You Know You Love Them: Top 5 Shipley Flavors

As a former Bostonian, I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Dunkin' Donuts, but among the many blessings that came with moving to Texas was the chance to become acquainted with Shipley Do-Nuts. I will always favor their monstrous apple fritters, though recently I have willed myself to try their diverse doughnut flavors (it's rough, i tell you). Here are my five favorite Shipley varieties:

5. Cherry-Filled. While the filling is definitely a far cry from natural/organic, the drupe stuffing of this doughnut still bursts with (processed) fruit flavor. It can barely contain all those cherries in syrup, so don't be surprised if just a little leaks onto your hands. Don't worry, that's what napkins licking your fingers is for.

4. Plain Glazed. By sight alone you can readily tell the difference between crappy grocery-store glazed doughnuts and the ones proffered by Shipley. Shipley doesn't skimp on the glaze, covering every curve of the doughnut with a thick layer of sugar icing that does NOT drip off at the drop of a hat (I'm looking at you, H-E-B glazed doughnut). The dough's interior is always fresh and fluffy, making for a doughnut that is lighter than air...which is probably why half a dozen go down so smoothly.

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3. Chocolate Cream-Filled. This doughnut suffers from a severe case of cream edema. Fortunately (for you), the only cure is to take a huge bite to relieve the swelling. Try not to moan too loudly as you enjoy the luscious white filling, and have a large glass of cold milk on hand to ease digestion.

2. Iced Maple. Essentially the doughnut version of the best Sunday morning pancake with syrup you can imagine. I harbor a fantasy of actually stacking three or four of these babies, covering them with real maple syrup and eating them flapjack-style. But then I remember my new year's resolution to eat more kale.

1. Buttermilk Cake. Shipley's buttermilk cake doughnut's relatively petite size belies a very rich, dense cake interior whose vanilla flavor is tweaked by slight sour notes. Perhaps the ultimate doughnut for dunking (note: not dunkin'), it pairs well with steaming beverages. I suggest hot cocoa or a nice chai.

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Joanna O'Leary