Whether you like them chocolate frosted or glazed, doughnuts are a fried treat that Americans love. Sticky sweet with a variety of toppings, donut lovers can agree that there’s one donut shop that illuminates it’s light above the rest. Getting its start in 1937, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts has grown into an international sensation with over 1,004 locations in places like Iceland, Nigeria and Australia.
But do you know everything about this North Carolina company? Follow along as we list 14 of the best facts about Krispy Kreme Doughnuts.
1. Krispy Kreme was founded in Winston-Salem, NC
When Vernon Rudolph was 18, he bought a doughnut recipe from a New Orleans french chef in hopes of selling them in a store. A few years later in 1937, after selling the donuts in Nashville, Tennessee with his uncle Ishmael Armstrong, Rudolph decided to move to Winston-Salem, North Carolina and open up his own shop which is located in now historic Old Salem.
He originally sold the doughnuts to local grocery stores but soon passersby’s on the street would smell the doughnuts and ask to buy from Vernon directly. Vernon cut a hole in the wall, creating a take-out window, and started selling the doughnuts to the customers on the sidewalk.
2. The Original Glazed is still the same from 1945
Whether you ate an Original Glazed doughnut as a child or now, the recipe has always stayed the same for this delicious and sweet treat.
3. They started selling doughnuts for fundraising in 1955
Have you ever bought Krispy Kreme doughnuts from a fundraising sale? The company started this initiative back in 1955 and today Krispy Kreme has helped raise over $40 million for educational, religious and charitable organizations. Participants can sign up on the site and with profit margins of 50%-60%, selling doughnuts is a great way to raise funds.
4. The Red Hot Light started in 1992
The classic neon hot now light was introduced to stores back in 1992. Whenever the light is on, stop in and grab a hot donut with warm sugar glaze straight off the conveyer belt. You’ll never eat them at room temperature again.
5. Doughnuts were made by hand up until 1963
Up until 1963, all doughnuts were kneaded, pressed out, fried and glazed by hand. Today machines do all the work but the doughnuts still taste just like they did over 70 years ago.
6. There’s a Krispy Kreme Challenge in Raleigh every year
Every year participants in Raleigh, North Carolina race 2.5 miles to a Krispy Kreme store, eat a dozen doughnuts, then run back to the finish line in under an hour. Proceeds of the race go towards North Carolina Children’s Hospital and in 2017 the proceeds totaled a whopping $190,000.
7. They once made a Cheerwine Doughnut
Back in 2010 Krispy Kreme and Cheerwine collided, with a limited edition doughnut marring the two Southern food classics. The doughnuts were filled with a Cheerwine creme and topped with chocolate and sprinkles.
In 2016 Cheerwine decided to return the favor and introduced a limited time soda with the flavors of your favorite doughnuts. Tasters said it had a slight hint of cream soda.
8. You can order Doughnut Wedding Cakes
Shove over vanilla cake, these Krispy Kreme doughnuts are taking center stage at this wedding. A great alternative to a wedding cake, Krispy Kreme lovers in the UK can order their very own doughnut tower, wedding favors or even doughnut dozens online.
The eight tier display comes with 216 doughnuts either Original Glazed or assorted with a price tag of $470.
9. The Krispy Kreme App lets customers know when doughnuts are hot
Want to make sure your doughnuts are hot and ready the minute you drive up? Krispy Kreme launched the Krispy Kreme Rewards App that not only lets you know when the “Hot Now” light is on, but use it to earn points every time you visit. The app even gives you a free gift on your birthday.
10. Krispy Kreme candles actually exist
Turn your house into a doughnut bakery by lighting one of these delicious scented candles. Candle scents range from Maple Iced Glaze to Raspberry Filled and include the Original Glazed. Although the candles are no longer in stores, they are still available on Ebay and Amazon.
11. Shaquille O’Neal owns a Krispy Kreme shop in Atlanta
Did you know that Shaq is more than a sports icon? In 2016 Shaquille O’Neal bought the Ponce de Leon location located in Atlanta, Georgia. The Hall-of-Famer is also the global spokesman for the company. Slam dunk.
12. Krispy Kreme gives out free doughnuts throughout the year
There are multiple times of the year that the store will give our free donuts to customers. Some days include National Doughnut Day, Election Day (show up with a “I Voted” sticker), Veterans Day and Halloween (wearing a costume of course). Check with your local Krispy Kreme locations if they are participating.
13. There’s limited time flavors
Every month or so the doughnut giant rolls out new flavors based on trends, the season or collaborations. Some limited flavors include blueberry, lemon, nutter butter, key lime pie, red velvet and cotton candy.
14. Coffee is a big deal
Nothing pairs better than coffee and hot doughnuts. In 2011 Krispy Kreme introduced their new signature coffee blend, and with it, coffee drinks to delight.