While there might technically be no bad time for a doughnut, there are certainly more optimal moments. Namely: the colder months. Yes, beach season has officially released its grips on our dietary restrictions. From now until May, we are free to indulge in all sorts of decadent sweets in the name of hibernation. What better treat than a coffee and a warm doughnut on a cold winter’s day? To that end, we’ve selected some of the city’s finest purveyors of delicious dough. Because if you’re going to it, you best do it right.
A Lower East Side favorite since opening its doors in 2000, Doughnut Plant churns out perfected versions of a few varieties: yeast (light, airy, a bit of chew), cake (birthday cake meets pound cake), and filled (think house-made jams, creams, and custards).
379 Grand St, New York, NY 10002
If you’re looking for a petite sweet, look elsewhere. Dough’s yeasted donuts are nearly as big as your head. Dough goes big on flavor, too, with selections like Salted Chocolate Caramel, Lemon Poppy, and Hibiscus—in nuclear pink, no less.
14 W 19th St, New York, NY 10011
Brave the Chelsea Market crowds and head to Doughnuttery, a wee booth serving equally wee donuts. Every mini doughnut is made to order at the frier on the counter and then dusted with any one of their “uniquely flavored sugars,” like Paris Time (lavender, pistachio, vanilla), Apple Cider (fall spices, apple, orange zest), and Lemon Pop (lemon, vanilla, poppy seeds). Glaze is so 1999.
425 W 15th St, New York, NY 10011
Dominique Ansel‘s “cronuts” took the world by storm some years back and people are still talking about them. (For those who are uniformed, this is a buttery croissant/doughnut hybrid that practically evaporates in your mouth upon contact.) It’s a now-iconic sweet worth putting on your list, and the bakery is right around the corner for SIXTY SoHo.
189 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
The Donut Pub
To stay in business in New York City decade after decade is no small accomplishment. Opened in 1964, Donut Pub offers the no-frills, old-school approach most of us grew up with. Stick with the classics, like a cruller, a sugar ring, or the chocolate glazed.
203 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011
A Spring Street staple, the bakery adjacent to Keith McNally’s brasserie of the same name delivers on classic pastries like almond croissants, sticky buns, and, lucky for you, cake doughnuts. Do yourself a favor and try their elegant glazed pistachio option. It’s green—that means it’s good for you, right?
80 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
Photo courtesy of Jessica Henderson