Alliance Bakery is offering strawberry, raspberry rose, blueberry lemon and apple cinnamon paczki. (Alliance Bakery)
While plenty of Chicago spots are celebrating Fat Tuesday in the traditional New Orleans fashion, the city’s huge Polish population also brings an abundance of paczki to bakeries and restaurants. Sweeten your celebration with one of these traditional stuffed doughnuts, but be sure to order in advance, or head out early as demand is always high.
Alliance Bakery. Both the Wicker Park and River North locations are offering strawberry, raspberry rose, blueberry lemon and apple cinnamon paczki for $3.25, and vanilla bean ganache and salted caramel chocolate for $3.50 through Fat Tuesday on a first-come, first-served basis. 1736 W. Division St., 773-278-0366, and 615 N. State St., 312-374-4144, alliance-bakery.com
Ann's Bakery. Paczki are $1.20-$1.50 apiece with flavors including strawberry, plum and chocolate. 2158 W. Chicago Ave. 773-384-5562
Bennison's Bakery. Choose from 11 flavors through Tuesday, including special selections like praline chocolate mousse and fresh banana cream. Classic paczki like apricot and custard are $1.75, while the specialty flavors cost $2.75. 1000 Davis St., Evanston, 847-328-9434, bennisonscakes.com
Bittersweet. Four flavors are offered this year: vanilla bourbon, chocolate cream, sweet lemon and raspberry. Paczki are $3.50 each and can be ordered online. 1114 W. Belmont Ave. 773- 929-1100, bittersweetpastry.com
Bridgeport Bakery. The bakery serves 17 flavors for $1.05, including apple, custard with powdered sugar, and prune. A whipped cream version is $1.30, and strawberry with whipped cream is $1.40. Advance orders are taken by phone or in store. 2907 S. Archer Ave., 773-523-1121.
Cafe Selmarie. Lemon, custard with chocolate on top, and raspberry are $2.95 each, while banana, strawberry with whipped cream, and praline chocolate mousse are $3.95 each. The Lincoln Square bakery sells out very quickly, so get there early. 4729 N. Lincoln Ave., 773-989-5595, cafeselmarie.com
Cafe Vienna. The traditional European bakery in Lincoln Park serves apricot, raspberry and custard paczki for $1.99, and plum, Nutella and strawberry with whipped cream for $2.99. Calling ahead is recommended. 2523 N. Clark St. 773-244-9922, cafeviennachicago.com
Central Continental Bakery. The Mount Prospect staple will have nearly 40 varieties of paczki. Traditional versions, including apricot or strawberry, are $2.40, fresh fruit-filled ones, including blueberry or cherry, are $3.85, and gourmet varieties, including lemon meringue pie and mocha latte, are $4.15. Online orders are available. 101 Main St., Mount Prospect, 847-870-9500, centralcontinentalbakery.com
The Chow Brothers. The Polish restaurant within Wells Street Market serves two flavors of paczki for Fat Tuesday: Nutella cream and Boozy Berry (raspberry jelly spiked with vodka). $2.75 each. 205 W. Wacker Drive, 312-980-1409, thechowbrothers.com
Deerfields Bakery. Find 20 flavors of paczki at each Deerfields location, including chocolate custard or lemon for $1.79, blueberry or mango for $2.25, and chocolate mousse or peanut for $3.39 apiece. 813 Waukegan Road, Deerfield; 201 N. Buffalo Grove Road, Buffalo Grove; and 25 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg; 847-520-0068; deerfieldsbakery.com
Delightful Pastries. The Jefferson Park bakery serves paczki year-round, but it’s expanding the menu for Fat Tuesday, when it will be making more than 50,000 of the pastries. Prices are $2.25 for standards, like apricot jelly and custard topped with chocolate fudge, or $3.75 for gourmet flavors, like passion fruit jelly and "drunken" paczki made with booze. 5927 W. Lawrence Ave., 773-545-7215, delightfulpastries.com
