Here's Why It's Actually Spelled 'Doughnut' And Not 'Donut'

Hey, lovers of both doughnuts and lingual shortcuts, I've got some bad news for you: Spelling "doughnut" as d-o-n-u-t is technically incorrect.

I know, I'm super bummed, too. I'm a busy gal, and I don't have time to type out eight whole letters when my point can just as easily be made in five letters.

I bring you this news on none other than National Doughnut (NOT Donut) Day 2016. What better way to celebrate National Doughnut (NOT Donut) Day than with a good ol' fashion spelling/history lesson?!?

Sure, I could tell you where to get free doughnuts, but who cares about that? Let's dive into this history of spelling thing.

The official, dictionary spelling of this delicious dessert is d-o-u-g-h-n-u-t.

That's because doughnuts are made of fried dough, d-o-u-g-h, and are not made of fried expression-made-popular-by-cartoon-character-Homer-Simpson.

So, why do so many people use d-o-n-u-t instead? Well, we have capitalism to thank for that one!

Although the shortcut version of the word has been around since the late 1800s, Grammarist reports "donut" wasn't popularized until a certain brand embraced it in 1950.

I think you know what brand I'm talking about...


That's right, Dunkin' Donuts, staple of America's health problems, is responsible for over a generation of misspelling and copy editing nightmares.

Thanks a lot, Massachusetts.

Incidentally, Dunkin' Donuts is actually giving out free donuts doughnuts today, but like I said, who cares about that? Back to the good stuff.

This means, technically, a "donut" only refers to the doughnuts that come from our doughnut overlord, Dunkin' Donuts. Any other fried rings of dough are merely "doughnuts."

Since the brand popularized the shortcut, it has become more and more common each year, particularly in the United States, leaving people confused as to what's actually correct.

Still, Merriam Webster has not budged on the spelling yet, so you can still annoyingly spellcheck your friend's text messages today in good conscience.

But who cares what me and the dictionary say! What do you think?

Citations: Doughnut vs. donut (Grammarist)