HOME > Chowhound > San Diego >

Best SD doughnut / donut ?

pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 01:13 PM

Any and all. (And if I missed an old thread, forgive me. I looked.)

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. bizzwriter RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 01:28 PM

    Mary's in Santee. Period.

    2 Replies
    1. re: bizzwriter
      JRSD RE: bizzwriter Nov 26, 2012 01:41 PM

      Strongly seconded. Open 24 hours, to boot.

      1. re: JRSD
        phee RE: JRSD Nov 26, 2012 07:57 PM

        Another vote for Mary's.

    2. RhonelyInsanediego RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 01:34 PM

      Good query, and I really don't know as I haven't tried too many places, but my vote would be for VGs Bakery in Cardiff (Blueberry Buttermilk donut rocks it!).

      1. DiningDiva RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 02:15 PM

        Picky, this was short and sweet. You got the 2 best replies right off the top.

        If you're more centrally located, Mary's in Santee just off the 52 or VGs if you've in North County. They're good...and remember, donut's *are* a food group

        1. ipsedixit RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 02:46 PM

          Searsucker - the best donuts I've had in San Diego thus far are the cinnamon donuts with chocolate dipping sauce from their dessert menu.

          Here's an old thread with suggestions that I've been working through. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/474056 Can't say any of them -- VG, Mary's and Rose -- really rock my world.

          2 Replies
          1. re: ipsedixit
            RB Hound RE: ipsedixit Nov 26, 2012 03:10 PM

            Ipsedixit hit the third place that I've seen touted (Rose). I've not been to VG or Mary's, but I have been to Rose's Linda Vista shop a few times. They were decent enough (the blueberry-apple fritter is a bit of a twist you don't often see), but I did not find them life changing.

            Stardust Donut Shop in Imperial Beach gets a lot of love.

            1. re: RB Hound
              RB Hound RE: RB Hound Feb 12, 2013 02:42 PM

              Found myself by Rose yesterday, and went with my usual blueberry apple fritter plus something else that strikes my fancy combination. I went for the maple iced buttermilk bar, and was glad I did. One of the better buttermilk bars I can remember having in recent years. The fritter was its usual yummy self, but this time it was too sweet for my taste at the moment.

          2. c
            cstr RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 02:50 PM

            Linda's Donuts on Grand in PB, been there forever.

            2 Replies
            1. re: cstr
              pickypicky RE: cstr Dec 7, 2012 03:00 PM

              First donut visit. Only had the glazed but I liked it alot. Slightly heftier than a KKreme and therefore seemed more like a donut from my childhood Dixie Creme donut place. Thanks, cstr.

              1. re: pickypicky
                cstr RE: pickypicky Dec 7, 2012 04:06 PM

                They're certainly old school, glad you liked it. One time I asked him to make me a choc covered raised with vanilla creme innside, a/k/a a Boston Cream filled donut. Perfect!

            2. Fake Name RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 03:49 PM

              Late the the party, I know. But it's Mary's.

              1. pRon RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 06:53 PM

                I don't know if 'San Diego' applies but this place has a good rep...d;^)


                3 Replies
                1. re: pRon
                  Norm Man RE: pRon Nov 27, 2012 10:47 AM

                  I just tried Peterson's Donuts in Escondido and was a little disappointed. I bought one of each Boston Cream Donut, Apple Fritter, Cinnamon Roll and Glazed Donut. Their donuts were a case of quantity over quality. All the donuts were huge in size but I found the dough a little heavy and dense -- not light and airy. And the Boston Cream Donuts was light on the filling.

                  In my opinion, Peterson's Donuts is not in the same ballpark as my favorite donut shop, Donut Man of Glendora.

                  1. re: Norm Man
                    ipsedixit RE: Norm Man Nov 27, 2012 11:00 AM

                    Donut Man ... at least another 4-5 months until strawberry (and peach) season!

                    1. re: Norm Man
                      pRon RE: Norm Man Nov 28, 2012 06:37 PM

                      Not to be rude but,

                      I haven't been there in a long time and perhaps my pallet is not as refined as yours?

                      Plus over 100 miles from SD doughnut locations would be a bit much out of the way!

                      My favorite was the lemon and cream cheese, though I don't see it on the menu now.

                      I don't eat near as much junk food as I used to...d;^)

                  2. k
                    keena RE: pickypicky Nov 26, 2012 08:09 PM

                    Not exactly a donut shop thing but for a special treat George's California Modern has a donut with dip dessert that is spectacular! We fight over it!

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: keena
                      Rodzilla RE: keena Nov 27, 2012 12:13 AM


                    2. Dagney RE: pickypicky Nov 28, 2012 12:04 PM

                      Mary's in Santee. And my vote counts more because I work in law enforcement.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Dagney
                        ipsedixit RE: Dagney Nov 28, 2012 03:12 PM

                        Shouldn't it count less? Won't cops eat just about any donut?

                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          Dagney RE: ipsedixit Nov 28, 2012 08:51 PM

                          Possibly. But I am a foodie.

                      2. j
                        jbol RE: pickypicky Nov 29, 2012 08:23 AM

                        Panaderia su pan on El Cajon Blvd. The simple glazed donuts and donut holes are fantastic! My son gets the chocolate bars but I can't get passed the glazed. We discovered the donuts here upon trying all the panaderias in the 'hood. It's great for panaderia items too

                        1. Gypsy Jan RE: pickypicky Nov 29, 2012 10:43 AM

                          How about Stardust Donuts in Imperial Beach?


                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Gypsy Jan
                            phee RE: Gypsy Jan Nov 29, 2012 10:48 AM

                            Definitely Stardust for those cinnamon rolls!

                            1. re: phee
                              Fake Name RE: phee Nov 29, 2012 12:56 PM

                              Can't talk about cinnamon rolls without talking about Urban Solace.

                              1. re: Fake Name
                                DiningDiva RE: Fake Name Nov 29, 2012 01:12 PM

                                Did someone say cinnamon rolls?!?!??? Con Pane in Liberty Station, YUM

                                1. re: DiningDiva
                                  ipsedixit RE: DiningDiva Nov 29, 2012 02:51 PM

                                  Yeah, I agree. It's the brioche that sets them apart at Con Pane.

                                  I think cinnamon rolls deserve their own thread .... http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/879772

                            2. re: Gypsy Jan
                              Encinitan RE: Gypsy Jan Dec 18, 2012 01:13 PM

                              When I lived in Westwood I used to frequent the famous Stan's Donuts. I have only been to Stardust about 3 times, but I liked their donuts even better than Stan's.

                              Stardust article from 6 years ago.


                            3. scottca075 RE: pickypicky Dec 1, 2012 07:17 AM

                              I don't really do doughnuts anymore, but I still think that a Krispy Kreme glazed donut still warm/hot is nature's most perfect food.

                              1. DiningDiva RE: pickypicky Dec 18, 2012 09:05 AM

                                Sadly, not one of them is in San Diego... :-(


                                3 Replies
                                1. re: DiningDiva
                                  RB Hound RE: DiningDiva Dec 18, 2012 09:34 AM

                                  Yeah, but in a best 12 in the USA list, that isn't that surprising. I'd be more disturbed if they had a top 50 and we still didn't have an entry (which probably would be the case, but I digress).

                                  1. re: DiningDiva
                                    ipsedixit RE: DiningDiva Dec 18, 2012 10:57 AM

                                    Don't feel so left-out DD.

                                    I've tried and been to several on that list and we're not really missing out all that much.

                                    Randy's is good, but nothing that we can't get here in SD.

                                    Voodoo Donuts is good if you are just into looks, and don't really care about taste. They remind me of the Pamela Anderson of donuts -- all looks, very little taste.

                                    Cafe Du Mond makes beignets (which are just so-so) and beignets are not donuts.

                                    I will say, though, that Sublime in the ATL is awfully awfully good. Awfully good that they are some 3000 miles away from me ...

