Food & Drink

In celebration of National Donut Day, 17 donuts you absolutely NEED to eat

Published On 06/06/2013 Published On 06/06/2013

National Donut Day is Friday, June 7th, which is basically the equivalent of having another birthday. Unless your regular birthday is June 7th, in which case you've just got one donutbirthday. Wait, let's call it a Girthday. Yeah, that's it. But, on such a momentous day, you don't want you to settle for just any donuts -- we took the liberty of rounding up the finest in all the land, right here in this handy list. Track them down and get to celebrating.

Dun-Well Doughnuts
Brooklyn, NY
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Orange-Pistachio
You'd never guess from tasting this unique combo of citrus and nut that all of Dun-Well's pastries are vegan, but they are. Those tree-hugging health maniacs have infiltrated even our most sacred ground: dessert!! But once you tast these 'nuts, you'll finally like vegans. The place's also got a Cadbury Creme Egg donut that's only available at Easter, and is miraculously made without sacrificing the lives of ANY Cadbury chickens, even though that doesn't make sense.

Chicago, IL
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Bourbon Vanilla
It's never a bad thing when you've got bourbon in your dessert. Add to that a Bacon Butterscotch number and one called Nutella Milk Stout, and you've got the well-rounded meal of a rhino manly donut-fiend. Just be sure to get at least a six-pack, like we did, so you don't have to play favorites.

Glam Doll Donuts
Minneapolis, MN
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Peanut Butter Sriracha
It's just like your classic PB&J, except instead of jelly, it's COVERED in Sriracha, then sprinkled with peanut shards. Given that it's served alongside The Starlet (strawberry frosting, chocolate sprinkles), The Calendar Girl (chocolate glaze topped with sea salt, with a melted caramel center), and a maple-glazed, candied bacon-topped Long John, you won't mind a little spicy Asian invasion in your American classic.

Doughnut Dolly
Oakland, CA
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Hand-Filled "Naughty Cream"
This place is named after the women in WWI who would bring coffee and donuts to soldiers (so THAT'S what "total war" entails!), and the woman who makes 'em injects flavors like chocolate-hazelnut, raspberry jam, and the above unmentionable delight.

Federal Donuts
Philadelphia, PA
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Mint Chocolate Cookie
After sending their 'nuts through a robot fryer, FD coats them in flavored sugars (Turkish Mocha, Strawberry Fennel, Vanilla Spice), then tops them with delicious "mixes" like the above Mint Chocolate Cookie, Maple Bacon, or Spicy PB&J. Did we mention they've also got coffee-fried chicken? They've also got coffee-fried chicken.

Do Rite Donuts
Chicago, IL
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Maple with Candied Bacon
Like all of Do Rite's flavors, the fellas above are lovingly made in batches of three dozen, and are technically closer to fried dough than donuts, hence the cruller-esque appearance. But hey, a donut by any other name would still smell as sweet, thanks to delicious fried cake, icing, and CANDIED FREAKING BACON. Open-faced jellies with peanut butter mousse and raspberry jam are their other, um, jam, so you should probably just get all three dozen yourself.

Union Square Donuts
Somerville, MA
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Maple Bacon
Combine the ladies who teach you how to cook and do all sorts of DIY at City Chicks with the kombucha/ice pop cyclists at Culinary Cruisers, and you get hand-knit kombucha koozies? scrumptious small-batch donuts (duh!), like their drippingly-delicious maple bacon, hibiscus rose, or stuffed orange-ginger cream.

Donut Bar
San Diego, CA
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Maple Bacon Bars
"But those donuts aren't even round!", you say. "But they are delicious!", we say. "Mhhrsmwhmmna", you say, as you stuff your face with these life-altering bars. They've also got Crème Brûlée donuts that they make by caramelizing the sugar on top with a blow torch. Or, if neither of those do it for you, opt for their Chocolate Euphoria topped with chocolate curls.

Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken
Washington, DC
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Maple Bacon and Brooklyn Blackout
Aren't they just the purtiest little things you ever did want to inhale in a gluttonous rage? The guy on the left's got a generous helping of Benton's bacon, but if you're more in the mood for "pre-owned" cutoff Beatles tees and mother-shaming haircuts, opt for that BK number on the right, with devil's food cake and cookie-crumb topping. Oh, and in case the name wasn't clear, this place also sells fried chicken.

Denver, CO
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Japanese Circular Cake
Okay, so this one isn't technically a donut, but it IS a crazy Japanese cake with a bajillion layers that takes forever to make/cut/serve. This flavor is Matcha Green Tea with limoncello, and it serves 4-6 people, or just you, you insatiable fiend.

Gourdough's Public House
Austin, TX
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: The Freebird
The term "donut" may have to once again be a bit flexible to include this monstrosity, but there is technically a donut underneath all that. There also happens to be cheese cake filling, cream cheese icing, graham cracker crumbles, strawberries, and blackberries. Given that the place also has a cocktail called the Grandpa's Breakfast with maple syrup, blood orange, egg white, bacon-infused bourbon, and a STICK OF BACON, it'd be un-American NOT to make the trek out to Austin to snag one of each.

Washington, DC
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Brioche with Chocolate Filling and Cocoa Krispies
Surprise! This guy's made of brioche, stuffed with a ring of chocolate, dipped in milk chocolate ganache, sprinkled with Cocoa Krispies, then drizzled with vanilla frosting, allowing you to live out those two dreams you thought were incompatible: fancy beret-wearing writer in a French cafe AND stay-at-home child living in your mom's basement and eating Cocoa Krispies out of the bag so messily that they fall out all over your donuts. Who says dreams can't come true?

Glazed and Infused
Chicago, IL
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Bar Snack
M&Ms, pretzels, peanuts, potato chips... you can get practically a week's worth of junk food out of the way with a single Bar Snack donut from Glazed and Infused. They've also got banana cream cheese, a Key lime custard-stuffed (topped with graham cracker streusel!), and a bacon-maple Long John, so you've pretty much got all of your junk-food bases covered.

Surdyk's Cheese Shop
Minneapolis, MN
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Maple Glazed with Bacon
Donuts from a liquor store? Your washed-up detective life-long dream is finally a reality. Surdyk's fries up their donuts in grape seed oil, resulting in a crispier dough. This fella's glazed in maple and then sprinkled with Benton's bacon, but they've also got lemon-lavender chocolate glazed and a cinnamon, cardamom, clove, and orange Chai Spice donut. Plus, every donut comes with a free donut hole. Sorry, kindergarteners.

Peter Pan Donut & Pastry Shop
Brooklyn, NY
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Red Velvet Cake
This shop has been around since 1961, so you know this donut with cream and crumbled red velvet cake, all for $1, is totally legit (vanilla glazed with rainbow sprinkles for photo-friendly propping not included). Also, it's from Brooklyn, so you know it enjoys vintage snapbacks.

Firecakes Donuts
Chicago, IL
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Coconut Cream
This small-batch 'nut shop in Chi-Town coats this coconut cream number in toasted coconut flakes and tops it with a delicious pile of coconut shavings. Or, if you need a little something extra to put out your fire, snag their blood orange with raspberry jelly, Tahitian vanilla glazed, or Nutella Long Johns (!).

Do or Dine
Brooklyn, NY
Donut You Absolutely Need to Eat: Foie Gras
This place is known for pushing the boundaries (they've got a shot called The Spherickle Back, which is a pickle back in a crazy floating sphere), but a foie gras donut is a serious mind-blower. You may never have imagined you'd be eating a goose liver-stuffed donut, but you DEFINITELY never imagined that a goose liver-stuffed donut could be this tasty.



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