No matter where you live in the U.S. or what you believe in, all Americans can agree on one thing: Doughnuts are really, really good. Seriously. Can you think of anything more delicious and satisfying than a fresh, warm, pillowy doughnut glazed in hot syrup or coated in cinnamon sugar? Nope. You can’t. And neither can we. That’s why we set out to find the best doughnut shop (and thus, the best doughnuts) in every state.
The Heavenly Donut Co./Yelp
Fun and playful doughnuts are what makes Birmingham hotspot The Heavenly Donut Co. stand out. The worst thing about this place? It’s hard to pick what pastries should make up your dozen. Of course, you can’t go wrong with the classic glazed, which is yeasty perfection, and everyone knows the Oreo doughnut, topped with cookie cream and crumbles, is a must-have.
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This nostalgic doughnut shop makes its old-fashioned doughnuts fresh every day, so they’re always fresh and fluffy. In addition to the glazed options, it also makes an amazing salty-sweet bacon maple doughnut and some hugely popular cake doughnuts with colorful, unique flavors and frostings: Try the vanilla cake with cherry frosting or an animated doughnut, complete with a gumball nose.
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Brother and sister team Sophy and Keng Se opened Young Donuts five years ago, next door to a children’s dentist office. If that isn’t enough of a reason to applaud them, then their doughnuts (and the super friendly staff) definitely are. Fresh, light, puffy, sweet doughnuts line the shelves, and though there are plenty of choices, we can’t recommend the simple buttermilk glaze and or the apple fritters highly enough.
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This small, family-owned doughnut shop is a hidden gem, and their doughnuts are true classics. The team at Mark’s has been focused on selling its signature doughnuts since 1978, and we really hope it never stops. On your first visit, try the coconut doughnut and a raspberry-filled jelly doughnut; breakfast doesn’t get much better than this.
Few things remain of old-school Oakland, but Colonial Donuts is one of them. For 28 years, this 24/7 joint has been serving piping hot, heavenly doughnuts. Though one of this restaurant’s locations was closed due to gentrification, another still exists. So run — don’t walk — to grab an old-fashioned maple doughnut, a blueberry cake doughnut with a delightful pink center, or a colorful sprinkled doughnut.
Glazed and Confuzed is baking some incredibly creative doughnuts made with local, organic, and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. The inventive flavors range from root beer float to Nutter Butter fluff with chocolate-covered bananas to blackberry pecan cobbler. But go for the mojito doughnut: The yeasted dough has been coated in a rum-infused glaze made with fresh lime and fresh mint. It’s as good as it sounds.
This retro diner draws people for its world-class chicken pot pie and its wonderful doughnuts. The selection is concise, but no huge range is needed when they’re all made so perfectly. Try a cinnamon-sugar doughnut, which will probably still be warm from the fryer, cakey on the inside, and crunchy and sugary on the outside — just as it should be.
“Best doughnuts ever.” That’s what all the Yelp reviews say about Gooey Donuts. It’s hard to deny that title while this Milton mainstay has offerings such as a chocolate-covered strawberry doughnut, a caramel-frosted doughnut, and a variety of doughnuts topped with favorite childhood cereals. Beyond the inventive flavors and frostings, these doughnuts are fried fresh, so you’ll always be getting a fluffy, perfectly hot pastry.
Mojo Donuts has only been around since 2013, but thanks to their absolutely bonkers flavors, they’ve become one of the Sunshine State’s most celebrated doughnut spots. They unsurprisingly always sell out quickly, so make sure you get there early in order to choose among flavors such as key lime pie, red velvet with cream cheese frosting, banana cream pie, mixed berry cheesecake, and death by chocolate.
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From Peach Extravaganza to A-Town Mocha to salt and vinegar, Sublime Doughnuts is not afraid to take risks with their flavors. But these risks pay off, resulting in a hype that is well deserved. If you get there early enough, make sure you try the most popular creation: A powdered doughnut cut open and stuffed full of fresh strawberries and whipped cream.
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Leonard, the son of two Portuguese immigrants, opened his Hawaiian bakery in the 1950s, and, under the encouragement of his mother, he started to bake and sell Portuguese malasadas. These European treats are doughnuts without a hole, coated in sugar. Everyone was soon obsessed with these treats, and they have now become a Hawaiian staple.
Gourmet doughnut shop Guru Donuts opened when the co-owners spotted a gap in the Idaho market. Although they were far from being expert bakers at the time, a kind neighbor taught them the tricks of doughnut-making, and ever since, they have been a staple in Boise. Their flavors are fan favorites too, from a Girl Scout cookie-inspired doughnut to the Hipsterberry (a blend of blueberry, blackberry, and lavender). Vegans are also welcome here; they have a variety of egg- and dairy-free items.
