National Doughnut Day November 5. Photo Credit:


November 5, of each year, is one of two National Doughnut Days that are celebrated by doughnut lovers across the nation.  The first Friday in June is the other day that doughnuts are the star of the show.

For more information on National Doughnut Day when celebrated in June, click here.

The history of the doughnut is disputed:

  •  There is one theory that suggests they were invented in North America by Dutch settlers who were responsible for popularizing other American desserts including cookies, apple pie, cream pie and cobbler.
  • An American, Hanson Gregory, claimed to have invented the ring shaped doughnut in 1847 while on board a lime-trading ship at the age of 16.  He claimed to have punched a hole in the center of dough with the ship’s tin pepper box and later taught the technique to his mother.
  • Anthropologist Paul R Mullins states that the first cookbook mentioning doughnuts was an 1803 English volume which included doughnuts in an appendix of American recipes.
  • An 1808 short story describing a spread of “fire-cakes and dough-nuts” is the earliest known recorded usage of the term “doughnut“.
  • A more commonly cited first written recording of the term is Washington Irving’s reference to “doughnuts” in 1809 in his History of New York.  He described “balls of sweetened dough, fried in hog’s fat and called doughnuts.  Today, these “nuts” of fried dough are called doughnut holes.


  • Peck’s Bad boy and his Pa, written by George W. Peck and published in 1900, was the first known printed use of “donut” in which a character is quoted as saying, “Pa said he guessed he hadn’t got much appetite and he would just drink a cup of coffee and eat a donut.”
  • It is said that the alternative spelling “donut” was invented when the New York-based Display Doughnut Machine Corporation abbreviated the word to make it more pronounceable by the foreigners that they hoped would buy their automated doughnut making equipment.

Doughnut is the more traditional spelling however, doughnut and the shortened form, donut, are both pervasive in American English.

A few of the many different types of doughnuts across the United States include: frosted, glazed, powdered, sugar, chocolate, Boston cream, coconut, sour cream, cinnamon, jelly, cider and potato.

To celebrate National Doughnut Day, try making your own homemade doughnuts with one of the following “tried and true” recipes:


National Doughnut Day, an “unofficial” National holiday that is celebrated on the first Friday in June, was created by The Salvation Army in 1938 to honor the women who served the doughnuts to soldiers in World War I.    This day began as a fund raiser for Chicago’s Salvation Army.  The goal of their 1938 fund raiser was to help the needy during the Great Depression.

Within our research, we were unable to find the creator of National Doughnut Day, an “unofficial” national holiday which is celebrated each November 5.


5 Responses to “NATIONAL DOUGHNUT DAY – November 5”

  1. Doug October 21, 2014 at 11:23 am #

    National Doughnut day is in JUNE…..


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