolled out, dip your cutter in flour, shake it off and press your cutter into the dough; pressing down firmly.  Lift the cutter off of the dough, slightly jiggling if the dough is stuck.  If the dough lifts off with the cutter, place your shape back into place.Cutting out sugar cookies

Continue cutting your shapes out, making sure not to cut too closely or the cookies may bake and stick together.Cookie spacing is important

Once your cookies are all cut, carefully remove the excess dough from around each cookie. Be careful not to disturb the shapes of the cookies.  The cookies should be sticking slightly to the parchment paper which helps in keeping their shapes.Remove excess cookie dough

Carefully remove the excess dough

When all the dough is removed, lift the whole piece of parchment paper and place on your baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees F for exactly 8 minutes (if you are using my recipe).  If using your own recipe, follow the baking time listed.Cool baked cookies on wire rack

Once the cookies are baked, they should be slightly puffed and light brown on the bottom and edges.  Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack before removing them from the parchment paper.  Once cooled, your cookies should be exactly the shape you intended!  To assemble the standing menorahs, simple fit the slot in the base cookie into the slot of the menorah cookie and stand!


  • If the cookie base doesn’t fit into the menorah you may have baked your cookies too thick.  Simply use your finger to press down the cookie in the spots where the cookies fit together.  Make sure to do this when the cookies are slightly warm so the cookies don’t crack.Pressing down puffy cookies
  • If the cookie base doesn’t fit into the menorah, the slots may have moved too close together.  Use a sharp knife (I like using an xacto knife) and trim the slots slightly larger.Trimming cookies
  • If your cookies are too thin, they may not stand up so well.  Simply add some frosting or royal icing to help attach the base cookie to the menorah.  The cookies should have a lot more stability this way.  Adding some frosting or icing also helps if you are planning to travel with the cookies. Filling the gap
  • I like my sugar cookies puffy and fluffy and that is how my cookies bake up.  If you are decorating them with royal icing and need the cookies to be completely flat, bake as usual.  Once they come out of the oven, wait one minute, then place a clean piece of parchment paper over the top of the hot cookies and place a second cookie sheet directly on top of the cookies.  You want the flat bottom of the baking pan pressing down the tops of the cookies.  Allow the cookies to cool like this.  Once the cookies are cool, they will be completely flat but they will still have kept their shape and they will still taste perfect!  Here’s my simple, favorite, dairy-free cut-out sugar cookie recipe:

Perfect Cut-Out Sugar Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 6 Tbs. orange juice
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, beat the shortening, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy.
  3. Add in the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.
  4. Add in the flour, baking powder, and salt all at once and combine.
  5. With the mixer running at low speed slowly add in the orange juice.
  6. If the dough is very sticky, refrigerate before trying to roll out.
  7. When ready, roll the dough on a floured surface so the dough doesn't stick. You can also roll the dough directly on a sheet of parchment paper. The dough can be rolled thinner to create a crunchy cookie or thicker for a soft and chewy cookie.
  8. Cut shapes out using your favorite cookie cutter.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees F for exactly 8 minutes until just barely light brown at the edges.
  10. Cool on wire rack.

Check here to purchase my custom cutter!
Want to learn how to decorate your menorah cookies? Check out my video tutorial here!

Peanut Butter Chanukah Gelt Cookies

Peanut Butter Chanukah Gelt Cookies

I love these cookies.  They are a stroke of genius!  Too bad they were not my ingenious idea though.  I cannot take credit for them, the original  recipe comes from Miriam of Overtime Cook.  I have been making peanut butter blossom cookies (a peanut butter cookie rolled in sugar and topped with chocolate kisses or chips) for years.  But a few years ago Miriam decided to press a piece of Chanukah gelt into the cookie and life has never been the same!  I love this idea and was so bummed that I didn’t think of it first!  Since then, Chanie of Busy in Brooklyn made olive oil crinkle cookies sprayed with edible gold shimmer and topped with chocolate gelt, and again I was blown away.  Finally Miriam was back this year with a new version of her original: melt-in-your-mouth Chanukah cookies and I knew it was time for me to join the party.

Blue Sugar Peanut Butter Cookies

My twist on the original is pretty cute.  Instead of rolling the cookies in plain white sugar, I rolled them in two different colors or blue crystal sugar before pressing a delicious piece of gelt in each one.  I think this really gives them a festive vibe.  They would also look gorgeous rolled in gold or silver sugar or even clear crystal sugar.  I love that these can be made to match any party decor.  Thank you Miriam and Chanie for your inspiration!  Here is my non-dairy recipe adapted from Hershey’s.

Peanut Butter Chanukah Gelt Cookies
Serves: 3½ dozen
  • ½ cup shortening
  • ¾ cup peanut butter
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbs. soy milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • crystal sugar for rolling
  • 30-40 unwrapped large chocolate gelt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat shortening with the sugars until light and fluffy.
  3. Add in the egg and beat until combined.
  4. Add in the soy milk and vanilla and stir to combine.
  5. Add in the flour, and baking soda and mix until dough forms.
  6. Using a 2 tsp. size cookie scoop or regular spoon, scoop batter and roll into balls.
  7. Roll each ball in crystal sugar, place on parchment lined baking sheet and gently flatten slightly.
  8. Bake for 7-9 minutes until the edges are slightly browned and cookies is cracked.
  9. Allow to cool on baking sheet for 5 to 10 minutes before pressing each chocolate on to the cookies.
  10. Allow to cool completely, you may place cookies in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes to help the chocolate firm up.

Hanukkah Cookies

To celebrate Hanukkah this year, I treated myself to some new cookie cutters and stencils. I was inspired by some cookies made by Callye of The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle. You should check out her cookie blog; it’s absolutely fabulous! Here is my attempt at Jewish Holiday Cookies.

Chanukah Menorah Cookies

These are Chanukah Menorahs. This is a retro style menorah. Officially the menorah needs to have 4 candles on each side with one in the center. I like the look of this one though.

Chanukah Menorahs

Here are little menorahs all lined up. These are my favorite cookies of the whole collection. I just love how they look!

Chanukah Dreidel Cookies

I really wanted to make these cookies square instead of round but I couldn’t find my square cutters. After searching and searching I just decided that I never had any square cutters and settled for round instead. Of course I found the missing cutters later. I guess I know what my cookies will look like next year!

Dreidel Stencil Cookies

You can really see the glitter on these cookies. I airbrushed all the cookies in this collection with a pearl shimmer color because I wanted the cookies to have a holiday glow.

Chanukah Star Cookies

These cookies are really elegant and can be used for any occasion, not just for Chanukah.

Chanukah Star Stencil Cookies

These cookies are so simple, crisp and clean looking. I love how this color combination works together.

8th Night of Chanukah

Happy Hanukkah!