Well, if you really want to know.

These are what I did yesterday afternoon while my roommates were studying for our rheumatology test today.  Occasionally, I would pop my head into Sophie’s room and offer my opinion on such various topics as “what the difference is between a polyarticular and an oligoarticular arthritis” or “why steroids are contraindicated in glomerulonephritis”.

Mostly, though, I spent my time covered in flour with dough all over my hands and feet and notes, which were sitting dutifully on the kitchen table so that I could at least give the impression that I was trying to learn how to tell one vasculitis from another.


Beignets were not my intention at all for this week, which is why they are a few days late and a dollar short when it comes to Mardi Gras.  For the third round of the MarxFoods competition, we had to remake another participants recipe using three of the ingredients that we hadn’t used in round two.  I was very crafty when planning all this and since I knew I’d be better at remaking a sweet rather than a savory recipe, I saved all of my sweet ingredients for this occasion.

Somewhere along the way, I got it into my head that I wanted to remake Brian’s scones.  I had this whole idea that I would make scone shortcakes with a saffron whipped cream and a dried cherry sauce and then I would gather my roommates together around our kitchen table for tea and we would all sit around like ladies while wearing long flowy skirts and gossip about every person we know until we were blue in the face.


Then I read Jenna’s blog.  And as soon as she mentioned that she had recently become so addicted to watching Grey’s Anatomy that she had finished the entire second season in a week.

I then got it into my head that were soulmates.

And then after that she posted a recipe for oven baked beignets.   That sealed the deal.

Someday she’ll read this and run away screaming because she’ll think I’m a stalker.  But I’m not, I swear.  We just have a mutual love of Patrick Dempsey and NOLA-inspired pastries.  No biggie.


Now it is many hours later, my other roommate Anu is walking around our apartment with a half eaten beignet in her hand, in some kind of sugar-induced stupor, just repeating to herself over and over, “Oh my god”.  And the twelve beignets that were sitting on my table as of 5pm yesterday have now dwindled down to two and a half.  So while Mardi Gras is over for this year, I like to think that it’s really never too late for beignets.  Gotta keep that spirit alive and kicking somehow.

I also just want to say a belated happy birthday to my little sister!  She turned 15 yesterday.  Which means that tonight I will be baking a triple layer cake just for her that is decorated to look like cookie monster.  And pulling 12 pounds of pork.  None of which I will be eating because for some reason the thought of eating meat right now is making me feel really sick.  And no. I’m definitely not pregnant.  Weird.

Also, as part of this round of the MarxFoods competition, we had to specify a second recipe that we would try in the future.  I would go with Shannon’s Blueberry Cherry Crisp with Grains of Paradise ice cream.  Crisps make me think of spring and spring makes me happy.  Nuff said.

Picnik collage

Oven-Baked Beignets with Saffron, Dried Cherries and a Coconut Sugar Glaze
Makes 12-14, adapted from Eat, Live, Run

1/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp yeast
3 cups AP flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp saffron, crumbled
5 tbsp COLD butter, cut into small chunks
1 egg
3/4 cup milk mixed with 1 1/2 tbsp cream of tartar (or 3/4 cup buttermilk)
1/2 cup dried tart cherries
3 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon

1. Combine the yeast, warm water, and a pinch of sugar in a small bowl and stir until yeast is dissolved.  Let sit for five minutes or until yeast proofs/becomes foamy.

2. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, and saffron.  Using your fingers, cut in the butter and work mixture together until it resembles coarse sand.

3. Mix together the egg and buttermilk.  Mix into the yeast.  Add to dry ingredients.  Mix in the dried cherries.  Stir together to form a soft dough and then continue to knead until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. In your stand mixer, this should take 6-8 minutes.

4. Spray a bowl with cooking spray and dump your ball of dough into it.  Cover with a damp cloth and let rest for 15 minutes.  On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough to the shape of a large square.  Cut square into five strips and then cut those strips into squares.  Place squares on a lined baking sheet.  Spray with cooking spray and cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap.  Let rise for 45 minutes.

