Paleo Gingerbread Donut Holes (AIP)
Few things say “holidays” like the flavor of gingerbread. The kick of the ginger, the warming, familiar flavor of the cinnamon, and that sweet, sweet sweetness, that just gets you feeling all of the holiday feels! Gingerbread men, and gingerbread houses are an amazing and fun holiday tradition that we all love. However, here’s the thing… they also take quite a bit of work. Especially if you’re paleo and AIP. You just can’t grab a mix or a pre-made gingerbread house off the shelf. Sometimes you’re up for the extra steps, sometimes you’re not. So, I wanted to create an alternative for those who still want all of the gingerbread flavor with an easy shortcut, and unique twist. Gingerbread Donut Holes that are both paleo, and AIP!
When I first made my Pumpkin Donut Holes earlier this season, my first thought was “uh oh… these are way too good! I have to share them immediately!” Luckily, my husband was more than happy to take on the task of my donut hole eating partner, and we were both super happy campers. We were seriously even happier when we tried out these Gingerbread donut holes!
These paleo gingerbread donut holes are perfect for….
- Leaving out for santa
- A little holiday treat for two or three to share (the recipe makes 6-8 donut holes)
- Doubling or tripling the recipe (as you’ll see in the photo below) to bring to a holiday party to share
- Placing on a holiday cookie tray as something a little fun and different
- Making with kiddos for a super simple holiday treat
The Ingredients You’ll Need (and a word on substitutions) for these Gingerbread Donut Holes
Tigernut flour, Coconut flour & Tapioca starch
These three flours are all grain and nut free, making them paleo and AIP friendly. I’ve tested this recipe a lot of different ways and have always had the best results with these three flours together. I would not recommended subbing any of them out to get the same results.
Palm shortening helps give these donuts a really cake-y texture. I have not tried it without palm shortening.
You can easily sub honey in place of maple syrup.
Vanilla gives these even more of a cookie flavor!
Gelatin basically acts as a binder in this recipe. There’s not need to bloom it (it’s dry in this recipe) and you can use varieties such as Vital Proteins, Great Lakes, or other. However, you cannot sub collagen.
Ginger, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg
Ahh, there’s that gingerbread flavor! I just love that kick from the ginger. If you’re AIP, sub the nutmeg for mace.
Optional – melted coconut butter and coconut sugar for topping
The topping is optional, but you’ll find that it really makes these donut holes look a lot prettier! On their own, they look a little plain, so a quick extra topping really dresses it up and adds more of that traditional donut hole look to them.
- The recipe makes 6-8 donut holes. You can scale up or down from there!
- The donut holes are best eaten warm. You can totally store them in the fridge, but I think they’re best warmed up a bit.
Paleo Gingerbread Donut Holes (AIP)
- Yield: 6-8 donut holes 1x
- 1/3 cup tigernut flour
- 1/4 cup tapioca starch
- 1/4 cup coconut flour
- 1/4 cup palm shortening
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 tbsp gelatin (can use vital proteins, great lakes, etc… do not sub collagen)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1 tsp ginger powder
- 1/2 tsp clove
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg (sub mace for AIP)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- FOR TOPPING-
- 2–3 tbsp melted coconut butter
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1–2 tsp coconut sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 F and prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
- Sift together the three flours in a medium sized bowl until evenly combined
- Pour in the maple syrup and vanilla and lightly mix
- Next, fold in the palm shortening and stir until the mixture is creamy
- Add the baking soda, spices, and gelatin and stir well
- Form the dough into 6-8 donut holes and place on the parchment lined baking sheet
- Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the donut holes are hardened on the outside
- Remove from the oven top with melted coconut butter, cinnamon, and a sprinkle of coconut sugar if desired.. it’s optional, but it really makes it pretty!
- Serve warm and enjoy!
All nutritional information are estimations and will vary. Estimations do not include optional ingredients.
- Serving Size: 1 donut hole
- Calories: 146
- Fat: 11.4g
- Carbohydrates: 13.8g
- Fiber: 1.8g
- Protein: 2.2g
I mean, can you even?
These donut holes are such great spin on traditional gingerbread cookies, and are sure to make your family smile. But seriously… you’ll want to share these. They’re good enough to eat a bunch of for sure!
Have a happy holiday, and enjoy these yummy treats!
I love that these are egg-free!! Can’t wait to make them for our family! 🙂
Thanks Megan! I’m egg free myself so I know how hard it is to find good egg free things!
Wow! Great flavor and pretty easy. Thank you! Two questions – 1) mine cracked on the top—what am I doing wrong? And, 2) how do you turn the coconut butter into a glaze? Heating in microwave turned it brown. Also, did you mix the cinnamon and coconut sugar into the butter, or just sprinkle on top?
Thank you Ardi!
1) Some of mine crack a bit on the top as well. It’s pretty normal for something that’s egg free. You can try to make them smaller, or add 2 tbsp of pumpkin puree to them for more moisture. It changes the flavor but it makes for a more moist product.
2) I just sprinkle it over the top 🙂
How do these freeze?
Made these this weekend. Turned out perfectly. I ended up baking them in a mini muffin tin so the shape wasn’t quite the same, but they’re were at least uniform 🙂 Thanks for the recipe!
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I just made these. I was never a donut person, and I knew they wouldn’t be like the yeast donuts that many crave. So I cooked up a batch. They were delicious. I made 7, ate 3, and stuck 3 in the freezer. That leaves me 1 for later. I lived the fall spices. The only problem that I had was that after biting into the hole, the remaining hole piece would crumble into 2-3 parts. This isn’t really a problem since it tasted so good. Thank you for all of your egg-free recipes.
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The flavor is good but I found these to be a little to dry, I think I’ll try adding a little pumpkin next time. The pumpkin donut holes were perfect.
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My teenager just got in the kitchen and made these and YUM! Perfect treat for the season. We didn’t have tigernut so he subbed with almond flour and a little cassava too. Love the glaze!
Yum! Thank you so much, Rennie! So happy you enjoyed!!
These look amazing can you substitute anything else for the palm shortening ? Can’t get it in Canada ? Would regular shortening work ?
Love your recipes
Thank you so much, Karen! I haven’t really tried any alternatives. I would think that lard may be a close second?
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I can’t do eggs or beef what would you recommend to use instead of Gelatin?
I haven’t tried anything else so can’t say for sure it would yield the same results… sorry!