Donegal were well beneath their best, but Declan Bonner's side still kept Tyrone scoreless in the second half to book a meeting with Armagh in two weeks' time.
Conor Doherty's third-minute goal was the game's big score but it was an afternoon when Bonner's boys didn't find the high gears.
However, they made enough of what they had in the second half to outscore Tyrone 0-6 to 0-0 and get the start of the defence of their Ulster title off to a winning start.
Tyrone kicked five points in a row in a ten-minute purple patch in the first half that had them ahead, but Donegal got back on level terms by the interval, and they kicked for home in the second half.
Naoise Ó Baoill made the play for the game's opening goal, bursting through Tyrone's heart before off-loading for Doherty, who finished at the second attempt.
Johnny Harkin landed Tyrone's opening point on five minutes and the Red Hands had pulled themselves level by the 20th minute.
Ethan O'Donnell restored Donegal's four-point lead, but with Conan McLernon on the mark with three excellent points, the visitors reeled in the deficit.
Tyrone took the lead when Fintan McClure landed a sumptuous effort from distance before he turned provider for McLernon who drilled between the sticks.
Daire Ó Baoill punted Donegal in front with a fine point under pressure seven minutes into the second half and the hosts never looked back.
Scorers - Donegal: C Doherty 1-1, K Barrett 0-3fs, N O'Donnell, E O'Donnell (1f), R Carr (2 '45s') 0-2 each, D Ó Baoill 0-1. Tyrone: C McLernon 0-4, J Harkin, J Darcy, R Coleman, F McClure 0-1 each.
DONEGAL - D Rodgers; G McFadden, S McMenamin, P Doherty; D Ó Baoill, N Gavigan, B McCole; M Carroll, M Langan; N Ó Baoill, N O'Donnell, R Carr; C Doherty, K Barrett, E O'Donnell. Subs: J McGee for Gavigan (h-t), P McNern for E.O'Donnell (h-t), Sean McHugh for N Ó Baoill (54), M Coyle for Carr (56), B Curran for D Ó Baoill (60).
TYRONE - B Gallen; C McGlinchey, C McGuigan, Conor Shields; E Murray, C Campbell, J Harkin; J Darcy, C O'Hagan; M Corless, D Mulgrew, R Coleman; C McLernon, F McClure, T Carney. Subs: J McGuigan for Carney (30), E McNabb for O'Hagan (h-t), B Kennedy for Corless (40), C Kilpatrick for Coleman (44), Michael McKernan for Harkin (black card, 49), R McGuigan for McGlinchey (60).
REF - P Faloon (Down).