Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Donuts

I haven’t always been a fan of key lime.  I don’t think I’ve ever actually had key lime pie.  You might be familiar with Tastefully Simple.  It’s sort of like Mary Kay for food and they have this little thing called a Key Lime Cheeseball Mix.  You add 8 ounces of cream cheese to it, chill it and you have a cheese ball.

Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Donuts

I was completely turned off by the idea when I first heard of it.  Who wants a sweet cheeseball?  I soon found out that I, for one, love a sweet cheeseball; particularly one flavored with key lime.  Surprisingly, cream cheese compliments the sweet/tart of lime so well and I found myself actually craving it  this week.

Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Donuts

I was fresh out of a cheeseball mix so I decided to get creative.  And put my doughnut pan to great use while I was at it.  Because, why not frost cake doughnuts with cream cheese frosting?  I couldn’t come up with a good reason either.

And what I came up with is, I think, as close as I’m going to get without finding myself at a Tastefully Simple party.  The frosting is, of course, thinner than a cheeseball.  But I think it would set up as a cheeseball if you add a little more powdered sugar and a little less cream (or maybe no cream at all.)  If you try it, I want to hear about it!  But for now, enjoy it on some baked cake doughnuts.

Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Donuts

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Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Cake Doughnut Recipe

Yield: 6 doughnuts

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Dense baked cake doughnuts with a sweet and tart key lime cream cheese frosting.


for the donuts:
3/4 cup + 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. key lime zest
2 Tbs. + 2 tsp. grapeseed oil
1/4 cup + 2 Tbs. sugar
1/4 cup + 2 Tbs. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 egg

for the frosting:
2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3-4 Tbs. powdered sugar
1 Tbs. heavy cream
1 Tbs. key lime juice (more or less to taste)
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Additional lime zest or sprinkles for garnish, if desired


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray or grease a 6-cavity doughnut pan.

Combine flour, baking powder, salt and lime zest in a small bowl. Whisk to blend and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk oil, sugar, milk, vanilla and egg until well-combined.

Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until well-blended. Spoon into doughnut pan and bake for 17-18 minutes until the donuts bounce back when lightly touched.

Remove from pan and let cool on a wire rack.

While the donuts are cooling, whisk the cream cheese, 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, heavy cream, lime juice and vanilla in a wide, shallow bowl. If the frosting is too thin, add another tablespoon of powdered sugar.

When the doughnuts are mostly cool, dip the tops in the frosting, and return them to the wire rack to let the frosting set. Repeat with the other doughnuts.

Cassie's Notes:
If you don't have a doughnut pan, these will bake nicely as doughnut muffins.

If you don't have grapeseed oil, feel free to substitute canola oil.

Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosted Donuts