When it comes to baked goods, Chicago shows a distinct preference for those round fried treats with a hole in the middle. The city’s doughnut game is strong, and some of the best donut shops can be found downtown. From your basic glazed to creative flavors, here are our favorite places to get your donut fix in the South Loop and nearby neighborhoods.
Stan’s Donuts is an LA-import with a retro feel that’s taken Chicago by storm. They’ve got seven area locations, including one in the South Loop. You can get one of the standards, such as glazed or cake, or you can try one of the specialty flavors. They’ve got Boston Cream, Captain Crunch bismarck, and double chocolate old fashioned varieties, to name a view. Even though the original is on the West Coast, they’ve got a local connection. Rich Labriola, of Labriola bakeries, partnered with Stan himself to bring the chain to the Midwest.
You can’t go wrong with Do-Rite Donuts. Head to the Loop for tasty treats like candied maple bacon or pistachio-Meyer lemon. They change their flavors frequently, but you can count on finding something delicious and creative. They even offer gluten-free and vegan doughnuts. If you go to the West Loop or Streeterville locations you can also get a fried chicken sandwich. They use fresh, hormone-free chickens that have been brined and seasoned to make them as juicy and flavorful as possible.
Glazed and Infused has not just one but four downtown locations, one each in the West Loop, the Loop, River North, and Streeterville. You can order your maple bacon long john and your chocolate dipped old fashioned in advance and pick them up at the spot that’s most convenient to you. You can even have them delivered.
Inside the Chicago French Market is Beavers. This donut shop started as a food truck and became so popular they opened a location inside the market at Ogilvie Station. Beavers is perfect when you want a taste; they fry their mini-donuts to order and make them from scratch daily. Signature toppings include turtle, with chocolate, caramel sauce, and pecans, and Nutella dream made with the hazelnut spread and strawberry sauce. If you don’t want to go to the market you can follow their Twitter account to see where the food truck will be next.
River North’s Doughnut Vault may be on the other side of the Loop, but if the daily morning lines are any indication, they’re worth the trek. You’ll want to get there early because they only make so many, and once they’re out, they’re out.
Have you got a favorite place for these breakfast sweets? Let us know on Twitter and Facebook!