5. Preheat oven to 400.  Bake beignets for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden.  In a small bowl, mix together the cinnamon and coconut sugar (or regular sugar if you don’t have coconut!).  Pour the melted butter into a flat yet lightly rounded bowl.  When the beignets are cool enough to touch but still warm, dip the top of them into the butter and then dredge in the coconut sugar/cinnamon mix.  Serve warm.

This has been yeastspotted!


You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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108 Responses to Oven Baked Beignets with Saffron, Dried Cherries and a Coconut Sugar Glaze

  1. I am IN! Yes- she may be your soulmate but you are mine because any girl who will show me a recipe for beignets in the oven is a friend of mine! I did crawfish beignets a while back and they were fabulous. I will have to do sweet beignets soon. My husband’s family owns Cafe du Monde in New Orleans so they would be so proud of me!

    I have a fun giveaway going on today- would love for you to check it out! XO

  2. That’s the kind of sugar stupor that i would love to be in! You seriously must be the best roommate in the world! 🙂

  3. You are so creative in the kitchen, I love it! It is definitely never too late for beignets and these look wonderful!

  4. jenna laughs says:

    Oh gosh – so good! These look light and fluffy. That cherry glaze is out of control.

  5. ABowlOfMush says:

    Yum! I wish I was eating these for breakfast!

  6. Joanne says:

    All I can say is that your roommates must love, love, love having you as a roommate and study partner. The aroma alone of those beignets must have been exquisite …

  7. brandi says:

    isn’t that coconut sugar awesome?

    I need to make these.

  8. Breakfast has just rolled around and wouldn’t I just love to have these on the table Joanne. Sandly I am off to work and no time to beignet me!!!

  9. Dawn says:

    Reminds me of my fun time at Mardi Gras including both kissing random boys and (shhhh don’t tell anyone) flashing. Ah the old crazy college days.

  10. Amy says:

    See, and when I get up in the morning I usually have a choice of Honey Bunches of Oats, Life, or Raisin Bran. I need a new roommate (and in this case, that would be husband. I mean, what a raw deal. I cook for him all the time. What does he do for me? Oh wait…he cleans the house and makes me videos. I’ll shut up now.) Please pass a beignet.

  11. She sounds like your soulmate! OK, gotta make these when I get home from Texas.

  12. Wow, your creativity shows here. Love the baked version.

  13. Tasha says:

    I’ve recently come to the conclusion that despite my intentions, I just really am not a fan of saffron…BUT with all these other flavors, maybe this would be the recipe to change my mind! They certainly look amazing.

  14. I’m kind of jealous that your roommates get to eat all of your creations, while I only get to see the pictures on your blog. I hope they realize how lucky they are.

  15. Nina says:

    Oh, Joanne…mardi gras or not…these look divine and oven-baked? Whoa. That cherry cinnamon glaze should be illegal it looks so good! Have a great weekend!

  16. Interesting, its the first time I am hearing about beignet. Its a bit different and similar to scones! Coconut, sugar and butter – can’t go wrong!

  17. Catherine says:

    These looks beautiful, Joanne. I am craving one terribly right now- A beignet with a cup of coffee, and I’d be good to go!
    Blessings, Catherine

  18. RamblingTart says:

    You are the best roommate ever, Joanne. 🙂 I love these! The tart cherries, coconut sugar and those lovely beignets are a match made in heaven. I’d get so much studying done with a plate of those by my side. 🙂

  19. That Girl says:

    I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never made begneits from scratch. I always use the cafe du monde mix.

  20. Oh my – they are definitely calling to me. I call dibs on the last 2.5!

  21. Suman Singh says:

    I am not familiar with this but it looks great and delicious!

  22. Swathi says:

    I tasted beignets first time in New Orleans , i fell in love with them, afraid to try as it is deep fried now i can make them as you inspired me to try oven bake.

  23. Megan says:

    Those beignets sound amazing. Got room for another roommate? 🙂 Hope you have a great weekend!

  24. Oh Yes!!! They look amazing. Happy Birthday to your little sister.

  25. I thought Brian’s recipe looked delicious when he posted it, too! Your remake sounds great… let us know when we can vote!

  26. Shannon says:

    that looks awesome!! love 🙂

  27. Victoria says:

    I agree, beignets are a great idea, better than the shortcakes. And the fact that they are baked make them just slightly less guilt-inducing 😉 Good luck with the contest!!

