Destination Sturgeon Bay Recipes

Apple Cider Donut Crock-Pot Bread Pudding

There’s absolutely nothing like apple picking and stopping at every farm stand along the way in beautiful Sturgeon Bay, Door County. Fall’s crisp air, the crunch of the vibrant leaves…ahhh…and the return of the famous apple cider donuts.

Enjoy the taste and smell of your DC trip when you get home with this easy crock pot bread pudding recipe.


1 pound day-old apple cider donuts (approximately 12 donuts. You’ll want to buy extra, lol)
½ cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. kosher salt
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
¾ cup + 2T whole milk
½ cup apple cider
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 whole apples, peeled, cored, and cut into chunks
1 recipe apple cider caramel


1. Plug in a 4- to 6-quart Crock-Pot. Grease the interior with pan spray.

2. Break up the donuts into bite-size pieces, about the size of walnuts, and place them in the Crock-Pot.

3. Whisk the sugar, vanilla extract, salt, whole eggs, and egg yolks together in a large bowl. Stream in the milk, apple cider, and heavy cream and whisk to combine.

4. Pour the milk and egg mixture into the Crock-Pot, covering the donuts with the liquid. Add apple chunks. Use a spatula or wooden spoon to stir everything. Cover the Crock-Pot and let it sit without turning it on for 30 minutes, so the donuts can soak up all of the liquid.

5. Stir the donut mixture again, then set the Crock-Pot to low. Partially cover the Crock-Pot and cook the pudding for 4 to 6 hours, until it has set and is cooked through in the center.

6. While it’s still hot, spoon the pudding directly from the Crock-Pot onto plates and drizzle each scoop with the apple cider caramel.

If you somehow end up with extra donut bits, slowly toast them in the oven (250°F for 20 minutes) for a crunchy, yummy garnish

Apple Cider Caramel

(makes about ¾ cup)


¼ cup apple cider
1 T unsalted butter
½ tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. kosher salt
½ cup sugar
¼ cup heavy cream


1. Combine the apple cider, butter, vanilla extract, and salt in a bowl and set aside.

2. Make a dry caramel: Heat the sugar in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. As soon as the sugar starts to melt, use a heatproof spatula to move it constantly around the pan—you want it all to melt and caramelize evenly. Cook and stir, cook and stir, until the caramel is a deep, dark amber, 3 to 5 minutes from when the sugar starts to melt.

3. Once the caramel has reached the target color, remove the saucepan from the heat. Very slowly and very carefully, pour in the heavy cream. The caramel will bubble up and steam; stand away until the steam dissipates. Use the heatproof spatula to stir the mixture together.

4. Carefully stream in the apple cider mixture and stir it all together. If it is at all lumpy or if there are any clumps of hardened caramel floating around the sauce, put the saucepan back over medium heat and heat the mixture, stirring constantly, until the mixture is smooth.

5. Let the caramel cool before using. It will keep in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for up to 2 weeks.

Reprinted with modifications from  All About Cake by Christina Tosi with Courtney McBroom. Copyright © 2018 by MomoMilk, LLC.

Click here to download a PDF.