KANSAS CITY - Held annually on the first Friday in June, National Donut Day offers a sweet time to celebrate America’s heroes. On June 4, The Salvation Army will thank the men and women on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic by delivering donuts and hope. 

America’s leading bakery suppliers are poised to help ring in this celebration brighter than ever before.

From Rich Products, challenges inspire innovation. The company’s commitment to instore bakeries began with Rich’s Whip Topping® over 75 years ago — and Rich’s continues to introduce revolutionary products ever since. The result is an unmatched portfolio of solutions specifically designed for your everyday challenges.

For instance, Rich’s new Filled Dessert Donuts create shareable moments as over-the-top, Instagram-worthy delights to expand your bakery offerings. Rich’s ready-to-finish and fully finished Filled Dessert Donuts are available in three options — with toppings, without toppings or new Jumbo Filled Donut Bites. For a turn-key solution, opt for Filled Dessert Donuts with Toppings or Jumbo Filled Donut Bites. For a more customized solution, choose Filled Dessert Donuts without toppings.

In other innovations, when Rich’s launched Bettercreme® back in 1978, it was the very first whipped icing. Rich’s went on to introduce sweet swirls of flavor, clusters of cookie and chocolate, and a full spectrum of seasonal hues and classic colors — revolutionizing the dessert decorating industry. Bettercreme is the smooth, light, perfectly sweet whipped icing that continues to play a delicious role in countless memorable moments around the globe.

Packaging options

Suppliers offer multiple choices of ways to help your instore bakery celebrate National Donut Day. Baker Boy launched The Donut Hole® thaw-and-serve fully finished donut line in October 2019. It quickly became one of its hottest new product launches ever. Most recently, the company has transitioned into the new The Donut Hole® branded packaging, as of March 1.

“With The Donut Hole® line, we try to offer something for everyone. We have iced and glazed donuts, yeast-raised and cake donuts, and everything from old favorites to new innovations,” said Dustin Monke, marketing manager for Baker Boy.

Mashups come in many forms, as General Mills Foodservice introduces Pillsbury Triple Layer Bars, which come individually wrapped to help foodservice operations satisfy consumers’ craving for an indulgent treat while meeting heightened interest in safety. Transparent, sealed packaging provides peace of mind that the product is safe and showcases the visual appeal of the bars.  

As non-commercial foodservice programs seek more single-serve, packaged dessert options as a result of the pandemic, the Pillsbury Triple Layer Bars are a convenient, labor-free, grab & go option that works across all service models including cafeterias, catering, coffee shops and retail spaces.

Decadent, delicious and versatile, the bars feature three textured layers that shine through in the clear packaging to drive impulse sales. The bars are available in two flavors: the Cookie Caramel Brownie bar starts with a chocolate chip cookie base, filled with a caramel middle and topped with chocolate chunk brownie, while the S’mores bar features a graham cracker cookie crust, marshmallow center and chocolate brownie top.

Flavor and texture

BakeMark’s donut mixes contain the highest quality ingredients to enhance the flavor of your final product. Utilizing the highest quality milk and egg products, BakeMark mixes are formulated to bring the best flavor and texture to your donuts. BakeMark’s mixes are blended with you and the end consumer in mind.

“We know that our donut mixes will give you an edge over the competition,” said David Lopez, BakeMark’s director of marketing. “Our product is less susceptible to over-proofing or over mixing, providing you with the correct consistency, bite after bite. Not only that, with consistent proofing, your donuts will have irresistible visual appeal and fly right out of the bakery case.”

BakeMark mixes are favorites for different reasons. BakeMark’s Master Mix has the richest flavor and the highest quality milk and egg content. Formulated for its ease of rolling out, Sup-R-Roll gives you a high volume, tender eating donut.

BakeMark formulates donut mixes that can be used by small bakeries, instore grocery bakeries, and even wholesale operations. BakeMark also offers specialty mixes like potato donuts and vegan donuts.

Sourdough donuts

This year, Dawn Foods celebrated the one-year anniversary of the introduction of its sourdough donut mix. The donut is a mashup of sourdough bread and a yeast-raised donut that creates a buttery sourdough flavor with a soft, light and airy texture. It combines everything consumers love about sourdough bread and yeast raised donuts.

  • Buttery, sourdough flavor
  • Soft, light & airy texture
  • Darker crust, like sourdough bread

As sourdough has continued to grow in popularity (11% growth the past 4 years), bakers have looked for trendy ways to incorporate it into baked goods. The mix can be used with in both sweet and savory offerings such as sourdough jelly donuts, glazed sourdough sweet rolls and honey butter-fried chicken sandwich roll.

Now that the first-ever sourdough donut mix has been around for one year and consumers continue to crave its flavor, Dawn’s sourdough inspiration guide provides greater detail on how bakers can utilize the mix. 

With this versatile donut mix, you can create a wide variety of unique, on-trend, signature sourdough offerings that your consumers will pay a premium for. Just follow the recipes in this guide using Dawn’s icings, glazes and fillings – or invent your own creative recipes, to delight your customers with a truly unique donut experience.

According to Phil DeWester, senior director of category marketing at Dawn Foods, unique flavor combinations combined with an alluring presentation may allow bakeries the option to sell items at a premium.

“There’s been an increased appetite for more versatility,” DeWester said. “People want something that’s going to be an experience they can share with a friend or post on Facebook. It helps differentiate bakeries; they can have something customers can only get at their location.”

For bakeries and donut shops, in particular, generating a steady stream of new items across a wide array of options can be an involved endeavor. To keep the production process manageable, numerous bakers are utilizing yeast-raised donut mixes, which require only adding oil or water, instead of a long list of ingredients.

Dawn’s Raised A mix, for instance, is a popular choice, DeWester said, because it can be used to make assorted types of donuts—from basic ring shapes, which can be formed when the dough is first rolled out, to fritters that can be crafted as the dough is re-rolled and gets stiffer.

“You can use all the dough, so it reduces waste; but you can fill an entire donut case with just that one mix,” he said. “It gives our customers the ability to bring new seasonal or limited-time-only items to their bakeries so there’s always something new (and it) gives their customers a reason to go back to the shop because they’re doing something exciting.”

Frying facts

So which frying oil is best for the preparation of flavorful donuts?

Roger Daniels, vice president of research, development, innovation and quality for Stratas Foods LLC, points out that it is important to select the right oil for donuts.

For best results, he explains, utilize a frying shortening based on a high-oleic oil. The chemistry of what defines a high-oleic oil provides the perfect frying medium to achieve the balance between doughnut visual attributes and flavor. He recommends 100% high-oleic soybean oil or oils made from high-oleic sunflower and cottonseed oils. If a high-oleic oil is not available, a basic high quality soybean oil would be the next choice.

From Stratas Foods the three oil types are represented by these specific oil products:

  • Frymax Soy Supreme made from 100% high-oleic soybean oil
  • Frymax Sun Classic made from high-oleic sunflower and cottonseed oils, and
  • Mazola ZT Soy Select, made from high quality soybean oil 

“Frying donuts is a dehydration process in which we are heating the donut batter to a temperature to set the starch while driving out the water contained in the batter,” Daniels said. “This is done most efficiently at or around 335°F. Too low of a temperature and the donut is underdeveloped in texture from excess oil pick-up and exhibits a light or low doughnut color. Too high a temperature and the donut will be too dark in color and the flavor may be off. Being consistently consistent via the use of the right frying shortening system is key.”