• Don’t Eat Dee’s Donuts!


    When you eat food that was prepared by somebody else, you’re entering into an unwritten contract of trust that is centuries old. On a base level, you’re trusting that the food preparer took all the necessary steps to ensure that what you’re about to eat was made with ingredients that are wholesome (not contaminated, past a use-by date etc.) and prepared in an environment that’s clean and sanitary. For us vegans, especially when dining in an omnivorous establishment, we’re also trusting that our food is animal free – something we take very seriously.

    The ultimate slap in the face, though, is to be served food under the guise of it being vegan, only to find out that it not only contains animal products but was prepared on equipment so dirty that it’s a clear health hazard and contravenes a number of health codes. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Dee’s Bakery and Donuts: the non-vegan donuts cooked in a filthy deep-fat fryer.

    Let’s first examine the non-vegan nature of the ingredients. We understand, from two eye-witnesses that the sprinkles for the donuts contain “Confectioner’s Glaze”, or Shellac, which is made from the secretion of the lac insect (the manufacturing process involves keeping thousands of insects under warm lamps so that they secrete like crazy until they die from heat exhaustion after only a few hours). The resulting secretion turns into a hard, shell-like compound when cooled (hence the name Shellac – Shell from the Lac insect) and is the coating on the sprinkles of Dee’s Donuts. Nice, huh?

    Now, there are plenty of non-shellac sprinkles available – however, they are more expensive than the regular kind and more difficult to obtain. Still, not impossible and by no means prohibitively expensive as a simple search on the Web will confirm.

    the donut machine that makes dee's donuts

    the donut machine that makes dee's donuts (also note the layer of dust next to the oil underneath. YUCK)

    Now, what about the dirty preparation conditions? You probably know that donuts have to be deep fried – this is what gives them an utterly decadent flavor, as the combination of sugar and oil wrapped up in a crispy surface tastes just great! You probably don’t want to know, though, the details of how to maintain and care for a professional deep fat frying machine, and apparently neither does the person who makes Dee’s Donuts.

    In a restaurant I frequent regularly, along the main corridor between the dining area and the restroom, is one of the most disgusting things I’ve ever seen: the deep fat fryer used by Dee’s Donuts. To be honest, I thought that it was a piece of scrap kitchen equipment that was discarded and ready to be taken away as junk and even joked as much with the person who owns the kitchen. Apparently, Dee’s Donuts rent the restaurant kitchen early in the morning to make the donuts, and then leave the fryer for 20 hours, in a main corridor completely uncovered.

    Kitchen health rules (and common sense) state that fryers must be covered when not being used, as cold oil is very sticky and attracts flies, hair, insects, dander and fluff. Every fryer I’ve ever seen has a cover that’s put in place when the kitchen closes, and then removed when the oil is heated up for the next shift. Sadly, Dee’s Bakery and Donuts don’t think us vegans are worth protecting and leave a dirty fryer open for many, many hours so it can absorb god knows what crap before being used again for the next batch of donuts. I took a close look at the surface of the oil with a flashlight, and could see plenty of hair fibers and what appeared to be a small black fly that had obviously flown to the fryer, attracted by the smell only to meet a sticky death before being cooked into a donut that some unsuspecting person would eat the next day.


    This harks back to a comment one LA vegan made some time ago that there was “a hair” stuck in the coating of his donut. No fucking wonder! And, I’m absolutely serious about all this — the photographic evidence proves it, as well as several eye witness accounts of the fryer’s neglect.

    These days, it’s cool to be a vegan baker — seems like everybody is doing it (Dee’s Donuts were even featured on the Ellen DeGeneres show). An avalanche of decadent vegan products is a welcome addition to our diets (in moderation, of course!) and really helps dispel the myth that we vegans live on cabbage and tofu. However, it’s one thing to be too cool for school and create something vegan, and another to be responsible enough to ensure that you keep your side of the unwritten contract of common decency.

    I’d urge Dee’s Bakery and Donuts customers (Intelligentsia, Locali, Café Muse, Café De Leche and others) to stop carrying the products immediately and pull anything unsold out of the desert case and put it into the trash where it belongs. If you’re in one of those establishments and you see Dee’s Donuts baked goods for sale tell them about the hair and fly-filled fryer and insect secretions.

    I’ve eaten several Dee’s Donuts over the past few months, and even given them to vegan friends. After seeing that fryer and reading about shellac I really feel like I want to puke. Dee’s Bakery and Donuts: you really let us all down. Thanks for sidling up to the vegan community of LA (this blog included) for a bunch of free publicity and a lot of love and hope from us, in return to feed us insect secretions, flies and hairs. Thank you very fucking much.

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95 responses to “Don’t Eat Dee’s Donuts!” RSS icon

  • I picked up two donuts from a café in Silverlake a few days ago, and I only ate about half of one. The taste was of dirty and burnt oil and there was a gritty mass on my teeth after every bite. I gave the other donut to a non-vegan friend who was, like “vegan donuts suck dude”. After seeing the photos of that fryer I also feel like I want to puke. What a let down.

  • FYI, I don’t think they sell the donuts at Swingers anymore. I haven’t seen them there in ages. Maybe they found out about the fryer, LOL!

  • Are you serious? This seem like another April 1st joke. The donuts did go downhill, though. Back in January they tasted great but now they are greasy and gritty. Has the oil ever been changed in that fryer? Lol

  • Great reporting; have you asked Dee’s what they have to say about this?

  • Nasty!!! Not only are the above details completely disgusting, but the donuts were never even that good when the fryer was new and “clean.”

    Long live Ronald’s Donuts of Las Vegas! May he soon open an establishment in LA so people can see Vegan donuts done right!

    Thanks for sharing the facts and nauseating photos, Mr. Meaner!

