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Cronut™ Battle: Herb Box vs. Karl's Quality Bakery

Cronuts™ fried up by Chow Bella.
Cronuts™ fried up by Chow Bella.
Rachel Miller

After Chow Bella fried up some of the ever popular Cronuts™ a few weeks back, we have had our ears to the ground, waiting to see who would attempt this trendy treat locally.

The Cronut™ craze has slowly trickled outside of New York, from Dominique Ansel Bakery, into neighborhood bakeries around the world. For those not in the pastry loop, a Cronut™ is the love child of a doughnut and a croissant. It boasts multiple fluffy layers like a croissant, yet is fried up with love like a doughnut. Filled with cream, dredged in sugar, and topped with a glaze, Cronuts™ are the latest guilty pleasure for pastry lovers -- no matter what you call 'em (since Ansel apparently has the rights to the name).

For those not able to travel to New York City and wait on line for hours, a few Valley pastry chefs are frying up their version of the treat, for your tasting pleasure.

See also: -Cronuts™: Chow Bella Shows You How to Fry Up the Latest Pastry Fad -The Herb Box in Scottsdale Going "Cronuts" with "Doissants" -Karl's Quality Bakery in Sunnyslope Making "Kronuts" and Suing Its Landlord

In This Corner: Herb Box

The Setup: Herb Box, high-end catering company turned restaurant and market, focuses on utilizing local ingredients to add a twist on world cuisine. With their Southbridge location, and market below, there is endless marbled space for pastry chef Ladawn Driscol to fill with delectable delicacies.

Termed the "Doissant" at Herb Box, the flavors change daily on this version, which is marked "50% Donut 50% Croissant 100% Delicious," and will set you back $5. The day we arrived, the flavor was Strawberry Lemon.

The Good: Excellent exterior sugary crunch on this Cronut™. The lemon filling was fresh and tart, and the server took the care to pack the Cronut™ in a plastic container, to keep it from being crushed.

Herb Box Lemon Strawberry doissant.
Herb Box Lemon Strawberry doissant.
Rachel Miller

The Bad: This cronut was a little doughy. The thing we love about the cronut/doissant is the flaky croissant layers. Also the strawberry glaze wasn't overly flavorful and really added nothing but a pop of color to the Cronut™.  

In This Corner: Karl's Quality Bakery

The Setup: With 20 years of sweet clout in the Valley, Christine and Karl Boerner of Karl's Quality Bakery, are pros at churning out pastry and artisan chocolates in their small neighborhood of Sunnyslope.

Termed "Kronut" at Karl's Quality Bakery, we did have quite the issue getting our hands on one of these Kronuts. Third time is the charm apparently, and on our third trek to their Sunnyslope storefront, we were finally able to acquire two Kronuts, in the Lemon Basil and Vanilla. Though slightly smaller, these Kronuts run $2.50 a piece.

The Good: Flaky layers that are tender and melt in your mouth. The lemon cream is a nice contrast to the buttery of the Kronut. A perfectly sugar-coated exterior with a little crunch as you bite.

The Bad: We didn't taste the basil at all in the lemon basil, which may have tamed the slightly cloying sweetness, and the vanilla flavored Kronut was a little bland. It also was moderately annoying that it took three trips to get a couple, as staff incorrectly advised us on what days they sell Kronuts.

 

And the winner is...Karl's Quality Bakery. While Herb Box rocked it with their lemon curd filling, the body of Karl's Kronut is flaky divinity. Just make sure you call ahead to make sure they still have some.

Two Kronuts from Karl's Quality Bakery.
Two Kronuts from Karl's Quality Bakery.
Rachel Miller

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