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Don’t underestimate the power of the donut. During World War I, simple deep-fried dough balls are said to have boosted the morale of American troops. You can read more about the story behind this delicious day here, but if you’re less of an educational mood and more of a “how fast can I find a vegan donut?” craze, keep reading. From coast to coast and everywhere in between, here are the best vegan donuts to start your day off right.

donut friend

1 Donut Friend’s Youth Brûlée in Los Angeles, CA

There’s so much wasted potential in the hole of a donut. Instead of leaving a gaping gap of unsatisfying air, this micro-chain of vegan donuts fills the void with Bavarian cream topped with sugar and burnt for a creme brulee effect. In terms of dessert mashups, this creme brulee glazed donut hybrid is a cut above the cronut.
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VegNews.Peacefuleclairs
Peaceful provisions

2 Eclairs from Peaceful Provisions in Beacon, NY

This donut is worth getting up early. Based in Beacon, NY, and only open Friday through Sunday with limited hours, this vegan bakery sells out fast. It’s a telltale sign that you’re into something big. Every bit they whip up is epic, but the quick donuts are over the top. Go traditional with vanilla custard filling and chocolate frosting or go spicy with the cinnamon and pecan variety. Just stock up on what’s left.
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VegNews.VictorMikasDonut
Victor and Mika’s Bakery

3 Victor and Mika’s Bakery Biscoff Cookie Butter Donut in Winter Haven, FL

Those who eat spoon biscuit butter, you know who you are. While there’s a purity to pouring speculoos into your mouth, glazing a vegan yeast donut is exponentially more delicious. Find them on the rotating menu at the Winter Haven Farmer’s Market.
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VegNews.DoeDonut@Drinkdontshave

4 Doe Donuts’ Tiramisu filled in Portland, OR

The best vegan tiramisu may simply be in donut form. This vegan donut specializes in leavened, filled and beautifully decorated fried dough. Tiramisu is a deliciously complex marvel of tangy cream cheese filling, light but breaded batter, and coffee glaze covered in cocoa powder. To be enjoyed with a double espresso.
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VegNews.Dunwell
Dun-well Donuts

5 PB&J of Dun-Well Donuts in Brooklyn, NY

A step up from the classic jelly-filled donut, this donut adds a thick layer of creamy peanut glaze to recreate this humble sandwich in fried dough form. There’s a reason it’s a bestseller.
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Vegan Donut Company

6 Strawberry Shortcake from Vegan Donut Company in Lakewood, OH

Based in the Cleveland area, this specialty bakery offers a rotating list of inventive donut flavors, but customers and visitors can count on the recurring Strawberry Shortcake. It’s a square-shaped filled donut topped with strawberry crumble borrowed from the famous ice cream novelty and finished with a center dollop of whipped cream and a fresh strawberry. You will need two hands (or a knife and fork) to take this donut apart.
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NOLA Seed

seven Seed NOLA’s Donuts, New Orleans, LA

By culinary definition, a beignet is a donut. Now that that’s settled, seek out a hot batch of these melt-in-your-mouth powdered sweet treats. To be enjoyed with a large cup of coffee and a mountain of napkins. Plan your outfit accordingly – don’t wear black or risk wearing powdered sugar residue all day.
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Ronald’s donuts

8 Ronalds Donuts Birthday Donut in Las Vegas, NV

This no-frills vegan donut shop has some of the best vegan donuts in the country, according to its loyal fans. Grab a dozen and be sure to grab a few birthday donuts sprinkled with a handful of rainbow jimmies and thick vanilla frosting.
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Dottie’s donuts

9 Boston Cream from Dotties Donuts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Flavors change daily at this famous vegan donut shop, so while we’d love to recommend the blueberry pie option or the chef’s special filled with spicy chocolate cheesecake, it may not not be there during your visit. Pro tip: Order the constant Boston Cream and always go for the chef’s specialty if it doesn’t run out.
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Erin McKenna’s Bakery

ten Erin McKenna’s Coffee Crunch, multiple locations

Looking for something gluten-free that doesn’t taste gluten-free? Erin McKenna has you. The cake donuts from this bakery are sublime and never grainy. It’s a tough choice between Chocolate Coconut Samoa and Coffee Crunch, but the texture of this crumbly-filled coffee treat calls our name every time.
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VegNews.VeganTreatsDonut
Vegan treats

