Up until recently, I couldn't tell you the last time that I had eaten a donut; it had probably been years on end since I'd had one. I was turned off to donuts after a period of overconsumption. When I was younger, my grandmother managed a Dunkin' Donuts and would bring home boxes of leftover donuts every single night. I think I reached my lifetime limit of donuts by age six, and I've been disinterested in the dessert ever since. I've gone all that time without ever feeling the need to have a donut, but since coming to college the popularity of donuts and the prevalence of artisan donut shops has skyrocketed, especially in Providence. My interest in resurrecting my inner donut lover was specifically sparked when I met Rachael Cholak. Rachael is the self-proclaimed donut queen, and I doubt anyone would question her rank; she founded the Brown Donut Club, runs her own donut blog, manages and creates new donuts at Mike's Chicken and Donuts, and did a capstone donut podcast. When Rachael found out about my donut dormancy, she vowed to get me to love donuts again, even if they had to be vegan donuts. 

Photo courtesy of Rachael Cholak

She decided to take me to her favorite donut shop in Providence, PVDonuts, which worked out perfectly because PVDonuts has a selection of vegan donuts. PVDonut's menu changes every month (including their vegan donut menu!), but the essential base of their donuts doesn't change: brioche, cake, old-fashioned, and filled.  

Here are my reviews of the vegan selection for the month of February. All ratings are out of 5 🍩s. 

Meyer Lemon

Brianna Sa

The Meyer Lemon is a vanilla brioche-like donut dipped in meyer lemon glaze and topped with candied orange bits and dried cranberries. The base reminded me of a cronut, as it was super airy, simultaneously dense and light, a little flaky, and not too sweet. It serves as the perfect vessel for the slightly tart lemon glaze. The candied orange pieces and dried cranberries could go–I ended up picking them off–but that being said, the lemon meyer donut (without the toppings) was my favorite of all three donuts. It was light, refreshing, and not too sweet or overwhelming.

Note: I got too excited about this donut and forgot to take a cross-section Meyer Lemon picture, but see the Chocolate Coconut photos to see the amazing fluffy inside (they're both the same base).

Rating: 🍩🍩🍩🍩🍩

Chocolate Coconut

Brianna Sa

The Chocolate Coconut donut is a brioche-like donut dipped in a chocolate glaze and rolled in toasted shredded coconut. This donut has the same base as the Meyer Lemon donut. It's an amazingly thick and airy donut that is not too sweet. I mean, look at all those air pockets...

Brianna Sa

 I wish the chocolate glaze was a little bit sweeter as both the donut and coconut shreds were unsweetened. The donut could be a bit dry, so I would suggest eating this with a cup of coffee or another drink. This is an overall solid donut, the most reminiscent of a classic chocolate glazed donut. 


Peanut Butter & Jelly

Brianna Sa

I'm a peanut butter and jelly fanatic, so I was super excited to try this peanut butter and jelly donut. I ate a peanut butter and jelly sandwich every day for lunch from kindergarten up until eighth grade. Rachael even said that this was a very solid donut, which is always a good sign. The peanut butter and jelly donut is filled with fresh raspberry jam, dipped in a peanut butter glaze and topped with crushed peanuts. 

I hate to say it, but I really did not like this donut. The base seemed much denser and soggier than the previous two donuts. The peanut butter glaze was nauseatingly sweet and resembled powdered peanut butter. The raspberry jam was good, but just seemed like smashed raspberries. 

Brianna Sa

Rating: 🍩

I do have to say that I have been converted back into a donut lover. I will definitely be going back to PVDonuts for another Meyer Lemon donut (and maybe even reviewing their vegan menu for March!). So make sure you head out to PVDonuts before the end of the month to see if you agree with my rankings. 

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