This might be the most debatable topic in the city of Chicago.
Sure, everyone knows where their favorite bar is, and most people can rattle off a dozen places where they like to go out and get a bite to eat on a Friday night.
But doughnuts are sacred. Once you find your favorite doughnut shop, you rarely stray away. There’s something about the way your special doughnut place puts that glaze on just right, and there’s that particular soft-but-warm ooziness that gets you every time.
So, which doughnuts are the ‘best’ in Chicago? These 10 are:
- Glazed And Infused
- Doughnut Vault
- Do-Rite Donuts
- Firecakes Donuts
- Stan’s Donuts and Coffee
- Beavers Donuts
- Fritz Pastry
- Old Fashioned Donuts
- Somethin’ Sweet Donuts
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Don’t get all bent out of shape because your favorite place isn’t at the top. Remember, this is science speaking. And no, Dunkin’ Donuts doesn’t count. We’re just talking about mom and pop, ‘they know your first name’ places.
Read on below to see how we figured it out, and let your mouth water as we go through the best doughnut (or donut) shops in the Windy City.
How do you decide if a doughnut place is amazeballs or not?
In order to rank Chicago’s best doughnut shops, we only had to look at the number of Facebook fans each place had. What we found was there are a dozen or so places that are obviously delectable, since they had, by far, the most Facebook fans.
Our argument: if you’re willing to look at pictures of a shop’s doughnuts every day on your Facebook wall, that means you’re hooked.
1. Glazed And Infused
Facebook fans: 17,230
Yeah, that’s a ton of Facebook followers, even for a city as large as Chicago. What makes Glazed and Infused so popular? Well, lots of things. Their creme brulee doughnuts have been called ‘yumazing’ for starters. And if you haven’t tried their Maple Bacon Long John, then you are missing out.
Go and see ‘em for yourself. They’re on Fulton Avenue.
2. Doughnut Vault
Facebook fans: 11,018
When there’s a line forming outside a doughnut shop, that means people are crazy over them. That happens at Doughnut Vault on Franklin.
Check out their Facebook page. It’s filled with people posting pictures of their delicious boxes that they stood in line for. One person said: “Second person in line at 7:50 this morning… 20 people in line by 8 am.”
Facebook fans: 6,761
This fourth generation family owned and operated doughnut shop has been around since 1922. And, they ship worldwide. That means there are lots of people who left Chicago who simply can’t live without their Dinkel’s.
And they cater, too. And lots of people get Dinkel’s at their weddings.
4. Do-Rite Donuts
Facebook fans: 6,300
Do-Rite is more of your gourmet doughnut place, where you can get vegan options, gluten-free, and artisanal small-batch varieties. Or, you can go the other way and get their donut and chicken sandwich.
This is the place to go when Stan’s has a big line. And you might not go back to Stan’s after you try Do-Rite, either.
Do-Rite is on Randolph.
5. Firecakes Donuts
Facebook fans: 5,656
Located in River North, this hand-crafted donut shop has a ton of raving fans. If you’re one of them, this might have just made your mouth water.
They have everything from a donut ice cream sandwich to butterscotch pudding filled. Yum.
Facebook fans: 4,540
Located on Damen Avenue, Stan’s has a variety of doughnuts that people are nuts about. These ain’t your Dunkin’ Donuts for sure. At Stan’s, you stand in line like every other sweet tooth to try anything from vegan to traditional.
Here’s one Facebook comment that just about sums up Stan’s: “I bought a half dozen to bring home to my kids. I ate 3 on the car ride home and I don’t even like donuts.”
7. Beavers Donuts
Facebook fans: 3,636
Donut miss Beavers Donuts if you’re in the vicinity of Randolph and Clinton. They’re inside the Chicago French Market. You’ll certainly miss out on what lots of Chicagoites have discovered already. Lots of people rave about their mini donuts.
And, they have a food truck, too, so you can smell their tasty treats a block away from where they park.
8. Fritz Pastry
Facebook fans: 3,468
This place doesn’t just do doughnuts. But that doesn’t mean their doughnuts aren’t delectable.
But if you’re in the mood for anything from doughnuts to cinnamon rolls, scones, muffins, pop tarts or vegan pasties, you simply can’t go wrong here.
You know they’re damn good when almost every picture posted to their Facebook page already has a bite out of them. Or they’re half gone. People just can’t wait to dig into them, apparently.
9. Old Fashioned Donuts
Facebook fans: 2,201
Old Fashion Donuts is right on Michigan Ave between 112th and 113th Streets. If you’ve passed by and noticed people smiling (or drooling) and you never walked in, then shame on you. Especially after you’ve seen their TV commercials.
This place is old school good. Cheap, simple and to the point.
10. Somethin’ Sweet Donuts
Facebook fans: 712
For a smallish place, Somethin’ Sweet Donuts might just be one of those hidden gems that only certain people know about. If you’re a big fan, you might be nodding in agreement to our ranking, but wincing at the fact that now, the lines at SSD might be a little longer.
And not only do their treats melt in your mouth, everyone raves about how friendly they are, too. You can’t beat that.
There You Have It
If you’re looking at the doughnut shops in Chicago that have the biggest followings (and thusly, the best doughnuts in town), this is an accurate list.
Disclaimer: This article is an opinion based on data. It should not be taken as fact.