Everywhere You Can Get Free & Cheap Donuts Today for National Donut Day

Buckle up, donut lovers. This train is headed to donut town.

national donut day deals

Look, let's not waste a bunch of time with a drawn-out story about my favorite donut shop (Bogart's Doughnut Co., thanks for asking). Everybody likes donuts. Everybody has had a long week. Everybody just wants to get to the point. 

The point is that Friday, June 5, is National Donut Day. This food holiday has a deeper, richer tradition than most. (I'm looking at you, National Candy Month.) Donut Day dates back to 1938, created to honor the "Donut Lassies" of World War I. It was a group of women who volunteered with the Salvation Army to boost morale on the frontlines. To do so, they started making and slinging donuts. 

"[Those volunteers] met a group of soldiers from the American First Division," Doran Cart, senior curator at the National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City tells Thrillist. "They really wanted to give the soldiers something that was homemade and not just candy or cigarettes or things like that. So, they scrounged up some of the fixings, which were pretty simple at that time."

The donuts were a hit and to celebrate, you'll find free or cheap donuts coming out of the doors of places like Krispy Kreme, Dunkin', and other bakeries large and small. Here's our running list of all the best donut deals you'll find for National Donut Day.

Free Food for National Donut Day

Krispy Kreme
The deal: Instead of celebrating National Donut Day, Krispy Kreme is celebrating National Donut Week. Get a free donut any day during the week just for stopping in. 
When: June 1-5

The deal:
Buy a beverage and you'll get hooked up with a free donut for National Donut Day. That's the exact kind of thing you're looking for on a day like National Donut Day.
When: June 5

Tim Hortons
The deal: The very-Canadian convenience store is launching Dream Donuts, "an elevated line of handcrafted, decadent donuts." You can grab a free one (or any other donut) when you buy a drink through the Tim Hortons app. 
When: June 5

Duck Donuts
The deal: Join the Duck Donuts Rewards program and you'll get a free donut after your first purchase.
When: Ongoing

national donut day deals
Courtesy of Krispy Kreme

Other Deals on Sweets for National Donut Day

The Cheesecake Factory
The deal:
Grab a complimentary slice of candy-themed cheesecake when you place an order through the chain or DoorDash for at least $30. Use the code "CANDYSLICE."
When: June 1-7 

The deal: Download the Baskin-Robbins app for the first time, and you'll get hooked up with a regular-sized scoop. 
When: Ongoing

BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
The deal:
Place an order of $9.95 or more and get a free Pizzokie -- that's a portmanteau of pizza and cookie -- when you use the code "PIZOOKIE."
When: Ongoing

Mrs. Fields
The deal:
Get 15% off your order for Father's Day with the code "FATHER."
When: Through June 30

Hwy 55
The deal: When you download the My Hwy 55 app for the first time, you can get a free milkshake. 
When: Ongoing

Local Deals for National Donut Day

Stan's Donuts
The deal: Stan's had announced a National Donut Day promotion, but has postponed the event "out of an abundance of respect and caution" given the nationwide protests against police brutality. Instead, it will host its first-ever Donut Weekend "on the proposed first day of the Phase 4 reopening of Chicagoland restaurants." You can get a free glazed cake donut with an purchase and will also be able to discounts on assortment boxes. 
When: June 26-28

Other Food Deals on National Donut Day

Auntie Anne's
The deal: Grab a free pretzel when you join the reward program and make your first purchase of at least $1. 
When: Ongoing

The deal:
Make any purchase at all through the Wendy's app to get a free Spicy Chicken Sandwich or a Breakfast Baconator. (You can actually get both at different times. These are separate offers available in the app.)
When: Through June 7

The deal:
Buy one Made to Crave Chicken Sandwich and you'll get a second one for a buck. 
When: Through June 7

White Castle
The deal:
If you're an employee at a grocery store or a retail food outlet, you can get 20% off any order at White Castle. It's the chain's way of thanking workers for their hard work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
When: Through June 15

Man Crates
The deal:
The site has tons of subscription boxes packed with food, booze, and toys. Get 20% off any order over $149 for Father's Day with the code "DAD20."
When: June 5-17

Want More Free Food?

Here's our huuuuuuuge running list of all the free food you can get right now, as well as the best reward programs, birthday freebiesgift card offersdeals on food for kids, food delivery, and alcohol delivery deals you'll find. If you want a little more than, say a free taco, we also have you covered with a long list of meals you can get at fast food chains under $5. You're welcome.

Additionally, we've put together a list of places offering free food to healthcare workers and first responders during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

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Dustin Nelson is a Senior Staff Writer at Thrillist. Follow him @dlukenelson.