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Best Doughnuts in CT?

I'm really getting tired of Dunkin Donuts' and Tim Horton's doughnuts, but I haven't been able to find any local places that make their own. Does anyone know where I can get a good doughnut (preferably in the Hartford area)?

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  1. Sadly, not in the Hartford area, Beach Doughnut of South Lyme and Clinton is wonderful. The South Lyme location is on Hartford Ave. in Sound View Beach. It is seasonal. They have been there for over fifty years. They used to be open early in the morning, close midday, and open again at four in the afternoon. There would be a line waiting for their lemon sticks, cinnamon buns, glazed...The Clinton locatioin is on Rte. 1, across the road from Grove Gardens and is open year round.

    7 Replies
    1. re: rosieg

      Ditto, Beach Doughnuts, the BEST.

      1. re: chefstu

        Krispy Kreme ?

        lol sorry, couldn't resist. Personally I don't even like their donuts. Noticed at Mohegan yesterday there's like one on every corner and full of people. Yuck.

        1. re: chefstu

          Have you been to the Sound View location?

        2. re: rosieg

          Beach Donuts, sadly is no longer in the Sound View area and I'm not certain they are even in Clnton anymore, but don't quote me. I tried to check that out as I drove by the other day, but missed the plaza

          1. re: mthrthyme

            They are still in Clinton. Drive by their all the time and was just in there a couple of weeks ago. Amazing donuts!! The smell from the parking lot just blows you away.

            1. re: mthrthyme

              Just picked up half a dozen. Their shop is in the strip mall just west of Westbrook Lobster on Rt. 1 at the Westbrook/Clinton town line.

              Their cheese danish is great too!

            2. re: rosieg

              Lakeside Diner off exit 34 on the Merritt bakes a very tasty homemade cinnamon sugar cake donut. ( Puts Stew L's version into orbit.) Perfect topper to their fabulous pancakes. Carb central. If only the rest of the menu lived up to those two items... and its great water view.

            3. I am happy to say that I have two, maybe 3 suggestions for you.
              1. Elmwood bakery on New Britain Ave in West Hartford. They have really good and homemade donuts. My favorites are the cinnamon sugar raised and the chocolate covered.
              2. Tastease on New Park Avenue in Hartford. They specialize in mini donuts all of which seem to be a variation on the "old fashioned" style. This place is a total find too. You can get a "platter" of them on the cheap ($6 and change I think) and dazzle coworkers or the hostess of a party. They come in interesting flavors such as heath bar and pumpkin. They can also personalize them for parties.
              3. Abby's bakery on Farmington Ave in West Hartford has good churros if that's your sort of thing.

              9 Replies
              1. re: masha bousha

                Luke's Donuts, 395 W Avon Rd. in Avon. They promise "the best donuts this side of heaven" and I don't disagree. My old boss used to bring them in and ask if anybody wanted some religion. ;) Wish they were closer to me--they are so delicious. The double chocolate and Boston creams are my faves. Here's an old article (2002) with info about Luke's and other indie donut joints in CT. Hopefully most are still going strong:

                1. re: kattyeyes

                  Luke's donuts are still pretty good, but not quite as good as they used to before the place was sold to the current owners. Nevertheless, the old fashioned plain donuts are still slightly crunchy on the outside, as they should be.

                  1. re: Lee Gordon

                    Thanks, Lee. It's been a couple of years, but I remember them fondly. Thanks to this thread, I'll try some other new favorites closer to home. Your avatar cracks me up, btw. ;)

                    1. re: kattyeyes

                      Still good but as you say, not quite as good as they used to be, but still a much better than average donut and worth the trip.

                    2. re: Lee Gordon

                      Michael's Bakery in E. Hartford has pretty good donuts. They have the aformentioned slightly crunchy plain donuts.

                      1. re: Waquoit

                        Yes, they do--in fact, more than just pretty good, if you ask me. My uncle is also a fan.

                    3. re: kattyeyes

                      I was in Avon today and made a beeline for Luke's Donuts. I grabbed a chocolate glazed. It was every bit as delicious as I recall--slightly crunchy outside, moist and cakelike inside, covered in a sweet glaze.

