Donuts are one of those indulgences that everyone needs in their lives. Anyone who disagrees hasn’t had a fresh donut in the last month and would benefit from treating themselves. My love affair started with the ‘Texas’ donut from the Piggly Wiggly bakery in Racine, Wisconsin. That thing was huge (for a 7-year-old), round, glorious, frosted and accompanied by sprinkles from heaven. I’ve never been the same since, and my donut obsession has followed me through childhood into my adult life.
In Portland, the number of donut shops is astounding. Every person has their favorite little place, myself included. My top three recommendations are Pip’s Donuts, Tonalli’s and Coco Donuts. Each shop is unique, but all the donuts are delicious.
I’ve never eaten a fresh donut I didn’t enjoy and I have love affairs with many of the donut shops in Portland. The city is known for biking, beer drinking, coffee and DONUTS, all for good reason. These three shops will get you started on your donut adventures. Grab yourself a fresh one while they’re still warm!
Pip’s Donuts is located on NE Fremont and 48th. These donuts are about the size of the “O” when you make an “OK” sign, making them easily consumable. The little made-to-order rings of goodness are to die for, and the line around the block proves it. They come fresh, hot and ready to consume. I always giggle at myself when I get my donuts to go, knowing full well that they won’t last the walk back to the car.
Each donut has the same base, but they come with a variety of toppings including cinnamon sugar, honey, sea salt and Nutella. Do yourself a favor and enjoy your donuts piping hot with Pip’s House-Crafted Chai Latte. In my opinion, Pip’s Donuts’ owner, Nate Snell, epitomizes Portland. He prioritizes community and collaboration with his hashtag #CommunityNotCompetition. It’s inspiring and what we should all stand for as people-driven communities, no matter which community you are a part of!
Tonalli’s is located on the corner of NE 28th and Alberta and has taken more money from me over the last three years than I care to admit. Tonalli’s is two blocks from my house, and I never want to move because I never want to be more than two blocks from Tonalli’s. The building is sure to catch your eye with its bright yellow exterior and flashing green and red lights.
Tonalli’s is open until midnight in case you get a late-night donut craving. They offer a donut sundae (heaven) if you feel like a combination of ice cream and donuts! My go-to is the glazed twist and a frosted sprinkled cake donut – simply delicious.
Last, but not least: Coco Donuts. They have recently blown up with multiple locations opening all over Portland! As a small business owner myself, it makes me happy seeing their success. Their donuts make their popularity and growth unsurprising.
Envision a warm donut, covered in a gooey glaze, the soft dough melting in your mouth, and finishing with an explosion of rich, buttery flavor. I don’t eat more than one donut when I visit Coco’s because it only takes one to put me in a coma of blissful donut delight. It will leave you dreaming of the next time you can handle the intensity of goodness.