  • The donuts aren’t that great anyways. I don’t know why you were getting all excited about them in the first place…they never tasted good! I think that’s pretty gross though, that these places I eat at are carrying dirty products. You can’t trust anyone these days! 🙁

  • I’ve been to said restaurant and used the bathroom in the back, and noticed bins of flour or sugar being stored on the floor. I’m pretty sure that’s a health code violation, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the bins are put on the counter when in use, bringing anything that was on the floor with it. There’s also big tubs of Crisco sitting on her shelf – hydrogenated fats = bad.

    Also, I was at the Locali grand opening party and noticed Dee walking around and shaking people’s hands and then going and cutting up her food samples without wearing gloves or washing her hands. You can bet I didn’t eat anything there.

    This isn’t really a code violation – but last time I was at Cafe Muse, all of the donuts were misshapen and had big dents in them. The cinnamon rolls also looked pretty small, definitely too small to warrant a $4 price tag.

  • This is such a shocker! What a major letdown especially as quarrygirl was such a pro-Dee’s Donuts fan in the very beginning. 🙁 Never had a chance to try a donut but the cinnamon rolls were outta this world. RIP Dee’s Donuts!

  • thanks for the keen reporting.

    there is only one donut shop in north america as far as I’m concerned.

    4300 spring mountain road…..

  • Damn Right – Randy’s is the donunt king. Wish I had an excuse to go to Vegas.


  • Ho…leee… crap. I was happy to learn about Dee’s and consumed several in a sign of solidarity and support. What a let down. What a disappointment. Maybe it’s time to switch back to cabbage and tofu…

    As for other donut options, after sampling Randy’s donuts in Vegas, I can’t say I care for them. They taste funky to me. Conversely, Mighty-O out of Seattle, is phenomenal!


  • Thanks so much for this well-written expose. I just learned this truth yesterday and was very pleased that I’d already decided Dee’s products weren’t up to par in the taste department and, thus, not worth the calories. I won’t be missing anything, but I feel sorry for the LA vegan crowd that really digs these treats.

  • Ugghh, that’s so disgusting. I am definitely not going to eat those ever again (they weren’t that great to begin with), and will be telling everyone I know to avoid them like the plague. Thanks for letting us know, it’s so important to keep our community well informed!

  • The Truth Hurts!

    Don’t forget she uses BONE CHAR SUGAR! Also, that oil is from Smart & Final, anyone can go there & see that oil is both fully hydrogenated AND made with genetically modified ingredients.. HEALTHY!

  • All the people calling it “Randy’s” actually mean “Ronalds”, right?

    This info on Dee’s Donuts is just scandalous and disgusting. I freaking love those donuts and have gone so far as to defend them when other people say they’re not that great. I happen to find them delicious… but you can bet I’ll never put another one in my mouth ever again.

    I heard this same information 1st hand myself and have seen the fryer with my own eyes… this ain’t no April Fool’s joke people! GROSS!

  • Allow me to offer an addendum.
    I will attempt to make this brief. I have been perching, ready to sue Deanna for the reproduction of several of my recipes. I previously supplied Swingers with their cinnamon rolls, cookies, and vegan cheesecakes, and Native Foods in Westwood with HoHo cupcakes, Angel cakes, various bars and gluten-free cookies, and Boston Creme Pie.
    I considered hiring Deanna as an assistant. I did not because I was not impressed. During this time, she copied several of my recipes. Although I asked her not to use them, she did not respect me or my clientele enough to do so.
    These recipes, MY recipes, were found in her notebook at said kitchen, along with Tollhouse’s cookie recipe.
    The cinnamon rolls currently at Swingers were amongst them.
    I have been considering suing her for taking these recipes as if she had some kind of creativity to come up with them. I have seen her posing in a photograph with a cake I actually made for her as if she had made it herself. She has no respect whatsoever.
    Now I am amazed to find out she not only has no sense of business ethics or willingness to give credit where it is due, but no sort of ethic towards PUBLIC HEALTH either.
    This is absolutely disgusting. But I am not surprised.
    She has never cared to show consideration for my business. She is now risking the wonderful kitchen and business she is renting from by leaving this stain in their place of business. This amazing restaurant is definitely at risk with her being there. Let it be known, the kitchen she rents from is normally SPOTLESS, and a credible, otherwise exceptionally clean restaurant. She is a spreading plague, first on my business, now on risking the entire kitchen of a wonderful restaurant with her filthy equipment solely used by her, and last but not least, now risking the health of her consumers.
    Absolutely disgusting.
    I am so glad I did not hire you, Deanna. You never were in it for the right reasons.

  • As a quick note, if you’re headed to Las Vegas, RONALD’s (not Randy’s) is actually located at
    4600 (NOT 4300) W Spring Mountain Rd, Las Vegas Nevada 89102

    Here are the reviews on Happy Cow: http://www.happycow.net/reviews.php?id=4228

    I have a question to those who know Deanna: Is she even Vegan? Just wondering. There are so many opportunists in LA (and around the world). Even Coca Cola makes “juice” products.

  • I have seen that fryer several times and every time it has been uncovered. Maybe she is just clueless and doesn’t understand the fact that it’s disgusting. We should support te companies who know what they are doing….unlike Dee’s.

  • Oh gross!!!! I had a cinnamon roll at Swingers like a week ago, I’m so disgusted and disappointed. What a major bummer 🙁

  • disgusting! no more cinnamon rolls from swingers~!

  • i have seen this fryer in this state for the past month or so. i actually was sad the restaurant was using this and talked to them about it, they assured me they have nothing to do with it, it belongs to the girl renting from them. (aka DEANNA). funny, the donuts at intelligentsia have been getting lumpier and lumpier…no wonder with all that dirt and whatever else is stuck in that oil smooshing them into different shapes! this is no joke, this is real, and this is totally illegal.
    maybe i can scrape some gum off the sidewalk and try to pass it as healthy, too.

