How to Make Sufganiyot: A Sweet Fried Doughnut Recipe for Hanukkah by Meredith Schneider

Holidays Desserts
a year ago

How to Make Sufganiyot: A Sweet Fried Doughnut Recipe for Hanukkah

Mmmmm! Who doesn't love fresh doughnuts? As I mentioned in my latke tip, doughnuts, or sufganiyot as they're known in Hebrew, are delicious fried treats enjoyed during Hanukkah by kids of all ages and of course adults. This is another favorite recipe I use from Tori Avey during Hanukkah. For more details and cooking tips for this recipe, visit

Cuisine: Jewish
Prep Time: 3 1/2 to 4 hours
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours


Here's how to make it:

  1. Pour yeast into a mixing bowl with 1/4 cup of the lukewarm water or milk and 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Whisk together to dissolve the yeast and sugar. Wait 10 minutes. If yeast is foamy, whisk in the remaining 1/2 cup of lukewarm water or milk, remaining 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar, 1/4 cup canola oil, 2 large eggs and 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract. Set aside.
  2. Fit your stand mixer with the dough attachment. In your mixer bowl, sift together flour and 1 teaspoon of salt. Pour in the wet ingredients. Set stand mixer to low speed and mix the wet ingredients together with the dry for 10 full minutes, until a very sticky dough forms. The dough will come together, but will stick to the bottom of the mixing bowl. If the dough seems dry, add a little more water, a tablespoon at a time, until the texture becomes sticky. Alternatively, if the dough seems too wet, add a little more flour.
  3. Add 1 tablespoons of liquor (vodka, brandy, ouzo or arak) and continue to process on low for 2 to 3 additional minutes until the dough comes together again (it should look sticky but not overly wet). At first, after adding the liquor, it may seem very wet – don't worry, it should continue to come together after 2 to 3 minutes and return to a more sticky, doughy texture.
  4. Grease a large mixing bowl with a little of the cooking oil, then scoop the sticky dough into the bowl. Cover with a clean slightly damp towel and let the dough rise for roughly 2 hours until it doubles in size. It may take even longer than 2 hours – go by the size. 
  5. Lightly flour a baking sheet. Flour a solid flat surface like a cutting board large enough for rolling out the dough. Take the dough out of the bowl, place it on the floured surface, and flour the top of the dough as well. Use a rolling pin to gently roll the dough out into a rough circle about 1/2-inch thick. Proceed carefully, as you can easily roll it too thin. It should be gently stretched. Make sure you use plenty of flour on top and bottom, loosening the dough as you roll to keep it from sticking.
  6. Dip your round cookie cutter in flour lightly, then starting at the outer edge of the dough and cut a circle by pushing down firmly and twisting slightly. As each circle is cut, remove it from the larger dough circle, scoop it up with a small spatula, and place it gently on the prepared floured baking sheet. When the dough has no room for circles left, re-roll it to 1/2 inch thickness and cut circles again, repeating the process until you’ve cut as many circles as you can from the dough. Lightly dust the tops of the circles with flour. Cover the circles gently with a clean dry tea towel and let them rise for about 45 minutes longer.
  7. While sufganiyot are rising, add about 1 1/4 cups of strawberry jam to a squeeze bottle. If your jam has chunks of fruit or seeds in it, you will want to run it through a strainer before adding it to the bottle to ensure it squeezes smoothly into the sufganiyot. If straining the jam, you'll need roughly double the amount (2 1/2 cups) to end up with the proper amount of strained jam.
  8. In a dutch oven, heat frying oil to 325 degrees F. Be careful not to let the oil get hotter than this or you run the risk of cooking the outside of the sufganiyot while the inside remains raw. The oil should be bubbling very lightly when the sufganiyot are added.
  9. Using a small spatula or flat knife, transfer the circles one at a time into the hot oil, flipping them gently as you place them in the oil so that the puffy top side is facing downward into the oil. Transfer up to four circles at a time into the oil. Let them fry for about 90 seconds, or until golden brown on the bottom. Gently flip them to continue frying on the other side for another 90 seconds (roughly 3 minutes total), until the sufganiyot are nicely browned on both sides.
  10. Transfer cooked sufganiyot to a wire rack or a parchment-lined baking sheet to drain. Continue frying in batches of four until all of the sufganiyot are cooked. Wait until the sufganiyot have cooled slightly before starting the filling process. Use a straw to tunnel into each sufganiyot, creating a narrow hollow hole in the top center of the pastry.
  11. Use the squeeze bottle to squeeze jam into the center of each sufganiyot, just until the jam slightly overflows the hole in the center.
  12. Dust with sugar just prior to serving. Sufganiyot are best served fresh.

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Mmm! Want to try!
Elisa Schmitz
These sound delicious, Meredith Schneider ! Thank you so much for sharing the yum!
Meredith Schneider
Yum is right! Can’t wait to make more tonight! Kids love them! Gotta do an extra workout tomorrow lol!
Awesome recipe 😋
Meredith Schneider
Thank you! Gonna make more for the last night of Hanukkah 🕎 that was a fast 8 nights!

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