The Old Mill Apple Cider Fritters

Apple Cider Fritters | Old Mill

Back in the day of our Smoky Mountain ancestors, apple fritters were sweet treats worth waiting for.

They contained ingredients local to this part of the country – apples, apple cider, self-rising flour, sugar or sorghum for sweetening, and lard or vegetable oil for frying. And they took a bit of artistry to prepare. Not just anyone could turn everyday ingredients into a lighter-than-air fritter.

So right now, when fresh local apples are coming into the market and being pressed into cider, it’s a good time to recreate this old mountain treat. Fried crispy and rolled in sugar, these fritters remind us of fall. They also remind us that we should be thankful for the resourceful cooks who first prepared recipes like this and handed down their methods so we can continue to make them today.

Self-rising flour has a long history in the South and was designed for busy cooks. Containing baking powder and salt, this flour was “self-rising,” and cooks figured out they could use it in all sorts of baked goods, from fritters, to biscuits, to cakes, to dumplings. The next time you are shopping in our General Store or online, grab a bag and make a batch of apple cider fritters!

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The Old Mill’s Apple Cider Fritters

Apple Cider Fritters | The Old Mill
  • Author: The Old Mill
  • Prep Time: 40
  • Cook Time: 4
  • Total Time: 44 minutes
  • Yield: 20 1x


  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups The Old Mill Self-Rising Flour, divided use
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 cups finely chopped apples (about 4 medium apples, peeled and cored)
  • Peanut oil for frying
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar for sifting


1. Place the eggs, apple cider, milk, melted butter, and vanilla in large bowl and whisk to combine. Whisk in the sugar, and set aside.

2. Measure 1 1/2 cups of the self-rising flour into a small bowl. Stir in the cinnamon. Toss the apples with the remaining 1/2 cup flour. Place the flour mixture in the bowl with the egg mixture and whisk until it is combined and smooth, about 1 minute. Fold in the floured apples until combined.

3. Place enough peanut oil in a large, deep cast iron skillet or Dutch oven to measure 2 inches. Place the pan over medium-high heat, and bring to 350 to 365 degrees F. When the oil is hot, drop generous tablespoons of the batter into the pan, frying about four doughnuts at a time. Let the doughnuts fry about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side, turn, and continue cooking 1 1/2 to 2 minutes on the other side. Remove to a wire rack set on top of brown paper to drain.

4. Repeat with the remaining batter, giving the oil time to reheat to 350 to 365 degrees before frying. With a slotted spoon or sieve, clean up the oil between frying, removing any burned bits from the oil. Dust the warm, drained doughnuts with confectioners’ sugar and serve.

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