Chocolate Pecan Donut from High 5 in Louisville Kentucky

The Best Donuts in Louisville from 10 Delicious Bakeries

Sometimes, there is nothing better than a fresh, hot, sticky-sweet donut melting on your tongue. I mean, hey, it’s part of a well-rounded diet! Luckily there are so many places to get some of the best donuts in Louisville, and we won’t judge if you try them all to figure out your favorite!

Donut culture is one of a kind, I mean, with what other food do you order it by the box mixed with assorted flavors? And the fact that a “baker’s dozen” literally means you get an extra donut for no reason at all! Now that’s magic.

These are the top 9 shops to get the best donuts in Louisville for your next Sunday morning donut run, whether you want light and fluffy, or dense and cakey fried dough. We don’t judge here!

Check out a few of these other posts:

See also
The 12 Best Desserts in Louisville: from Ice Cream to Pie (& more!)
Box of donuts from Nord's Bakery in Louisville Ky
Box of donuts from local favorite Nord’s Bakery (Photo Credit: @nordsbakery)

Where to Get the Best Donuts in Louisville

Dunkin’ Donuts, Duck Donuts, and Krispy Kreme are all in town, but here we focus on what makes Louisville unique, and that certainly extends to its donuts.

Whether you’re team glaze, cake, sprinkle, or doughnut hole – we’ve got you covered. Here’s where you can find the best donuts in Louisville:

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Jeff's Donuts at the Village Market in Paristown, in Louisville Kentucky
Jeff’s Donuts at the Village Market in Paristown

Jeff’s Donuts

Jeff bought a bakery and named it Jeff’s Donuts in Jefferson, Indiana in 2003, eventually expanding all the way over the Ohio River into Kentucky!

Today, the bakery operates on a 24/7 basis (other than their location in Village Market, that is) in thoughtful consideration of Louisville’s second – and third -shift workers. Or really just anyone who has had the hankering for a donut at 2am. I can’t be the only one!

There are over 40 different options for your donut delight, with icings that include orange, cherry, maple, and apple. Choose from fillings like creamy custard and tart raspberry, topping it all off with options like coconut, cinnamon, peanuts, and almond slices. Can you imagine all the combinations?!

The Long Johns are just as creative. Customers especially love the long cream-filled donut (think like an eclair, but a donut) topped with various icings like the tangy Orange Cream Dream or Strawberry Cream Dream. All the dreams! The fluffy white cream inside is *chefs kiss* A chocolate topped Long John filled with cream is by far our personal favorite from Jeff’s!

Maple bacon long john from Nord's Donuts in Louisville Ky
Did someone say maple bacon donut?! This divine treat is from Nord’s Bakery!

Nord’s Bakery

Nord’s Bakery is home to fluffy, yeasty donuts with some of the most imaginative and delicious combinations you have ever seen, and the flavors just keep coming

Maple fans have a choice of two different flavors, the maple with a decadent chocolate drizzle or the savory maple with smoky bacon. Yes, you read that right. Crispy bacon on top of a maple Long John – just try it before you think we’re crazy!

If you are feeling a little more adventurous, branch out and try some of Nord’s more daring combinations, like a French Fry donut that somehow manages to bring the best of both breakfast and lunch fried foods in one bite.  

Visit Friday through Sunday for special flavors like red velvet, chocolate-glazed crullers, and pumpkin spice cake – you won’t regret it! Just don’t be surprised if there is a line; people love these donuts!

See also
The 7 Best Apple Orchards in Kentucky (and Southern Indiana)

Chocolate Donuts from Clifton Donut Shop (Photo Credit: @aloush.foodie)

Clifton Donut Shop

Head over to Clifton Donuts for fresh, fluffy donuts made in-house by this small-town mom-and-pop shop. 

The little white and red striped shop on Brownsboro Road, is quaint and sweet. A sprinkle-filled mural greets you at the door with a large pink donut helping to spell out the word “Love”. Awww.

The shop’s famous staple, the Blueberry cake donut, hits the tongue just right with the natural flavors of real fruit, making a lovely addition to Clifton’s soft and airy donut collection. 

