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The Doughnut Vault

The Doughnut Vault

Donut Shop · River North
401 1/2 N Franklin St (at W Kinzie St), Chicago, IL 60654, United States
Open until 3:00 PM (Show more)
  • Mon–Fri
    • 8:00 AM–3:00 PM
Breakfast, Dessert
Credit Cards:
Outdoor Seating:

Artisanal Handcrafted Doughnuts | Old World Recipe | Classic Flavors


Based on 309 votes

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130 tips and reviews.

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  • donuts
  • gingerbread stack
  • coffee
  • daily specials
  • casual
  • authentic
  • cake
  • good for a quick meal
  • breakfast food
  • great value
  • cozy
  • cute
  • good service
  • family-friendly
  • buttermilk
  • espresso
  • quiet
  • chestnuts
  • chocolate
  • vanilla
  • Amanda J.
    what others said...GO EARLY !! First time we went at 10am, and they were sold out/closed for the day, and that was during the week. They were delicious though, worth the wait! I got the daily special.
    Amanda Joyce · September 19, 2013
  • Jessica T.
    Go on a weekday if possible. The space is crazy small but the donuts are crazy good. If you're lucky enough to be an early bird, order the daily special. Otherwise, get whatever. Music vibe is killer!
    Jessica Toliuszis · November 11, 2012
  • Julia P.
    Get the Jelly-filled Donut (seasonal special). PHENOMENAL. All of their donuts are really good, but the vanilla glazed was a bit too plain (and just like any other glazed donut) for me.
    Julia Park · August 9, 2013
  • Bitches Who Brunch
    The Buttermilk Old Fashioned is the Vault’s most popular choice. Also, the cute outdoor photo-opp, traveling Doughnut Vault Van and $1 coffee makes this place high on my list of favorites in the city. Read more
    Bitches Who Brunch · October 23, 2015
  • DailyCandy
    Tucked inside an old vault, bakers riff on classic recipes to produce pitch-perfect donuts. Go early (it closes when it sells out), brave the lines, order the old-fashioned, and take yours to go.
    DailyCandy · February 25, 2014
  • Angela
    The chocolate glazed here is the best I've ever had. Melt in your mouth gooey good. Coffee is only a buck too. Get there before 11 am because they tend to run of doughnuts and then close for the day.
    Angela · February 7, 2013
  • Time Out Chicago
    This shop puts out batches of vanilla glazed, chestnut, buttermilk old-fashioned and other doughnuts of both cake and yeast varieties. And they are marvelous—perhaps the best you will ever have. Read more
    Time Out Chicago · February 28, 2012
  • Katie H.
    Coffee is Metropolis & only $1. But onto the Doughnuts! The Gingerbread Stack is such a simple breakfast delight so try them out OR try any doughnut that sounds yummy, you will like it.
    Katie H2O · December 23, 2015
  • AskMen
    Whips up a limited, ever-changing selection of fresh-baked sweets in flavors like chestnut, buttermilk, carrot cake, & maple-bourbon-bacon. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter for store hours. Read more
    AskMen · April 14, 2011
  • Carmen G.
    Pro tip.. have your order ready when u get 2 front of the line. 6 donuts fit in a box. Tell them if ur going to need a box as soon as u get up to the counter. They accept CC but u pay a lil more.
    Carmen Guzman · October 5, 2014
  • Time Out Chicago
    Doughnut makers using the noms de plume François and Henri Gras put out batches of vanilla glazed, chestnut, buttermilk old-fashioned and other doughnuts of both the cake and yeast variety. Read more
    Time Out Chicago · February 17, 2012
  • Aaron C.
    Every morning people get in line hoping to get to the counter before the donuts are gone. Get the chocolate glazed or chestnut donut or the donut of the day. They're big, delicious donuts!
    Aaron Cruz · May 14, 2012
  • Jayson M.
    Unique experience to the Chicago area! Carrier early as they only make so many doughnuts per day and when they are gone they are gone! Harry Potter-ish side entry! Great taste!
    Jayson M · June 6, 2015
  • Jen M.
    Check their Twitter first thing in the morning to find out their specials and to get live updates on item availability. Lemon poppyseed old fashioned is one of the best around.
    Jen Marquez · March 3, 2015
  • Heather W.
    The raspberry old fashioned was worth the trek. I felt like a total bonehead when I ordered and realized I left my wallet at the office. The server was so great about it! I'll be back!
    Heather Williams · April 2, 2015
  • Time Out Chicago
    Buttermilk and glazed yeast are staples, but the Twitter feed update dough lovers of daily specials that range from pistachio to birthday cake (cake dunked in vanilla glaze with rainbow sprinkles). Read more
    Time Out Chicago · April 17, 2012
  • Serious Eats
    Lines are long in the mornings and on weekends, but after 10 am, its a little easier to slip in. Go for the buttermilk old fashioned or the yeasty glazed doughnut.
    Serious Eats · May 21, 2013
  • Gloria C.
    super popular in the morning & weekends!! go after 10 am for a shorter line. choose between the buttermilk old fashioned ($2.00) or the yeasty glazed ($3.00) doughnuts
    Gloria Chin · January 17, 2013
  • Niki C.