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It’s really easy to get overly inventive with the doughnut, but Dat Donut, a doughnut in front of a barbecue shop, doesn’t overly complicate things. The doughnuts really are some of the best we’ve ever tried. The eponymous “Big Dat” is a huge creation, but it’s more than a novelty tourist attraction. The pillowy fluffiness is truly satisfying, and the plain glaze will make you wonder if there really is anything better than a ginormous, classic, glazed doughnut.
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Long’s Bakery is aptly named; the line snaking out the door is, well, long. But it’s worth the wait for this cash-only, staple doughnut store. Those glazed and blueberry cake doughnuts melt in your mouth. You’ve waited long enough for Long’s, you may as well buy a whole dozen.
The doughnuts at Mahalo’s may be tiny, but they pack a ton of flavor. These bite-sized doughnuts come in tropical-inspired flavors such as Blueberry Beach (blueberry glaze, whipped cream, powdered sugar), Turtle Bay (chocolate glaze, caramel glaze, pecans), and Apple Tiki (caramel glaze, apple cobbler, cinnamon sugar). They’re all so simply scrumptious, it’s a great thing you can eat a lot of them at once.
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This hidden gem of a doughnut shop is worth seeking out if you’re in Kansas City. These fresh pastries are filled to order, so there’s no risk of an overly soggy filling. And that’s ideal, because the cream cheese-filled doughnut is genius. The glazed doughnuts with fancy toppings, such as cinnamon glaze with roasted walnuts or white chocolate with coconut shavings, are as delicious as they sound.
If you find yourself in Louisville, head to Nord’s Bakery to try its signature maple bacon doughnut. This specialty consists of a long, yeasted doughnut topped with a creamy maple frosting and a crisp strip of maple bacon. We don’t think we need to tell you more about the deliciousness of Nord’s after you’ve heard about a doughnut like that.
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In addition to offering the classic chocolate glazed and cinnamon sugar doughnuts, District doesn’t hesitate to experiment with other flavors. Seven flavors are on offer every day, and it’s likely you’ll find yourself deliberating among candied thyme, sriracha-maple, or even a “croquenut,” a specialty hybrid of a croque madame and a doughnut. Trust us: It’s worth a try.
Holy Donut is right; the potato doughnuts here are so light, so fluffy, and so warm that they totally just melt in your mouth. The dark chocolate sea salt, triple berry, and maple bacon are favorites. Just be sure to get here early; the line gets long, even at 8 a.m.
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The Fractured Prune has a few locations across Maryland, but it’s best known as a staple of the Ocean City boardwalk. While you can get their glazed doughnuts at stores across the country, it’s worth a visit to the boardwalk to get a customized doughnut, piping hot. You can choose from 19 glazes (including peach, mocha, mint, and blueberry) and 13 toppings (such as mini marshmallows, crumbled bacon, and vanilla wafers). Let your imagination go wild!
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The people of Massachusetts take their doughnuts seriously, which is why Donut King is such a resounding success. This old-fashioned doughnut shop makes its pastries fresh throughout the day and focuses on making the perfect batter rather than messing around with fancy flavors. The result is huge, warm, fresh, and fluffy doughnuts. Ain’t nothing wrong with that.
You want a unique doughnut flavor? Sweetwater’s has you covered. Though they offer nearly infinite takes on the doughnut, their candy bar series is what makes this Kalamazoo shop stand out. Yes, you can get doughnuts inspired by Mounds, Snickers, and Reese’s candies. There are also masterfully executed classics, such as the Boston crème and a perfect powdered doughnut.
A rich, yeasty brioche dough is what helps to make the doughnuts at Bogart’s so dang irresistible and buttery. This means their offerings, which include a lavender cake doughnut, a vanilla buttercream filled doughnut, and even a sprinkled cake aren’t too sweet. It’s the perfect way to start your day.
The TatoNut Shop knows it’s good; it declares itself as “the only real donut.” Go during Mardi Gras for their world-famous king cake doughnut. Don’t forget to grab some Katrina pieces. After Hurricane Katrina, this shop fried their loose ends to make up for a low supply of ingredients, but people loved them so much, they stuck around. Lines are oftentimes out the door, but it’s worth the wait for these airy pieces of heaven.
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The Donut Stop has been a St. Louis staple for more than 60 years, and despite having over 130 types of doughnuts, one particular offering makes this place such a well-loved classic: the cinnamon glob. As you’d imagine from its name, this sweet treat is a giant ball of fried dough, which is crisp on the outside and dense, buttery, and packed full of cinnamon on the inside.
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There may not be a grandma behind the counter here, but this doughnut shop is incredibly popular with the Bozeman community. Their best doughnuts are stuffed (and topped) with fresh fruit. Be sure to get there early in the day to beat the crowds.