11 Chicken and Waffles Vegan Treats in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

This mashup only appears at the discretion of the baker, so if you see it in store, grab it. Light and fluffy donuts are dipped in maple glaze then topped with two pieces of homemade crispy fried “chicken” and miniature Belgian waffles. If you thought chicken and waffles was a crazy combo, this donut will blow your mind.
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Good Town Donuts

12 Good Town Donuts Vegan S’mores in Costa Mesa, CA

Not all of the donuts in this shop are vegan, but at least half are. While the colorful raspberry pistachio or pretty cherry blossom may first grab your attention, feast your eyes on the colossal toasted marshmallow and chocolate glazed dough topped with graham crackers. You’ll have to drop your jaw to taste it all in one bite.
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donut race

13 Donut Run Apple Donut in Washington, DC

As the nation’s capital, it was high time DC had its own vegan donut shop. Established in January 2021, the small shop with a light pink exterior specializes in yeasted and frozen confections. Sure, stock up on those frosty treats, but leave room for the head-sized apple fritter. It’s soft, craggly, soft and fluffy all rolled into one.
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Revolution donuts

14 Mint Julep from Revolution Donuts in Atlanta, Georgia

It was extremely vexing to pick just one standout flavor from this vegan shop, but the Mint Julep came out ahead by a nose. The pastel green batter is a leavened round topped with bourbon mint glaze, vanilla whip, and fresh mint. Why drink your cocktail when you can devour it?
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VegNews.Donuttery
The donut

15 Donuttery’s Blueberry Cake in Huntington Beach, California

This surftown donut shop will never let you down. It is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We featured The Donuttery last year for National Donut Day to see how it managed to stay afloat (and open) during the turmoil of 2020. Given the vast assortment of vegan options here, we always try to mix it up every time we visit, but the humble blueberry cake donut will forever be a constant in our orders.
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Kimberly Deflores

16 Vegan Donut Gelato’s Old Fashioned

This old-school Oakland-based donut serves up affordable and accessible pink donuts in the Bay Area. Every bite of this crunchy, maple-glazed old fashioned donut is absolute perfection.
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Valkyrie donuts

17 Valkyrie Donuts Birthday Cake in Orlando, Florida

There’s more than one reason to visit Orlando, and it’s not Disneyworld. These square-shaped donuts outshine any vegan treats you can find at surrounding amusement parks. When it’s spinning, hang the birthday cake if you can. Think of it as a traditional 13 notch sprinkle donut – it’s a hand-sized risen dough topped with thick icing that tastes like birthday cake, rainbow sprinkles and bread crumbs of homemade funfetti cake. Stick a candle in it and start celebrating.
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Voodoo donuts

18 Voodoo Donuts Vegan Voodoo Doll, Multiple Locations

Not for the easily offended, this edgy, full-faced chain of donuts is known for its crude inventions in both name and form (we won’t sugar coat it – several cream-filled flavors are phallic-shaped ). We’re fans of several of the vegan flavors, but beginners must try the brand’s Voodoo Doll donut. Shaped exactly as it looks, the playful yeast treat is filled with raspberry jelly, chocolate glazed and stabbed with a salted pretzel stake. Now is definitely the time to play with your food.
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VegNews.DoughJoyjoy of dough

19 Dough Joy is anything but the donut bagel

Even Seattleites can get a little depressed when the weather is extremely gloomy and they haven’t seen the sun in 10 days. This is where Dough Joy comes in. While we wouldn’t recommend eating your feelings for every cloudy Seattle day, treating yourself to one of these yeasty, filled, frosted treats can lighten the mood. Those who like it savory can’t ignore the inventive Everything But The Bagel flavor from the shop with a chewy yeast dough, all the bagel seasoning and a cream cheese center. Don’t question it, enjoy it.
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For more on vegan donuts, read: