L.A.’s Best Doughnuts? We Asked Local Shops What Their Customers Love

In honor of National Doughnut Day, we took a sweet, fried tour of L.A.’s doughnut landscape, from downtown to the Valley

It’s National Doughnut Day, and this year we’re celebrating the doughnuts that Angelenos dough-nuts for. We called up shops from downtown to the Valley and asked them one question: What’s your best seller? We’ve put together a list so you know what to grab first when you go out to celebrate today—or any day.

Birdies: Horchata Twist

At Birdies in downtown L.A., customers adore the Horchata Twist, a perfect combination of fluff and chew. A twisted, raised doughnut that’s coated with a horchata glaze and topped with stripes of dulce de leche, this doughnut is as satisfying to look at as it is to enjoy. 314 W. Olympic Blvd., downtown.

Blinkie’s Donuts: Black and White Doughnut

In Woodland Hills, Blinkie’s customers new and old alike go after the Black and White Doughnut. Made with a raised doughnut and topped with vanilla frosting, Blinkie’s adds a splash of their house-made chocolate frosting on top. The chocolate frosting includes five types of chocolate, but if you’re wondering what they are, it’s a heavily guarded family secret, says owner Teresa. 4884 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills.

Blue Star Donuts: The O.G. (The Orxata Glaze)

With the tagline “Donuts for grownups” it’s no wonder that even the simplest doughnut at Blue Star is an elevated sibling of the classic. At their flagship in Venice, the O.G. (the Orxata Glaze) is made by dipping their brioche doughnuts in a horchata glaze based on the traditional Mexican drink, made with a rice milk base, ground cinnamon, and pure vanilla bean paste. 1142 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice; other locations.

California Donuts: Cereal Specialty Doughnuts

What’s better than one breakfast? How about a second right on top of your first? At California Donuts in Koreatown, that’s why employees guess patrons can’t get enough of their cereal-focused specialty doughnuts. Their yeast raised doughnuts are topped with vanilla glaze and cereals including Fruity Pebbles, Froot Loops, and the unexpected but delectable combination of blueberry glaze with Cinnamon Toast Crunch on top. 3540 W. 3rd St., Koreatown.

Donut Friend: X-Ray Speculoos

In Highland Park, Donut Friend is no stranger to putting big flavors into vegan doughnuts, and that’s why they say customer’s are clawing for a doughnut they’ve named the X-Ray Speculoos (a nod to English punk band X-Ray Spex). This vegan raised doughnut is cut in half and filled with a speculoos cookie butter filling, then topped with chocolate glaze and sea salt to balance out the flavors. 5107 York Blvd., Highland Park; other locations.

The Donut Man: Strawberry Doughnut

It’s no secret which doughnut is most popular at the Donut Man, but we went ahead and asked anyway. We were reassured that, yes, the strawberry doughnut is the clear winner, and it’s easy to see why when you witness the fresh strawberries pouring out of their bisected raised doughnut. Lucky for us, and customers across town, they recently opened a location in Grand Central Market so we can go more often. 915 E. Rte. 66, Glendora; Grand Central Market, 317 S. Broadway, downtown.


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Dot & Dough: Cookies & Cream Chocolate Filled Donut Puff

Dot & Dough in Monterey Park stands apart from other local shops, thanks to doughnuts based on Portuguese malasadas and the signature dollop of filling that peeks out of them. Their best seller, the Cookies & Cream Chocolate Filled Donut Puff, is a favorite among customers because of its Belgian chocolate custard and Oreo crumble topping. 141 N. Atlantic Blvd #102, Monterey Park; other locations.

Primo’s Donuts: Buttermilk Bar

Primo’s on Sawtelle Boulevard claim they’ve served the best doughnuts in L.A. since 1956, and they say their signature classic Buttermilk Bar is proof. This doughnut highlights the tart taste of buttermilk while delivering it in a vessel that’s crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Considering the amount of pride they have in the Buttermilk Bar, it’s easy to see why customers can’t get enough. 2918 Sawtelle Blvd., Sawtelle.

Randy’s Donuts: Butter Crumb Raised

Randy’s in Inglewood is about as iconic as it gets, but managers say this customer favorite is a surprise. Their best seller is the Butter Crumb Raised, a raised doughnut topped with a crumble mixture of flour, butter, and sugar. Our theory for its popularity is that it sort of looks like the signature doughnut that sits atop the shop, but we’ll let you decide if you see the connection. 805 W. Manchester Blvd., Inglewood; other locations.


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Sidecar Doughnuts & Coffee: Huckleberry Cake Doughnut

In Santa Monica, the doughnut magicians at Sidecar work in small batches to make their huckleberry cake doughnuts with fresh foraged Oregon huckleberries added to their crisp cake doughnuts that hide a moist kick in the center. Topped with huckleberry glaze, this doughnut boasts tangy, fruity flavors that help to balance out the sweetness of their cake doughnuts. 631 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica; other locations.

SK’s Donuts & Croissants: Strawberry Cheesecake Doughnut

The folks at SK’s in Mid-Wilshire are known for pushing the envelope with what they can fit into a doughnut, and that’s exactly why managers say everyone is rushing to get the Strawberry Cheesecake Doughnut. This creation starts with a raised doughnut that’s covered with cream cheese frosting and coated in buttery graham crackers for texture. Then they add a strawberry drizzle and a heaping mound of strawberries to finish things off. 5850 W. 3rd St. Suite #A, Mid-Wilshire.

Sweet Retreat Donuts: Lemon Drop Fresh Fruits

Sweet Retreat in Long Beach attributes the appeal of their best seller to the fresh fruit that sits like a crown on many of their doughnuts, especially the Lemon Drop Fresh Fruits. Their yeast doughnut has a heap of tart lemon glaze on top and is carefully decorated with fresh fruit to finish the experience off with a punch of sweetness. 924 E. Pacific Coast Hwy., Long Beach.

Trejo’s Coffee & Donuts: Abuelita

Owned by a Hollywood star right in the heart of Hollywood, Trejo’s says their best seller is a classic dolled up for Hollywood. Starting with what might be the softest raised doughnut known to mankind, they top it with a creamy dark chocolate glaze with a chocolate crumble on top. This is the embodiment of depth in a simple doughnut that customers just can’t get enough of. 6785 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood.

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