If you are feeling venturesome, give the Tronut a try. It is a perfectly sweet and light trifecta of donut, cruller, and croissant with a sticky glaze. How could that be bad?!

Clifton Donut Shop is closed on Mondays, but open the rest of the week to give your blood sugar a spike!

Local Travel Tip: The best way to taste the best food in Louisville is on a food and history walking tour with Louisville Food Tours! Explore the story of Louisville and Kentucky while tasting culinary classics like bourbon balls, biscuits, fried chicken, and - of course - bourbon! You can book a tour with Louisville Food Tours and use the code LGL10 for 10% off your booking..
stack of donuts from Heitzman Traditional Bakeery and Deli in Louisville ky
Can’t go wrong with some thick, glazed donuts from Heitzman! (Photo Credit: @mytattedtake)

Heitzman Traditional Bakery and Deli

Heitzman Traditional Bakery and Deli is one of the oldest bakeries in Louisville, serving Kentuckiana since 1891. That’s a long a** time. Over the last 130+ years Heitzman has grown quite a following, so it’s no surprise they have some of the best donuts in Louisville!

Needless to say this “traditional bakery” is nostalgic and serves up some classic donuts, and it can be hard to move past the irresistible goodness of just a plain traditional glazed donut. Why mess up a good thing?

There are also soft fluffy apple fritters, Honey Buns and sticky-sweet Crullers that are always the hit of the bakery case. Basically whatever you get is tried and true, and will take you back to when you used to be a small Victorian child. Those were the days.

Heitzman does weddings, too, if you are dreaming of a tired donut cake for your special day!

See also
Where to Get Tacos in Louisville, Kentucky: The 8 Best Tacos in Louisville
Chocolate Pecan Donut from High 5 in Louisville Kentucky
A decadent Chocolate Pecan Donut from Hi-Five!

Hi-Five Doughnuts

Starting in 2013, Hi-Five Doughnuts has the distinction of being the first female-owned-and-operated food truck and bakery dedicated to doughnuts, obviously making owners Annie Harlow and Leslie Wilson the Queens of Donuts! They describe their yeast doughnuts as “brioche in style” with a dense feel.  

Hi-Five offers complete customization for your donuts, available both in full-size and as donut holes. Choose your own glaze from flavors like bourbon caramel, creamy peanut butter, and smoky bacon. Then top it off with creative garnishes like Sinnamon Toast Crunch (because they’re sinfully delicious, get it?!), coconut, and Fruity Pebbles. They are also enormously oversized so they’re easily shareable!

If inspiration does not strike, have no fear because owners Annie Harlow and Leslie Wilson have already done the work for you with signature offerings like Kentucky Fried Buttermilk Chicken Doughnut Sandwich. Yes, this sandwich is actually served on a doughnut with with sweet and tangy hot sauce. 

Their creativity earned them recognition from Southern Living, which named them one of the top food trucks in the south.

Hi-Five Doughnuts is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, so stop in any other day to spice up your life.

Apple Fritter from King Donuts in Louisville Ky
An apple fritter a day from King Donuts keeps the doctor away? Maybe?

King Donuts

King Donuts has a fantastic assortment of fresh, delicious yeasty donuts and donut holes available in either glazed or cake varieties. 

But if you’re team cake donut, the selection here is great. Glazed and frosted varieties in both chocolate and old-fashioned flavors. The Blueberry cake is a favorite. A dense crumbly dough sweetened inside and out, is the ideal way to start the day.

King also offers bars and twists, adding an extra spin on your favorite morning pastry. If you are not in the mood for a donut, there are also apple fritters and bear claws made fresh in-house.

King Donuts can be found at 814 Eastern Parkway, but be careful when you navigate your GPS, as there are 3 King Donut shops in the area – all independent from one another! Confusing, we know…

Donuts from North Lime Donuts in Louisville KY
North Lime not only has donuts but a super cute atmosphere!