                      I will say that some of the donuts looked pretty homely and not as I remember from "the old days." The Boston Creams were frosted in a light brown (???) frosting. I half thought they must be maple, but no, the guy told me they were Boston Creams. And some of the chocolate glazed ones looked pretty raggedy, too...not sure what happened. Some were misshapen and oddly colored...so maybe this is what folks have been saying here about "not quite as good." But overlook the "funny" ones and it seems (at least in terms of chocolate) they still taste as good as ever.

                      What's up with those Boston Creams, though?!!!

                    4. re: masha bousha

                      HI Masha,

                      I recommended Abby's for churros awhile back, and you mentioned you would go there. Glad to see you liked them.

                      1. re: masha bousha

                        The jelly donut at the Elmwood Bakery stands out as one of the best I've had. The others were not so great.

                        Tastease is just okay! I love the concept and they are beautiful to look at, but the frosting is just too much.

                        I haven't been to Abby's, but now that I know they have churros, I will definitely make a stop!

                      2. Also not in the Hartford area, but Neil's donuts in the Yalesville section of Wallingford has GREAT homemade donuts. He makes a bunch of different flavors and makes the old fashioned cake donuts. You won't be disappointed.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: jquest619

                          http://eddysbakeshop.net/ Eddy's bake shop for paczki. Possibly the best donut I've ever had.

                          1. re: jquest619

                            A friend brought me a dozen of Neil's donuts for my 40th birthday last weekend. They were as fantastic as everyone says. I already asked her (last night) "you're stopping there again this weekend, right?"
                            I particularly liked the Bavarian Cream. Sadly I was so full of other chowish foods when trying Neil's I feel I need another bunch of them to sample, STAT!!

                            1. re: jquest619

                              I went to Neil's last weekend and ate the best donut of my ENTIRE LIFE! I will now be making regular pilgrimages and thinking of excuses to head in that direction. JUST WOW. There's a Dunkin' Donuts down the street...just laugh and keep going to the RIGHT place. :)

                            2. In eastern CT:
                              Dixie Donuts in Norwichtown - along West Town Street, near Route 2/32. Great doughnuts, but also great breakfast wraps and sandwiches. There's a line every morning when they open ~ 5-6am.
                              Arremony's Bakery in Jewetty City - Can't believe I'm giving up my secret, but this is the best bakery in the area. Great doughnuts, pastries, breads, and the birthday cakes are outstanding.

                              1. Also, not Hartford area, but I love Julia's Bakery Kettle Doughnuts in Orange. Melt-in-your-mouth good.

                                1. Wow, thanks guys. I'll definitely put all of these on my list of places to try.

                                  1. It's not in the Hartford area, but I have to mention Dottie's Diner in Woodbury. A small selection, but they are delicious. They also make this awesome donut bread pudding that is so worth trying!

                                    Also, I will second Tastease. You would have no idea how creative and wonderful their little donuts are if you drove past it!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: ladyearrinde

                                      Right. These used to be Philip's Diner donuts, rated among the top in the US by Jane and Michael Stern. I think Mr Philips may still be making them as part of the sales deal.

                                    2. Coffee An', a couple blocks outside of Westport's downtown. So sinful: cakey, moist, and amazing outside crust.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: slsharp

                                        I have had some great one's from Lukes, however they are under new management from some guys who do not have donuts in their native country. Same story with donut and bagel stop on prospect in hartford. THey used to have outstanding donuts until the owners sold out to some people who don't have donuts in their native land. They destroyed the place. my two favorite places absolutely destroyed. I wonder if they even bothered to taste them when they started cutting corners. Mrs Murphy's in agawam? is the best around here now. Whole donut in canton is good if you need a fix. I have a friend who works with dunkin donuts he says it really hurt the cake donut flavor when they switched over to the non-trans fat oil. I thought they tasted worse than ever. ANy thoughts on this?

                                        pS I love all races and creeds but if you buy a landmark, please have the decency not to ruin it.

                                        1. re: hokiefan

                                          gerrys donuts in vernon ct. and on sundays he makes bluberry but sells out fast

                                      2. Tastease on Park in Hartford for awesome mini doughnuts with tons of flavors (like pb&j, carmel crunch and orange cream). they are all delicious and pretty. go there early though as they sell out fairly quickly (before noon). they have standard flavors too. also great coffee, egg and cuban sandwiches.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: maddiebluedog

                                          Another vote for Tastease. Super cheap, super tasty doughtnuts, out of this world friendly service. One of my all-time favorite finds in the 6 or so years I've lived in Central CT.