  • Yuck!!!, this seals the deal for me. I Knew she baked out of the kitchen at a local restaurant, and a little over a week ago I went to use the bathroom and saw this disgusting machine. I already didn’t like the texture of her Donuts, but knowing that the grease isn’t a one time event makes me never want to look at one again. You would think she would have her own quality control figured out by now.

  • I had one of these donuts at Intelligentsia last week and couldn’t figure what all the hype was about. I thought it tasted more like a pretzel than a donut. I wasn’t going to make a habit of eating them and certainly won’t after this!

  • this is totally fucking disgusting. i was just looking at dee’s donuts site which appears to be little more than a self-promotion for her and her tatooes. i have been vegan for years and eaten severl of her donuts (none of which were really outstanding) and feel totally betrayed. this really is horrible news for all LA vegans.

  • Maybe I’m just from a different era of what it means to be vegan; a supportive culture of people united against doing what is the norm.

    The cinnamon rolls have nothing to do with the donut fryer. They’re actually baked on-site at both Swingers locations.

    On a personal note, Sally Watts, aka ‘Bismark of the Beast,’ USED to be a friend of Deanna, and apparently is more interested in slandering her than defending a friend in need. Seems she’s been perched to do more than ‘sue,’ though as I saw firsthand all of Deanna’s recipes develop, I know there’s no ground or basis for that. Additionally, she just admitted to snooping through Deanna’s recipe book when no one was around: Bismarck writes, ‘These recipes, MY recipes, were found in her notebook at said kitchen, along with Tollhouse’s cookie recipe.
    The cinnamon rolls currently at Swingers were amongst them.’ How disappointing.

    I urge any and all of the above businesses listed as carriers of Dee’s goods to do his/her/their own research before listening to the whims of this blog. Any who choose to let go of quality vegan products based on this sketchy, covert reporting will surely lose credibility and my business. I also have seen the infamous donut machine and assure you, it is spotless, as are the ovens she bakes her cookies in and the hands she rolls her dough with. I encourage any of you to contact Dee directly (d@deesbakeryanddonuts.com) for personal questions about her space and operations.

  • Jared – your blog is full of pics with you and Deanna all snuggled up like. You are clearly going to be impartial!!! Smooch smooch with your baker pooch.


  • Wow. Do I know you?

  • Bismark of the Beast

    Jared –
    “A friend in need?”. Friends don’t copy recipes. And actually, I did not snoop through her book. Another person forwarded the information containing PHOTOGRAPHS of all my recipes in her notebook, along with notes on my business. This other person emailed all of this to me. I had no idea she was using them, or where she was baking, until then. Actually, we have photographic proof, not only of my recipes, but of this disgusting fryer. Don’t claim it is spotless, or that her development of everything in her line is. Anyone with eyes can see the truth. I would love to show them to you.

  • Jared: thanks for coming out to play. I do enjoy your coffee. Last time I drank it was on a visit to your cafe specially to get some Dee’s donuts. I labored long and hard about whether to post this or not, but my eyes don’t lie: the fryer was kept unclean for weeks, there were hairs resting on the top of the oil, and the sprinkles did contain non-vegan shellac-based confectioner’s glaze. nothing sketchy about that reporting, sadly. oh, and in my research I’ve heard FAR WORSE things about the baking “operation” that I refused to share in the post.

  • Jared: I’m from the era when being vegan means that I expect people not to sell me dried up insects in the form of a dirty donut and try to pass it off to me as vegan.

    If by supporting a “culture of people united against doing what is the norm” you mean supporting people who use dirty kitchen equipment and pass off non-vegan ingredients to the unsuspecting public, than your definition of veganism is very different from mine.

    For what it’s worth, the pictures on your blog with the business owner in question bouncing on your lap don’t help your case, or hers.

  • I too, have seen this machine. I have also seen the donuts get more and more burnt, evidently from the oil that never gets changed. I cannot report on the cinnamon rolls or cookies. There are so many great other vegan desserts in Los Angeles. Bismark of the Beast used to be one of those, before the baker’s health forced her to shutdown for awhile. I hope she’ll reopen, I miss my Ho Ho’s at Native!
    Please look up Jenn’s vegan twinkies, or this new Vegan Bake Sale, they seem like they have great options!

  • hmmmm, i would say the cinnamon rolls have a lot to do with the dirty fryer. if she makes dirty donuts, who’s to say she wouldnt make dirty cinnamon rolls, rolling them with the same standards of cleanliness! so gross.
    also, of course the ovens are clean, they don’t belong to her, they belong to the restaurant she bakes out of! they actually understand health codes…

  • Seems like a vendetta against Dee…a lot of inside info and how would people know all these details? Recipes, ingredients, a hair in someone’s donut at someplace, cleanliness of stove,…any proof, really?…I’ve met Dee and she is a true vegan that works long, hard days and nights at something she believes in. Wouldn’t it be awful to be piled on like this if it were you? I would hope this group might want to get some facts and talk or wait to here from Dee before going further as though this is an inquisition,…sounds like a modern day witch hunt…it’s sad.

  • Amy – there’s no witch hunt or vendetta here. All I know is a dirty fryer (witnessed on many occasions) and eye witness accounts of non-vegan ingredients. That’s all I reported on, while trying to reflect the disappointment of the vegan community at large. Until this post I had no idea that Dee (as a person) even existed. The Internet, and blogs in particular, provide a forum for opinions and facts. This “piling on” of which you speak just shows the strength of feeling from the community at large. Perhaps a comment from Dee apologizing to LA vegans and explaining what she’s going to do about it would be in order?

