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Filled Doughknots – Sweet, Buttery Layers of Knotted Dough Filled With Jam or Nutella

I love a good morning pastry. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day and I make coffee ALL DAY LONG to prolong the experience. Coffee and sweets definitely make my toddler filled life a little bit sweeter and much more tolerable. (And a glass of wine at the end of the day helps too!)

I worked on these doughknots for weeks. I was inspired by a recipe for Cruffins, which were invented at a bakery in San Fransisco. Worked into a knot instead of folded and rolled like a croissant, they are a cross between a croissant and a muffin. But I didn’t like the dough. It wasn’t really “croissant like” to me. I also found the recipe overly complicated. So I played around with a sweet dough recipe of my own and after about 10 attempts, ended up with these scrumptious doughknots! If I ever follow my dream of opening a cafĂ©, these will always adorn my counter.

Here’s how to make this simple, delicious morning pastry.

First combine your dry ingredients in a stand mixer bowl (or a large bowl if hand kneading).

In a small bowl, combine your milk, melted butter and vanilla (it’s okay if your butter clumps a little from the cold milk).

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and knead by hand or with your stand mixer dough hook until the dough is smooth and elastic. When is your dough ready? Cut off a small piece after about 8 minutes and spread it with your fingers to make it as thin as you can. If you can get it thin enough to see light through it, without it breaking apart, it’s ready.

Place your dough in a greased bowl. Turn the dough around to grease all sides. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and put it in a cold oven, with the light on, to rise. Leave until it doubles in size. This takes about two hours (it’s a slow rise due to all that milk).

Once doubled, punch the dough down and turn it out onto your counter. You don’t need to flour the counter, this is a slightly greasy dough thanks to the butter.

Cut into 8 equally sized pieces. Roll each piece into a ball.

Using a rolling pin, roll out each ball into a long rectangle, about 5 inches wide. Butter it to help keep the layers separate.


Roll from the short end, like a jelly roll, to make a short, thick roll.


With a sharp knife, cut the roll lengthwise.


Roll each piece like a snail. Place in a greased muffin tin.


Let these rise for another 30 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes, or until golden brown and baked through.

Cool completely on a wire rack.

Cut out center with a sharp knife or cupcake corer. I cut a hole that went about 1/2 of the way through the doughknot. Make it slightly less deep if filling with Nutella. That stuff goes a long ways!


Fill with jam or Nutella (I just put a small amount in a ziplock bag, cut a corner, and piped it it).

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!

Filled Doughknots
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 pkg instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup melted butter more for spreading
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • nutella or jam for filling
  • powdered sugar
  1. In a stand mixer or large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, salt and instant yeast.

  2. In a small bowl, combine the milk, melted butter and vanilla.

  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

  4. Using a dough hook in your stand mixer, knead dough for about 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. The dough should not break when stretched thin. (alternately, hand knead for about 15 minutes.

  5. Put dough in a greased bowl, turn it around so all sides of dough are greased. 

  6. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot (I use a cold oven with the light on) until dough doubles in size (about 2 hours)

  7. Punch dough down and turn out onto your counter. Cut dough into 8 equally sized portions.

  8. Roll each portion into a ball.

  9. With a rolling pin, roll out each ball into a long rectangle, about 5 inches wide. Get it as thin as you can.

  10. Butter the rectangle. (This will help keep your layers separate.)

  11. Roll the rectangle into a jelly roll, starting at the short end, to make a short, thick roll.

  12. With a very sharp knife, cut the roll lengthwise.

  13. Roll each piece like a snail (this is called a knot)

  14. Place into a greased muffin tin and allow to rise for another 30 minutes

  15. Bake at 350 for approximately 35 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.

  16. Cool on a wire rack.

  17. When completely cooled, cut center out with a cupcake corer or a sharp knife and fill with jam or Nutella (I make hole about 1/2 way through the cupcake).

  18. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Enjoy!