Sugar Rush: Blowtorched Creme Brulee Beignets at Donut-o-Rama in Portland, OR


It's a bit daring to open a doughnut cart mere steps from Portland's touristy hotspot Voodoo Doughnut, but Greg Slauson had a vision. And we're not certain we've seen so much blowtorching in a food cart anywhere.


Slauson has regular beignets on the menu, but the real draw at Donut-O-Rama is the creme brulée beignet.


The filling is Boston Cream custard (ok, Jell-O custard) enhanced with vanilla bean, five spice, and vanilla extract, but you're there for the crisp burnt-sugar top, which happens by torching two layers of sprinkled sugar on the just-fried beignet. The final product is hot; so hot that Slauson suggests waiting until you've walked about two blocks of cool-off time before attempting to bite in.

There's a lot going on, but the beignet itself shines through, fresh and yeasty. He makes 20 cups of dough at a time, using a recipe that riffs on Paula Deen (Slauson adds shortening and some brown sugar.)


On our visit, he was also experimenting with a Nutella-filled beignet, topped with toasted hazelnuts and powdered sugar. If you're looking for a sugar high, this is a gutsy way to go.



SW 3rd and Ash, Portland, OR 97204 (map), check Facebook for details.

We're eating our way through the state of Oregon! Check out all our Oregon month posts over here.

About the Author: Maggie Hoffman is the editor of Serious Eats: Drinks. You can follow her on Twitter @maggiejane.

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