Cronuts: The Latest Dessert Craze Began In NYC

Image via Flickr/ Rachel Lovinger

America is probably the last country on Earth that needs another fatty-food sensation, but in New York — the place where, let’s face it, all good food finds new heights of glory — a new dessert has descended upon Manhattan in all its delicious glory.

Cronuts, a combination between croissants and donuts, are selling like hotcakes in SoHo. Chef Dominique Ansel first started selling the pastry at his Spring Street bakery on May 10, and word spread quickly. Cronuts are now in high demand. Lines – filled with businessmen, locals and tourists from around the globe – form two hours before the bakery even opens.

There have even been reports of a black market popping up on Craigslist, listing Cronuts for $40 a pop. To deal with this, or just to make the dough stretch further, Ansel’s shop has been forced to limit the number of cronuts customers can purchase in one go — originally six, then three and now only two per person, no matter how long they’ve been waiting.

So why all the craze over a piece of food? French Chef Ansel invented what he later called the Cronut when he was making snacks for his coworkers using leftover doughnut material. He confessed that the first few attempts to make the treat ended in disaster, but the final product, he thinks, is a delight. By the wild response, New Yorkers’ taste buds agree.

Ansel told the Guardian each Cronut has a “texture inside very similar to a croissant: light, flaky layers that peel off. And the cream, outside crispiness, sugar texture and glaze is just like a doughnut.”

Bakeries around the nation have been quick to capitalize on this trend, and a few have already begun producing what they call “Doissants.” Clearly an inferior name, but the taste is probably similarly delectable… maybe. No one does New York like New York, as evidenced by pizza.

This new craze has been a goldmine for youthful entrepreneurs. Each morning, several scalpers rise early and snatch up their share of the few Cronuts made, which they then proceed to sell to passersby at in inflated price. Some customers have paid up to $20 on the street for a taste of this new invention.

Image via Flickr/

Image via Flickr/ pburka

Overwhelmed by his newfound popularity, Ansel told Grubsreet that his bakery “will never be a Cronut shop!” He wants to keep the Cronut a delicacy that just happens to be made at his bakery, not the only thing he produces.

If you live in New York and are willing to brave the lines and wait—or are willing to travel across the nation to SoHo for just a taste of the treat — June’s featured flavor is lemon-maple.