Celebrate National Doughnut Day, with doughnuts!
Now that every street cart vendor in SoHo sells them, cupcakes are like, so last year. In celebration of National Doughnut Day on Friday, which was created to honor the women who served doughnuts to servicemen in WWI, it's only fitting that New Yorkers reconnect with the original sweet snack of choice.
And so, here's our guide to some of the best gourmet doughnuts in town.
1) With locations in Chelsea and the Lower East Side, Doughnut Plant (220 W. 23rd St. and 379 Grand St., doughnut plant.com) is a pioneer in the city's designer doughnut movement.
"Doughnut Plant has been making doughnuts by hand and with the highest-quality natural ingredients since 1994," says spokesperson Jeff Magness.
Founded and owned by Mark Isreal, the bakery specializes in yeast, cake and square filled doughnuts.
DON'T MISS:Vanilla Bean yeast doughnut, Tres Leches cake doughnut, Peanut Butter & Jam square filled doughnut. $2.25-$3.25
2) At Dominique Ansel Bakery (189 Spring St.; dominiqueansel.com), crowds clamor for the half croissant, half doughnut masterpiece known as the Cronut. But arrive early to snag one of these buttery pastry delights, which are now limited to three per person.
To appease Cronut fanatics, spokesperson Amy Ma says the bakery has "quadrupled production." But she encourages patrons to try other tasty confections created by the acclaimed French chef, like the DKA, a caramelized croissant that's all the rage in Paris.
DON'T MISS:The Cronut, duh. $5
3) Who doesn't love mini-doughnuts? Especially if they're the hot, fresh and delicious variety found at Doughnuttery (425 W. 15th St., doughnuttery.com) in the Chelsea Market.
"Mini-doughnuts give you just the right bite size and allow you to taste a variety of flavors without committing to just one large doughnut," explains spokesman Evan Feldman.
Classic cinnamon and powdered sugar minis evoke memories of Little Debbie, and fancier sugar flavors like Paris Time, Urban Monkey and Speckled Strawberry offer a modern twist. Savor them with fun dipping sauces like Beer Caramel and Deep Dark Aztec Chocolate.
DON'T MISS:Powdered sugar mini-doughnut, $6 for a half dozen, $10 for a dozen
4) Dough's (448 Lafayette Ave., Bedford-Stuyvesant, 347-533-7544) doughnuts are so addictive, we bet you can't eat just one. For quality control, the bakery churns out small batches, and pastry chef Fany Gerson uses wholesome ingredients such as organic butter and flour, fresh fruit puree, and freshly ground spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
"We try to get more creative with the flavor, and make sure they're fluffy all the time," says co-owner Thierry Cabigeos.
In addition to selling out at weekend flea markets in Dumbo and Williamsburg, Dough plans to expand to a Manhattan store, which in addition to decadent yeast varieties like Blood Orange, Passion Fruit with Cocoa Nibbs and Peanut Butter and Nutella Cream, will also sell churros and cake doughnuts made with buttermilk.
In celebration of National Doughnut Day, Dough will hold a raffle on Friday. The winner gets four doughnuts every week for a year.
DON'T MISS:Dulce de Leche, Blood Orange, $2.25 -$2.75
5) Thanks to BabyCakes (248 Broome St., baby cakesnyc.com), people with dietary restrictions can participate in all the doughnut debauchery. The popular Lower East Side bakery's coveted cake doughnut is vegan and gluten-free -- the first in the city -- but you'd never know the difference.
"We created a recipe that tastes the closest to a regular doughnut," owner Erin McKenna says of her doughnut made with a blend of bean flour, organic coconut oil and applesauce. "Creating a vegan, gluten-free option allows people to feel normal, [since] their allergies tend to restrict them in many ways."
DON'T MISS:Salted caramel, $3.95