In 1904, St Louis hosted the World’s Fair. Who would have thought the donut would still be paying homage to that event now? But that’s exactly what World’s Fair Donuts, located at 1904 (see what they did there?) South Vandeventer Avenue is doing all these years later. No they weren’t selling donuts then but they have been baking up glazed buttermilk cake donuts, long john’s and blueberry chip cake donuts, their specialty, for around forty years. The majority of those years at this location.
On a recent trip to St Louis, the Gateway to the West, I had the pleasure of stopping in and meeting Peggy Clanton, half of the couple that has made World Fair Donuts some of the most famous and some of the best donuts in the St Louis. While I was in the city, I had taken it upon myself to check out as many old school donuts shops I could find on a search for the best donuts in St Louis
To even the playing field and keep it more or less the same kind of donuts from each place, I selected a plain glazed or sugared donut, a chocolate covered or glazed donut and one donut that was somewhat unique from each shop. Thank goodness I managed to keep myself from going into a sugar coma!
Are the Best Donuts in St Louis at Old Town Donuts?
Next up was Old Town Donuts located in the Florissant area. Could they have the best donuts in St Louis? This neighborhood is a second ring suburb to the north of St Louis. It’s also one of the oldest settlements in the state so it’s no wonder Old Town has been making donuts for over 30 years, seven days a week, 24 hours a day! Impressive. According to their website, Old Town runs three shifts to ensure the freshest donuts. The chocolate covered cream filled was my favorite. I really liked the yeastiness and crispy texture of the glaze of these donuts. Just as promised, they were extremely fresh!
Are the Best Donuts in St Louis at Donut Drive In?
Another St Louis establishment that I visited was Donut Drive In . They’ve been around since the 50’s and still use the same family recipes they did back then to make their donuts today. Featured on Food Network, they were voted best donuts on the original Route 66. I purchased a plain glazed and a chocolate covered donut. The texture and consistency were near perfect and everything I want from a donut. However, the customer service was not good. Just because you’ve been around a long time doesn’t mean you can forget to be nice. I would give them another try because I really liked the donuts a lot. Hopefully I just caught them at a bad time.
Searching in Illinois for the The Best Donuts in St Louis
Last but not least I ventured over to the other side of the Mississippi to try Duke Bakery in Granite City, Illinois. Even though “Granite”, as the locals call it, is in Illinois, it’s considered the Greater St Louis metropolitan area. Could the best donuts in St. Louis be across the state line?
They didn’t have a huge selection because I got there late in the day but they still had my favorite- chocolate iced. Up until the moment I tasted the Duke donut, Krispy Kreme chocolate covered had always been my favorite. But since I tasted the Duke donut, I cannot stop thinking about it. It was perfect! From the texture, to the yeastiness, to the chocolate. I don’t know what kind of chocolate they use but it’s what chocolate dreams are made of.
The Best Donuts in St Louis
So there you have it. Which one was my favorite? It’s too close to call! I’m going to need a repeat visit to figure it out. If you plan on visiting St. Louis check out some of the most unique things to do in the city and one of the other things I enjoy eating…BBQ!
There are also plenty of other donuts shops in town and I’d love to do some more searching for the best donuts in St Louis. Do you have a favorite in St Louis that I don’t know about? If so, leave me a comment and tell me what it is.