National Doughnut day happens on the first Friday of June, so if you missed it this year, have no fear! Luckily for us in Ottawa, every day can be doughnut day as more and more bakeries and boutique shops are offering a staggering variety of our favourite fried treat. Some bakeries sell them only on weekends, and many posh restaurants offer them for dessert. For the sake of this piece, I focussed my gruelling research on the best variety of doughnuts that can be guaranteed to be delicious and available whenever you have a doughnut related emergency. Dinner party? Coworker’s birthday? Tuesday night in with a bottle of wine? No judgement, just doughnuts.
1500 Bank Street
Not only are these doughnuts total Instagram eye candy, they are also delicious and fun. This shop is in Ottawa South, with a friendly and passionate staff who love helping you fulfill your doughnut fantasies. You can choose from their creative prepared doughnuts in all shapes and sizes for $2.85 each, like s’mores, strawberry shortcake, lemon ricotta and PB&J, or you can build your own! For $1.85, you can start with a vanilla or chocolate cake doughnut base, choose your glaze, and top it however you’d like. The possibilities are endless and colourful.
880 Notre Dame, Embrun
Hear me out. Embrun, our quaint francophone neighbour whose area is best known to city dwellers for the Spooky Wagon ride and Calypso Theme Waterpark, has been hiding its amazing doughnuts from us. The selection at the Boulangerie is vast with at least 13 varieties, including a killer apple fritter, tangy lemon curd, and satisfying maple bacon glaze. With both yeast and cake styles of doughnut, these fried miracles are bigger than any other doughnuts I found, and also cheaper! Doughnuts range from $1.05-$1.38 each, and are $12 for a dozen. Pack all your friends into a car, drive over to Embrun and eat a case of doughnuts on their sunny little patio. I promise they will blow your mind. Insider tip: they tend to sell out before noon on Saturdays, so go early (and go often)!
384 Rideau Street
This Ottawa landmark bakery has been churning out delicious goods since before many of us were born, or addicted to carbs. The doughnut selection is classic and tasty. I’ve never had such satisfying jelly filled doughnuts: fillings like fresh blueberry, lemon curd, strawberry jam and creamy chocolate explode from these masterpieces. For $1.35 each, or 12 for $15 they are a steal, and they definitely please a crowd who love a good old fashioned perfect doughnut. You can eat in at the cool, retro lunch counter, or bring your box of treats to a park bench in Lowertown and people watch.
969 Wellington Street W
Well established Ottawa Doughnut royalty Suzy Q is serving up delicious yeast doughnuts on the regular from their huge hip space in Hintonburg . With glazes like spicy pineapple, London fog, and bumbleberry they are bringing new flavours to the doughnut scene while also holding down their classic maple bacon and salty caramel that some of us crave on a regular basis. My last visit introduced me to the yogurt and pretzel doughnut, which was every bit as good as it sounds. Doughnuts are $3 each, or 6 for $12. Expect lineups on weekends, this place is a Hintonburg institution.
1305 Wellington Street West
This adorable cafe in Westboro has developed a reputation for fresh and creative vegan eats. Bakery options change daily, but the gluten free charcoal vanilla and chocolate with sprinkles are both great options for a moist, cake-like doughnut with a hint of sweetness. I am also a total sucker for sprinkles, so Little Jo totally gets me. Doughnuts sell for $3.95 each or can be pre ordered at 6 for $19. This bright, welcoming space is great for a chill hangout with friends over a delicious coffee and some vegan goodies. Being able to order ahead of time guarantees that you can be the hero when you arrive at the vegan dinner party with dessert.
250 City Centre Avenue
The Cronut is a croissant / doughnut hybrid that came onto the food scene in the past couple of years and is alive and well at Art Is In Bakery in Hintonburg. The basic ‘Kronut” with a cinnamon sugar coating is available every day for $1.50 and is a light, airy choice for a treat that isn’t too sweet. Every Thursday, the baking team concocts a new creation based on their popular Kronut, so keep an eye out for over the top confections weekly, selling for $5.25. These sell out quickly, so it is best to be there early, before they are all gone, and you have to wait another week to satisfy your kronut fever!
Did we miss your favourite doughnut spot? Let us know in the comments so we can check it out!