Olive Oil Sufganiyot (Hanukkah Jelly Doughnuts)

Recipe by Sarah Jampel

Ideal for Hanukkah, this sufganiyot recipe produces fluffy doughnuts with crisp exteriors and open, airy insides, and there's no kneading or stand mixer required. The dough itself is light, airy, and only subtly sweet, a delightful counterpoint to the raspberry jam filling. Orange zest in the sugar coating adds a floral, citrus aroma. (For a less traditional but much faster version of sufganiyot, try this recipe made with choux pastry.) 

40 mins
10 hrs
12 to 14 medium (2 1/2") filled doughnuts and 8 to 10 mini doughnuts
Olive Oil Sufganiyot (Hanukkah Jelly Doughnuts)  - select to zoom
Olive Oil Sufganiyot (Hanukkah Jelly Doughnuts)  - select to zoom
Olive Oil Sufganiyot (Hanukkah Jelly Doughnuts) - select to zoom


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  1. To make the dough: Weigh your flour; or measure it by gently spooning it into a cup, then sweeping off any excess. 

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, water, and sour cream. Add the egg and vanilla and whisk to combine. 

  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir vigorously with a flexible spatula until fully combined and homogenous, with no visible floury patches. Scoop the dough to one side of the bowl, grease the bowl lightly with olive oil, then turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl with a reusable cover or plastic wrap and set aside for 15 minutes.  

  4. Perform a bowl fold: Grab a section of dough from one side, lift it up, then press it down into the middle. Repeat 3 to 6 times, rotating the bowl after each stretch, until you’ve circled the bowl and the dough feels stronger. Re-cover, then set aside for 15 minutes and perform a second bowl fold. Cover the bowl tightly and transfer it to the refrigerator to rise overnight (for at least 8 hours and up to 18 hours).  

  5. To shape the sufganiyot: Dust your work surface with flour. Dust the top of the dough with flour, then transfer it to the surface and gently deflate. Lightly dust the top of the dough and your hands with flour, then pat the dough to about 1/2" thick (about 11" x 8" in size). Use a floured 2 1/4" cutter to cut rounds of the dough and transfer them to parchment-lined baking sheets dusted with flour. Bring the scraps together once, then pat out the dough again to about 1/2" thick, and stamp out more rounds. Once you’ve made as many 2 1/4" rounds as you’d like, use a smaller cutter to make additional rounds (mini doughnuts!), which will reduce the amount of scrap dough leftover. (After you’ve re-rolled the scraps twice, cut the scraps into rough pieces to fry for a baker’s snack, or discard.) Transfer all the pieces of cut-out dough to the floured parchment. 

  6. Cover the baking sheets with reusable covers or greased plastic wrap and let them rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until very puffy. 

  7. To fry the sufganiyot: Towards the end of the rise time, heat about 2" of oil in a heavy-bottomed pot, like a Dutch oven, to between 350°F and 365°F. 

  8. To prepare for frying, line a baking sheet with paper towels. When the sufganiyot have risen, use scissors to cut the parchment so that each one is on its own individual piece. 

  9. When ready to fry, use the parchment to invert one piece of dough at a time into the hot oil (parchment-side up); soon, the parchment will release — use tongs to dispose of it. (If the parchment doesn’t easily release, don’t worry: It will when you flip the sufganiyot.)  

  10. Fry 3 or 4 sufganiyot at a time, being sure not to crowd the pan, until they’re brown on the bottom, about 1 to 2 minutes. Use tongs to flip the sufganiyot and cook the other side, 1 to 2 more minutes. 

  11. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the sufganiyot to the paper towel-lined baking sheet. Repeat, being sure to bring the oil back up to temperature between batches, until all the sufganiyot are fried. 

  12. Once the sufganiyot are slightly cool, rub together the orange zest and granulated sugar in a wide shallow bowl or pie plate until moist and fragrant. Add the confectioners’ sugar and whisk to combine. Transfer the sufganiyot to the bowl, 1 or 2 at a time, and toss to lightly coat. (If you’d like more sugar, give the sufganiyot a second coat.) 

  13. To fill the sufganiyot: Use a skewer, sturdy straw, or chopstick to poke a hole in the side of all the sufganiyot; rotate the tool around a couple of times to make a small cavity in the center. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a round tip or a squeeze bottle with the jam. Insert the pastry tip or the squeeze bottle into the hole and pipe in about 1 tablespoon of jam; you’ve added too much if the jam starts peeking out. 

  14. Storage information: Filled sufganiyot are best enjoyed the same day they’re fried, though no one will complain about a leftover (or two) with breakfast the next day. Once filled, serve the sufganiyot immediately (or as soon as possible).