  • Dee is willingly making and selling unsanitary and unhealthy products to dozens of people. When you pay $2.50 for a donut or $4 for a cinnamon roll, it is expected that you are paying for a quality product. Not some thing that was fried along with random hairs and dead bugs. Side note – do you know what happens to oil when it’s been reheated? The smoke point lowers. Do you know what happens when oil is heated past it’s smoke point? It creates free radicals, which cause cancer. Not only are bugs and dirt in the oil, all of the molecules have mutated and become harmful. You can imagine what oil that’s been used every day for who knows how long has floating around in it. The public needs to know what exactly they are putting in their mouths and what kind of business practices they are supporting.

    The kitchen she cooks in has a lot of people going through it. To get to the bathroom at said establishment you have to walk through the kitchen, where all of these things – the fryer, her ingredients, etc. are clearly visible.

  • I should rephrase this: Dee is willingly making and selling unsanitary and unhealthy products *that aren’t even really vegan* to dozens of people.

  • Interesting how you have all this info on Dee’s business,… ingredients, business accounts, purported ingredients, etc. without knowing there is a person named Dee that own’s the company…witnessing a “dirty fryer on many occassions”, ingredients from “eye witness” accounts…hmmm. I think I will try to contact Dee and suggest she visit with one of our staff attorneys as I would think that this heresay vilification may be construed as a vendetta and more over, libelous. I would sure want to be correct if I were posting such negative comments….but then I wouldn’t be wasting my time trying to bring down other people – good luck Mr Meaner, I believe your monicker was chosen approriately:)

  • Amy: The only information I did not observe for myself was the using of the sprinkles, which was confirmed to me by two independent people. Her business account information is available on the company website, it’s not “inside information.”

    An attorney? Don’t waste my time. I’m surrounded by them everyday, and I’m much smarter than you are. Glad you like my monicker. It is unfortunate that it’s apropos in this context.

  • I was really shocked to hear this. I have forwarded this blog post to the manager (who I personally know well) at one of these establishments. Thanks so much for keeping us posted.

  • Good grief people… This particular blog post references the fryer and it’s state of sanitation. Additionally, it’s a well-known fact that confectioner’s glaze contains animal by-products, any Level-2 Vegan could tell you that.

    Keep the lawyer threats out of here. It’s childish and immature. If you’re going to own and operate a business, be responsible. No wonder I stopped attending meetings and demo’s.

  • I just visited the kitchen. Heard the fryer was cleaned for hours yesterday. Come on you fake vegan fuck and join us in the comments. Your lack of participation speaks volumes. Mr. Meaner – I’m a vegan litigator and the threats of a lawsuit are so stupid. You have my email address, so send me anything you get from Plaintiff’s attorney.

  • Hey, I normally love your blog here but I have to say that the tone and and style of this post is pretty inflammatory and sensationalist. I appreciate that you’re concerned about non-vegan food being called vegan and unclean cooking equipment but I think your story would be better supported by naming your sources and covering other angles of the story.

    Did anyone think of asking Deanna herself to comment? I know Miss Anthrope met her for her first review about Dee’s and Bismark of the Beast and Jared know her personally so they would be able to provide their viewpoints.

    I don’t know any of the parties involved and have never eaten Dee’s donuts or at this restaurant where they’re made so I can’t give any first-hand information, but I’ll comment on your two points.
    1. Sprinkles with confectioner’s glaze. Does Deanna know that confectioner’s glaze is shellac from female lac insects? If she does know, does she consider it vegan? I’ve read that the shellac is produced in a way similar to beeswax and while most vegans don’t use beeswax or shellac, some might.
    2. The donut machine pictures look pretty unclean. If it’s always uncovered it may violate Section 113980 of the California Retail Food Code:
    The LA County Health Department has a hotline that you can call to ask questions and file complaints:

    I know this is a blog and not a newspaper or “official news” source so you can write however you like but this post felt pretty one-sided to me.

  • Nick, first off, let me congratulate you on the amazing CSS on your website. I like standards, and it’s a pity that WordPress doesn’t allow more customization. That aside, I also like eating food that has been prepared to accepted standards and contains what it says it does (or, in this case, contains ingredients that fall under a relevant umbrella term like “vegan”).

    Sadly, although the post could be considered as sensationalist, your comment is somewhat immature. Shellac is absolutely NOT vegan, by any stretch of the imagination. Many millions of insects die in horribly cruel circumstances every week on the shellac farms of India and south-east Asia, along with billions of larvae, spiders and aphids that are collateral damage of the horrible deforestation that takes place to “harvest” the lac secretions. Beeswax and honey do not directly cause the death of the insects so would be (justifiably) considered as an animal by-product and can be considered as vegan, even though I’d not eat or use either.

    As far as the fryer is concerned, the health code is not specific about the actual conditions of storing oil in between uses, but it DOES allow for penalties and/or revocation of food licenses should surfaces (including, in this case, of the oil in the fryer) become contaminated with airborne particles for an extended period of time.

    By your own admission, you have no first-hand knowledge of the state of the fryer, are ambiguous about whether shellac is vegan and have never consumed the products concerned. You are in no place to leave such a comment with such an authoritative tone, and your opinions about the post being “one-sided” are highly misguided.

    Regardless of the editorial status (or lack thereof) of this or any other blog, there are a number of people that have contacted me today with negative stories about Dee’s Donuts baking practices and products that claim to have experienced first-hand (ex-employees, suppliers and workers in the outlets that sell the product who have had to deal with complaints from customers).

  • it is only one sided because Dee is choosing not to post. she should respond and apologize.

  • julie: exactly! all we’ve heard from Dee’s Donuts today is a request to take the post down under a thinly veiled threat of litigation (quote) “we might have a legal situation”. As a British national, I’m always amazed at how Americans run for their lawyers as soon as they read things they don’t like. Why is this country so litigious? With so many great people and great things should you not be able to fight your own battles? Especially ones as trivial as this?

