10 Must-Try Donut Shops Around Atlanta

By Christopher Hassiotis  |  January 13, 2016
Credit: Christopher Hassiotis

Look, while you're busy arguing over whether it's "donut" or "doughnut," we're going to be busy chowing down. And there's no use getting all riled up over whether cake-style is better than yeast-style. That's like arguing Beatles vs. Stones — both scratch different itches, and there's room in your life for both. Get one, get a dozen. (And grab the car keys; for whatever reason, many of ATL's best donut shops are a ways from the city center.)

  • Credit: Christopher Hassiotis

    Revolution Doughnuts & Coffee

    Richly spiced pumpkin donuts. Cake donuts glazed with orange and dusted with crumbled pistachios. Baked carrot-cake vegan donuts that transcend their dairy-free origins. Whatever your choice at this Decatur donut shop and its farmer's market outposts, Revolution revels in made-from-scratch artisanal recipes and high-quality, organic and locally sourced ingredients. Watch for an Inman Park location coming spring 2016.

    908 W. College Ave., Decatur; 678-927-9920

  • Dough in the Box

    Sure, you can get lots fancy donuts — and that's great! But why not try for something classic, because there's something really terrific about a place that does the basics to the finest. Dough in the Box specializes in California-style donuts, baked to a perfect balance of density and fluffiness.

    3184 Austell Rd. SW, Marietta; 770-436-5155

  • Dutch Monkey Doughnuts

    It's tough making the drive out to the sticks, and Cumming only loosely falls under the "Atlanta" description. But the northern exurbs have a real gem with Dutch Monkey Doughnuts, and it's not just the annual donut-eating competition that's worth the trip. Seasonal jelly-filleds and excellent fritters abound, and the eponymous house specialty oozes with dulce de leche and is topped with bananas and chocolate.

    3075 Ronald Reagan Blvd. Suite 502, Cumming; 404-482-3650

  • Sarah Donuts

    The sour cream donuts at this modest suburban bakery are top-notch, crusty and slightly salty on the outside, warm and crumbly on the inside. The red-velvet cake donuts are winners, though the real stars are, well, the stars — donuts in a familiar five-pointed shape and decorated with seasonal frostings and sprinkles. All are made by hand early, early in the morning.

    5860 Jimmy Carter Blvd. #155, Norcross; 770-409-9020

  • Ray's Donut Shop

    Whether you're going for a traditional bear claw, a crisp apple fritter or a tart lemon curd filled, the donuts at Ray's are a solid choice of American classics. And a special treat comes when you buy a box of donuts — the staff will toss in a handful of donut holes on the house.

    4805 Canton Rd., Marietta; 770-485-2448

  • Sublime Doughnuts

    A trailblazer in Atlanta's donut scene, Sublime Doughnuts sits in a deceptively modest-looking strip mall across from the Georgia Tech campus. But there's nothing modest about the A-Town Créme, an Atlanta-shaped spin on the custardy Boston cream donut. From s'mores to Nutella to orangesicle, the flavors dazzle, though it's tough to beat the powdered donut split open and stuffed with fresh strawberries and whipped cream. 2016 should see two new locations open, one in Druid Hills and the other in Sandy Springs.

    535 10th St. NW; 404-897-1801

  • Best Country Donuts

    Boasting yeasty California-style donuts, this south-of-the-city donut shop plays it straight with tried-and-true recipes. Nothing fancy, but everything's tasty. The chocolate-iced, topped with salted peanuts or shredded coconut, is tough to beat.

    4746 Jonesboro Rd., Forest Park; 404-361-7108

  • Happy Donuts

    This East Atlanta Village donut shop may not win awards when it comes to off-the-wall recipes, but it makes up for it in friendliness and convenience. A stone's throw from EAV's cluster of bars and restaurants, Happy Donuts stays open well past when the bars shut down — and that makes for some truly happy customers.

    380 Flat Shoals Ave. SE; 404-893-0088

  • Bon Glaze

    Bon Glaze is hot out of the oven, having opened in December 2015 in Brookhaven. The bakery, which features drive-thru window service, sets itself apart from competitors by adding bacon to its menu. In addition to a wide variety of elaborately topped donuts, Bon Glaze's menu offers a cup of bacon — four varieties, from cayenne-candied to chocolate dipped — as a menu item. The team behind Bon Glaze is so confident in their concept that they've already got a second location in Buckhead ready to open later this year.

    3575 Durden Dr. NE; 404-662-1415

  • Donut Theory

    Another recent entry in the donut wars of the OTP northern 'burbs is Donut Theory. You'll find standard sugar and chocolate — and those are done well for sure — but if you're in a playful mood, look to the display of more outré offerings: breakfast cereal; salty country ham.

    11550 Webb Bridge Way #3B, Alpharetta; 470-275-5530