                                    And what's up Chicago?! How'd they get so many donut places on that list? Seems like that city got the market cornered on corrupt mayors and good donut shops. Who would've thunk it!

                                    1. re: ipsedixit
                                      scottg RE: ipsedixit Dec 18, 2012 05:10 PM

                                      I can think of two donuts shops in LA that are better than Randy's (Stan's in Westwood Village and Primo's in West LA) and I don't go to many donut shops. And Mary's in Santee can match all three.

                                  2. polldeldiablo RE: pickypicky Dec 24, 2012 11:25 PM

                                    I haven't tried Mary's so I can't comment on it, all the other one's mentioned though I have, VG's is prob the best I've had that's still around, it's 'ok'. The best donuts I've ever had period were in San Diego at the Donut Star in mission hills BEFORE the owner retired and the new owners have run the quality to the ground. The previous owner was a older filipino man I believe and his wife, and you can tell it was good because for such a bad location for junk food, it almost always had 2-3 people inside buying donuts.

                                    1. Rodzilla RE: pickypicky Dec 24, 2012 11:57 PM

                                      Kirk from mmmyoso has compiled a pretty extensive list of favorite shops.


                                      1. ipsedixit RE: pickypicky Dec 28, 2012 09:15 PM

                                        I'm putting in a vote for the Crema Bombolini at Monello ... nice and warm and filled with thick egg custard.

                                        1. Granite RE: pickypicky Dec 30, 2012 01:15 PM

                                          Stardust is really, really good. Their toasted coconut donut is like crack. The cinnamon rolls are tasty and unique with finely chopped peanuts on top. These are homemade, not from a mix.

                                          Rose Donuts in Linda Vista has awesome blueberry apple fritters.

                                          1. ibstatguy RE: pickypicky Jan 3, 2013 01:11 PM

                                            in Carmel Valley you can get some nice donuts on Saturdays at Village Mill Bakery; the cinnamon roll donut at Stardust, when the damn place is open, can be outstanding

                                            1. ipsedixit RE: pickypicky Feb 12, 2013 02:19 PM

                                              Looks like the much anticipated (?) Donut Bar on 6th and B in downtown is about ready to open. Walked by and it looks almost ready to go.

                                              Can't wait to see what SD's first haute gourmet donut shop is like ...


                                              21 Replies
                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                jmtreg RE: ipsedixit Feb 12, 2013 04:51 PM

                                                I work right across the street from where Donut Bar is going to be and figure I'll end up gaining 5 lbs.

                                                1. re: jmtreg
                                                  JRSD RE: jmtreg Feb 12, 2013 05:52 PM

                                                  per day?

                                                  1. re: JRSD
                                                    jmtreg RE: JRSD Feb 13, 2013 10:14 AM

                                                    Per hour.

                                                  2. re: jmtreg
                                                    ipsedixit RE: jmtreg Feb 12, 2013 07:06 PM

                                                    You and me both.

                                                  3. re: ipsedixit
                                                    pickypicky RE: ipsedixit Feb 13, 2013 08:51 AM

                                                    can't wait to hear.

                                                    1. re: pickypicky
                                                      ibstatguy RE: pickypicky Feb 14, 2013 09:23 PM

                                                      yes, reactions please!

                                                    2. re: ipsedixit
                                                      ipsedixit RE: ipsedixit Mar 3, 2013 02:35 PM

                                                      Still not quite there yet ...


                                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                                        jmtreg RE: ipsedixit Mar 4, 2013 11:18 AM

                                                        According to the Facebook page, they're getting the espresso machine installed today, and are undergoing their final inspection with the Health Department on March 11.

                                                        1. re: jmtreg
                                                          ipsedixit RE: jmtreg Mar 4, 2013 11:25 AM

                                                          I kind of wish they would just focus on donuts, and not worry about coffee or beverages.

                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                                            jwizzle RE: ipsedixit Mar 6, 2013 12:30 PM

                                                            I wish they would just focus on donuts too, but it seems like a lot of donut shop traffic is for coffee. I also work across the street, and I literally look every.single.day to see what kind of progress there is. I hope they price donuts at like $5 a piece to keep my weight gain in check.

