Not Your Average Donuts

Not Your Average Donuts
SEATTLE - Before Krispy Kreme and Top Pot came to town, there was Mighty O Donuts.

But these aren't your average donuts. Mighty O's are organic and vegan!

"That's the hottest sector in my opinion right now," says owner Ryan Kellner, who ditched his job as a geologist six years ago and moved to Seattle specifically to start Mighty-O with an old college buddy. "If you're not trying to do things organic, or even looking at it, you're sort of missing the game."

"We didn't use any lard or animal fats in the product to begin with, so all we had to do was throw out the milk and eggs," he says.

Ryan and his partner (who no longer is involved with the business) started selling the donuts out of a mobile kitchen at the U-District street fair in May 2000, followed by Northwest Folklife and the Fremont Sunday Market before finding a physical location in Wallingford's Tangle Town neighborhood.

Mighty-O can no longer be found at street fairs, but you can find them at many health food stores and coffee shops, including Whole Foods and PCC.

You can't tell by tasting them, but Ryan replaces hydrogenated oil with organic palm fruit oil and doesn't add any preservatives or additives to his donuts.

"We've been fed all this stuff, the artificial ingredients, for so long that people think it's normal. It's not normal. It's a detour from the true nature of food."

And what exactly makes the O so Mighty?

"Organic, for one. Very Original. And the donut. The donut's an O," Ryan says.

The O could also be interpreted as a zero to symbolize no trans-fat. Ryan says the biggest challenge of making healthy donuts is creating his own supply chain - which doesn't exist.

"Like sprinkles, for instance. We managed to locate some that were organic and also didn't have any animal products in them. But they're manufactured in Germany."

Beyond just making great tasting, healthy donuts, Ryan and his 12-member staff are creative bakers.

You can usually find flavors ranging from mint chocolate, to lemon poppy seed, to French toast and peanut butter.

They also offer an impressive list of seasonal favorites like pumpkin, gingerbread with raspberry glaze and espresso - again, without using any food coloring.

By the way, the O could easily stand for "out of luck" if you don't get to the shop before the donuts start running out at 11 a.m. Ryan says the best time to get to the shop is around 7 a.m., but if you're a late sleeper, there are several varieties still available before they close at 5 p.m.

And kudos to the genius at Mighty-O who came up with the idea of offering a "Happy Hour" from 4p-5p, where you can score a dozen donut holes for $2 and a dozen whole donuts for about $6.

O yeah!

For more information and a complete list of operating hours:

http://www.mightyo.com/