Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >
Aug 22, 2006 04:05 AM

Independent doughnut shops in Boston or nearby?

Now that Dunkin' Donuts has taken over, are there any independent doughnut shops left that aren't 20 miles out of town? I know there's a famous place in Saugus, but haven't made it out there b/c I have no car. Is there anyplace in Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, or nearby public transit with good, old-school-style doughnuts (or is it officially "donuts" by now?)?

PS I'm guilty of eating a Dunkin' Donuts Boston Kreme donut from time to time. When they're fresh, I have to admit that they're not bad, but I'm sure there is better out there.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. My favorite local (though not lo-cal) donuts are from Verna's on Mass Ave in North Cambridge - especially the plain cake donuts and plain crullers. ("Plain" is such a cruel word in this case)

    Demet's Donuts (Mystic Ave, Medford) and Linda's (Belmont St, Belmont) also have their fans. Both Demet's and Linda's make a bigger donut than Verna's, and, to my taste at least, somewhat sweeter - but Verna's wins for me for the slight crunchiness of the perfectly-fried exterior.

    All three should be reachable by T (though I'm not entirely sure about Demet's) - all three are definitely old-school non-machine-made get-there-early-or-the-good-ones-are-gone donut shops.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Bob Geary

      Demet's is on the 95 from Sullivan and the 96 from Davis also goes nearby, there is yet another that goes up Main St which is easy walking distance but its also from Sullivan.

      Verna's is on the 77 (and others), Linda's the 73. Running the 77 there is another independent donut shop in Arlington center -- get off at the Starbucks and walk past the theater. Not quite in the same league as, but they offer huge cinnamon rolls.

      I prefer Linda's and Demet's (and Kane's) to Verna's, but its about time to try Verna's again. Mike's in Everett was a big loss. I would also suggest trying some Brazilian bakeries for sonhos mineiros with doce de leite.

      1. re: itaunas

        What is the other donut shop in Arlington Center? I've lived and worked around there for a couple years and had no idea...

        1. re: itaunas

          Ah, never mind, found it in the posts below. I had no idea that Gail Ann's served donuts!

        2. re: Bob Geary

          I also recommend Verna's cinnamon donuts -- a variation on the plain donut. I don't like non-crunchy variety like jelly so much there.

        3. If you search donuts/doughnuts, you'll see lots of old talk. In Forest Hills station is Mike's who have good donuts, altho they seem to have gone a little down hill. Then take a bus from FH to Roslindale and visit Diane's who have wonderful donuts, for only $.65. Or take a different bus to West Roxbury to Anna's on Centre St. There's also a Mike's on Mission Hill, walk down Tremont St. from the E line or 39 bus or take the 66. Stop & Shop used to make a decent donut but since most of them have Dunkin in there now, not so much. And there's Betty Ann's in East Boston but I haven't been there.

          1. Not in Boston Metro, but still deserves a mention..Donut Cafe in Worcester. Simply the best donuts I've ever had. They use a little nutmeg in the coffee rolls.....mmmmm

            1. How are the doughnuts at Twin Doughnuts in Allston?

              I never get there at a proper doughnut eating time.

              1 Reply
              1. re: horrible

                I knew there was another donut place right in town. Twin are quite decent, I've only gotten them a couple times tho. Don't they have donuts all day?

              2. Gail Anne's is an old school coffee shop with awesome donuts and breads (banana, apple etc) -- 10 Medford St in Arlington (across from the Regent Theatre in Arlington Center) (take the 77 down Mass Ave)

                1 Reply
                1. re: MaineRed

                  Yes, Gail Ann's is very good. Back when I ate donuts all the time, I went there a lot. Linda's in Belmont is definitely good, too.