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Sufganiyot (Israeli Jelly Doughnuts)

April 18, 2021
Sufganiyot (Israeli Jelly Doughnuts)

Every baker in Israel makes jelly doughnuts, or sufganiyot, for the eight days of Hanukkah. The word sufganiyot comes from the Greek sufan (“puffed,” “fried,” and “spongy”) as well as from the Hebrew sofiget (“water”) and sofeg (“to blot”). Though traditionally sufganiyot were stuffed with jelly, today innovative Israeli bakers fill them with Nutella, lemon curd, and even foie gras.

Featured in: How To Make the Ultimate Sufganiyot—Israeli Jelly Doughnuts—for Hanukkah

Great for: Hanukkah


  • 1package dry yeast
  • 3tablespoons sugar
  • ¼cup water
  • ½cup lukewarm milk
  • 3 ½cups unbleached all-purpose flour (about)
  • 1large egg
  • 1large egg yolk (in addition to the whole egg)
  • Pinch salt
  • 1Grated zest of lemon
  • 3 ½tablespoons butter, at room temperature
  • Vegetable oil for deep-frying
  • 1cup apricot jam (you can substitute strawberry or any flavorful jam, dulce de leche, Nutella, or lemon curd)
  • Confectioner’s or granulated sugar for rolling
Yield: about 2 dozen doughnuts


Israeli Jelly Doughnuts

  • Step 1

    Dissolve 1 tablespoon yeast and 1 tablespoon of the sugar in the water, then add the milk and pour into a large bowl.

  • Step 2

    Add the whole egg and the yolk, salt, lemon zest, flour, the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, and the butter. Mix together with your hands, then knead dough on a pastry board until it becomes sticky yet elastic.

  • Step 3

    Cover the dough in a bowl, and let rise in a warm place for at least an hour. If you want to prepare it ahead, place the dough in the refrigerator overnight, then let it warm to room temperature before rolling and cutting.

  • Step 4

    Dust a pastry board with flour. Roll the dough out to a 1/2-inch thickness. Using the top of a glass, cut into rounds about 2 inches in diameter, and let rise 30 minutes more.

  • Step 5

    Pour at least 2 inches of oil into a heavy pot and heat until it is about to bubble (or do as I often do in an electric wok at 375 degrees).

  • Step 6

    Drop the doughnuts into the oil, 4 or 5 at a time. Cook about 3 minutes on each side, turning when brown. Drain on paper towels. Using a pastry or cupcake injector (available at cooking stores and online), insert a teaspoon of jam into each doughnut. Roll the sufganiyot in confectioner’s or granulated sugar and serve immediately