  • smartest thing for dee to do, (IMHO,) would be to admit to what so many of us saw first hand, apologize and promise change. avoidance and threats of litigation do not build trust while honesty and remorse can do wonders. show your customers they matter and you care

  • alright, i’ve been debating whether or not i should say anything, so i’m just going to stick with the facts. i worked as a baker for dee’s bakery for a few weeks, and while there was no bad blood when i left, this has really escalated and a feel the need to set things straight.

    1) was the fryer ever cleaned while i worked there? no, not once.

    2) was the oil changed? once. i worked there for three weeks at the beginning of march. i asked deanna about changing the oil/how often it should be changed and she said it only needed to be changed “when the oil is gross and you can’t see through it”. i don’t know if the oil had been changed since then, but it doesn’t sound like it.

    3) was the fryer covered at night? no.

    4) was there confectioners’ glaze in the sprinkles? yes, in some of them. i read the ingredients and i didn’t know what it was, i only found out recently that it wasn’t vegan.

    there are a few other things but since they were not brought up in the post i will not add more fuel to the fire. most of this stuff that has been written, however, is not far from the truth or is the truth. and she still owes me $26 for ingredients that i bought when i worked there, which i will probably never see, especially now.

    and @ Nick above, that *is* some really sweet CSS.

  • Brittany – Thanks for coming forward with some first-hand information on this. I’d be just as happy if your evidence refuted the facts of the post — all we’re looking for here is the facts and I’m glad you provided some.

  • how long ago were those pictures taken?

  • cakes: they were taken two weeks ago. have several other pics taken over the last two months – all look about the same. I chose those as they were the most recent. I eyeballed the fryer last week and it looked the same or perhaps worse.

  • checkmate.

  • cakes: April 11th, 2009 is the EXIF data on my pictures. doubt me and I’ll send them to you if you provide a real email address!

  • exif data can be edited, but feel free to email me anyway. the email i provided is a real email address. lmao

  • nick: since when has quarrygirl.com ever been anything but inflammatory and sensationalist? a few weeks ago she was freaking out at miranda for serving “chicken menstration and cow puss” at flore 2…at least miranda isn’t hiding what she is serving and uses separate pots/pans/utensils! if anyone is looking for a “softer” vegan blog stick to toliveandeatinla.com. she much nicer.

    dee can’t hide behind excuses that she “didn’t know.” its just not fair to market yourself as a professional vegan baker if you don’t even know what that means. fuck, say you are a strict vegetarian then…cover your ass. somebody gift a copy of skinny bitch to the girl.

    i’ve worked at a few vegan restaurants and we would change our oil AT LEAST twice a week. sounds to me like she was just being lazy…and completely clueless. what goes around comes around…i think the fact that so many people are willing to throw dee under the bus speaks volumes about herself as a person. its sad really.

    jared: i do agree “what it means to be vegan; a supportive culture of people united against doing what is the norm.” thats actually how i felt in response to quarrygirl pillaging flore 2 (although i chose not to respond at that time)…i’m not convinced your gf is as innocent as you perceive. but with everything there are infinite sides to every story.

  • cakes: lmao? I ate those donuts and it’s not a laughing matter.

  • I had NO idea that sprinkles were made of Confectioner’s glaze=shellac=insect stuff. I can NOT believe I’ve been feeding my family insect extract. *green* bleh

    Although I’m not vegan…I choose not to eat bugs. Truly…there should be a food label warning. *shudders*

  • STEPPING IN… hey everyone, this is the editor of the blog and i don’t want to have to close this thread or moderate comments. Can we kinda just end it here unless something new comes to light or people from Dee’s Donuts want to speak out?

    I really don’t want to close comments because I want to be fair…

    Other than that, I think enough has been said. Thanks everyone!

  • Just want to say I LOVE the freedom we have in this country and in this blog to rant & rave about the passions we hold so deep. And wow I wonder if this is a record number of comments for one post? It’s amazing what will get vegetarians/vegans stirred up sometimes. Keep up the good work quarrygirl & co! 🙂

  • Just a quick update – one of our ninjas sent through this communication, allegedly from the owner of Dee’s Donuts. It does corroborate the facts of the blog post, and provides assertions that the issues are now resolved.

    For the record: the only comments that were edited above were those that gave personal details about people or places involved in the story.

    > Hi friends. I was devastated this morning when I was alerted
    > to a popular
    > vegan blog ‘exposing’ my bakery as being dirty and
    > my donuts as not being
    > vegan.
    > There are photos posted of my donut machine looking like
    > it’s been through
    > some wear and tear. And mention of one of the cans of
    > sprinkles that I have
    > as having a non-vegan ingredient.
    > The sprinkles are a new addition to my supplies – and yes,
    > there is a non-
    > vegan ingredient: confectioners glaze. I feel horrible. It
    > was an honest
    > mistake, I research all of the ingredients that I am unsure
    > about, and as
    > this is a new product for me, I just missed it. Apparently,
    > confectioners
    > glaze is code for “some sort of stuff with bugs in
    > it” – also common with a
    > lot of food colorings and sugars, etc. That was in the
    > chocolate and rainbow
    > sprinkles. So if you still have some of them, feel free to
    > chuck them, or
    > sell them as a non-vegan item.
    > The donut fryer fell behind with its regular upkeep,
    > several weeks ago, due
    > to some staffing issues…I’m sure you can all relate.
    > I don’t actually use
    > the kitchen that often right now. I’ve hired bakers to
    > do the production
    > work while I work on expanding the business. After my
    > sub-par baker/kitchen
    > assistant and I parted ways, I realized that the donut
    > machine needed
    > attention and promptly gave it a good scrubbing. It’s
    > now sparkling and has
    > been for weeks, I have photos of it that I took this
    > morning if any of you
    > would like to see it. It is also drained and cleaned daily.
    > Other than the
    > donut machine previously being dirty, the kitchen is very
    > clean.
    > There’s also a comment on the blog making mention of my
    > recipes being
    > stolen. It’s a complete fabrication. The owner of the
    > blog, also, is
    > filtering out any positive or supportive comments.
    > I’m really sorry for this bad press, some of your
    > businesses were listed,
    > and links provided, as my customers. The blog post implored
    > its readers to
    > contact my customers requesting that you no longer carry my
    > food. Should you
    > decide not to, I’ll understand.
    > Also, I’ll be closed for the next 2 days while I decide
    > my course of action.
    > Deanna

