Campfire Donuts

This past weekend while I was camping with my scouting group we tried a new recipe: campfire donuts. They were a BIG hit with everyone and really simple to make.

Campfire donuts


  • Oil for frying (about 2 cups is sufficient)
  • Refrigerated biscuits (like Pillsbury’s Grands)
  • Cinnamon and sugar (1 cup of sugar to 2 tablespoons cinnamon)
  • Brown paper bag (like you would use to pack a lunch)
  • Cooking pot (I used cast iron)

Step 1: Heat the oil until it is just about to boil; the temperature is right when little bubbles are forming on the pot. You do not want a rolling boil. (At first I had the oil too hot and it turned the first donut black in under 10 seconds!)Campfire Doughnuts

Step 2: Cut each biscuit in half (down the middle) so that each pre-sliced biscuit makes two round dough circles. Then poke a hole in the middle of each dough circle.

Step 3: Deep-fry the donut biscuits until both sides are golden brown.

Campfire Doughnuts

Step 4: Place the cinnamon and sugar in the brown lunch bag and shake to mix. When you remove the cooked donut from the oil, let any excess oil run off, then put it into the bag and shake until the donut is coated.

Step 5: Enjoy!

Campfire Doughnuts

26 thoughts on “Campfire Donuts

  1. Amanda Lake

    So happy to find another Scout parent. I am constantly trying to get my son’s patrol to do something different every time we camp. I can only convince them after I have brought/made something different and it comes out amazing. Going to have to try this next! (Pst, let me know if you are ever coming through Missouri!)

    1. Kristin

      Hi Amanda! Thanks for stopping by and reading! 🙂 Jarrett also loves to experiment with camp food. He has a scout camping weekend coming up this month, and I know he’s already looking for some new ideas to try. 😉 So check back, because I’m sure we’ll be posting more ideas in the near future. Happy Camping!

  2. Patrick

    I make fried dough boys (elephant ears, scones, dough gods) at camp and they are always a hit. I make the basic dough at home, then at camp flatten out with a rolling pin or stretch by hand then fry in oil, coat with sugar and enjoy. This works well with large or small groups. If there is dough left over I make buns in the morning for breakfast. The smell of the buns really gets the appetite fired up.

    1. Kristin

      Hi Patrick–thanks so much for stopping by and reading! And thanks for sharing a great camp recipe idea! Sounds awesome–we’ll have to try that sometime!

      1. Kristin

        Hi Anne–thanks for stopping by! I’m not sure what Patrick’s dough recipe is, but many people use the frozen bread dough as well as the refrigerated biscuit dough. Good luck and happy camping!

  3. Tara

    This looks really good. I’ve been camping all summer with my family, and we’re trying out some new recipes. I’m wondering, though, what do you do with all that oil when you’re camping? I seems like it would be pretty messy.

    1. Kristin

      Hi Tara! Thanks so much for stopping by! Great question! We funnel the used oil right back into the container it came out of. Usually we then pitch it, or if we are going to fry something else soon, we’ll save it for the next time. Just keep in mind that the oil will have “donut” residue in it and the oil can go rancid if not properly stored. Happy camping!

  4. Steph

    Thanks for this idea! Annual group Labor day float this weekend, I’m going to give these a try!
    Ps: fellow MO camper 🙂

  5. Konnie Robinson

    Scout Parent here as well.
    We cut biscuits into 4ths and dry them without making them look like traditional donuts.
    We do a brown paper grocery bag of cinnamon super & a brown paper grocery bag of powdered sugar.

    Camp Stove Donuts are a huge hit! We have others making Mountain Man Breakfast Bake in a Cast Iron Dutch Oven with charcoal as well, because Scouts need protein for an active morning before lunch.

    Enjoyed your website, I’ll be back!

    1. Kristin

      Hi Konnie–thanks for stopping by and reading! That’s a great idea to cut them up–I bet they cook more evenly that way. And the Mountain Man Breakfast Bake sounds intriguing! Is there a recipe for it floating around the internet, or is that a personal creation?

  6. Cathy

    A really nice idea for when I go camping with my grandchild. Always looking for something different to do instead of marshmallows or hot dogs over the camp fire.

  7. Vicki Cooksey

    Looks like an easy way to try something extra tasty for breakfast. Thanks for sharing. Going to have to try this when we go camping with our group this summer.

    1. Kristin

      Hi Vicki–thanks for stopping by! Glad you enjoyed the recipe idea–I hope you have fun making these on your next camping trip! Happy camping!

  8. Hedy

    When I was a Brownie, they taught us to roll the biscuits into a rope and tie into a knot. Then we dipped them into melted margarine and rolled it in the cinnamon sugar mix. Baked them about 13 minutes or so, following directions on can. Have to watch they don’t burn on bottom. This was over 60 years ago. I will make your recipe, sure looks good.

    1. Kristin

      Hi Hedy–thanks for stopping by and reading! That sounds yummy too–like an Auntie Anne’s pretzel! We will have to try that sometime! 🙂 Happy camping!

    1. Kristin

      Hi Allison! Any of the canned biscuits should work (but not products like crescent rolls). We usually buy the Aldi version and it’s cooked fine. Cutting the dough into bite-sized pieces also works if you want donut holes instead of bigger donuts. Hope that helps–happy camping!

  9. Karen

    This looks awesome! I am also a scout parent and my sons’ Boy Scout troop camps every month. We’ve been doing a lot of dutch oven cooking over the fire. I am looking for some new recipes to try out on our campouts. Thanks for sharing. I’m going to suggest this one for our next campout.

    1. Kristin

      Hi Karen–thanks so much for stopping by and reading! Yay for dutch oven camp cooking! 🙂 I hope you all enjoy them as much as we do. We also have a gluten-free donut hole recipe on the site that is super yummy! We are going to be experimenting with some new dutch oven recipes on our next campout–can’t wait to try them! 🙂

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