The largest donut


A guide on vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free donuts is an important tool in providing responsible information to donut lovers.

Donuts have been a staple in many cultures, offering a wide array of flavors and styles.

However, as dietary needs and lifestyle choices evolve, the classic donut is also undergoing a transformation.

This guide provides a deeper understanding of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free donuts to give consumers the information they need.

Guide on Vegan, Vegetarian, and Gluten-Free Donuts
Photo by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

Vegan Donuts

Vegetarian Donuts

  • Definition: Donuts that may contain dairy and eggs but do not contain meat or meat-derived ingredients.
  • Types:
    • Lacto-vegetarian: Includes dairy but not eggs.
    • Ovo-vegetarian: Includes eggs but not dairy.
    • Lacto-ovo-vegetarian: Includes both dairy and eggs.
  • Special Considerations: Gelatin, often used in marshmallow and other fillings, is not vegetarian.

Gluten-Free Donuts

  • Definition: Donuts made without wheat, barley, rye, or any other gluten-containing grains.
  • Key Features: Uses alternative flours such as rice flour, almond flour, or coconut flour.
  • Special Considerations: Cross-contamination is a risk if these donuts are prepared in the same area as regular donuts.

Ingredients to Look For and Avoid

Type of DonutCommon IngredientsIngredients to Avoid
VeganPlant milk, vegan butter, agave nectarDairy, eggs, gelatin, honey
VegetarianRegular milk, eggs, butterMeat, gelatin, fish oil
Gluten-FreeRice flour, potato starch, xanthan gumWheat flour, malt extract

Special Ingredients

  • Vegan: Aquafaba, tofu, and nut butters can replace eggs and dairy.
  • Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian: Often relies on eggs for structure and dairy for richness.
  • Gluten-Free: May use guar gum or psyllium husk as binding agents.

Identifying Vegan Donuts

  1. Read the Ingredient List: Animal-derived products should be absent.
  2. Look for Certifications: A Vegan Society or similar certification is a reliable indicator.
  3. Ask the Staff: Many stores with vegan options train their staff to provide accurate information.

Understanding Gluten and Its Effects

Gluten has different impacts depending on individual health conditions:

  • Celiac Disease: A severe autoimmune disorder where gluten consumption damages the small intestine. Diagnosed through medical tests.
  • Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity: Experiences discomfort upon consuming gluten but no intestinal damage.

Brands and Companies Selling Specialized Donuts

  • Dunkin’: Vegan and gluten-free options available in select locations.
  • Krispy Kreme: Limited vegan options, but no certified gluten-free choices.
  • Voodoo Doughnut: Offers a wide array of vegan donuts.
  • Erin McKenna’s Bakery: All donuts are vegan and gluten-free.

Recipe for a Healthy Alternative

This recipe is not only vegan but also gluten-free and yeast-free.


  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds soaked in 6 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) and prepare a donut mold.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together almond flour, coconut sugar, and baking soda.
  3. In another bowl, mix apple sauce, chia seed mixture, and vanilla.
  4. Combine both mixtures and stir until smooth.
  5. Pour into the donut mold and bake for 12-15 minutes or until firm to touch.
  6. Let it cool before demolding.

The almond flour makes the muffins gluten-free, the coconut sugar sweetens them, the applesauce adds moisture and helps them bind together, the chia seeds add fiber and nutrients, the baking soda helps them rise, and the vanilla extract gives them a delicious flavor.

This recipe gives you a base to experiment with flavors and toppings.

It’s a great alternative for those looking for a healthier or allergen-friendly option.


By understanding the ingredients and the processes involved, we can make better choices in line with our dietary needs and ethical beliefs.

On the other hand, every maker and seller of donuts has a responsibility to inform the public about the ingredients of their products, especially with donuts, where the ingredients are not readily observable.

The donut world is evolving, making it easier for everyone to enjoy this delicious treat.