Gluten-free maple bourbon glazed doughnuts: A cop and robber show-stopper


I’ve never seen a policeman eat a doughnut.

Where DID that stereotype come from anyway? Was it the criminal-chasing third shifts that led cops to the only food outlets open during the wee morning hours? Or the need for an accompaniment with their all-time favorite and most legal caffeine stimulant?

Either way, I’ve just never caught a uniformed cop in the act of doughnut consumption.

I’ve also never had a gluten-free doughnut from a café or bakery, but that doesn’t mean they’re not out there.

I hope every gluten-free sheriff, cop, state trooper, and doughnut-lover are able to stumble upon this recipe, as we’re already well into the autumn start-of-school season. Apples, pumpkin, cinnamon, and maple are some of the celebrated fall flavors, but I feel that maple needs a greater endorsement in the doughnut world. Not to mention, it goes great with bourbon whiskey… which can go well with any season.

It’s my understanding that gluten cannot survive the distillation process, but for those who must avoid grain alcohol, you may substitute rum or brandy; or be sure to use corn-based bourbon. And by all means, please omit the alcohol if you must.

I invite all law-makers, law breakers, those fighting for justice, and advocates of war to reach a common gluten-free ground with me today, as we make a fantastic, maple-y breakfast-treat-after-school-snack-spot-for-a-big-scoop-of-dessert-ice-cream kind of doughnut!

Hopefully it’s cooled down enough in your world to turn your ovens on. Please preheat yours to 350°F, and lightly grease two doughnut pans.


The dry ingredients can be mixed in a bowl and set aside. They are:



Here are two ingredients that don’t get together often enough, in my opinion. Aside from creaming them together to make doughnut batter, maple sugar and butter can also be whipped together to spread on toast, pancakes, waffles… you read me? Total yums!


Don’t snatch any of this for your toast, I worked unbearable hours to get the maple flavor perfectly balanced in this doughnut (don’t you feel sorry for me?)

I put many a meal’s worth of doughnuts out for sampling when I was testing this one and I heard a lotta, “You’re making those doughnuts AGAIN!!??”

Yes, this may have so far won the made-most-times-before-actually-edible recipe award of all my trials and errors. But it was worth it.

Actually it’s more fun when the first try is so disastrously horrible and you have to work toward just being able to get it in your mouth without spitting it out. Then when you accomplish, “Wow, these are really good! They’re gluten-free?” you feel like you’ve finally crossed the finish line in a very long race.

OK, my subject matter wandered off the beaten path again. Back to business!


Make sure the 1/2 cup of butter and 3/4 cup maple sugar are beaten until fluffy and the sugar begins to dissolve (about 2 minutes). This will prevent pools of maple sugar from forming on the baked product.


Add 2 large eggs to the creamed mixture, one at a time, and beat until incorporated. If you notice that the mixture looks slightly broken, carry on!


Stir 1/4 teaspoon maple flavoring into 1 3/4 cups milk. Add the milk to the butter/sugar mixture alternately with the blended dry mixture.


Beat the batter on medium speed for approximately 30 seconds, then scrape the sides and beat for an additional 30 seconds.


Fill a large piping bag (or zip-top bag) with the batter.


Pipe the batter into your prepared doughnut pans. The batter will make a perfect dozen (one of the few things about the recipe that remained consistent through EVERY test). Allow the batter to rest for 10-15 minutes before baking!


Bake the doughnuts for 15 minutes and allow them to cool for just a minute or two before turning them out onto a rack. Now it’s time to stir up the glaze and brew some coffee!


Mix 1 cup confectioners’ sugar with 1/3 cup maple syrup and 1 teaspoon bourbon.

Now, I’ll make you an offer. If you tend to prefer enrobed glazed doughnuts, you should double the glaze recipe and add a little milk or water to make it thinner. Then you can even immerse the entire doughnut instead of just glazing the top. This recipe is smack in the middle of a thin glaze and a frosting. It clings, but not so tightly that it clumps.

The short point? More liquid for glaze, more sugar for frosting.

Happy medium? Keep it where it is!


Dip the cooled doughnuts into the glaze



Turn them out onto the cooling rack, underlined with parchment paper to catch the excess glaze (fair game for finger-licking children).


