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Where to get vegan doughnuts in and around Philadelphia

There are lots of vegan — or vegan and gluten-free — doughnuts in Philly. Here's where to find them.

High Fidelity Bakery specializes in gluten-free, vegan baked goods both sweet and savory.
High Fidelity Bakery specializes in gluten-free, vegan baked goods both sweet and savory.Read moreTammy Bradshaw

In the quest for doughnuts that fit vegan and gluten-free diets, where milk, eggs, and butter typically play central roles, the challenge becomes finding suitable substitutes.

However, bakers across the Philadelphia region are getting creative with a variety of ingredients to replace traditional dairy and eggs. They’re experimenting with aquafaba (the liquid from chickpeas), fruit purees, flax seeds, and plant-based milks, crafting delicious alternatives that cater to these dietary preferences.

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“I think what’s underappreciated is how many variables go into making a doughnut,” says Dottie’s Donuts co-owner Jeff Poleon. “Vegan or not, the process is what’s so important and what makes the biggest difference. You can give your recipe to anyone, but if they have a different mixer or proofer or they’re frying at a different temperature, you’re going to get a different doughnut.” The art is in the flavor-making too — take Dottie’s cookie butter s’mores and buttermilk-glazed doughnuts with a seitan buffalo wing center.

Whether you’re looking for cake doughnuts or pockets stuffed with dairy-free cream, you’ll find plenty of plant-based options in Philly. Here are a handful of bakeries to score a doughnut or two.

Price: $2.50 (classic), $3 (deluxe), $3.75 (filled), 8% off half-dozen, 10% off dozen

Known for its wide and creative selection, Dottie’s has been selling its all-vegan doughnuts since 2014, now operating four storefronts that offer six rotating flavors daily.

“We were in bands and were touring heavily, and so we had tried vegan doughnuts in L.A. and New York, but Philly just didn’t have it yet,” said co-owner Jeff Poleon of him and his business partner, who together formed their doughnut business idea while working at Blackbird Pizzeria. “We kind of realized it was a right place, right time situation.”

Light and soft, with a slight chew, doughnuts previously incorporated Ener-G Egg Replacer, an old-school vegan alternative made with potato and tapioca starches, in the yeast dough. But the ingredient is now used for other baked goods for doughnut garnishes.

Dottie’s menu offers deluxe options, classic options, and filled options. Expect flavors like Almond Joy, lemon sprinkle, matcha pistachio, and Boston cream. There are also elaborate weekend specials, like lemon poppy pound cake doughnuts with a square of lemon poppy pound cake atop.

And we can’t forget about the “eagles fan on a greased pole,” an éclair-shaped doughnut with vanilla and matcha glaze that debuted in 2018 when the Eagles went to the Super Bowl.

📍4529 Springfield Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19143, and other locations, 🌐 📷 @dottiesdonuts

Price: $2.25 for cinnamon sugar, plain glazed, and chocolate glazed, $3.25 for weekend specials.

This vegan diner’s cake doughnuts strike that balance of crispy-on-the-outside and fluffy on-the-inside. The secret is Earth Balance, a plant-based butter that’s melted and mixed into the dough.

“The truth is, I tried to make my ‘perfect’ doughnut — full disclosure: the Dunkin’ Donuts of the ‘80s jelly doughnut, sugared not powdered, particularly from Highland Park, N.J. — for years, but failed,” said Kate Hiltz, co-owner and dough-maker the Tasty. “In the process, I learned that I could make a delicious old-fashioned cake doughnut.”

You’ll find cinnamon sugar, plain glazed, and sprinkle-topped, chocolate-glazed doughnuts, alongside a rotating mix of doughnut holes always on the menu. Weekends bring seasonal and rotating specials like strawberry, lemon poppy, and maple walnut.

If you’re looking to secure more than one, call ahead. They are made in limited quantities, so securing a half-dozen or dozen generally requires a special order. Keep an eye on their Instagram for new flavors coming each weekend.

📍 1401 S. 12th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147, 📞 267-457-5670, 🌐, 📷 @thetastyphilly

Price: $3.50 each, $18 per half-dozen

You’ll find both yeast and cake doughnuts at this East Kensington spot, along with creative options, like blueberry pancake and maple bourbon with coconut “bacon.”

Six different flavors are rolled out each week — half are vegan, relying on coconut milk to mimic the textures of butter and eggs. “Honestly we haven’t found it that hard to create vegan versions,” said co-owner Zack Zarrillo.