  28. I m simply drooling Joanne.This is the most amazing recipe that you have shared till.Mouthwatering cherries, saffron and coconut sugar.Life’s good! Have a nice weekend my friend! I m gonna try these out soon!

  29. I love to eat while studying. Or study while eating. Your choice!

    Camila F.

  30. Goodness, this sounds amazing! I have a slight obsession with everything coconut, and coconut sugar is just so wonderful! I love its slightly smoky flavor. Dried cherries, too. It’s like you were reading my mind. I’ve got dessert planned for tonight!

  31. La Liz says:

    The best pastries get baked right before Lent. Paczki and Beignets are heaven! I am mesmerized by your awesome Beignets. Coconut sugar and dried cherries ….yummmmmmm.

  32. There’s only one thing better than making beignets and that’s eating them in New Orleans! I made them a couple of years ago and, trying to be true to the original, fried mine in oil. Yours are way healthier!

  33. Pam says:

    Why oh why aren’t you my neighbor?

  34. Astra Libris says:

    You made baked beignets!!! You are officially my hero!!! 🙂

  35. Gloria says:

    WOW Joanne I love baking and these look really delicious and beauty! have a nice weekend! gloria

  36. Claudia says:

    Well, at least you made them. I had the recipe out and looked at it is all. Then you had to post this and make me want to buy some of that coconut sugar. Me with the coconuts falling off the trees in her yard.

  37. I dunno if I could study at all with all these deliciousness around heheheh

  38. Velva says:

    I am drooling-You would not have 2-1/2 beignets left. I would have easily taken care of that for you. Your roommates must love you. This is definitely the best way to procrastinate. Awesome.


  39. Wow, your beignets sound amazing with saffron, dried cherries and coconut sugar glaze! I want to try these!

  40. Um, why can’t you be my roommate? Seriously. Drop out of med school, move back to Boston, and be my personal chef. It won’t be a very high-paying job, but you’ll get plenty of “omg this is amazings!!” Good enough, right??


  41. aipi says:

    I too baked with saffron today..these look fabulous n the texture is amazing!

    US Masala

  42. Candace says:

    omygosh, Joanne! I’m a sucker for anything with dried cherries. It just gets better and better over here. Baked Beignets? Seriously? I know these were amazing.

  43. Johanna GGG says:

    I had to google beignet to see if it was what I thought – not something I am familiar with but I would be willing to walk around the house sampling and muttering oh my god if only I had someone like you living in my house! (instead of another someone who just runs out to the bakery for some dried uninspiring baked goods)

    And it did occur to me that maybe you are not pregnant re the aversion to meat but maybe part of you wants to be vegetarian – after all I spent a few years cooking meat dishes with lots of vegetables before I became vegetarian and realise I just wasn’t interested in meat – beware!

  44. Catherine says:

    Dear Joanne, These look delicious…Blessings, Catherine

  45. omg..Joanne, those beignets look heavenly…you are a genius. Gosh..the pictures are so good too!

  46. Maria says:

    These looks perfectly scrumptious Joanne!

  47. Corina says:

    Anything with a cinnamon glaze can seduce me. I like the idea of the coconut in it too.

  48. Katerina says:

    Joanne have you thought of changing career path? I mean these look gorgeous and perhaps your place is in the kitchen (and don’t take this badly) of a 5 star hotel or have a show of your own instead of dealing with dead corps. Think about it!

  49. Big Dude says:

    Better patent these before Cafe Du Monde sees them.

  50. Ada says:

    omg just looking at those is making me salivate! I’ve never been to New Orleans, but I think it’s worth the trip just to try authentic beignets!

    I hope your rheum exam went well!

  51. Love the flavour combination. On Chopped they are always saying these are a cop-out for any challenge as they are so easy. HA! Not THESE ones, and I have never made them – the flavour combination is what really reeled me in here… and your writing, of course. Back to my University days – middle of the night stupor eating whatever and then passing out with crumbs all over my face.
    I have been neck deep in the throws of planning a local food conference here within slow food and have not posted for three weeks. Important work. Time well spent: BUT…I have not read, written, cooked and I miss my life and reading YOU!
    I am catching up slowly!