Is the coffee hot? The tea steeped?

Throw a box of these down on the table at work for your favorite gluten-free peeps and watch even the glutenivores make them disappear.

Don’t think you’ll finish ALL the doughnuts in one day? There’s no shame in that, just save your extra glaze and keep a number of doughnuts unglazed in an airtight container for up to two days.

Heat the doughnuts in the microwave for about 10 to 15 seconds, and glaze just before serving.

Please read, bake, and review our recipe for Gluten-Free Maple Bourbon Glazed Doughnuts.

Print just the recipe.





Amy Trage

Amy Trage is a native of Vermont where she spent much of her childhood skiing and training for the equestrian event circuit. With a strong desire to pursue food writing, Amy took her English degree from Saint Anselm College to the New England Culinary Institute ...


  1. Jen

    It looks good. I need to check with several of my friends who are gluten free to see if they want me to make some. I really like the idea of using a pastry bag. I will have to use that.

  2. Laymusic

    Amy writes:

    >> I’ve never seen a policeman eat a doughnut.

    >> Where DID that stereotype come from anyway?

    A few years ago, a Dunkin Donuts sprouted up across the street from me, and I commented to some friends that I didn’t want to be shallow, but I certainly hadn’t seen anything like as many policemen on my street before the Dunkin Donuts as after.

    One of my friends pointed out that people who work out of a car instead of an office do need to go to some kind of establishment with a restroom at intervals during the day.

  3. Ann Hefenieder

    How’s the texture on these? I’ve had gluten-free donuts from Udi’s (?) that had a pancake-like texture, and sickeningly-sweet maple glaze.

    Those donut pans look great!
    These doughnuts have a texture close to a tender wheat-based cake doughnut, Ann! ~Amy

  4. Ann Daniel-Hartung

    May these be made with regular flour instead of the gluten-free? Would a one-to-one substitution of regular flour for the gluten-free work?
    I would advise that you use the wheat-based maple doughnut recipe and use maple sugar in place of granulated and the maple flavoring. You can leave out the bacon if you want. :) ~Amy

  5. Teddi

    Be careful with the Bourbon. Those who are celiac can have problems with it, as it is distilled from a gluten containing grain. Some react, some don’t. Just know if you are making it for someone who is gluten free, make a few with no frosting to be sure to avoid disappointment for everyone if they have to refuse the bourbon.
    Yes, in the blog you will find alternative suggestions for the bourbon if you need to avoid it and a link to an explanation of the distilling process also! ~Amy

  6. Matt

    If they are good with Beam, they’ll be even better with something from higher up the shelf. (If you don’t have a preference yet but want to REALLY notice the step up, try Buffalo Trace). Also, if your kitchen gets too hot, shake four parts bourbon to one part each lemon juice and maple syrup and strain into a glass for a Maple Leaf. I suspect, but have not tried this as a hot toddy, but I’m guessing it would work well and might go better with fall and doughnuts that way.

  7. Bridgid

    We are a bacon loving family, and I immediately wanted to sprinkle crumbled bacon on top of the glaze! These look wonderful!
    And I think you should!!! ~Amy

  8. deidremefford

    Cops LOVE doughnuts! My husband always slid his doughnuts down the muzzle of his shotgun which was bolted in the front seat of his patrol car. (This would make a great scene in a cop program!) There was a famous-named chocolate factory nearby that supplied chocolate to the See’s Candy factory. There was a big industrial spigot out back where the trucks would fill up with liquid chocolate to transporting to other locations. This was years before cameras – and hubby would clean out a bucket of KFC and at 3am go and fill the bucket up with yummy-high quality liquid chocolate, pop the lid on and by the end of his shift it would be a solid block of chocolate. Back to the station and the hammers and screwdrivers would came out and everyone got chocolate! It was a sad day back at the PD when the chocolate company wised up and put a lock on the spigot.
    I love it!! Thanks so much for sharing here with us! ~Amy

    1. Amy Trage , post author

      I really wanted to do a fried version, but ran out of development time. Would you please try it and let me know how it goes? I would really love to hear your feedback. If you do fry them, my thought is to do it briefly and then bake them the rest of the way since they are a cake doughnut rather than yeasted. I am anxious to hear back from you! ~Amy

