Lake County’s Best Donuts

In my forty plus years, I have yet to run into someone who doesn’t love donuts. There is just something about fried dough that people can resonate with. I have actually written about donuts over three times in my writing career and created a donut birthday party for my youngest daughter. Because if there is one thing I am sure of in my 18 years of parenting, donuts are the answer to any question. Bored? Eat a donut! Crabby? Let’s go get donuts! Homework too hard? Donuts will help! There wasn’t a guide to Lake County’s best donuts, so we here at Little Lake County decided to fill that void. With lots and lots of donuts.

lake county's best donuts

Best Donuts in Lake County

*Don’t send me hate mail if yours didn’t make the list. Share it in the comments because no one likes a donut hog. 

CJ’s Coffee House
2352 Sheridan Rd., Zion | (847) 731-2208
I’m told the cinnamon coffee and red velvet donuts are worth the trip. They don’t have a website (the best places usually don’t) so you will have to look for them on Facebook.

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Photo source CJ’s Coffee House on Facebook

Deerfield’s Bakery
201 N. Buffalo Grove Rd., Buffalo Grove | (847) 520-0068
813 N. Waukegan Rd., Deerfield | (847) 520-0068
I remember when there was only one of Deerfield’s Bakery location, but that tells you how amazing their items are. Most people upon hearing the name Deerfield’s immediately think of cake but their donuts are just as spectacular.

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Gerhard’s Elegant European Desserts
720 N. Western Ave., Lake Forest | (847) 234-0023
You had me at European desserts.

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Gurnee Donuts
4949 Grand Ave., Gurnee | (847) 248-4757
NOW WE’RE TALKIN’. Once upon a time, there was a fire in the castle (Gurnee Donuts) and it closed for eternity (several months) and all the people in the land cried and cried. Then the prince and princess (the owners) saved all in the land by re-opening it super fast because people in Lake County can’t live without fried dough. The end.

lake county's best donuts
Photo Source: Gurnee Donuts Facebook Page

The Heart of Europe Cafe
113 S. Cook St., Barrington | (847) 808-9321
This place got a huge boost when BuzzFeed named their donuts best in Illinois. You know what that means? GO EARLY. And get a chimney cake because they are an “investment in your belly.” I don’t know what the heck that means but I think I need it.

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La Luz Bakery 
500 N. Lake St., Mundelein | (847) 837-0303
This place is a must-see-for-yourself because as well as amazing donuts, they sell almost everything you would ever want, and it is affordable. They don’t have a website so look this place up on Facebook.

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Photo Source: Heart of Europe on Facebook

Lee Donuts
124 Peterson Rd., Libertyville | (847) 816-7764

I wrote about these donuts for another publication several years ago and said they were my favorite donut in Lake County. It still stands true today. Get yourself here and try an apple fritter (the house specialty) but ask the nice person at the counter what their favorite is. Trust me on this.

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Lovin’ Oven Cakery
2207 N. Route 83, Round Lake Beach | (847) 231-4700
355 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville | (224) 207-4500
Antioch location coming soon!
Lovin’ Oven is one of Lake County’s favorite bakeries. We used them for our wedding cakes, coffee cakes, cookies for teachers and many more delicious items. But did you know they also make delicious donuts? Get there early for the best selection.

Lovin’ Oven has been featured here many times including Lake County’s Best Birthday Cakes, 15 Foods You Have to Try in Lake County, and Best Cupcakes in Lake County

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O’Brothers Bakery 
2820 Belvidere Rd. (Route 120), Waukegan | (847) 249-0091
Known in northern Lake County for their birthday cakes, O’Brothers also specializes in delicious donuts as well. Head to Facebook to check out some of their amazing cake creations.

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Image source Lee Donuts on Facebook

Tom’s Pastry 
830 Sheridan Rd., Highwood | (847) 433-0507
No Facebook page, no website, cash or check only and I adore this place already. A family-owned place, Tom’s has customers coming back for more every day. So many choices, but according to our sources, the chocolate cake donuts are divine.

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Village Bakery 
27 E. Grand Ave., Fox Lake | (847) 587-8100
Known in the Fox Lake area for great pastries, Village Bakery offers delicious donuts and are known for their Danish as well. Head to Facebook to see all that they offer.

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Photo source Mike’s Donuts and Chicken on Facebook


Worth the Trip 

McHenry Riverside Bakery
1309 Riverside Dr., McHenry | (815) 385-0044
Around since 1971, this great little bakery serves up some of the best donuts in McHenry County. Head there on Wednesdays and get a cup of coffee and a donut for only $1.95!

Mike’s Donuts and Chicken
701 56th St., Kenosha | (262) 764-9520
Head over the border to get some of the best donuts (and chicken among many other items) in the tri-state area.

We have featured Mike’s before when Loralie took us along for her Worth the Trip feature and in our 101 Things to Do This Winter

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Spunky Dunkers
3441 N. Arlington Heights Rd., Arlington Heights | (847) 255-6677
When you enter an all-donut restaurant, the smell that greets you can’t compare. Sure bakeries smell delicious, but the donut shop smell is another level of deliciousness. I swear if they could pump this smell everywhere, we’d all be happier.

Where is YOUR favorite donut place? Not on this list? Tell us in the comments.

About Kari Wagner Hoban 36 Articles
Kari loves to write and take photos, not necessarily in that order. Her journey started in 2010 when she sat down to write a few words on a private blog. She pressed “public” a few weeks later and the rest is history. Kari loves making people laugh, being real, and spending time with her husband and two daughters. She also really loves her dog Buddy and fish Lucy. When she is not busy writing or going through the Starbucks drive thru, you can find her talking to her plants Zoe, Evie and Albert. She didn’t name Evie. Her nine year old did. But she's totally an Edna so that’s what Kari calls her when her nine year old isn’t home.

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