All the mouthwatering recipes in our series “The Main Ingredient” have one thing in common: They all contain cookies. This deconstructed sufganiyot recipe features Cheryl’s Buttercream Frosted Celebration Cut-out Cookies in the streusel topping.

Hanukkah makes me think of lighting the menorah, playing dreidel with my siblings — and my very first job. When I was 16, I sold jelly donuts at the crack of dawn to bleary-eyed suburban New Jersey commuters catching trains and buses to Manhattan.

Jelly doughnuts, or sufganiyot, are another symbol of the Festival of Lights. Fried in oil, like many other foods eaten during the eight-day celebration, these are also known as Berliners in Germany and Hanukkah or Israeli doughnuts in other parts of the world.

A German couple owned the bakery where I worked, which was well known for its Berliners, as well as its streusel cake. For this sufganiyot recipe, I deconstructed both, baking the doughnuts for ease and using Buttercream Frosted Celebration Cut-out Cookies as the main ingredient in the streusel topping.

You can buy the cake-style doughnuts if you only want to do the garnishes with your kids as a Hanukkah activity. But if you feel like going all out, make the doughnuts yourself.

Deconstructed Sufganiyot (Hanukkah Doughnuts) with Streusel Topping

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Assembly Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings:12 doughnuts


Doughnut Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs (beaten)
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter (melted)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup grape or blueberry jelly
  • ½ cup blue frosting (optional)
  • 2 cups cookie streusel topping
  • powdered sugar for garnish (optional)

Streusel Topping Ingredients


Doughnut Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease doughnut pan(s) with butter or cooking spray.
  • In a bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  • In another bowl, beat the eggs. Add the butter, milk, and vanilla.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth. If the mixture is too thick, thin it out with a little more milk.
  • Fill a plastic bag (or pastry bag, if you have one) with the dough. Cut a hole in the corner, and pipe the dough into the doughnut pans. Fill them about half to three-quarters of the way; they will rise.
  • Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and let the doughnuts cool in the pans for at least 5 minutes. When cool enough to handle, transfer the doughnuts to racks to finish cooling.
  • Ice the doughnuts with grape or blueberry jelly, blue frosting, or both. Then, dip them into the cookie streusel topping. Dust with more powdered sugar before serving, if desired.
  • Makes 12 doughnuts.

Streusel Topping Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350° F. (Note: If you're making both doughnuts and crumb topping, you can bake them at the same time.)
  • Lay the Cheryl's Cookies Buttercream Frosted Celebration Cut-out Cookies, frosting side down, on one half of a long piece of parchment paper. Fold the other half of the paper over the cookies. Using a rolling pin, flatten the cookies into crumbs. Transfer the crumbs to a bowl.
  • Add the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt to the cookie crumbs. Mix the dry ingredients together with a fork.
  • Stir in the butter until just mixed. Spread the mixture on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  • Bake until the mixture is a little melted and lightly golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and let harden, about 5 minutes. Break up into crumbs with a spatula. Dust with powdered sugar.
  • Makes 2 cups.

Jen Karetnick is a Miami-based food writer, dining critic, and author of 20 cookbooks, guidebooks, and more. She co-writes the garden-to-table newsletter "Dishtillery" with her sister.

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