                                                            1. re: jwizzle
                                                              ipsedixit RE: jwizzle Mar 6, 2013 01:26 PM

                                                              I hope they price donuts at like $5 a piece to keep my weight gain in check.

                                                              Hey, hey, hey ... Don't give them any ideas!

                                                        2. re: ipsedixit
                                                          ipsedixit RE: ipsedixit Mar 17, 2013 02:52 PM

                                                          And so the countdown begins.

                                                          ETA: March 23.

                                                          Tick ... Tick ... Tick ...

                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                                            cstr RE: ipsedixit Mar 18, 2013 08:14 AM

                                                            Better get a bottle of SENSA and sprinkle your donuts away!

                                                            1. re: cstr
                                                              ipsedixit RE: cstr Mar 18, 2013 08:27 AM

                                                              I plan on wearing my donuts proudly.

                                                              It'll look well in my wetsuit.

                                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                cstr RE: ipsedixit Mar 18, 2013 09:09 AM

                                                                Bouyency compensator or sinker?

                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                  youareabunny RE: ipsedixit Mar 18, 2013 09:39 AM

                                                                  Eat enough donuts and you'll grow your own wetsuit.

                                                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                    cstr RE: ipsedixit Mar 20, 2013 06:08 PM

                                                                    I thought I saw an open sign on the door this morning. So.. did you go over and scent mark your territory?

                                                            2. re: ipsedixit
                                                              jmtreg RE: ipsedixit Mar 21, 2013 03:31 PM

                                                              Donut Bar had a free tasting today - the line was ridiculous, so I snagged a piece of a co-workers salted caramel donut. Ridiculously fluffy, good caramel flavor, followed by a salty aftertaste, which cut the sweetness nicely. Apparently, the other donut offered was a bacon chocolate donut. We're doomed.

                                                              1. re: jmtreg
                                                                ipsedixit RE: jmtreg Mar 21, 2013 03:34 PM

                                                                Wow. Lucky you.

                                                                Doesn't matter about the lines today. I just hope that they can sustain themselves in that location.

                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                  polldeldiablo RE: ipsedixit Mar 21, 2013 08:10 PM

                                                                  Yeah, when I heard it was opening in that location I was like WTF? Maybe that's why they installed the coffee there, to 'attempt' to have people go to them for coffee runs+ donuts as opposed to starburnt.

                                                                  1. re: polldeldiablo
                                                                    ipsedixit RE: polldeldiablo Mar 21, 2013 08:12 PM

                                                                    But but but ... they're right around the corner from a Starbucks!

                                                                    I really do hope they succeed. SD, esp. DTSD, really needs a shop like this.

                                                            3. Tripeler RE: pickypicky Feb 15, 2013 05:40 PM

                                                              So where do all the cops go for their doughnuts?

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Tripeler
                                                                Dagney RE: Tripeler Feb 16, 2013 05:11 PM

                                                                Mary's, in Santee.

                                                              2. Gypsy Jan RE: pickypicky Mar 9, 2013 06:57 PM

                                                                Recent doghnut porn pics from Stardust Doghnuts in Imperial Beach:


                                                                1. jmtreg RE: pickypicky Mar 27, 2013 01:05 PM

                                                                  So, after much wait, I finally tried the artisan donuts at the Donut Bar proper (not just the free tasting). Thus far, I've tried the bourbon maple, the chocolate bacon bar, and the creme brulee donut hole (its a hard life).

                                                                  Of the three, the creme brulee donut hole was the obvious winner. Its a donut hole stuffed with custard and topped with a layer of crunchy burnt sugar. Fantastic.

                                                                  The chocolate bacon bar was a bar shaped donut with a darker chocolate frosting (or at least, chocolate frosting that had a stronger chocolate flavor than I usually have), and topped with bacon. While the donut was as crisp as I'd like, the interior was very fluffy and not too sweet.

