The Thrifty New England Traveler is a blog of VisitingNewEngland, a web site that features real New England travel stories told by a lifelong local.

The Best Donut Shops in the Boston Area

Photo of donuts from Donut Express, Medfield, Mass.

Mouthwatering donuts from Donut Express, Medfield, Mass. (photo by Eric)

Donuts are definitely not good for you, but they are cheap, delicious and a nice, occasional treat. The Boston area used to have many local donuts shops, but sadly, many have gone the way of the five and dime and downtown clothing store.

It’s a real testimony to the following five Boston area locally-owned and operated donut shops that they have survived and continue to thrive with lines sometimes out the door:

Kane’s Donuts, Saugus
The donuts are huge and so are the appetites in this famous old-fashioned North Shore donut shop established in 1955. They’ve got the donut science down to a tee with offerings that burst with sweetness, soft texture and flavors like apple cider, black raspberry jam with whip cream, and the classic honey dip. I know Kane’s experiments with different flavors, so be prepared for creative offerings — or just stick with the traditional. Either way, you are in donut heaven here. 120 Lincoln Ave. Tel. (781) 233-8499

Country Kitchen, Walpole
In business for nearly 45 years, Country Kitchen Donuts is the ultimate old school townie spot that makes outstanding donuts. It’s a great place to sit down for a donut, coffee and some spirited local conversation at the counter. Nice staff, too, that seems to know everyone.  Go for the ample jelly and cream-filled donuts, you won’t be disappointed! 745 Main St., Tel. (508) 668-4044.


Linda’s Donuts, Belmont
, Belmont I remember Linda’s when I was a kid in the early 1970s, and its recipe for donut shop success hasn’t changed much at all. Nothing fancy, but are the donuts ever good here! Though not as good as Kane’s, Linda’s, nevertheless, makes a great, soft melt-in-your-mouth donut with Boston Creme and chocolate frosted as my favorites. 247 Belmont St., Tel. (617) 484-9844

Donut Express, Medfield
None of the Boston area “experts” on food seem to know about this place. Locals know otherwise, often raving about the delicious donuts. Try the honey dip,, chocolate butter crunch and lemon filling donuts — my mouth waters about 10 minutes before arriving here! Also housed here is the Custom Cakes business — pretty tempting, too! 258 Main St.. Tel. (508) 359-5686

Verna’s, Cambridge
If we lived in the Cambridge area, this would be our go-to donut place. I haven’t been here much, but the few times have been memorable — with the donuts sticking in my mind (and probably digestion track) many years later. This no-frills donut shop that seems stuck in time offers a great butter crunch and chocolate frosted, amongst the many other fabulous flavors. 2344 Mass. Ave. Tel.  (617) 354-4110.

In general, we recommend getting to these donut destinations early for optimal freshness and variety. If you have a favorite Boston area donut shop, please feel free to leave a comment below in the “Leave a Reply” box. Happy donut eating!

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