This semester, our PWR 297 examined the preferences of North Carolinians in regards to one of their favorite sweet treats: Donuts. To decipher whether your not donut culture differed by region if preferences were impacted by childhood experience, and to gain insight into the state’s favorite donuts, we surveyed 939 people from across the mountains, foothills, piedmont, and coastal regions of the state along Highway 64.
71.1% of survey respondents (656 people) were from the mountain region of North Carolina, stretching from Murphy to Brevard. In regards to their type of donuts residents of this region prefer 73% of respondents from the region said they preferred yeast-risen donuts. This is unsurprising seeing as how Krispy Kreme serves yeast-risen donuts and 57% of respondents mentioned Krispy Kreme in their response to where they currently prefer to buy donuts from. 56% of mountain-region respondents also stated their favorite place to buy donuts as a child was Krispy Kreme. Krispy Kreme was also founded in North Carolina in 1937, making it a staple throughout the state, again a likely reason why these donuts are the most popular in the mountain region, even when compared to local shops. 61% of mountain-region respondents said they currently preferred chain donut shops over local shops and 60% said they preferred chain shops as kids.
By far the most varied responses came from the question of people’s preferred flavor of donut. 37% of respondents in the mountain region said their favorite flavor of donut was glazed, followed by 22% favoring cream-filled, 17% favoring chocolate frosted, 16% favoring other specialty flavor, 4% favoring chocolate flavored, and 4% favoring plain. The most popular locations to find these donuts locally were McFarlan Bake Shop and Ingles Grocery Store.
For the most part, there is a concensus in the region about the preferred type of donut and where to obtain them. These preferences are also very similar to that of the rest of the state.