                                                                  The bourbon maple was well-made, but almost cloyingly sweet. I think this is more about the type of donut than the actual make of the donut. And unlike the chocolate bacon bar, this donut was crisper.

                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                  1. re: jmtreg
                                                                    cstr RE: jmtreg Mar 27, 2013 01:19 PM

                                                                    Was ipse in there hoarding a tray of hot ones?

                                                                    1. re: cstr
                                                                      jmtreg RE: cstr Mar 27, 2013 02:08 PM

                                                                      There were two boxes of donuts set for carry-out order, so I can only guess they were for ipse.

                                                                      1. re: jmtreg
                                                                        ipsedixit RE: jmtreg Mar 27, 2013 02:23 PM

                                                                        I have yet to make it there as I've been traveling these past few days.

                                                                        My spies tell me that they tend to run out early (like before noon). True?

                                                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                          jmtreg RE: ipsedixit Mar 27, 2013 04:01 PM


                                                                    2. re: jmtreg
                                                                      ibstatguy RE: jmtreg Apr 6, 2013 09:04 PM

                                                                      I've had both the Blueberry w/ Meyer Lemon Glaze and the Chocolate-Chocolate. I'd go back for either of them. I've been told the Nutella Glaze is pretty damn good

                                                                      1. re: ibstatguy
                                                                        jwizzle RE: ibstatguy Apr 7, 2013 07:37 AM

                                                                        I tried maple bacon and the chocolate bar with salted caramel during the tasting. I loved the chocolate - it was more like a ganache (like on an eclair) than typical chocolate glaze. Since they opened, I've had a lemon triangle, a cinnamon roll, a creme brûlée, and a bite of an apple fritter and an old fashioned. Oh yeah, and a birthday cake. The apple fritter is the first I've ever like. The cinnamon roll was amazing - light and fluffy and super cinnamon-y. The birthday cake and old fashioned were ok, nothing special. The creme brûlée has been everyone favorite, and I thought it was good, but didnt like the crunchiness as much as others.

                                                                        After writing this, I realize how I've gained five pounds in the last two weeks!

                                                                    3. i
                                                                      isaacm72 RE: pickypicky Apr 7, 2013 03:35 PM

                                                                      Personally, if I was to go for any donut, I'd go for Rose Donuts on Linda Vista. There are actually two of them (not sure if it's a chain or not, but one's at the intersection with Napa St. and the other is just off of Mesa College Dr.) but I really like their buttermilk and old fashioned donuts, not to mention the apple fritters.

                                                                      1. Fake Name RE: pickypicky Aug 27, 2013 06:20 PM

                                                                        Stopped at Heavenly Donuts yesterday for olde times sake. Mr12 gave his approval. They appear to be under new management since my last visit in, oh, 1977-ish.

                                                                        Don't seem so special anymore. But then I was ditching class to be there, and so there was a danger/adventure factor.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Fake Name
                                                                          phee RE: Fake Name Aug 27, 2013 07:46 PM

                                                                          The photo is reminiscent of someone. ;)

                                                                          1. re: phee
                                                                            Fake Name RE: phee Aug 27, 2013 07:58 PM

                                                                            Little doubt as to who's son he is.

                                                                        2. s
                                                                          sandiegomike RE: pickypicky Aug 27, 2013 11:03 PM

                                                                          Finally tried the Cray-Nut at Azucar in OB. This is their take on the Dominique Ansel Bakery Cro-Nut that originated in New York and migrated to LA earlier this year. It's croissant dough fried and filled with rum coconut custard. There's some vanilla and coconut icing on top. Not a traditional donut but truly outstanding. They only make about five dozen each Monday. They go on sale at Noon and sell out in about an hour.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: sandiegomike
                                                                            DoctorChow RE: sandiegomike Aug 28, 2013 01:48 PM

                                                                            "Not a traditional donut"

                                                                            To me, a doughnut is torroidal, solid (not filled), brown, and unglazed. Anything else isn't a doughnut. It's a doughnut-related pastry.

                                                                            But, who cares? A tasty pastry will do just fine.

                                                                          Show Hidden Posts