If you’re not feeling something sweet, Hello Donuts offers “savories,” warm, baked pockets made with extra vegan dough stuffed with a variety of fillings.

📍 2557 Amber St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125, 📞 215-595-2557, 🌐 📷 @hellodonutsphl

Price: $3 to $8

What better excuse to hop in the car than in the name of doughnuts?

Bethlehem’s Vegan Treats fills its display cases daily with over a dozen varieties of cake and yeast doughnuts, all 100% vegan. Some are stuffed with lemon custard and topped with eggless meringue, others are sliced and turned into sandwiches to hold strawberries and cream or toasty marshmallows and chocolate.

The menu’s online, featuring vegan cannolis, whoopie pies, soft serve, and more. Everything is available for pickup on a first come, first served basis, but larger orders can be placed in advance with a week notice.

Don’t have a car? You can find Vegan Treat’s doughnuts on select days at bakeries across the city — find where online.

📍 1444 Linden St., Bethlehem, Pa. 18018, 📞 610-861-7660, 🌐, 📷 @vegantreats

Price: $4 to $5.50 each

You may have to drive out to Maplewood, New Jersey, but the doughnuts at this vegan bakery are worth the trip.

The owners, Caitlyn Webber and Stephen Tong, meet-cute began with a vegan club on Seton Hall University campus in 2017. Later, the couple took Caitlyn’s longtime hobby of baking and made it into a bakery.

Find apple fritters, lemon lavendar, glazed fried, and more doughnuts.

📍 410 Ridgewood Road, Maplewood, N.J. 07040, 📞973-327-2286, 🌐, 📷 @yellowrosevegan

Gluten-free vegan donuts in Philadelphia

Price: $3.24 for single, $18.52 for half dozen

One afternoon nearly a decade ago, Carol Ha found herself in the kitchen experimenting with gluten-free doughnuts to create a treat for a friend’s family.

“I became obsessed with making a doughnut that tasted like the real thing, and now here we are,” Ha said.

Using dough made from rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch, Ha churns out new flavors every month at her South Philly spot, vegan options. “With the chocolate ones, I depend on aquafaba, and for our other doughnuts, I usually use apple or sometimes banana puree and oat milk,” Ha said.

Decadent, but not too sweet, the doughnuts are slightly denser than a classic cake style. Enjoy rich flavors like ube coconut and cardamom espresso. Find them Wednesday through Sunday.

📍 1439 Snyder Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19145, 📞 267-237-3786, 🌐, 📷 @okiedokiedonuts

Price: $4 for regular size, $2 for minis

Born out of owner Alice Leung’s desire to create a vegan, gluten-free, less oily doughnut, Soy Cafe’s baked, cake-style doughnuts have been a popular staple for more than a decade.

“It’s probably the healthiest doughnut you can find out there. But I’ve had plenty of people who weren’t searching for something healthy tell me how much they like them,” Leung said.

The dough is made with a housemade whole grain gluten-free flour mix, flax seeds, flax milk, and a tiny bit of grapeseed oil. Once baked, they’re dipped in dark chocolate, sometimes filled with berry compotes or jams, and then finished with toppings.

Regularly available flavors include toasted almond, chocolate coconut “bacon,” and the everything doughnut, featuring a sprinkle of coconut flakes, mini chocolate chips, and toasted almonds. There are two sizes too, in case you want a smaller treat in the shape of a doughnut, not a ball.

📍 630 N. Second St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19123, 📞 215-922-1003, 📷 @myjoycafe

Price: $3.25 each

Brady Hatin started baking gluten-free, plant-based doughnuts as a way to make treats his whole family could eat.

“Many of the flavors begin with family brainstorms around the dinner table,” said Hatin, a longtime vegan whose 11-year-old daughter, Scarlett, has celiac disease.

“Scarlett wants marshmallows. Zelda, my partner’s daughter, wants orange and mango. It really is a homegrown family think tank — and we joke Zelda and Scarlett are the chief taste testers.”

The doughnuts are on the dense side and extra moist. From chocolate to apple cider to vanilla, they all start with a dough made from Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour, almond flour, aquafaba from chickpeas, and almond milk. Those three flavors are always on the menu, plus monthly seasonal flavors and other speciality items. Come summer, you may also see baked goods with fruit, often family-picked berries from New Jersey.

Order online through Grubhub or UberEats or pick up from one of their many stockists, regularly updated on their website.

📍1929 S 17th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19145, 📞 267-854-3450, 🌐, 📷 @highfidelity_bakery

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