So it was with some excitement that local vegans greeted word that Cartems Donuterie has animal-friendly options at its Downtown Eastside pop-up shop (408 Carrall Street). The shop started up in February, and it’s open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Cartems donuts are also available at Woodland Smokehouse & Commissary (485 Commercial Drive), where the company’s kitchen is located.
This summer, I finally got around to sampling Cartems’ vegan offerings. On most days, there are two standard flavours being sold under the label of No Animals, No Problem. A single donut costs $3, while a half-dozen goes for $15 and a dozen for $27.
Chocolate coconut. Stephen Hui photo.
The chocolate coconut donut—my fave—is like a luscious slice of chocolate cake. Topped with coconut flakes, it’s soft but not too sweet.
Made with chocolate, chilies, cinnamon, and other spices, the Mexican mole donut is sprinkled with black sesame seeds. It’s got a peppery taste to go with the sweet.
Mexican mole. Stephen Hui photo.
Once in a blue moon, Cartems makes a vegan salted caramel donut. There’s also the vegan and gluten-free chocolate orange to look out for.
These are top contenders for the title of best vegan donuts in town. But it would be nice to see Cartems make some vegan donuts without a chocolate base.
(In Kitsilano, the vegan bakery Edible Flours [2280 West Broadway] offers donuts with vanilla and chocolate bases.)
I’ll take a dozen of the cinnamon sugar and the carrot cake, please.