    Chestnut. For sure. Ice coffee for a buck. Follow them on Twitter for line updates, special flavors, and inventory. Delicious. Jam to the rap while you wait!
    Niki Conrad · July 20, 2011
  • Jessica T.
    The best donuts in the city. Any city. Get the double old fashion. Get the daily special. And the massive chocolate
    Jessica Toliuszis · January 22
  • Christine
    One of the best Donuts place in the world!!!!! Go early for more choices! Take out only except little table outside.
    Christine · May 27, 2015
  • Vivian N.
    We arrived around 9:30 am on a Saturday morning, and waited about 30 mins. The chestnut glazed, old fashioned, and special filled were great
    Vivian Nguyen · September 21, 2015
  • Christopher F.
    Awesome old fashioned donuts!!! Get there early (especially on the weekend) otherwise they may run out!!! The buttermilk donut is THE BEST!!!!!!!
    Christopher Floss · December 12, 2014
  • Ryan O.
    Serves up creative flavors like birthday cake, dreamsicle and chestnut cream doughnuts alongside classic glazed and old-fashioned buttermilk (Eater)
    Ryan O'Malley · March 30, 2013
  • Fiachra M.
    Open till they sell out. Old fashioned buttermilk was a delight. All packaged into a room the size of a hallway.
    Fiachra Maguire · August 20, 2014
  • Chicagoist
    The classic chestnut glazed option is my favorite, a slight nutty sweetness that is the perfect side to a morning coffee to start your day Read more
    Chicagoist · August 1, 2014
  • Chris B.
    All Hype, The lines are really long and the donuts are IMO marginal. For a better doughnut check out firecakes on Hubbard.
    Chris Burke · September 13, 2014
  • JenKudu
    Everything they say is true... They are amazing! Buttermilk, Chocolate and Salted Caramel were the three I got. Salted Caramel was my fav.!
    JenKudu · December 5, 2013
  • Time Out Chicago
    Try the Chestnut doughnut from our 100 Best list: It doesn’t get any better, any fresher, any more flavorful, any airier than this.
    Time Out Chicago · December 6, 2011
  • Catherine P.
    The old-fashioned buttermilk doughnut is really good! Additionally, try the chocolate doughnut!
    Catherine Punkt · February 27, 2015
  • Mark R.
    Hip Hop, Hipsters and a sugar rush. The best doughnuts you'll ever eat, but beware the gut bomb coma!
    Mark Reynolds · May 7, 2014
  • Serious Eats
    Despite the high prices and long lines, this tiny takeout shops serves some of the most flawless doughnuts we've ever tried.
    Serious Eats · September 9, 2013
  • Chefs Feed
    Huge and delicious, this doughnut melts in your mouth. Only a hot, fresh coffee will slake my thirst after that. Read more
    Chefs Feed · April 15
  • Emily I.
    It's cash only but if you forget, like me, the merchandise mart has an ATM. Other than that come early and enjoy!
    Emily Israeli · December 20, 2011
  • Chicago magazine
    CAUTION: Beware of a doughnut coma after eating here. Our dining editor's pick: "The gingerbread stack—light and, uh, gingery." Read more
    Chicago magazine · June 3, 2011
  • Meg S.
    Pro Tip: tell your boss you have a dr's appointment and go to DV on a Tuesday morning around 10. All of the donut varieties, none of the wait.
    Meg Skwiat · June 1, 2011
  • Henry B.
    If the line reaches the corner, the wait'll be about an hour. Hit up Do-Rite, Firecakes, or Glazed & Infused instead. Live your life.
    Henry Birdseye · December 7, 2013
  • Katheryn M.
    Cash only! Show up early because the specials sell fast. And get your tastebuds ready to Enjoy! 🍩
    Katheryn M · February 7, 2014
  • Vicky K.
    Friendly service; excellent coffee! Cash only and get there early or else you're S.O.L..
    Vicky Kujawa · February 17, 2014
  • Chicago magazine
    The old-fashioned buttermilk doughnut hit dining editor Penny Pollack's cozy button. View a photo here. Read more
    Chicago magazine · June 3, 2011
  • Kevin S.
    They are only open for a few hours each morning. Go early to get their daily special.
    Kevin Skobac · August 28, 2015
  • Tammy G.
    I liked the classic sour cream and buttermilk donut the most.
    Tammy Gordon · May 9, 2014
    Follow this shop on Twitter: They'll tell you when they're running out and how many people are online. @doughnutvault Read more
    USA TODAY · May 30, 2013
  • Keith M.
    The buttermilk old-fashioned was amazing, but I found the remaining flavor to be just okay.
    Keith Marran · April 28, 2014
  • jaime g.
    Get there early, they only make so many doughnuts and when they are gone, they're gone. Closes between 12:30-2:00ish
    jaime garcia · July 7, 2013
  • Karen
    This place makes me wish I lived in Chicago! Great donuts and $1 coffee that is actually good. Ummm yes.
    Karen · April 15, 2015
  • David S.
    The buttermilk old fashioned is worth the line up and the calories. Seriously good doughnut.
    David Strasser · May 17, 2013
  • Jake S.
    They sell out. You need to wake up PREEETY early in the morning if you want a doughnut from here.
    Jake Smith · February 17, 2013
  • David
    In winter, get your donuts here and eat them inside of the nearby Merchandiese Mart.
    David · February 27, 2015
  • ToryBurch
    Lots of buzz and long lines at this pastry shop- donuts are the must-have treat.
    ToryBurch · November 17, 2011

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