  • since this was an obvious jab at me:

    > After my
    > sub-par baker/kitchen
    > assistant and I parted ways, I realized that the donut
    > machine needed
    > attention and promptly gave it a good scrubbing. It’s
    > now sparkling and has
    > been for weeks

    i would just like to reiterate that a, the fryer was in that condition the first day i went in, b, i was never given any instruction on how to change the oil, and c, those pictures were taken two weeks ago and i stopped working there over a month ago.

  • while I thought this blog was way out of line attacking Madeiline Bistro w/ out even trying the food & assuming the owners are greedy & make tons of money, at least they finally tried the food & wrote a proper review, this time is real info that should gross out & outrage both vegans & non vegans alike!So thank you for this information.

  • Wow, I just read all the responses that have poured in since I read this yesterday. I’m not shocked by the outraged Vegans who are mad about being mislead, I’m shocked by the few people who are trying to make excuses for her actions and trivializing the evidence that has surfaced. How many times are you going to allow someone to feed you bug guts before you stop giving them your business. How many chances will you give someone to provide you with food items that aren’t prepared under conditions that follow health code regulations that protect us from very real diseases. It bothers me that the response she gave to the businesses she provides to doesn’t acknowledge the severity of these issues. Oops doesn’t cut it. I’m all for being balanced and observing both sides of the story. But when the other side of the story says never mind the blogs, back to business as usual, and denies these things ever happened, you know you’re not dealing with a remorseful business owner. It’s shameful

  • Wow. Thanks to this post and all of the comments I can be reassured that vegans are petty, paranoid and care more about personal purity than furthering veganism.
    People: billions of animals are killed every year for food by 98% of the population who doesn’t give a fuck about those animals or veganism. And you want to shut down a business over a fraction of bug parts in a fraction of foods?
    If you ever take the time to eat somewhere besides those bourgeoisie west-side vegan restaurants I can assure you that those kitchens do not look much better.

    Get over your entitlement and bullshit squabbling and stop making veganism look so fucking crazy. It’s not about you, it’s about the animals.

  • Yeah. There is a complete and total lack of admitting ANY responsibily. I am more disgusted now than before. “oops I forgot to check my ingredients” (though I promise people they are vegan) “oh it was dirty, bad employee. I’m sure you understand.” NO! I do not understand how someone puts their name on a business, does not check ALL ingredients, does not supervise or check on their employees or their equipment, lies that the machine was dirty just that once and expects anyone to ever trust them or do business with them again. I am disgusted by the fact that all she shows concerns about is the loss of business, not that she let her customers down. Dee has no one but herself to blame here. This is shameful

  • Um … Matt … I’m not sure I quite understand your comment (2 posts above). We all love animals … so let’s eat shit?

  • ha! no shit! “it’s about the animals”, not the right to healthy, clean, animal-free food. how about both?! is that really too much to ask for?
    in most vegan eateries, the answer is no. the goal of most vegan restaurants is to make eating vegan, and saving more animals along with our own health, more attractive. i don’t know many meat eaters that would be swayed by these photographs. there’s a certain responsibility that food preparers hold, very basic health standards, which were not considered by her as very important. it’s time for an apology!
    any restaurant who continues to carry this crap may as well just start digging vegan garbage out of the dumpster! just brush that hair off and that dirt off, too, it’s evidently not a problem. hey, let’s pay $4 a pop for it. we have to “support the vegan community” deanna has built, lying through her teeth and protecting her business.

  • vegans NOT being paranoid about what goes in and behind the scenes of their food is what led to this matt. when a vegan is told something is vegan by a place that seems sketchy then we ask a billion questions , when we are assured something is vegan by a “vegan” company , then we usually just roll with it , this whole situation is a bummer cause maybe we have to have are guard up a little more now even with what we are told are purely vegan businesses

  • Talk about a hatchet job . . . don’t any of you have anything better to do than launch anonymous drive-by attacks against one of the best vegan products to come down the pipeline in a very long time? I am a loyal customer of dees bakery, and the food just keeps getting better. No lumps, no hair, no bugs – just a first rate product – and seriously the best chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever had.

    If you have a legitimate beef, send dees bakery an email – they’re easy to find online. If you’re not passionate enough about the issue to do that, then please write yourself off as just another hack.

  • No, Kay. This is done when ALL other options have been exhausted. you have NO idea. If you’re happy with it though, carry on.

  • On this subject… will someone with some $$$ PLEASE open a 100% vegan bakery in LA – pretty, pretty please!!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • a new doomies + vegan bakery even better.

  • Mmmmmmm….bourgeoisie west-side vegan restaurants. Yes, please!

  • I want to open a bakery but I have no idea what I’m doing. Bluuugh.

  • Kay: By definition, something can’t be “the best vegan product” if it’s NOT VEGAN. That’s the whole point.

    The slavish loyalty that some of these commentors have towards Dee and her donuts is borderline fanatical. I seriously doubt that any amount of evidence is going to get these people to accept the fact that their favorite baker is not god. Sucks that this has all been turned around and made to seem like it was a personal attack on Dee when it was not. The bottom line is that she has been selling unclean food to vegans that isn’t vegan, innocent mistake or not. Forget the vegan issue for a minute – that fryer alone is enough to make someone puke… be it for cooking vegan food or anything else. There’s at least a few months worth of dust on that thing. If you think that dust and filth didn’t make it into your delicious donuts than you need to get your head out of the sand.