Olsen Bake Shop
Visiting Omaha’s Olsen Bake Shop is like taking a step back in time. It opened in 1942 and really hasn’t changed much since then. The doughnuts here aren’t pretty, but what they lack in flash, they make up for in flavor. Get there early and grab a chocolate glazed cake doughnut with a strong, hot cup of coffee to get your day off to the best possible start.
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The offerings at Pink Box Doughnuts are as extravagant and decadent as a night out on the Strip. These treats are topped with fancy glazes like chipotle caramel and generous amounts of things like Cocoa Pebbles. If you’re only going to visit once, you must try the Fat Elvis: a chocolate-covered, peanut butter-filled doughnut garnished with a slice of caramelized banana. It’s only appropriate.
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It’s easy to miss Muriel’s Donuts; the building is a plain white front. But, once you get inside, you’ll find out why this doughnut shop is a well-respected mainstay of Lebanon. All of the doughnuts in the perfectly-curated, small collection are reliably tasty — but we can’t help but name favorites, and for us, the freshly-fried jelly stick coated in powdered sugar and a dust of cinnamon wins.
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There’s a good reason Uncle Dood’s has such a strong fan base in Jersey: The doughnuts are fun, fancy, and delicious. This relatively new opening is both amusing and delicious; doughnuts such as Vermont Swine (maple icing and bacon bits) and Bed Rockin’ (vanilla frosting and Fruity Pebbles) make us smile when we read the name and when we bite into the sweet, fluffy creation.
If you’re in Santa Fe, then head to Whoo’s Donuts and choose between their twists on classic doughnut flavors. Between the pistachio cake with white chocolate lemon ganache; the sweet, salty, and spicy maple bacon with dark chocolate glaze and chili brown sugar; and the blue corn, blueberry, and lavender doughnut, it’s impossible to go wrong.
It’s hard to strike the right balance between Instagrammable creations and foods with flavor, but NYC chain Doughnut Plant gets it right. Their yeast doughnuts are light and fluffy with classic, perfectly-executed taste; a vanilla bean glazed doughnut might sound typical, but this is anything but that. Their cake doughnuts are inventive yet not-too-sweet. Sweet not your thing? Don’t worry; they have savory doughnuts, too.
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Britt’s Donut Shop is only open from May to September, so be sure to get there while you’re at the beach this summer. The setup of Britt’s hasn’t changed since the stand opened in 1939, and neither has the single-item menu. The closely guarded recipe for their famous glazed doughnut is nothing short of perfection: soft, gooey, buttery, and so delicious that you’ll be talking about it until you can visit again.
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If you are a kid, have kids, or are simply a kid at heart, you have to make a stop at Sandy’s Donuts while in Fargo. Their delightful doughnuts come in joyful flavors such as Dirt and Worms, M&M, Almond Joy, and Cookie Monster. And you can’t forget the Big Sandy, a doughnut that’s big enough to feed a crowd (or one very hungry doughnut fan).
Students at Ohio State agree: The best drunk food spot isn’t Raising Cane’s or McDonald’s, it’s Buckeye Donuts. This 24/7 shop is good any time of day, though. Like a true Ohioan, you need to get the famous Buckeye Doughnut, a chocolate and peanut butter treat that’s a staple of the state. We also think their massive apple fritters are a must-have, as are the maple sticks.
Don’t let the silly names such as Strong Pimp Hands (an apple-cinnamon filled bear claw) and Camel Toes (two doughnut squares glued together with a cherry filling) put you off this great doughnut shop. It may be kitschy, but the flavor (and size) of these buttery doughnuts is insanely satisfying. And don’t let the name detour you; these doughnuts are fresh and delicious, never frozen.
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This doughnut shop is one of the country’s most famous, and as a result, there is always a line outside. But it’s a line worth waiting in. Voodoo Doughnut is a tiny, quirky stand serving up some of the most off-the-wall creations the doughnut world has ever seen. The Portland Cream doughnut has been named the city’s official doughnut by the mayor, and the Captain My Captain, topped with vanilla frosting and Cap’n Crunch, is a beautiful example of doughnut simplicity and brilliance.
Chef Michael Solomonov is well-known for his take on Israeli cuisine at his restaurants, which include Zahav and Dizengoff, but he also mastered the art of making doughnuts at Federal Donuts. Opt for the classic "Hot Fresh" Cinnamon Brown Sugar doughnut, a fresh cake doughnut that's dredged in cinnamon and brown sugar, and cooked to order, so that it’s still comfortingly warm when you eat it.
