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Nothing beats a donut.

Even in its simplest form — a dripping glaze, a sprinkling of sugar, smooth ring of icing — the donut packs a near-perfect punch of pillowy sweetness. A wildly popular, widely available indulgence. 

The Twin Cities' collective infatuation with donuts has inspired list after list after list, each one proclaiming This Beloved Old Bakery or That Trendy New Spot has the best offerings in the metro. 

One contender is always conspicuously absent. It isn't on any of these 'best donut' lists. Which leads me to believe it is the most overlooked, underappreciated donut in the Twin Cities:

Cub Foods' bakery.

cub donuts 3 full case

Cub's donuts are unassuming. They're not particularly "Instagrammable," they won't wow shoppers with unexpected flavors or experimental toppings. 

But nothing is missing. 

A Cub donut hits all of the fundamentals. That hint of crispiness on the outside, soft and springy inside, rich without becoming cloying. And all for the pretty darn reasonable price of $1.25. 

Their donuts aren't boring either, with plenty of styles (raised, cake, French cruller), shapes (ring, long john, bear claw), varieties (vanilla and chocolate icing, sprinkles, granulated sugar, filled) and even small flourishes (such as the glazed croissant) from which to choose.

Plus, they're made fresh.

cub donts 2

Cub Foods told Bring Me The News its donuts (the ones sold individually and in cardboard packs of six or 12, not the ones in the plastic clamshells) are fried every morning, on-site at each Cub bakery. They're pulled within 24 hours, too, meaning a shopper should never be at risk of buying a day-old treat.

Curiously, the grocery chain declined to provide details about where the donut dough comes from, and whether the source facility is owned by Cub Foods or a third-party vendor. A communications rep called it "proprietary information."

Cub Foods would, however, reveal its best-selling donuts: The glazed old fashioned is No. 1, with the glazed ring donut right behind it.

"Cub donuts have been a Twin Cities favorite for over 50 years due to the fresh, high-quality ingredients our expert donut makers use," the grocery chain said.

Just to be clear: This is not an argument that Cub Foods has the best donuts, bar none, in the entire Twin Cities metro. There's something to be said for pushing the donut envelope with new techniques and innovative flavor combinations. Other bakeries have admirably assumed that role, with often awesome results.

But if you want a dependable, delicious, no-frills donut — made fresh and for a fair price — it's hard to top the unsung reliability of Cub Foods.

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