                                        2. Whitney Donuts on Whitney Ave in Hamden are excellent - the coconut are espeically good if you like coconut. I realize this is out of your area, but if you are down, give it a try.

                                          1. Although I rarely eat doughnuts anymore, my favorite doughnut
                                            in the world is sold at Baker's dozen in Brooklyn, Ct.
                                            It's the "black-raspberry filled" coated with powdered sugar.
                                            They make a granulated version, but I prefer the powdered by a mile.

                                            1. Glad to see the votes for Tastease in Hartford - amazing little works of art that are still donuts. And also for Luke's in Avon - go with the maple frosted, if there are any on the shelf!

                                              And, while it is short notice - and sad news for donut fans! - if you can get to the Bridge Street Bakery in Collinsville, CT before tomorrow (Jan. 31), - and go in the morning, if you really want to try it - they make donuts on the weekends that are filled with either chocolate mousse or strawberry mousse. ($1.25 each, but worth every penny!). The sad news is that this bakery is closing tomorrow - going out of business. These donuts are freakin' awesome. Well worth the trip - from anywhere in the Farmington Valley/Hartford area. Go, man, go.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: Contentqb

                                                Happened upon Pastry Fusions in North Branford, CT, on Route 80. They had a big sign advertising fresh doughnuts on Saturday and Sunday only, so I had to stop in. I was a bit skeptical, but the doughnuts were amazing. Service was very friendly as well.

                                                1. re: newhavener

                                                  you should try his other creations. he does a great job.

                                                  1. re: triggs73

                                                    Pastry Fusions ROCKS! Huge donuts, so flavorful, crispy on the outside, full of filling on the inside. Love the raspberry cream!. Triggs is right, his cakes are to die for, and quite reasonable, too!

                                              2. If you're in Windsor Center, you might want to try the Windsor Donut shop. I've been a couple times and it's definitely a good local, handmade product. Not too many varieties but all the basic stuff is there.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: philbkr

                                                  I was just at the Mohegan Sun Winefest and they had a booth there of the most amazing donuts I have ever had!! The place was called Faddy's (I think) and they are supposed to be opening in Bloomfield in a few weeks. I'm telling you these don'ts when eaten warm was so delicious with a wonderful hint of vanilla. Frankly, I'm glad they aren't opening in my town because I would be 400 lbs in no time!

                                                  1. re: acervoni

                                                    Faddy's also had a booth at the garlic festival in Bethleham recently. Not only were the donuts great, the Ice cream is the absolute best.. The coconut ice cream was the creamiest and richest I've ever had. You could taste the freshness in every bite. Bloomfield has the newest "best of" in Connecticut in my book. While Bloomfield is not exactly around the corner from where we live, we will definantly be taking a road trip to stock up. It was that good!!

                                                2. Coffee An' in Westport. The best powdered sugar cake donuts in the NYC metro area.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: makko

                                                    Ditto MAKKO - though not only powdered sugar cake - the coconut and chocolate covered too!

                                                  2. My vote for a traditional, heavy doughnut is Neils Doughnuts 83 North Turnpike Road
                                                    Wallingford, CT . Just a little way off the Wilbur Cross Pkwy - Rt 15.

                                                    4 Replies
                                                    1. re: algct

                                                      I had never heard of Neil's Donut shop in Wallingford even though i work there. Since I read about them on this site and on roadfood.com (two weeks ago) I have had them twice...they are truly delicous!!! The jelly donuts are cut and layered with filling, the cinnamon apple were delicous and the key lime was really great. (I cut the donuts in quarters so I could try most of them!!) I heard the Boston Creme are incredible but there wasn't one of them in my box...now I have an excuse to go again real soon. My sister who went said the place was tiny and very crowded on Sunday morning.

                                                      1. re: MaureeninCT

                                                        Coffee An' in Westport are the best ever!

                                                        1. re: MaureeninCT

                                                          Neil's is the best. If they weren;t crowded on a Sunday morning, they wouldn't be worth going to.

                                                          1. re: MaureeninCT

                                                            The Boston Cream is OUTRAGEOUS and filled with custard just as you described the jelly!

