Grabbed a dirty nutella chai donut on one of my recent stops at Stay Glazed in Downtown Asheville.

Take the Asheville Donut Trail

Asheville’s amazing donuts are our best kept secret. With so many options, how do you choose? Don’t miss the best options for donuts in Asheville, from a local. And, a donut shop that you won’t find on any other “best of” lists. Not to be delayed… 

asheville donut trail in asheville nc. discover the best donuts in southern appalachia.
Coffee and donuts at Vortex Donuts is one of the best ways to start the morning. I love this honey caramel pistachio donut. <3

Asheville Donut Trail official is launching soon.

When I first moved to Asheville a few years ago, I had no idea how big and passionate our donut scene was.

Sure, most of the online “best of” food guides touted the likes of Hole and Vortex, but what about the small neighborhood bakery or hidden underground donut shop downtown?

Since writing this sweet post, I’ve gotten more questions about hidden donut spots that most people don’t know about in other areas close to Asheville.

What are the best donuts in Hendersonville? How about donuts in Weaverville? Black Mountain? Are there donuts in Old Fort?

Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered (scroll to the end of this post).

Being a city known for its craft beer, it should have come as no surprise that we take our donuts just as seriously.

Plus, there’s really never a bad time for a donut. And everyone is always happier when they are eating a donut.

Those of you that have a weakness for donuts like me will enjoy this post.

From crowd pleasers, to taste bud busters, all you need to do is follow this donut trail for the best donuts in Asheville.

Join me on a donut adventure and learn a little bit about Asheville along the way. And bring a friend!

Stay Glazed donuts in Downtown Asheville
Stay Glazed Donuts in downtown Asheville, NC is my favorite donut spot in town. Small batch. Creative flavors. Amazing donuts.

How many of these donuts have you had?

Asheville, NC Donut Trail

Hole Donuts (West Asheville)

Hole Donuts in West Asheville of Asheville, NC
My favorite donut at Hole is the sesame seed donut!

No amount of superlatives will really do this place justice. They’ve got a reputation for some of the best donuts in North Carolina and they’ve earned it.

Hole is in my top 3 Asheville donut spots. I love the location in West Asheville because I can grab my order of donuts and head down to the river and enjoy them while the morning fog burns off.

Vortex Donuts (South Slope Asheville)

Vortex Donuts is located in the South Slope Neighborhood of Asheville NC
I’m never disappointed when I go to Vortex. They are consistently amazing donuts.

Stay Glazed Donuts (Downtown Asheville)

Grabbed a dirty nutella chai donut on one of my recent stops at Stay Glazed in Downtown Asheville.
If you’re hanging out around Downtown Asheville and wanna grab a sweet, I suggest stopping by (or going underground rather) to pick up a donut at Stay Glazed. Stay Glazed has my favorite donuts in Asheville and has a fresh rotation of flavors on their menu.

I discovered Stay Glazed by accident while wandering Downtown Asheville one weekend. And I’m so glad I did.

I ran into one of their a-frame signs on the street and was pulled in. Marketing success.

Stay Glazed is my favorite donut shop in town. For their donuts, but also for their underground, off-the-beaten path location near Pack Square Park.

Their donuts are always small batch, made from scratch, and hand glazed.

Of the flavors available in Asheville, I’m of the perspective that the folks at Stay Glazed are among the most creative and inventive.

Check out their website https://www.stayglazeddonuts.com/ or Instagram https://www.instagram.com/stayglazeddonuts/ to see what they have going on.

Ava’s Doughnuts (South Asheville)

Ava's Donuts in South Asheville is meeting a big demand for donuts locally - and is doing it quite successfully!
These donuts are HUGE! Ava’s knows the donut game well and always serves up plenty of different flavors. Plus, you even get to choose the creme flavor for some of the donuts. These donuts look great but taste even better!

If it weren’t for Ava’s Doughnuts, South Asheville would be a veritable donut desert.

But Ava’s makes the tour list because of her amazing donuts, which include some of the traditional fan favorites, but also creative flavors.

West End Bakery (West Asheville)

West End Bakery Donuts in West Asheville of Asheville, NC

Somehow, I’ve been sleeping on donuts at West End. That is, until very recently.

