1-415-523-2090 Donut@SanFranciscoDonutTour.com
1-415-523-2090 Donut@SanFranciscoDonutTour.com

16 Delicious and Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Donuts

Donuts: A Hole Lot of History

Ah, donuts – those delectable, doughy delights that have captured the hearts (and stomachs) of millions. You might think you know everything there is to know about these sweet treats but think again! Here are 16 delicious and fun facts about donuts that will leave you craving for more:

1. Americans Consume Over 10 Billion Donuts Every Year

You read that right! Donuts are a beloved indulgence in the U.S.A., with the average American devouring a whopping 63 donuts annually. That’s a lot of sweet satisfaction!

2. Cops Do Love Donuts

The age-old stereotype of police officers and donuts isn’t just a myth. In the 1950s, cops working graveyard shifts would stop by donut shops for paperwork and a hot donut. This relationship led to donut shop owners giving donuts to cops in exchange for protection.

3. Donuts Were Declared the “Hit Food of the Century”

During the 1933 Chicago Fair, donuts were crowned the “Hit Food of the Century of Progress.” The advent of donut-making machines made these treats cheap and accessible, especially among the working class during the 1930s.

4. A Ship Captain Invented the Holes in Donuts

Yes, it’s a hole-y story! Captain Hansen Gregory, on one of his voyages, used the spokes of a steering wheel to punch holes in fried dough pastries. Thus, donut holes came into existence.

5. Donuts Were Served as Comfort Food During World Wars

During both World Wars, donuts played a crucial role as comfort food. Salvation Army volunteers served them to soldiers, boosting their morale. It continued during WWII when young women volunteers handed out donuts to soldiers.

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6. Donuts Can Help You Get in Character

Ever wondered how Renee Zellweger prepared for her role in “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason”? She devoured around 20 donuts every day to gain weight for the character. Talk about dedication to the craft!

7. Donuts Were Once Called “Oily Cakes”

In their simpler form, donuts were brought to America by the Dutch and called “olykoeks,” which translates to oily cakes. They were sweet balls of fried dough served during special occasions before transforming into the donuts we know today.

8. The United States Produces More Than 10 Billion Donuts Each Year

America is the donut capital of the world, producing over 10 billion donuts annually. On average, an American consumes about 23 pounds of donuts per year.

9. Donuts Can Get Pretty Pricey

While most donuts won’t break the bank, gourmet varieties can cost a pretty penny. The Golden Cristal Ube Donut from Brooklyn’s Manila Social Club, adorned with 24k gold leaves, sells for $1200 a dozen!

10. Washington Irving Was the First Writer to Describe Doughnuts in Print

The first documented mention of doughnuts was in Washington Irving’s 1809 work, “A History of New York.” He described them as deep-fried and shaped like wheels, coining the term “doughnuts.”

11. There Are People With the Last Name “Doughnut” or “Donut”

Believe it or not, there were 10 people in America with the last name “Doughnut” or “Donut” in 2011. Perhaps their love for these treats runs deep?

16 Fun Facts about donuts12. Voodoo Doughnut Once Sold “Medicinal” Doughnuts

Portland’s Voodoo Doughnut gained fame for its wild flavors, including Nyquil- and Pepto Bismol-coated doughnuts. They were marketed to late-night revelers but were eventually retired due to FDA intervention.

13. “Spudnuts” Have Dough Made of Potatoes

Potato doughnuts, known as “Spudnuts,” were once so popular they had their own fast-food chain. They were made with mashed potatoes or potato starch and were the first fast-food doughnut chain in Los Angeles.

14. Boston Has the Most Doughnut Shops Per Person

Bostonians sure love their doughnuts, boasting one doughnut shop for every 2480 people! That’s a lot of doughnut options.

15. The French Used to Call Their Doughnuts “Nun’s Farts”

In French, airy fried dough fritters, slightly different from American donuts, are called “pets de nonne,” which translates to “nun’s farts.” Quite a whimsical name!

16. Clark Gable Taught Movie Audiences How to Dunk Doughnuts

In the 1934 film “It Happened One Night,” Clark Gable’s character outlined the rules for proper doughnut dunking etiquette. A classic lesson in cinema history!


So, there you have it, 16 delightful and entertaining facts about donuts that will leave you craving a delicious, deep-fried ring of sweetness.

Whether you’re a donut aficionado or just a casual fan, these facts add a layer of fun to everyone’s favorite treat. Enjoy your donuts, and remember, dunking is an art!🍩


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