                                                        2. go to West Springfield Mass...rte 5 north HONEY DIP DOUGHNUTS

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: spuds350

                                                            YOU MEAN DONUT DIP?????? The only place in the world I go to for donuts. Decor is sooooooo retro and there are a billion different kinds. I LOVE DONUT DIP!!!!

                                                            1. re: pepoling

                                                              I adore the Donut Dip! Too bad it's not in CT. I try to hit it whenever I'm on I-91 up in MA.

                                                              Donut Dip
                                                              1305 Riverdale St, West Springfield, MA 01089

                                                          2. This is somewhat random, but should you find yourself anywhere near South Glastonbury, CT, please find your way up to Belltown Orchards. I had my first ever CHERRY donut today--made with their own cherries--that tops my list of donut deliciousness! WOW!

                                                            4 Replies
                                                            1. re: kattyeyes

                                                              Thanks for the heads up, can't wait to give those a try! Did you do any picking? Last years sours were a little disappointing so I am looking forward to this year, I think they will be good! And then there is the cherry tart to make!

                                                              1. re: geminigirl

                                                                My pleasure! Yes, we picked Bing cherries (there are sours, too) on opening day yesterday...finished right before the big downpour. If you'd like a sneak peek, I blogged it today--the cherries are gorgeous:

                                                                They have blueberry donuts...and maybe other flavors, too--I was too hung up on the cherry donuts to notice. :) Don't forget to head back down the hill to SoG for your coffee.

                                                                1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                  Spinelli Glenbrook Deli & Bakery
                                                                  They have the best donuts in town. They have Pizza Fritta on occasion as well. Also their bread is fantastic.
                                                                  508 Glenbrook Rd, Stamford,CT 06906

                                                                  1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                    It's cherry donut time again at Belltown Hill Orchards, just so ya know! NOM!

                                                              2. I visited Luke's Donuts for the first time ever a month ago. I tried a sugar-coated donut and a chocolate glazed donut. Let me tell you... they were the ABSOLUTE WORST donuts I've ever tasted. The overall selection was subpar to begin with. The donuts tasted like they'd been sitting there at least a day or two (I got there at 7:30 a.m. on a Monday morning... those should have been FRESH!).

                                                                And the outside "crunch" made them taste downright stale. I understand this place has changed ownership recently, so I can't comment on the donuts under the prior owner. But it'll be a miracle if this place stays in business on these poor excuses for donuts. Great location and they're blowing it because they have no clue how to make decent donuts.

                                                                1. The Bridgewater Village Store has some great doughnuts. Their chocolates look mighty fine too. Apparently, if you live in this dry town, there are some compensations to be had.

                                                                  Bridgewater Village Store
                                                                  27 Main St S, Bridgewater, CT 06752

                                                                  1. The Old Cider Mill in Glastonbury is open again on the weekends. They have apple fritters, cider donuts, pumpkin donuts and they used to do chocolate (don't know if they still do anymore). The pumpkin and chocolate are my favorites warm out of the fryer! omg...

                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                    1. re: geminigirl

                                                                      Yes! Those are amazing fritters! It has been years since we stopped at the cider mill on our way to Belltown Orchards. But it is completely worth a stop.

                                                                      1. re: geminigirl

                                                                        Hey there, geminigirl. Quick update--no more chocolate donuts athe Old Cider Mill. :( Next time I'll try the pumpkin...I was just in a chocolate mood today. I did see little donuts frying away as I asked, though...yum!

                                                                        Anyone got a line on SERIOUS chocolate donuts in easy driving distance of Middletown? Neil's in Wallyworld is still on my list as is Michael's in East Hartford. Anything closer would be a bonus.

                                                                        1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                          yeah, I had a feeling...sorry you didn't get to satisfy your craving, i'm not sure where else to point you around here...

                                                                      2. In Southern New England I vote for:
                                                                        Philip's Donuts at Dotties Diner in Woodbury CT; Arremony's Bakery in Jewett City, CT; (both mentioned elsewhere in this section) and Allie's Donuts in North Kingstown, RI The cinnamon donuts, which I think are the true test of a donut shop, are very good in any of these three places.

