Among petite pastries dolled up with frostings, glazes, sprinkles and even bacon, doughnuts have become the darling of the bakery, especially when they’re served hot.
Classics, of course, never go out of style, from the jiggly fruit of a jelly doughnut or a dunkable ring sifted with cinnamon. Yet crazy doughnuts are becoming destination-worthy, with unusual flavor combinations and outrageous toppings that promise a uniquely sweet treat.
How popular are doughnuts these days? “You’d be surprised what people would do for doughnuts,” says Jackie Stiansen, who opened Doughology in Lynbrook with her husband, Chris. She says that customers drive from Manhattan and Yonkers on weekends because the offerings like Devil Dog and French Toast are so unusual. Lines are also long across the Island in Sag Harbor, where Grindstone Coffee and Donuts sells out of 1,000 doughnuts by midafternoon on a Saturday.
Here are some of our favorites.
Dough Hut (891 W. Beech St., Long Beach): You’ll run into lifeguards and business people heading to work as well as kids en route to school at the tiny shop that’s been in Long Beach since 2012. They’ve stopped in for one of the dozens of novel varieties from cinna-crumb, which tastes like coffee cake, to blueberry or a berry number garnished with Fruity Pebbles cereal. Cannoli is served weekends only. It’s like a jelly doughnut, but swap the preserves for cannoli cream. Doughnuts run from $1 to $2.50 each. (Pictured: A peanut butter and jelly doughnut.) More info: 516-432-1400
A doughnut is topped with Fruity Pebbles at Dough Hut in Long Beach.
Duck Donuts (586 Veterans Memorial Hwy., Hauppauge): This North Carolina-based chain know for its popular made-to-order doughnuts has opened its first New York location in Hauppauge. Part of the experience here is watching the making of the vanilla flavored cake doughnuts and seeing them topped in a range of coatings, toppings and drizzles, from chocolate and vanilla to more ambitious flavors that include lemon icing, shredded coconut, crumbled graham crackers, chopped bacon and broken Oreos. More info: 631-656-8400, duckdonuts.com
The menu at Duck Donuts in Hauppauge includes doughnuts topped with ice cream sundaes.
Spiga Bakery (2685 Merrick Rd. Bellmore, 516-557-2688 and 4636 Merrick Rd., Massapequa, 516-541-2300): Rob Caravello says it’s been 10 years since he and his brother Luca took over this Bellmore bakery, where the doughnuts are getting crazier by the month. Banana Nutella doughnut ($2.50) was the crazy-kickoff because it was a nostalgic flavor for the brothers. “While other kids were eating peanut butter and jelly, we had Nutella on white bread, because we’re Italian,” Rob Caravello said. From there, the bakery introduced strawberry basil, coconut rum, creme brulee and the Cinnabomb, with cinnamon glaze, and the meta-addition of pieces of cinnamon bun on top. Doughnuts range from $1.75 to $3.25 for the most expensive one dressed in pignoli nuts on an almond custard-filled pastry. More info: spigabakery.com
An apple pie doughnut from Spiga Bakery in Bellmore.
House of Donuts
House of Donuts (95 S. Broadway, Hicksville): Nick Kefalas has been frying doughnuts here since 1971. Little has changed at the diner/doughnut house since then — not the décor, and not freshly made renditions of timeless classics: glazed, crullers (regular and marble), Boston cream, jelly, chocolate cake and more. What are the most popular doughnuts? “The Boston cream, the French crullers,” says Kefala. Doughnuts are $1.30 each, a dozen for $11.65. (Pictured: A chocolate crumb topped doughnut). More info: 516-433-4606
A chocolate-covered doughnut with sprinkles from House of Donuts in Hicksville.
Buttercooky Bakery (Multiple locations): A take on the pie of the same name, the Boston creme doughnut here tempts with a glossy chocolate glaze, a velvety pastry cream interior and a puffy doughnut that’s a perfect fit for the palm of a hand. The Boston creme is one of three doughnuts for sale at owner Ben Borgognone’s three locations — one in Floral Park ( 217 Jericho Tpke.), one in Manhasset (140 Plandome Rd.) and the other in Huntington (495 New York Ave.). Doughnuts run from $1.10 to $1.45 a piece. More info: buttercookybakery.com
Doughology (45 Atlantic Ave., Lynbrook): Italian-American rainbow doughnuts (pictured) are wildly popular — an over-the-top take on rainbow cookies, a display of three layers of colored dough. For the finale, it’s dressed with a rainbow cookie on top made by a home baker who is a regular customer. They’re so popular the staff runs out of the 900 doughnuts made when they’re offered. It’s surprising, even when there are a dozen varieties as tempting, from the create-your-own (three toppings for $2.50) with nuts, sprinkles, crumbs and cereals as well as sauces, whipped cream, bacon and jams. As for when you’ll find those rainbow doughnuts: It’s often random, but Sundays are a good bet. More info: 516-341-0882
Wildfeast (10 W. Park Ave., Long Beach): At this eatery, go for the cinnamon doughnuts whose flaky crust you will enjoy licking off your fingers long after you've paid the check. More info: 516-442-7284, wildfeastfoods.com