Come on, admit it. We know they are unhealthy – all that fat and sugar, that boatload of carbs and calories – but we simply cannot help ourselves. Doughnuts may be bad for our waistlines and cholesterol levels, but they soothe our souls.
That may explain why there are more than 30 Dunkin’ Donuts stores throughout the Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel. It may also be why when the area’s first Krispy Kreme opened last October in Fort Myers, the single location sold close to 1 million doughnuts in two weeks.
While the well-known chain stores get their share of the business, the Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel can take pride in the fact that there are some fine independent shops scattered throughout the area as well and they offer doughnuts guaranteed to jettison the most dedicated diet plan. Here’s a taste of the sweet temptations available around the area:
Bennett’s Fresh Roast: This is the place that started the artisanal doughnut craze in town. Radio DJ-and-executive-turned-baker Bob Grissinger created this bastion of fried-dough delights a decade ago with delectable doughnuts made fresh daily and sold until they run out. Then that’s it. So get there early if you have a hankering for apple fritters, cinnamon buns or doughnuts such as the popular maple-bacon, orange coconut or banana custard. And, if that’s not enough, there’s fresh house-roasted coffee in a variety of styles available, too.
Coasting Donut: If you see a screaming green food truck rolling down the street, there’s a good chance it’s Coasting Donuts, run by Crystal and Curt Hibbert. They create fresh mini doughnuts – of the vanilla buttermilk cake variety – that are then dusted with sugar and cinnamon. Customers select the topping of their choice, such as maple-bacon, Oreo lovers, Reese’s, well, you get the idea. The truck can be found at various locales throughout the region, including Lehigh Acres, Estero, Fort Myers and Cape Coral. Check out its Facebook or Instagram page for the latest updates.
Divine Donuts: Run by husband-and-wife team Mitchelle and Eddie Nobles, this spot boasts a rotating lineup of 200 varieties, with about 45 available daily until supplies run out. A sampling of the Divine options includes red angel, Snickers, Divine M&M, strawberry lemon drizzle, chocolate coconut, Samoa (coconut and caramel), Boston cream, kronuts and kronut holes.
Dojo Doughnuts: This is a pop-up business that offers artisanal doughnuts in intriguing flavors. It can often be found at area breweries such as Momentum in Bonita Springs and Fort Myers Brewing Company selling doughnuts in flavors such as strawberry homie, orange pistachio and maple-bacon with blueberry. Check the Facebook page for its schedule.
Duck Donuts: While part of a chain, these babies are made fresh when you order so they get a mention for that personal touch. Here you start with a fresh-baked vanilla cake doughnut. Then you pick your coating (bare, glazed, sugar, chocolate, etc.). Next, you pick a topping (graham cracker, chopped peanuts, chopped bacon), and finally, you top it off with a drizzle (hot fudge, raspberry, salted caramel, marshmallow). Then you eat it, still warm and gooey.
Totally Baked on Sanibel: This place isn’t strictly doughnuts but the doughnuts are so good you might not want to spoil your appetite with anything else. Owner Ginny Wagner and baker Adam Walling take their baked goods seriously. The lineup might change but some of their wondrous creations include Boston crème, raspberry filled, almond butter crunch, apple fritters and Sanibel cinnamon rolls.
Trackside Donuts & Café: A Bonita favorite just west of the dog track, this former Dairy Queen (hence the pointy roof) specializes in coffee and doughnuts like sugar glazed, toasted coconut, Bavarian cream and the wildly popular apple fritters. Don’t be surprised to see a line of people waiting.