                                                                        Dotties Diner
                                                                        740 Main St S, Woodbury, CT 06798

                                                                        Allie's Donuts
                                                                        3661 Quaker Ln, North Kingstown, RI 02852

                                                                        1. If you're on Route 34 in Derby (the Seymour end of town), stop in for a dozen at McConney's. They only make one kind, a cider donut, but they do it well. A little bit of crunch as you bite, then the tasty, cakey goodness of the donut body kicks in. They make them fresh every day, just from mid-September to Thanksgiving or so.

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: harrie

                                                                              AND if you're on Route 17 in South Glastonbury, stop in at Draghi's farmstand (on the left, going south) whose apple cider donuts are second to none--just as "harrie" says, first the crunch through the generous sugar coating and then that lucious, cakey, slightly spicy interior. You won't find a better one. Draghi's will be open through Christmas Eve.

                                                                            2. Dottie's Diner in Woodbury CT - Cinnamin Sugar doughnuts right out of the oven...stop in and try a sample on the tray next to the register

                                                                              1. Whitney Donut on Whitney Ave. in Hamden has the best dounuts in the greater New Haven areas. May favorite is a cruller with both regular and chocolate dough, then glazed. Their filled donuts must weigh a half a pound there is so much filling. Always fresh.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: awm922

                                                                                  @ awm922, that would be a tiger tail. My favorite too!

                                                                                2. Flanders Bake Shop- exit 74 East Lyme- the best in CT bar none

                                                                                  1. Last week we again tried Dottie's Donuts at the Diner. She may have gotten the original recipe from the former owner of Philipps but they are not the same donuts by a large margin. The crusts
                                                                                    are greasy and burned, the toppings are oversweet and sloppily applied. Hearburn city. Just because you have a recipe doesn't mean you can produce the goods. Shame on them, they insist they didn't change anything. Yeah right.... don''t bother going. Have the nerve to hang old great reviews of the donuts from Gourmet magazine years ago. Well Gourmet is dead and so are their donuts.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: meinNYC

                                                                                      I bought a dozen at Dottie's a few weeks ago and they were just as they always have been - a delightful bit of crunch on the outside, silky on the inside, loaded with cinnamon or frosting or powdered sugar, depending upon the variety. I brought them to some very picky eaters (professionals, actually) who tore into them with complete happiness and words of the highest praise. I have been eating doughnuts at Dottie's and the former Philips since the 1970s, and I return there with complete confidence. I still don't know of better doughnuts anywhere.

                                                                                    2. Had amazing apple cinnamon doughnuts at Bishops Orchards this weekend

                                                                                      1. This may be blasphemy, and I'm sure I'll get burned for it, but the bakery at Big Y (in New Milford anyway) actually makes some fine doughnuts - consistently moist and tasty and full of goodness.
                                                                                        My opinion anyway.

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: HunterJay

                                                                                          If you can make it down to Norwalk, CT there's a little spot that's nearly as old as I am just off I-95 on the Post Road called Speedy Donuts. Been there since 1969. Amazing homemade donuts that are irresistable. They also have a delicious breakfast (great pancakes, serious eggs, bacon etc). You will never want a Dunkin Donut again after eating one of these. The only lackluster thing about the place is the coffee, which is simply mediocre.

                                                                                        2. Coffee An' in Westport......

                                                                                          1. You gotta try the donuts from the Orangeside Diner on Orange St. in New Haven. They're square, allowing for extra crunch. The plain are fabulous - crunchy outside, soft inside, delicately spiced, not too sweet - like I remember growing up in Northern new England. The diner also makes several specialty donuts including a chocolate/coconut, a caramel peanut and several others I have not tried yet.

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: shoes

                                                                                              I second the Orangeside Luncheonette mention. The donuts are made and fried up daily. Most of the selection are deliciously huge cake donuts and a glazed yeast kind too. I recommend the butter crunch, blueberry and old-fashioned. The owner takes pride in his donuts and you can tell in the product.

                                                                                            2. Little Honey's Bakery in Middletown makes amazing and delicious cake donuts. They just opened in the last few months and brought some samples to my wife's office. She said they don't have a retail shop yet but offer wholesale and custom donut orders.. I may need to order some birthday donuts instead of a cake this year.

                                                                                              1. I dont even love donuts, but Whitney Donuts are amazing - but if you are looking for the "cakey" kind, not the fried, or crispy (old fashioned English kind). I love their butternut donut, it is the size of a small dinner plate and has a glaze on it before being dipped in the butternut. Really delicious. Hard to beat their prices as well