Every year, the 25th day of Kislev (a month in the Hebrew calendar) marks the start of Hanukkah. Hanukkah is a historical holiday commemorating the miracle in the Holy Temple of Jerusalem in the 2nd century. To sum it up in short, a one-day supply of oil used to light the temple’s menorah lasted for eight nights. Today, Jews celebrate by lighting their menorahs, retelling the Hanukkah story, playing dreidel, giving gifts, and indulging in plenty of foods fried in oil, especially donuts, symbolizing the oil that lasted eight nights. 

Johnae Horton

Jews know how to incorporate delicious food into every holiday, and Hanukkah is no exception. In addition to potato latkes, donuts called sufganiyot are a classic Hanukkah delicacy. Normally filled with raspberry or strawberry jam, sufganiyot are yeasty, airy, and flavorful. In celebration of Hanukkah this week, I’ve rounded up the best donut shops across the 50 states to make your holiday that much sweeter.

jam, jelly, raspberry, strawberry, doughnut, butter
Maddie Cleeff

1. Five Daughters Bakery

Founded by Isaac and Stephanie Meek in Franklin, Tennessee, Five Daughters Bakery has been a legendary Southern spot for doughnuts since 2015, with six locations across Franklin, Nashville, and Atlanta. The bakery is known for various fun and creative flavors, yet they also make sure to keep the classics on their menu. Their signature item is the 100 layer donut, a crossover between a croissant and donut...a cronut!

You won’t want to miss out on this carefully crafted donut that takes up to three days to make. This flavorful piece of warm fried dough rolled in sugar, filled with a rich cream, and topped with a sweet glaze will undoubtedly bring you back to the bakery for more. I recommend trying the Vanilla Cream and Maple Glaze when you go to sample some of the bakery’s staples. And if you get the chance to visit this month, don’t miss out on their December flavors like Peppermint Mocha and Gingerbread Latte, bringing a touch of holiday spirit to your tastebuds. 

2. Doughnuttery

Cupcakes are to cakes as Doughnuttery is to...doughnuts! This creative spin on the classic American donut is one you certainly won’t want to miss on your next trip to New York. Doughnuttery, which debuted in Chelsea Market in 2012, is a unique spot that specializes in mini donuts made with high-quality, exotic ingredients. With unique flavors on their menu, such as the Flower Power made with hibiscus, honey, and rose petals, and the Spicy Rooster made with sriracha, maple, and lime, Doughnuttery will not disappoint an adventurous eater. If you’re picky (no shame), Doughnuttery has no shortage of classic flavors like Powdered Sugar and Glaze Drizzle to satisfy any customer; they even have Doughnut Doggie Treats for your pup at home! Doughnuttery is the perfect place to indulge in a mini sweet treat without guilt.

3. Voodoo Doughnut

If you’re looking for a fun, out-of-the-box doughnut, look no further. Voodoo Doughnuts is known for its unique flavors and eclectic atmosphere, creating a memorable experience for its customers. The Portland staple, founded in 2003, has expanded to eleven locations across the U.S. in Oregon, Colorado, Texas, California, and Florida due to its attention from the media and fast-growing popularity. The combination of their eye-catching interiors, hip and edgy vibe, and mouthwatering doughnut menu makes it the perfect place to pick up a box of doughnuts when Dunkin' or Krispy Kreme just won’t cut it.

Some highlights include the Bacon Maple Bar, the ideal combination of salty and sweet; Oh Captain, My Captain, bringing your favorite childhood cereal back to life in doughnut form; and the Old Dirty Bastard topped with Oreos and a peanut butter drizzle. As the Voodoo slogan says, “Good things come in pink boxes!" - and trust me, they do. These doughnuts are to die for, and will have you unbuttoning your pants right after you stuff your face with these heavenly treats (and they obviously make for a sick Instagram pic!).

4. Angel Food Bakery

You’ll be tempted to leave the classic round doughnut behind after you try these fun-shaped letter doughnuts. No joke, this box of doughnuts from Angel Food Bakery, located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, puts an instant smile on anyone’s face. With a wide variety of messages to choose from like “Happy Birthday,” “Happy Holidays,” “I Love You,” and “Congratulations,” these doughnuts are guaranteed to be the perfect gift for any occasion. Who wouldn’t want a giant box of doughnuts sent right to their door, packed with flavors like Saturday Morning Cartoons (fruity pebbles), Raspberry Chocolate Chip, and of course the classic Vanilla with Sprinkles?

Angel Food's yeast-raised doughnuts are decadent, and made fresh each morning in a slew of insane options if these adorable message doughnuts aren’t your thing. Try the jumbo doughnut cake, featuring three layers of doughnuts with vanilla buttercream, pink icing, and sprinkles, or their famous “Dough-Naparts” - croissant style doughnuts which will send you into sugar heaven; chewy, flakey, and irresistibly delicious.

If these unique doughnut shops don’t satisfy your sweet tooth this Hanukkah, then I don’t know what will. So grab your computer, and conveniently order these doughnuts straight to your doorstep (or dorm room) that will bring you a latke joy. Happy Hanukkah!