We all know donuts are something everyone loves.
Whether you’re on a strict diet and want to cut back on carbs or limit your sugar intake, no one can really resist a soft, fried pastry filled with buttercream, jelly, or chocolate.
Sinking your teeth into a slice of paradise is perfectly acceptable for anyone of any age and Okie Dokie Donuts in South Philly has what it takes to attract customers.
The Wholesale Bakery, which is fairly new to the game, has managed to gain a lot of fans with its gluten-free treats.
Bill Kelly, co-owner of Okie Dokie Donuts, told AL DÍA News that the gluten-free was due to his partner Carole.
“Carole had a good friend whose whole family had a gluten allergy, and that prompted her to go gluten-free,” Kelly said.
By this time, Ha was learning to cook in addition to being a sous chef at the Walnut Street Cafe.
Kelly was also working full time as a photography teacher while they planned and saved for their future business.
“We never asked family members for money, we did it all on our own,” Kelly said.
Like many other food businesses, Kelly and Ha’s business started out doing pop-ups at facilities across town on weekends.
“We quickly started to wholesale and rent a full-time kitchen,” he said. “We started selling our donuts at 12 to 15 cafes around Philly.”
Things seemed to be falling into place until the COVID-19 pandemic hit Philadelphia in March 2020.
“We closed for two weeks and started making a plan,” Kelly said.
It was a devastating time for them, but they soon found themselves wanting to serve their artisan donuts to communities, so they came up with a plan that would provide locals with their baking specialties while maintaining social distancing.
“We have built a walk-in window for people to pick up their donuts, we also offer contactless delivery services,” he said.
In addition to offering a unique take on classic donuts, Kelly and Ha have managed to hire five additional employees for their business.
“We feel very lucky to adapt our business model very quickly,” he said.
Their activity has grown exponentially up to 400%.
Now Okie Dokie Donuts is busier than ever. They make the effort to change their menu every month so that customers can have some variety. Okie Dokie Donuts also strives to provide vegan donuts.
“We have six new flavors,” Kelly said.
One is a very licky donut in a nod to the traditional Hispanic dessert.
Ha begins to create the masterpiece in spicy dough with vanilla and nutmeg. She then fry the donut, soak it in a milk bath, and cover it with very lick frosting, whipped cream and more cinnamon.
“It’s definitely one of our bestsellers,” he said.
Another winning donut is the vegan mocha donut, made with chocolate donut cake, espresso frosting, and chocolate chips as a finishing touch.
Check out more of their menu here and support the local donut shop.