  52. i would not mind a sugar stupor this morning 🙂

    have a great weekend my dear! XOXOXO

    xo Alison

  53. Looks delicious, you had me at cherries! Lucky roommates, mine just studied, baking would have been nice!

  54. daphne says:

    they look TOO good! Studying and baking goes so well together I say! Sugar always helps. And what lucky ducks to be your housemates!

  55. girlichef says:

    Oven-baked, huh? Okay. I suppose that I would try them. 😉 Kidding, they look awesome, so light and fluffy and utterly addicting. and that topping…killer!

  56. Teresa says:

    oh i LOVE this! look at that great glaze! and i love that there is no oil dunking involved!

  57. Peggy says:

    Oh these beignets remind me of New Orleans and how much I love that dear city! Cafe Beignet would definitely be proud!

  58. Mary says:

    These really sound delicious, Joanne. Anytime something normally fried can be baked, is a huge step in the right directions. have a great weekend. Blessings…Mary

  59. Kristin says:

    Yummy! I really wish I lived in an area where I could get my hands on some of those ingredients because I am dying to make this.

  60. Marcia says:

    Catching up on your last three posts (I can’t see the pictures from work)…and now I am totally drooling…especially that lamb. And the curry. And the beignets…

  61. I didn know what Beignets were till now , babe that topping is gorgeous.
    I have a pack of those cherries too, but from KAF , love them so muc that dont use them:-) coz they are v difficult to find and last time arrived muc later after i needed them.
    The saffron and coconut sugar topping with the cherry is an absolutely fantastic pairing.
    Would totally love to vote for u.
    Is there any chance of u guys needing another flat mate.
    I must relocate to NY and soooonnnn.

  62. Nadji says:

    Des beignets délicieux.
    Photos très gourmandes. J’aime beaucoup.
    See soon.

  63. Do you know how much I adore beignets??? THIS MUCH (raises arms out)! Yeah, I do… I love them so freakin’ much. And based on my understanding of the wonderfulness of the cherry/saffron pairing, I know these are delightful!

  64. Tracy says:

    Your beignets look amazing! Love that they are baked, too. I could totally eat one (or twelve) of these for breakfast.

  65. Oh forget it already! These are freakin delicious!

  66. sweetlife says:

    omg..oven baked beignets…your amazing!! love the flavors!! it’s never too late for beignets!!


  67. WOW do those look good. Really good.

  68. These look sensational!! Bet they taste fantastic!

  69. Miriam says:

    Well done with the scones! And good luck with that studying thing :), [email protected]Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

  70. Kim says:

    I’m really into how fluffy these beignets look. I’m also into this oven baking business. Not to mention that the very idea of coconut sugar is making me weak in the knees.

  71. CH says:

    I’ve never had a beignet! I’m kind of mad at dried cherries right now. Like, they’re just SO bitter and it makes me mad. I’m bitter at their bitterness. I would try this with a different dried berry, perhaps. I had no idea there was such a thing as coconut sugar. It sounds like ti should definitely be available in heaven.

  72. Raina says:

    Wow! Baked beignets..yum! Your roomates are so lucky to have you. To be able to have something like this while studying must be a huge pick-me-up for them. Your sis is pretty lucky too. Sounds like you are going to make quite the birthday meal for her:)

  73. Julie says:

    Oh goodness, looks amazing. That glaze is calling to me. And I’ve heard that cherries are good for arthritis 🙂

  74. Mo 'Betta says:

    Baked beignet…fabulous! They look delicious!

  75. Lea Ann says:

    When I read the title of this post I said aloud “oh–my–goodness”. Gorgeous Joanne and beautiful photos.

  76. kickpleat says:

    Wow!!! These look so good – and I love that they are baked. How creative and what an interesting recipe. Love it.

  77. Megan says:

    Ever since Mardi Gras I have been craving these. This recipe sounds amazing. Where did you find the coconut sugar? I have a few local places I think I could find it, but wanted to see where you were able to snag some. These look and sound delicious!

