The limited-edition doughnut will only be available for one week.
Credit: Courtesy of Krispy Kreme

Krispy Kreme has had no trouble coming up with unique flavors, from Nutter Butter to gingerbread to Reese's Easter eggs. But back in January, the chain of coffee and doughnut shops turned to you to make the call on what its next limited-edition glazed flavor would be. The contenders, provided by Krispy Kreme, were caramel, maple, blueberry, and lemon. A few days later, after two million fans weighed in, the winner was announced: Lemon doughnuts would hit stores later in the year. That day is here.

Starting Monday you can get your hands on a Lemon Glaze Doughnut, but its journey to racks behind the Krispy Kreme counter started a while back with Krispy Kreme culinary director Brittany Dubin. While the company knew it could deliver on any one of the possible flavors, the process of making the winner come to life was begun only after the votes had been tallied. "We really had to hone in and quickly innovate what we thought consumers were looking for in a lemon glaze," Dubin told Food & Wine. The goal was a doughnut that maintained Krispy Kreme's signature glaze characteristics, but also "not too sweet, not too sour."

To achieve that, Dubin said "we broke apart the lemon and put it back together. We took all the pieces of the lemon that brought the best flavor and aroma and put it into the glaze." In this case, it means using the juice, the oil, and the zest while trying to strike the perfect balance of tart and sweet.

We tried the Lemon Glaze doughnut ahead of the launch, and that endeavor seems to have been a success. Take your standard Krispy Kreme Original Glazed doughnut, turn the sweetness down a notch, then add in the brightness of lemon without so much acidity as to induce any puckering. The result is a doughnut that pops with enough citrus to invoke a springtime feeling without hitting you over the head with summer lemonade. It might even have filled lemon doughnut fans saying "what jelly?" Flecks of lemon zest in the icing and the aroma of lemon round out the simple-looking doughnut's aesthetic appeal.

The Lemon Glaze Doughnut will be available at participating Krispy Kreme locations beginning Monday, April 23 and will only last through Sunday, April 29. But tells us that depending on how well the doughnut does during its brief week of existence, it could make a comeback, perhaps seasonally.

While lemon won, earning 36 percent of the vote, caramel came in second at 26 percent. Blueberry received 20 percent and maple came in at 18 percent. So what happens to the runners-up? Dubin says "we are always listening to the consumer, we're keeping our mind open to it." So, caramel fans, don't count your losses just yet.