    Mr Meaner & Miss Anthrope, you guys should have just never published this and let these people go on eating their dirty, bug laced donuts in ignorant bliss. They obviously don’t want to know what kind of shit is in the food they’re eating so why should you guys care if they get sick or are being fed insects? I mean really, how dare you???

  • Had these donuts a few times and they were either undercooked or stale. I gave them three chances and the third time they were fine. Always inconsistent is the bottom line. Quality control should be the biggest concern for a small business. My buddy at scoops made every container of ice cream by himself for the first two years. Why? because of quality control. And I know that these donuts have been hired out to inexperienced bakers. And bad quality is the by-product. And now all this mess. Being understaffed is no reason to lose your quality and cleanliness. What a shame.

    recommendation = heal the wounds

  • I have never eaten anything Dee’s Bakery; chalk it up to being a bit isolated from much of the LA vegan scene.

    However, when I was in high school I worked at a bowling alley that had a deep fat fryer. Part of my job was to drain the fryer every other Friday night, (every two weeks). Not clean the fryer, just drain it and put everything in the sink with some hot water and degreaser. I have to say this thing was gross. Bugs and hair were the least of it, I was completely disgusted with that fryer and the kitchen in general. I was so appalled that I would spend extra time to make sure those vats were clean. I would clean the cooked-on surface oil from the fryer, even though it was the job of the kitchen staff. I even got in trouble for draining the oil from the fryer once a week instead of waiting two weeks. I also got in trouble for using too much degreaser to properly clean the vats.

    The kitchen staff was pleased with me since I was making their job easier. I was offered free food all the time and while this was before I went vegan, I still couldn’t bring myself to eat anything from that kitchen.

    I was just a teenager making minimum wage. I didn’t own the bowling alley, I wasn’t earning extra money for working harder and I wasn’t eating the food there. The reason I cleaned more was because people were eating food cooked in that fryer. I don’t have to know these people and I don’t need incentive other than that fryer is fucking gross and I can’t ignore it while people keep getting served food cooked in that awful nastiness. Definitely the owner should have taken more pride in his business, or the kitchen manager should have demanded a higher standard.

    My point to this story is two part. First, if this is your business and you truly care about your business and what you do, then you don’t ever, NEVER leave it up to the kid making minimum wage to care more about the cleanliness of your workplace than you do. Second, that bowling alley fryer was pretty disgusting but it never looked as bad as the pictures above; including before I started working there.

  • i have easily eaten a dozen or more donuts and cinnamon rolls, cookies, etc. from dee’s since i heard of the bakery on this very website. the baked goods were inconsistent, sometimes being stale and very dry and other times very good…usually not so great though. one time i had found a hair in mine and assumed it was mine (hoped, is more like it). bottom line, that fryer is completely unacceptable and the products are not vegan. she never did address the bone char sugar issue in her email, either. just sell them as regular donuts, but a $4 cinnamon roll claiming to be vegan is wrong on so many levels. the health code violations being on the bottom of the list. i’m sickened that i spent so much money on such a huge gamble with my health….not to mention going against my beliefs as a vegan. thank you, quarrygirl for this entry!!!

  • I was so sad to read this post, and all the drama around it is certainly frustrating, but I’m really glad to be informed. I’ve only had Dee’s donuts once at Locali, and they were decent, but not as good as Mighty O’ or Ronald’s. I did video reviews on both of them and I salivate each time I watch them! It’s a shame we don’t have a great vegan donut shop in L.A….but hopefully Dee’s will turn around.


  • Alex: you’re making me drool…
    “a new doomies + vegan bakery even better.” 😀

    sucks that we have so many great vegan bakers/cooks but no one can afford to open up their own shop. we need to take a collection or something.

  • it has taken me days to come up with a response that would properly encapsulate my overwhelming feeling of disgust regarding this matter.

    for those of us who watched our good friend, the founder and owner of Bismarck of the Beast, struggle mightily against budget constraints, traffic, fatigue, and stress-induced immunity collapse in order to provide los angeles vegans with an ethically-prepared and dietarily sensitive array of goddamn downright delicious treats, it is more than a little vindicating to see Deanna of Dee’s Donuts being slapped on the internet for her utter disregard for public health, and theft of intellectual property to boot.

    but one wonders, where does a person go wrong? surely we are all diligent creatives working daily to impress our talents and contributions upon the metropolis / community / world as a whole. why anyone would cut such brutally offensive corners, bruise and mutilate crucial supportive relationships and damage public trust in such a massive way is truly insane to me. i am beyond wondering what goes through a person’s head who would do such a thing, or how she will recover from it. but i sincerely hope she does.

    but what i sincerely hope for even more, is an equally overwhelming wave of support for our good friend sally watts. we miss her cookies and we miss her cakes, vegan, glycemic-and-gluten free-friendly and all of the above. let’s bring the Bismarck back to the Beast.




  • Jared,
    I was actually trying to take your comments seriously until I noticed you have an obvious personal relationship with “Dee”.
    To make the matter worse, you seem to be an employee of sorts with Intelligentsia, which instantly took away all of your credibility. [My review of Intelligentsia here, in case you are curious as to why I feel this way. Ick!]

    With that said….
    After reading the blog, and the comments left by people who have worked for Dee or know her personally, I cant believe some people are still trying to defend her and her product. Why would anyone NOT want to know about such disgusting conditions?! Especially if you are vegan, such as myself, you are going to be damn well pissed if you are assured something is vegan, you consume it, and later realize it’s NOT vegan.
    Luckily I have only had the cinnamon rolls, and I personally was never really a fan. I honestly only bought them on occasion because of a lack of other options.