    2. Rachel McC

      because of the lack of gluten, I was wondering the same thing…I actually think reverse might work better. Bake them through but not golden, then finish them in the oil to get a good crispy finish (my experience with GF frying has been things falling apart)

  9. Bea

    Bourbon is a form of whiskey that is made half with corn and half with a mash of three main gluten grains – wheat, barley and rye.
    Instead, I suggest using plain brandy which is distilled from wine and is generally considered safe for gluten free diets.
    Thank you for your feedback. I included a section in the blog about the distillation process and how it is believed to eliminate gluten from grain alcohol. We are happy that you offered your alternative suggestions, thank you for sharing with us. ~Amy

  10. j.J.

    Please make the blog the way it was. It is very, very broken in the IE 8 that work makes me use. I can’t read the captions which are merged into the pictures and I can’t find any of the sidebar things. Please, I love KAF and the blog, but if it stays like this, I’ll have to give up reading it. And please don’t make the store like this, or I won’t be able to order, either.

    1. Amy Trage , post author

      I am so sorry for the inconvenience. Our new blog is currently down at the moment as we are experiencing some issues. We are working diligently to restore it and should have it back up for you soon. Thank you for your patience and please don’t hesitate to contact us if we can assist you in any way. ~Amy

  11. Laurie

    Love the new look! What I would like to see fixed/changed is adding a description/first line or two of the recent (now called “current”?) posts, instead of just the picture and the name. That information is most important to me, and I wish the recent posts were in the “related posts” spot at the top.
    The “related post” list is more useful to me at the end after I’ve read through the recipe.

  12. Caroline

    I live near a Dunkin Donuts that is always swarming with cops. Maybe they’re getting bagels or egg white wraps instead, but it’s compelling evidence that the stereotype is true!

  13. HHH8

    Wondering if I can substitute brown sugar and maple syrup for the maple sugar?

    Yes, you can consider subbing brown sugar for the maple sugar – knowing that this will change the flavor profile of the recipe. The brown sugar has molasses which is stronger than the maple syrup. You might also consider white sugar and maple syrup as the sub. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  14. Richard

    Bourbon is made from at least 51% corn. However, the other 49% can be, and usually is, made from wheat, barley and/or rye. Most people with Celiac disease do not react to distilled alcohol made from grain, but a large minority do. If you are gluten sensitive or suffer from celiac disease you should carefully until you are sure you do not have a reaction to the bourbon.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Thank you so much for the feedback! I believe Amy mentioned an alternative to the bourbon for those that can not use it, please feel free to use her suggestion for this glaze. Jon@KAF

  15. Mary Ann Home

    Could you check the directions again please? It sounds like there are two separate directions for adding the eggs.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yes, thank you for letting us know and sorry for the confusion. Please omit step number 4 in the recipe. I will see that the update is made. Thanks for keeping us on our toes! Elisabeth

    1. Dee

      JUST SO YOU KNOW… For some individuals (about 1 percent of the US population) who have a disease called Celiac Sprue, having to go Gluten Free is terrible, expensive, prison sentence, that if not treated properly can end in a very slow painful death (not to mention, the pain that is felt with in 24 hours). For some, yes, it can be just another Hollywood fad, but unfortunately for others, it means one can’t just run to McD’s for a burger when one get’s home late from work. One actually must make everything himself, unless one wants to spend 6-10 bucks for a GF T.V. dinner IF one can even make it to the specialty store in the next town or county before they close. You wouldn’t judge a diabetic for having to go sugar free? Or maybe you would give a person who is Lactose intolerant an ice cream, and tell them to suck it up when their tummy hurts! You need to get ALL your facts before you go judging someone with a serious condition!!!

  16. Nicki

    I’m new to the gluten free / diary free / soy free scene. Can I substitute rice milk or almond milk? If so will the amounts be the same or different?
    Thank you!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yes, you may use rice or almond milk in place of milk in most recipes whether GF or not. Good news, right? Enjoy, Nicki. Happy baking! Elisabeth@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Maple sugar is a wonderful substance. Boiling most of the water off of maple syrup creates maple sugar.~Jaydl@KAF

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