Pumpkin Doughnuts – Buñuelos de Calabaza

Before Halloween became popular in Spain, people prepared sweets to celebrate Dia de Todos los Santos on the 1 November. Popular dishes included creepy huesos de santos, made from marzipan and filled with sweetened egg yolk, which look all too similar to their namesake, and buñuelos de viento, sweet fried doughnuts. Today, Halloween is celebrated throughout Spain, but there’s something to be said for making classic dishes as part of your holiday traditions!

Our version of buñuelos includes a classic autumn ingredient – pumpkin. The addition of pureed pumpkin gives the doughnuts a beautiful orange tone and a sweet earthy flavour. These are best eaten straight from the pan, so get stuck in straight away!

Ingredients (makes around 16 doughnuts)

300g roasted pumpkin with the skin removed

1tbsp sugar (+150g for coating)

1 egg

zest of 1/2 lemon

1 tsp quick action yeast

2 tsp cinnamon

25g plain flour

a pinch of salt

vegetable oil for frying



  1. Place the pumpkin in a large bowl. Use a handheld blender to puree the pumpkin until no large lumps remain.
  2. Add 1tbsp sugar, 1 egg, the zest of 1/2 lemon, the yeast and the cinnamon to the pumpkin. Mix until well combined. Sift the flour and add to the bowl with a pinch of salt. Mix until combined.
  3. Fill a small saucepan about 6cm deep with vegetable oil. Heat on medium until hot. Test that the oil is hot enough by dropping a small amount of batter into the oil. If the oil is hot enough, it will bubble around the batter, and the batter will float on the surface.
  4. When the batter is hot enough, drop tablespoons of the batter into the oil. Depending on the size of your saucepan, it’s probably best to do this in batches of around 4. Allow the doughnuts to cook for around 2 minutes on one side (or until golden), and then flip and cook on the other side for another minute. The doughnuts are ready when they are puffed up and golden. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and place on a plate covered in kitchen roll to drain off excess oil.
  5. When all of the doughnuts have been cooked, fill a small bowl with 150g of sugar. Dip both sides of the warm doughnuts in the sugar. Serve immediately with coffee or a dessert wine.


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