I was showing houses in West Asheville last weekend and decided to pop in to see what kind of pastry situation was going on at West End.

I was not disappointed.

The pastry case was stacked full of HUGE donuts. I think the donuts were each 3-4″ tall, MINIMUM.

They had a lot of flavors, but I opted for the Boston creme. There’s something about a Boston creme donut that just screams ‘classic American pastry’. The fluffy, golden dough is a comforting sight, evocative of countless diners and coffee shops across the country. But then, there’s that moment when you take a bite and your teeth sink through the layers of soft pastry and into the rich, velvety cream filling. It’s a textural revelation, the kind of decadence that makes you close your eyes and savor each and every bite.

And let’s not forget about that glossy, chocolate glaze on top. It’s the finishing touch that takes this donut from good to great. It’s not too sweet, not too bitter – just the perfect balance of cocoa and sugar. And when you lick the remnants of the glaze off your fingers, you know that you’ve truly indulged in something special.

So that’s just what I did!

…a Boston creme donut is a reminder that sometimes, the simplest pleasures can be the most satisfying. Thank you West End for the sweet memory!

Other options if you’re looking for new donut spots

*Note: Malvern Hills Bakery used to be on this list, but has since closed.

Are there good donuts close to Asheville?

Asheville Donut Trail
Me doing what I do best – devour a delicious apple fritter donut. Asheville’s underground donut scene is really something worth trying. If you’re visiting or transplanting, make sure you take time to stop in a few of these bakeries for a real treat.

It’s always good to know where the closest donut is. Which is why I also have a list of amazing donut spots in the greater Asheville area.

So, if you find yourself day-tripping out of Asheville, here’s a few spots you’ll want to keep handy in case you get a hankering for a sweet donut. 🙂

Velvet Cup (Brevard)

The Velvet Cup coffee truck is a literal god send. After a long day of hiking, biking, waterfalling, there’s really nothing better than a delicious cup of coffee and donuts. Velvet Cup is actually a food truck parked at the entrance to the Pisgah National Forest. The donut menu is small, but packs a punch. I’m outta there with at least half a dozen hot fresh mini-donuts every time I roll by.

https://www.thevelvetcupcoffeetruck.com/

10754 Greenville Hwy. Cedar Mountain, NC 28718

McFarlan’s (Hendersonville, NC)

Hendersonville residents rave about McFarlan’s, considered by some the best bakery in Hendersonville. McFarlan’s serves up made-from-scratch donuts daily.

https://www.mcfarlanbakery.com/

If you’re venturing outside of Asheville to Hendersonville, Weaverville, Waynesville, or Flat Rock, don’t fret – here’s a list of options.

  • HenDough (Hendersonville, NC)
  • Mountain Fresh Orchard (Hendersonville)
  • Grandad’s Apples (Hendersonville)
  • Wild Donuts (Weaverville)
  • Black Mountain Doughnuts (Black Mountain)
  • Daylight Donuts (Waynesville)
  • Mr. Bob’s (Old Fort)
  • Sky Top Orchard (Flat Rock)
  • Budgies Bakeshop (Candler)

How People are Feeling About Asheville Donuts

I know we all feel great about the idea of donuts, but beneath the sweet surface, donuts can be a pretty divisive topic.

I polled my Instagram followers a few days ago about about what they think about a few different donut flavors, and this is what they said.

what's the best donut flavor?
What do you think the best donut flavor is? I polled my Instagram followers and these were the results. I realize, there are a bajillion more flavors. 🙂

The Asheville Donut Trail

Our donut scene adds to the unique character of the city. As I started to discover the different donut shops in the area, I started to think – dang – why don’t more people talk about these amazing donuts.

One thing led to another, and the Asheville Donut Trail was born. The Asheville Donut Trail is a delightful adventure that brings together the love of donuts, the beauty of nature, and the happiness of the people who enjoy them.

If you’re interested in following this project, follow Asheville Donut Trail on Instagram and sign up for an update when we launch by visiting the website: Asheville Donut Trail.

If you’re in town and need a donut recommendation, feel free to text me at 828-412-0678!

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