Cro-What Now? L.A.’s Craziest Donut Mash-Ups

Regular donuts are so 2012.


Humans have been fusing foods together for centuries. This year’s favorite mash-up darling? The donut. Shops all across L.A. have taken the concept high and low. In this post-cronut world, it isn’t enough just to whip up perfectly fluffy dough and deep-fry it. You need to forge it from potatoes, stuff it with sweet red bean, or sandwich it around epic frozen slabs of cream. The modern donut is a different beast from what it was just a few months ago — now, it’s a veritable triple threat, capable of satisfying multiple cravings with one dense, albeit calorie-laden, stone.

Here’s a roundup of some of the craziest donut hybrids we’ve seen around the city:

Donut Ice Cream Sandwich at Umami Burger: Earlier this month, the L.A.-based Umami Burger launched three donut ice cream sandwiches in collaboration with L.A. Creamery and Westwood’s Stan’s Donuts: a jelly donut with PB&J ice cream, a chocolate-peanut butter donut with chocolate ganache ice cream, and a cinnamon roll donut with cinnamon toast ice cream. The pastries suffer a little stiffness thanks to their colder counterparts, but there’s no better chaser for a side of “manly” fries.

Donut Dogs at Currywurst: A grill-caramelized Long John cradles a pure beef Vienna hot dog. It’s kid’s stuff, but not too far a cry from Currywurst’s already spicy-sweet slew of flavors.

Crème Brulée Crullants at Semi-Sweet Bakery: More croissant than donut, these sugar-crusted puffs of dough are actually baked, not fried (witchcraft, we know). Semi-Sweet added a layer of custard in the middle, which breaks up the thick and sticky glaze on top. 

Breakfast Croissant Donut at California Donuts: Fear not: California Donuts’ cronut breakfast sandwich is tamer than it sounds. Made to order, it features your choice of turkey or ham, cheese, and scrambled eggs snuggled between two unglazed, mille-feuille blankets. 

Mochi Donuts at Mitsuwa: Japan’s sweet and glutinous daifuku-mochi are typically served in ball form, but at Mitsuwa in Torrance, you can also find them flattened out with a hole in the middle, for something more Western. Served frozen to prevent disintegration, “mochido” thaw to a velvety softness and are filled with everything from green tea to chocolate to traditional red bean. 

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