Short List: Jelly Doughnuts

A jelly doughnut: the red-headed, red goop-filled stepchild of the doughnut shop. Does anyone still eat it? Or, more important, should we? In an era of avant-garde bacon-maple, Fruit Loop, bubble gum gonzo deviations, the humble jelly may seem as outmoded as the eight-track tape. And yet, after crisscrossing the metro area and sampling every jelly doughnut in our increasingly wide path, we’ve found that when injected with consideration, it’s a breakfast (or anytime) treat certainly worth savoring.

Kruta Bakery
300 St. Louis Road, Collinsville, Ill., 618.344.1115,

The creative bakers at Collinsville’s Kruta Bakery have miniaturized the jelly doughnut into raspberry-filled, pillow-shaped doughnut holes called “Jimmies.” These cute little jellies, which disappear in two bites, have fewer calories, less guilt, less mess and might just be a stroke of genius: Some days you don’t need a sugar bomb, merely a sugar rush. Jimmies are available every day the bakery is open, and if you’re so inclined, special order them with custard rather than jelly.

7734 Forsyth Blvd., 314.862.6603,

The Italian bomboloni doughnuts available at Pastaria on the weekend brunch menu are a revelation. Bomboloni are less sweet than their American counterparts ­– a doughnut for adults, if you will. While the filling changes each week, we can attest that the low-sugar Concord grape (made with local grapes) is bursting with flavor (while actually tasting like real grapes), and like the doughnut itself, isn’t cloying. This may be the jelly doughnut you’ve been waiting for. Order one with brunch as a tantalizing appetizer for the rest of the meal.

The Donut Stop
1101 Lemay Ferry Road, 314.631.3333,

South County’s The Donut Stop is hardcore. This family-run shop makes the light, tender doughnuts of fantasy daily. The Stop always offers a raspberry jelly-filled doughnut, but it also makes blueberry-, lemon- and apricot-filled varieties on weekends and by request. The chunky blueberry filling, in particular, kicks the standard raspberry goop to the curb. Order it topped with powdered sugar for a winning combo (and a day-long guilty reminder when you get powdered sugar all over your shirt).