HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >


Johnny Doughnuts in San Rafael

  • 6

Got around to reading the fine print for the press coverage of newly opened Johnny Doughnuts in San Rafael to discover that they're made using an old fashioned potato-based recipe. Spudnut fans should rejoice! Who's tried them?

Ruthven's posts on spudnuts,

Johnny Doughnuts
1617 Fourth St.
San Rafael, CA 94901




  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Melanie, I missed this until now. Looks like I'm going have to have to go there and try them :-) But at $2.50 to $3 per doughnut as reported, that's into ridiculous-pricing-for-a-doughnut to me.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

      From what I've read, the recipe uses fresh potatoes rather than the potato starch or dried mashed potatoes. I'm very interested in your take.

      * * * *
      Chowhound's Cheese board

      1. re: Melanie Wong

        Thanks for reminding me :-) Their hours aren't on their website or Facebook page, so I called and got this from their message.

        Tuesday - Sunday., 7 am - 2 pm or earlier if they sell out.

        1. re: Melanie Wong

          I went there this morning. I talked with Craig Blum, one of the two owners, and he said they use potatoes in all of their doughnuts except the Old Fashioned, and that there was someone in the back right now peeling potatoes. He knew about Spudnuts in general but had never had one. Their recipe and process is definitely their own.

          I had a "classic raised glazed", I think they called it, and I could definitely tell that potatoes were in it (I mean that in a very good way). They were similar to Spudnuts (the ones that are still good) in texture and consistency, more substantial and less "airy" than normal doughnuts, and with a unique flavor. The flavor was not the same as Spudnuts, but that's to be expected; they each use their own non-potato ingredients and seasoning. The price was $2.50 which seems high until you realize that the size is probably equivalent to two normal doughnuts. It took some time to finish the one I ordered. Overall, a very high-quality doughnut that benefits from the use of potatoes. They have many different types; go try them all :-)

      2. Tried a glazed and an unglazed old fashioned.
        Both were delicious and substantial. I'm not much of a donut eater and far from an expert, but they were unlike any donuts I've had before, and yet, they made sense.
        One donut was actually more than I'm inclined to eat at once and might satisfy those who are used to eating 2 or 3 at a time. Next time I'm buying the holes.

        1 Reply
        1. re: gumbolox

          Thanks to both of you for the donut reports. Things are looking up in Marin.