If you like your doughnuts to be bright, colorful, and sugar-filled, then the sprinkle doughnuts at Allie’s will be your idea of heaven. If you’re more of a traditionalist, then make sure you sample one of the renowned Boston creams. Or, heck, commit to the bit and get one of their customized doughnut cakes. No matter what you choose, it will be incredible.
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Every day, doughnut chef Allison Smith crafts 12 distinctive doughnuts, so you’ll need repeat visits to try all of Glazed Gourmet Doughnuts’ inventive flavors. And when we say “inventive,” we mean it. This place has beet-flavored doughnuts, green tea doughnuts, and Chinese five spice doughnuts. Don’t worry, they have perfectly-executed classics like PB&J, German chocolate, and cinnamon sugar.
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Two words: Oreo doughnuts. This is all the explanation you need to understand why this family-run doughnut shop is such a resounding success with a keen, intensely loyal clientele. If you don’t get here early enough to get that particular confection, don’t sweat it! The vanilla frosted, maple bars, and honey-glazed are also world-class.
The apple fritter at Ralph’s Donut Shop is a legendary creation; it’s huge and features a beautiful pool of apple filling in the center. But that deliciousness is not the only reason to head to Cookeville. The blueberry doughnuts, butter twists, and regular glazed are simple but pure perfection.
Round Rock doughnuts are known for their orange-yellow color and their puffy, yeast-risen appearance. The color comes from the high-quality eggs that are used in the dough, and the “rustic” appearance is a result of using the same recipe since the 1920s. Everything is bigger in Texas, including their doughnuts, so get your original glazed Texan-sized. It’s bigger than your face!
As the name suggests, you can create your very own doughnut at this Sandy, Utah, shop. First, choose between a classic doughnut or a trendy croissant doughnut. Then, pick one of 12 fillings, which range from a Madagascar vanilla whipped cream to an apple fruit filling to a Key lime mousse. Then, top it off with a drizzle, glaze, and one of 22 toppings. These one-of-a-kind creations are as much a work of art as they are a midday snack.
Mrs. Murphy’s is a quaint little shop with a granny on its logo, and their delicious yet simple doughnuts live up to the old-fashioned promise. The maple cream doughnuts, cinnamon cider doughnuts, and cookies and cream doughnuts are the definition of homemade comfort.
With 10 locations in the state (and even more coming), Sugar Shack Donuts & Coffee is a staple of the Virginia food scene. They have the classics down to a science; their cinnamon sugar, glazed, and chocolate sprinkle doughnuts are the definition of fresh and delicious. But it’s the unique seasonal offerings (that you pretty much have to preorder to get) and the flavors that incorporate candy, chocolate, and funky flavors that put this place on top.
A lot of times, a heavily-hyped doughnut is just that: Hype. But for Daddy’s Donuts in Kenmore, the hype is well-earned. These mini-doughnuts come in three varieties — plain, cinnamon sugar, or powdered sugar — and are always made fresh to order. If that’s not enough to get you to Washington state, realize you can make a doughnut sundae of sorts. Fan favorites include the Tayo Tornado (plain doughnuts topped with maple glaze and fresh bacon), Robot Roberta (topped with chocolate sauce, Oreo cookies, whipped cream and a robot ring), and the Coco-Loco (a chocolate and tres leche drizzle, topped with toasted coconut).
District Doughnut_District Doughnut and Coffee/Yelp
At Washington, D.C.’s District Doughnut, the crème brûlée doughnut is torched right in front of your eyes, resulting in a crunchy, perfectly crystallized crust around a soft, chewy doughnut. And that’s only one of their gourmet offerings. The Nutella s'more doughnut? Heavenly. The brown butter doughnut? Iconic.
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The doughnut recipe used at JR’s Donut Castle hasn’t changed for more than 30 years, and it’s probably because the giant glazed doughnuts are such an incredible attraction, both to see and to eat. Regular customers will insist that you try the maple cream fill, but there are more than 30 other doughnut flavors worth trying too. May as well get them all…
Manderfield’s Home Bakery is so popular that they recommend you reserve your doughnuts a day in advance to guarantee your breakfast. While that may be a pain, once you get your hands on their classic raised doughnuts, you’ll see what all the fuss is about. The fillings are light, creamy, and oh-so-sweet. The service is friendly in a classic Midwestern sense. This bakery’s three locations are a Wisconsin staple for a reason.
Mini doughnuts are as fun to look at as they are to eat, and Delish Donuts & Coffee proves this. These fresh, made-to-order doughnuts are crunchy and crisp on the outside and beautifully fluffy and wondrous on the inside. Get them plain, dusted, or glazed. And if you’re lucky enough, you just might find a seasonal flavor!
Now that you know America’s best doughnuts, try a hand at making this favorite breakfast/dessert/snack yourself with these 15 amazing doughnut recipes.