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Close up photo of brioche donuts, the top on has a bite missing from it showing vanilla cream inside.
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5 from 2 votes

Brioche Donuts with Vanilla Filling

Brioche Donuts are both crispy and light and filled with smooth vanilla pastry cream making them the ultimate breakfast confection!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Proof/Chill Time14 hrs
Total Time14 hrs 50 mins
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American, French
Servings: 12 people
Calories: 359kcal



Vanilla Cream

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract



  • Combine the warm water, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl. Whisk to dissolve the yeast. Leave for 5 to 10 minutes until foamy.
  • Add the flour, salt, eggs, and rum. Knead well using the attachment on your mixer or by hand.
  • Slowly incorporate the butter cubes and knead well. The dough has to be glossy and smooth.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until almost doubled in size, about two hours.
  • Punch the dough down. Put in the fridge to chill for 12 to 16 hours or overnight.
  • Cut the dough into 70g (2¼ oz. or ⅓ cup) sized pieces. Shape each piece into a smooth bun and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and dusted with flour. Leave plenty of room between the donuts to proof. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and leave to proof for about 1 hour, or until about doubled in size.
  • Heat 2 inches of oil in a heavy pot (cast iron) to 330-350°F. To fry donuts, drop several of them at a time and allow to become golden before turning to the other side, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. Remove donuts from the oil with a kitchen spider/strainer spoon and place on a tray lined with paper towels.
  • Once slightly cooled, place ½ cup granulated sugar in a dish, roll each donut in sugar, and set aside to cool completely before filling.

Pastry Cream

  • Add the sugar, cornstarch, and milk to a large saucepan and whisk until smooth. Cook, whisking continuously, over medium heat until mixture begins to thicken and boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat.
  • Add a little bit of mixture to the egg yolks and whisk together to temper the eggs, then add egg mixture to milk mixture. Place the saucepan back on the heat and bring to a light boil. Allow to boil for 2 minutes, stirring continuously.
  • Remove from heat and add the butter and vanilla and stir until smooth. Pour the cream into a medium bowl and cover with plastic wrap and press it directly on surface. Refrigerate until cold.
  • Fill a piping bag with a round tip with the vanilla cream. Using a small knife, cut a hole in the side of each donut about ¾ of the way into the donut and pipe a generous amount of vanilla cream into the center of the donut.


  • The dough will be more delicious if you leave it to chill overnight. If you don't have the time, you can skip it.
  • Try alternative fillings such as jello, lemon curd, or chocolate ganache.
  • These donuts can also be rolled in powdered sugar.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 12 hours or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. 


Calories: 359kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 223mg | Potassium: 108mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 407IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 2mg