North Lime Coffee and Donuts

North Lime Coffee & Donuts started in 2012 and features an ultra-tempting menu of both old and new favorites. Here, you will find square donuts that are both heavy and filing, perfect to satisfy even the most serious sweet tooth.

The specialty donuts change from week to week, and past flavors have included creative takes like Blue Slushie and Cotton Candy. The schedule can be found on their website, or you can text to get the new menu weekly. Now that’s a mailing list I can get behind.

One of the best parts about North Lime is its consideration of various food allergies. There is an impressive offering of vegan flavors in unexpected creations like strawberry jalapeno.

Gluten-free options are also available and come in some of North Lime’s most popular varieties, like a Pivot apple cider cake that takes like fall.

And of course, pair your donut with a coffee to max out your afternoon endorphin boost.

Donuts from Plehn's Bakery in Louisville ky
It’s plain to see, Plehn’s is the place to be! (Photo Credit: @plehns_bakery)

Plehn’s Bakery

Plehn’s Bakery (pronounced “plains”) is a self-professed “Louisville favorite” since 1924, and it has no shortage of options to offer. There are standard flavors like chocolate cake and raspberry-filled iced jelly donuts.

But for something fancier, check out the specialty flavors to find sugary cinnamon twists, doughy pretzel donuts, and chocolate honey buns.

Also in-store are rich spice cupcakes with sweet caramel icing, light and fluffy cream puffs, and orange blossom sweets. And if you’ve still got room, check out the assortment of cakes, cookies, and homemade ice cream made fresh in-store.

Like many local businesses, Plehn’s Bakery is closed on Mondays. (Is anyone else forever making this mistake week after week, or just me…?)

Sugar & Spice Donut Shop

Opened in 1982, Sugar & Spice Donut Shop has been in business for more than 40 years and has more than 30 flavors available for your enjoyment. 

These light, fluffy confections feature fun flavors like a decadent Peanut Butter Fudge Bar, smooth Coconut Custard, Chocolate Oreo Cheesecake, Moose Tracks, and the Southern favorite – Banana Cream Pie. No matter your fancy, there is no shortage of creativity with this expansive menu. 

Grab a seat at the cozy donut counter bar with its tin ceiling above you and enjoy the unique creativity that Sugar & Spice Brings to its donuts. 

When you’re ready to go, ask about Flavor Savor® bags to protect your donuts until you are ready to enjoy them.

Bourbon cream cronut from Butchertown Bakery in Louisville, Kentucky
Bourbon cream cronut from Butchertown Bakery

Bonus: Best Cronut in Louisville

What’s better than a donut? A donut that had a baby with a crossaint to create a delicious, flaky, buttery cronut, of course!

You can try this delectable star-crossed treat at the oh-so-Instagrammable Butchertown Bakery. Flavors rotate regularly, so you never quite know what you’ll find – but on our visit, we found a Bourbon Ball-inspired cronut filled with bourbon cream and topped with chocolate, smoked bourbon salt and pecans. Y’all, ohmygoodness.

These babies are HUGE and very filling, so grab someone to share with or plan for leftovers (midnight cronut snack!? Hell yes.) Happy snacking!

About the Author: This post was co-written with Managing Editor Allie Nova and Lena Muhtadi Borrelli, who has spent time in finance, marketing, and hospitality with a diverse professional background before settling into full-time life as a freelance writer. She has written for TIME, Investopedia, MSN, Bankrate, Onerent, and TV Guide.

What donuts are your favorite donuts in Louisville? Did we miss your favorite place? Drop us a comment below!

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Sometimes, there is nothing better than a fresh, hot, sticky-sweet donut melting on your tongue. I mean, hey, it's part of a well-rounded diet! Luckily there are so many places to get some of the best donuts in Louisville, and we won't judge if you try them all to figure out your favorite! These are the top 9 shops to get the best donuts in Louisville for your next Sunday morning donut run, whether you want light and fluffy, or dense and cakey fried dough. We don't judge here!
Subscribe to our email list and we'll send you a FREE printable list with 75 fun things to do in Louisville!
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