Dinkel's Bakery. All paczki varieties are $2.29 each, except fresh strawberry, which is $3.19. Prepackaged boxes of four or an assorted dozen are also available. 3329 N. Lincoln Ave., 773-281-7300, dinkels.com
Do-Rite Donuts. Advance online orders are strongly recommended for the lemon, blackberry, raspberry sugar and peanut butter chocolate paczki varieties that are available through Fat Tuesday at all of the chain’s five locations. The treats are $3.50 each, $16.95 for a half-dozen and $29.95 for a dozen. Locations and phone numbers vary; doritedonuts.com
Firecakes. The chain’s River North, Loop, Oak Park and Lincoln Park locations are serving raspberry blood orange jelly, chocolate malt custard, drunken plum jam and Meyer lemon curd paczki for $2.69 each or $26.95 by the dozen through Wednesday. Online orders are available. Locations and phone numbers vary; firecakesdonuts.com
Gene's Sausage Shop. Seven flavors will be offered Monday and Tuesday. Paczki are $1.99 each, except the fresh strawberries and cream, which are $2.79 each. Preorders are available if you’re buying a dozen or more. 4750 N. Lincoln Ave., 773-728-7243, genessausage.com
Jackalope Coffee and Tea House. The Bridgeport coffee shop will get in on the paczki action for one day only on Fat Tuesday, with a first-come, first-served selection of nine paczki flavors, each for $1.50. Options include strawberry, cheese and pineapple. 755 W. 32nd St., 312-888-3468.
Kirschbaum’s Bakery. Poppy seed and chocolate chip with cream cheese and whipped cream are among the 11 varieties offered for $1.49 to $2.09 each. 825 Burlington Ave., 708-246-2894, kirschbaumsbakery.com
La Petite Pastry. The Clearing bakery offers 20 flavors at three price levels. Start at $1.20 each for flavors like lemon, raspberry or apricot. Fresh fruit, like apple, peach, strawberry and blueberry, are $1.55. Include whipped cream, and it's $1.80. Advance orders are recommended, but plenty will be available the day of. 5610 W. 63rd St., 773-735-7383, lapetitepastry.com
Orland Park Bakery. Pick up paczki from Fat Tuesday through Easter Sunday at $1.99 apiece from Orland Park Bakery, which offers flavors including strawberry, fudge, lemon and pineapple. Online orders are available. 14850 S. La Grange Road, Orland Park, 708-349-8516, orlandparkbakery.com
Pierogi Crib. The Polish restaurant within the Chicago French Market serves a dozen varieties, including custard with powdered sugar, blueberry and sweet cheese. Small versions are $2, $10 for a half-dozen and $20 for a dozen, while large ones are $2.75, $14.50 for a half-dozen or $28 for a dozen. Advance orders can be made by emailing email@example.com. 131 N. Clinton St., 312-575-0306, pierogicrib.com
Red Apple Buffet. The Norwood Park restaurant serves a spongy version of the pastry stuffed with an icing made with lemon and orange juices and topped with candied orange peel for $1.50. Call ahead if you want to take home a dozen or more. 3121 N. Milwaukee Ave., 773-588-5781, redapple.restaurant
Roeser’s Bakery. The Humboldt Park institution serves 15 varieties, including guava, Nutella custard and strawberry, which are priced between $1.45 to $1.92. Ordering ahead is appreciated but not necessary. 3216 W. North Ave., 773-489-6900, roeserscakes.com
Scafuri Bakery. The Little Italy bakery opens one hour early at 6 a.m. Tuesday to serve 12 flavors, including raspberry, coconut, chocolate and a new cannoli variety. Prices range from $3.25 to $3.75, and a dozen is available for $40. Online orders are accepted. 1337 W. Taylor St., 312-733-8881, scafuribakery.com
Stan's Donuts. All 10 locations are serving paczki for $2.95 each, $16.95 for a half-dozen or $32.95 for a dozen. The flavors offered are pastry cream, chocolate pastry cream, cannoli cream and cherry. Locations and phone numbers vary; stansdonutschicago.com
Samantha Nelson is a freelance writer.