The history of National Donut Day and where to get free donuts

Shipley Do-Nuts National Do-Nut Day deal. Image courtesy Shipley Do-Nuts
Shipley Do-Nuts National Do-Nut Day deal. Image courtesy Shipley Do-Nuts /

The first Friday of June is upon us and for donut fans that means one thing: National Donut Day. One of the most popular foods in the world, donuts have been consumed for years. National Donut Day allows us to show our appreciation for this treat (and get free donuts).

But did you know that this day has been celebrated for over 80 years? We take a look at the origins of National Donut Day and where you can go to claim free donuts to celebrate.

The history of National Donut Day

In 1917, The Salvation Army sent women to France to establish field bases near the front lines during World War 1. Soldiers would come to their makeshift huts to stock up on essential good and grab a sweet treat from the women. Given on what they had, the women decided to make donuts. As a result, they became referred to as the ‘Donut Lassies.’

In 1938, The Salvation Army created a donut day event in Chicago as a fundraiser to help those in need during The Great Depression. The fundraiser was also a way to honour the ‘Donut Lassies’ for their service during Word War 1. Ever since this particular event in 1938, the first Friday of June has been National Donut Day.

Where to find free donuts


Participating Dunkin’ locations across the USA are offering a free classic donut of your choice with the purchase of any beverage. This deal is valid while supplies last all of June 2.

Krispy Kreme

For the entirety of June 2, you can get a free donut with no purchase necessarily. Additionally, if you buy any dozen donuts, you can get a dozen glazed original donuts for $2.

Tim Hortons

As a Canadian, I had to include this one. Using the Tim Hortons app or website, you can receive a free donut with the purchase of any hot or iced beverage.

Lamar’s Donuts

Free Ray’s Original glazed donuts will be given out for free all day on June 2. If you are lucky, you may just be able to snag a free National Donut Day T-shirt.

More National Donut Day deals

If you do not live near any one of these chains, worry not! Many other businesses have deals on donuts this Friday. The best way to find out would be to check out their social media pages and websites.

Next. Here’s how Krispy Kreme is celebrating National Doughnut Day. dark