    It’s great that she is communicating with businesses that carry her product about this matter [even though that email is just an obvious cop-out], but what about people who have spent their hard earned cash on her products?! I would like to know what she has to say to us!

    I am glad that all of you fine folks are speaking up about this horror!! I hope she either shapes up and makes this right, or moves on to doing something non-vegan.

  • I don’t understand what all this vitriol is about. Fry vats are always gross, whether as restaurant customers we want to admit that to ourselves or not. If you choose to eat a doughnut, you know it came out of a vat of oil. Oil is sticky. Flies and fibers and hair all exist in the universe, even in kitchens.

    The only evidence or first-hand information in any of these posts comes from a disgruntled former employee, who seems to have been fired from her job. Hm.

    Frankly, I think there are bigger (ahem) fish to fry in the world, folks. Someone’s trying to make vegan doughnuts for you to eat. If you don’t want to eat them, don’t. If you know some sprinkles are made from animal-derived products, eat the glazed ones instead. Really, there are a-holes out there abusing animals as we speak, and so many people above would rather spew out personal attacks on a baker? Really?

  • OMG – to think I ate some of these last week and actually posted about it today on my blog. The pictures of the fryer are absolutely atrocious and the ethical code that was broken…don’t claim to be 100% vegan if you are not, that is so not cool!

  • Let me first start of by making this clear:

    Veganism is a type of diet that excludes meat, eggs, dairy products and all other animal-derived ingredients. Many vegans also do not eat foods that are processed using animal products. Most vegans also avoid the use of all products tested on animals, as well as animal-derived non-food products. Vegan refers to either a person who follows this way of eating, or to the diet itself.

    From a business persons perspective if you are going to distribute any edible product to a mass consumer you MUST take the necessary precautions as far as sanitation and continual equipment cleanliness is concerned, especially if you are making a profit off of your products. Not only is it completely irresponsible but it is a let down to your cliental and against the law to provide a product to your consumer that directly falls under the health code. Now on top of it, when you claim to be vegan yourself but still use non-vegan products in the making and distribute them to individuals under false pretense then that is just a slap to the face and a sign of moral disrespect to a life style you yourself claim to live. As far as that sorry attempt to an apology let me just plain and simple say this, when you choose to provide vegan products, it is your obligation to ensure that the ingredients you choose are vegan and since you failed to do so then you shall reap the repercussions of losing the strong business cliental you built for yourself through your “extreme devotion and long hours”, end of story.

    As far as this non-sense of it being ridiculous that us vegans are meticulous with the food products we purchase and consume, well we have every right to be considering we obtain the food not only for the experience but to support the local vegan cook or baker who is striving to push the cause, in order to produce this so called unity that I have seen spoken of quite a bit in the past posts. Now if you aren‘t concerned that there are inappropriate products being used in your food that is your choice but do not sit there and type how it is wrong that we are upset by the misleading information we have been given . As a vegan I will strongly support the reaction of every angry person who has voiced their opinions on this blog and any personal friends to this “deanna” I understand that as a friend you want to automatically jump to the defense but if the evidence is here, then leave it be as what it is. Unless you where by her side while she made every single donut then your words hold no significance and I am sure some will try to easily turn that back on me but thankfully I am a person who is fueled by facts and pictures and food labels are all that is needed here.

    Mr. & Mrs. Meaner. Thank you.

  • “a new doomies + vegan bakery even better.”
    =) Pssst…we’re working on baked goods during our downtime. And if there are any *ahem ahem* INVESTORS INTERESTED? *ahem ahem* we have our eye on a place with a bakery front as well.

    “Replace milk with soy, replace butter with margarine. Not too hard to develop.”

  • “The only evidence or first-hand information in any of these posts comes from a disgruntled former employee, who seems to have been fired from her job. Hm.”

    i quit, sweetie, and it had nothing to do with the bakery or deanna. i was having panic attacks at the thought of going to east LA alone at 3:30am, especially after i found out someone was shot in his car on the street corner where the kitchen is located the week before i started, around the time i would have been reporting for work. the only reason i made it through my first weekend alone was because my boyfriend would wake up in the middle of the night and drive down there with me, make sure i got in alright, and turn around and go back to bed.

    i’m simply being used as a scapegoat, but most people seem to be smart enough to figure out what’s really going on.

  • mr meaner – thanks for looking out for the vegan community and posting this info. i know i appreciate it.

    while i never tried dee’s donuts (they were always sold out), i have to give five stars to Bismark of the Beast desserts…she made me the BEST VEGAN BIRTHDAY CAKE EVER and i am eternally grateful!

    and that amazing cake convinced my girlfriend that vegan baked goods can be delicious!


  • “i quit, sweetie, and it had nothing to do with the bakery or deanna. i was having panic attacks at the thought of going to east LA alone at 3:30am, especially after i found out someone was shot in his car on the street corner where the kitchen is located the week before i started, around the time i would have been reporting for work. the only reason i made it through my first weekend alone was because my boyfriend would wake up in the middle of the night and drive down there with me, make sure i got in alright, and turn around and go back to bed.”

    East LA? I am assuming the kitchen space being rented was in a vegan restaurant and I don’t know of any vegan restaurants in East LA…please do share the name of this place! Some of us would like to not have to cross the river to go to a vegan restaurant, it’s tough to make the trip when we’re so busy shooting people.

  • If you think that fryer is dirty, you shouldn’t be eating fried food anywhere.. I bet every vegan restaurant in america has a fryer dirtier than that.

  • I read this entire thread. My impression that vegans are self-righteous buttholes has been confirmed.

  • Any new info on Dee’s?

  • Confectioner’s glaze does not necessarily contain shellac made from lac insects. Zein, a protein extracted from corn (maize), is, commonly marketed as “confectioners glaze.”

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