The 8 Best Donut Shops in Grand Rapids (Ranked by a Local)

There’s a schism in donut-land. The lines are drawn, and sides must be chosen. You know what I’m talking about.

Are you team #cakedonut or team #yeastdonut?

Full disclosure: I’m team yeast donut, baby. The pillowy soft dough. The delightful air pockets. Pair one with a local cup of coffee, and you’re in for a Saturday morning breakfast of champions.

Grand Rapids may not have invented the donut (for that, we can thank Maine’s Hanson Gregory), but our city knows how to fry a mean hunk of dough.

Yeast or cake? Sprinkles or glazed? Pick your favorite. There’s no such thing as a bad donut.

C’mon. Let’s get our donut on. As a wise man, Homer Simpson was known to say: “Mmm. Donuts.”

Map of the Best Donut Shops in Grand Rapids, MI

The best donuts in Grand Rapids: Sandy’s Donuts

Sandy’s is a quick walk from my childhood home, and I made that walk on countless Saturday mornings. I’m here to tell you that Sandy’s has the best donuts in town.

Head to Sandy’s on Fat Tuesday for paczki’s, and I guarantee there’s a line out the door. No joke – you’d think they were selling Taylor Swift tickets.

I’ve never had a donut from Sandy’s that wasn’t sublime, but my favorites are the chocolate long john and the classic glazed. Whatever you get, you’re in for one of Grand Rapid’s greatest delights.

  • Address: 2040 Leonard St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
  • Website: Sandy’s Donuts

The best donuts in SE Grand Rapids: Marge’s Donut Den

If a place is called Marge’s, you know they’re gonna fry up a mean donut. And I’m proud to tell you that Marge’s in Grand Rapids delivers on their name.

To call Marge’s an institution might be an understatement. They’ve been slinging some of the area’s finest donuts since 1975.

Grab a couple of dozen donuts from Marge’s for your next office meeting, and be the hero of your workplace.

  • Address: 1751 28th St SW, Wyoming, MI 49519
  • Website: Marge’s

The other lady in the donut room: Cindy’s Donuts

cindy's donuts

Another donut shop that’s named after a lady. And yet another donut shop that’s been a landmark in Grand Rapids for as long as I can remember.

While Cindy’s might not be fancy (they don’t have their own website, for example), they are donut perfection. Ask a dozen Grand Rapidians about their favorite donut spot, and Cindy’s is sure to be on many lists.

If you’re not in the mood for a donut (what’s wrong with you?), Cindy’s makes otherworldly crullers, beignets, and fritters. But c’mon. Those are basically donuts.

The best donut place not named after a lady: Van’s Pastry Shoppvan's pasrtry shoppe

Ok, now that we’ve discussed Cindy, Marge, and Sandy (is this an article about donuts or a Lou Bega song?), let’s cover the rest of the field.

Van’s is an amazing little shop on Fulton. It’s also the oldest pastry shop in Grand Rapids.

The window display is eclectic and kitsch, which adds to the charm. Pop into Van’s in the wintertime, and the place will look like your Grandmother’s house, replete with Christmas decorations displayed on every available surface.

Let’s talk about their donuts. They’re fried to perfection, absolutely delicious, and generally served the old-school way – sprinkled, glazed, smothered in chocolate, etc. If you’re looking for a donut that’s been tarted up to resemble Elmo or covered in crumbled Oreos, Van’s is not the pastry shop for you.

But if you’re looking for blue-collar donut euphoria, Van’s might be your new go-to spot.

The best mini donut: Bro’s Doughs

If you’re anything like me, you’re looking for a donut hack. Like, how can I eat half a dozen donuts and not feel like a hot mess the next day?

Solution: the mini donut. Head over to Bro’s Doughs, and watch raw dough get transformed into hot-out-of-the-fryer donuts while you wait. Kinda like Krispy Kream, except Bro’s Doughs is local.

The toppings available at Bro’s Doughs are preposterous and fantastic. The “Flinstone” is topped with Fruity Pebbles. The “Dirt Pie” has a gummy worm emerging from the center of the donut.

Order a half dozen in whatever flavors appeal to you. Oh, and grab another half dozen for your loved ones. The donuts won’t last the morning.

  • Address: 2042 E Beltline Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525
  • Website: Bro’s Doughs

The best mobile donuts: Olly’s Donuts

If you’re out and about and happen to spot the Olly’s Donuts truck, run to the truck! Don’t walk. Get yourself a delicious donut fix.

You are about to have the most incredible mini-donut experience of your life. Olly’s cooks their donuts to order, so once the dough emerges from the oil, fried and delicious, they top it with the fixings. The donuts will be delightfully warm and fresh when you eat them moments later.

The “Oreo Speedwagon,” with vanilla frosting and Oreos, will leave your children in their sugar-induced happy place. If you’re feeling adventurous, order the “Tree Hogger,” which is loaded with maple syrup and bacon. Donut technology has come a long way – we didn’t have Oreo or bacon donuts when I was a kid.

The best apple orchard donuts: Post Family Farm

I might get in hot water for this one. Attention Robinette’s fanboys and fangirls: please don’t tar and feather me for suggesting Post Family Farm has the best donuts of any apple orchard.

While Robinette’s fries a mean donut, I’m a sucker for Post Family Farm’s. Their apple cider donuts are a little crunchy on the outside and meltingly tender on the inside. To bite into one is almost a religious experience – they’re donut nirvana.

The best gluten-free donuts: Rise Baking Co.

If you’re looking for a donut that is gluten-free, soy-free, and vegan but still packed with flavor, look no further.

Rise Baking makes shockingly good donuts that will leave you scratching your head, thinking, “how did they pack all that goodness in there with no gluten or animal products.” Marvel at the impossibility of it, then enjoy a few more bites of your donut.

  • Address: 1220 Fulton St. W., Grand Rapids, MI 49504
  • Website: Rise Baking Co.