  78. Megan says:

    Slapping self in forehead…sees picture of and rereads post. I see that the coconut sugar was from now…haha. But, if you were to look for some at a local place, any recommendations? (I guess I spent too much time drooling over the beignet photos…haha)

  79. tigerfish says:

    The saffron must be working magic into these beignets 🙂

  80. Never EVER thought to bake beignets! Awesome idea! Love the pics, too! Hope your test goes well… if not, just make the prof some beignets! Then lace them with steroids and hope he has glomerulonephritis 🙂

  81. Esi says:

    I really need to try oven baked beignets!

  82. Emily says:

    AHHH! These look amazing!

  83. Laura says:

    oh my god, these look incredible. I’ve only deep-fried beignets before (and at the same time, deep fried cookie dough, which I highly recommend), but baking sounds way easier and very delicious. Will have to try it, thanks!

  84. Sounds like they were a hit! Happy birthday to little sister. And though I don’t watch Grey’s Anatomy (I almost checked in on Off The Map because Meryl Streep’s daughter is on it), I have had a long, long crush on Patrick Dempsey too – even before the nose job!

  85. OohLookBel says:

    If I tried one of these beignets, I think I’d be wandering around saying ‘oh my god’ as well. So, no thanks, I’m distracted enough as it is.

  86. Tammy says:

    Hello Joanne! You have such a lovely blog here!
    First, happy belated b’day to your sister! I can only imagine what that triple layer cake looked like- you have so many beautiful recipes here!
    Second, these beignets look amazing! I’ve never had a beignet before, but yours look finger licking delicious with that wonderful glaze!
    Have a very lovely evening,

  87. Reeni says:

    Your beignets look wonderful – I love that you baked them! I think by doing that it gives you more room to play around with the ingredients. Love the flavors!

  88. What a dreamy combination! Well done for making such a good treat in between busy study.

  89. I love that these are baked! The flavors you have together sound delicious. I’m sure they were brain food for you and your lucky roommates. 🙂

  90. Oh man, these look amazing! And I love that they are baked – so much easier and less messy than the deep fry – and a bit lighter too. Yum!

  91. Little Inbox says:

    Hmm…that’s marvelous! Yummy!

  92. grace says:

    beignets sans screaming hot oil? i’m there, i’m so totally there. LOVE that glaze, too. excellent work.

  93. kellypea says:

    Well these brought back a few memories of fluffy hotness all dusted in powdered sugar, but better, which is pretty amazing. Good way to be productive while you’re perfecting the fine art of procrastination — or is it avoidance? I used to clean house instead of dealing with studying. Nothing quite like a spanking clean house. — except beignets ( you don’t even want to know what my husband calls them… : / )

  94. I love your creativity, Joanne! I would honestly have never thought to combine those ingredients in a glaze. And who needs deep-frying when baked beignets look this amazing?

  95. Oh nooooo you didn’t. I’ve always stayed away from making beignets at home because I don’t like deep-frying things (for the unhealthiness of it all plus all the cleanup). But now I have no excuse. Looks like I’ll have to workout an extra 45 hours to work these babies off!

  96. Stephanie says:

    I had no idea you could bake a beignet. These look DELIGHTFUL.

  97. Cara says:

    I love Grey’s too. Sometimes I feel like I’m stalking YOU!

    I wish I had known about baked beignets some time ago – someone gave me a beignet mix from NOLA which sat in my pantry for about three years collecting dust because an excuse for frying something never came along.

  98. Denise says:

    Congratulations on making it to Round 4! Good Luck!

  99. What a great combination of ingredients. If they are baked they must be good for you, right? 😉

  100. Dimah says:

    Just gorgeous, what a lovely treat.

  101. Hannah says:

    Oh man, I think you’ve got my baked donuts beat. Especially with that topping, they look amazing!

  102. Oh goodness, I am in love with these!

  103. Wow. These look INCREDIBLE. And what an awesome combination of flavors!

  104. Bizzy says:

    I must ask. Do your roommates bake or do you supply them. If you do, they must have gained weight since sharing with you.

  105. Thts so beautifully captured photo, love to try this looks delicious!

  106. Dang! I wanna be your roommate!! These look fabulous! ~Leslie

  107. My mouth is watering; honestly these look incredible…Wow, Joanne. Such beautiful pictures and a delicious recipe. Love it!

  108. […] Three years ago…Oven-Baked Beignets with Saffron, Dried Cherries, and a Coconut Sugar Glaze […]

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