norwegian christmas receipes

Delightful Norwegian Christmas Recipes to Try This Holiday Season

norwegian christmas recipes

Norway has a rich tradition of baking delicious Christmas cookies. In theory, each family chooses seven types of cookies to bake, resulting in a variety of flavours and textures. Clearly not everyone has the time or inclination to bake all seven, and there are of course regional variations. Every Christmas, as well as other Norwegian Christmas traditions, Norwegians argue about which should be on the list.

So here I’ve given you six to choose from, and am not sticking 100% to any “official” list. Because that would be unlike me, right?

If you want to go all out you’ll find the recipe for one more here, namely Fattigmann.

A YouGov poll in 2022 ended up with this list:

1. Kransekake – 11% named it a top favourite – kransekake is a cake, but people include it in their sju slag
2. Krumkaker – took back 2nd place
3. Pepperkaker – down from 2nd
4. Brune pinner – cinnamon strips with almond-topped crunch
5. Sarah Bernhardt kaker – (almond macaron base topped with ganache and dark chocolate)
6. Smultringer (fluffy spiced doughnuts)
7. Delfiakake (called “a classic that undoubtedly belongs at Christmas.” This no-bake recipe layers biscuits and marzipan between a chocolatey mix)

Other popular options include sand cookies (sandkaker), chocolate puffed rice balls (risboller), and almond lace cookies (mandelflarn). These recipes use traditional ingredients like lemon zest, potato starch, and almonds.

Let’s explore these delightful Norwegian Christmas recipes and bring the heartwarming magic of Scandinavia to your table this holiday season.

Norwegian Christmas Recipes – Key Takeaways:

  • Delight in the rich tradition of Norwegian Christmas baking.
  • Discover seven types of cookies that will add variety to your holiday cookie tin.
  • Experience the tangy and refreshing taste of sand cookies with lemon zest.
  • Try the easy and fun no-bake chocolate puffed rice balls.
  • Indulge in the thin and crispy almond lace cookies for a delightful treat.

Sandkaker | Sand cookies

Sandkaker, also known as sand cookies, are traditional Norwegian Christmas cookies made with a simple shortbread dough. The best sandkaker are flavored with lemon zest, giving them a tangy and refreshing taste. These cookies are often gluten-free as they are made with potato starch. They are a favorite among Norwegians and make a perfect addition to your holiday cookie tin.


  • 200g unsalted butter, softened
  • 200g powdered sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 350g all-purpose flour
  • 50g potato starch


  1. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the egg yolks, vanilla extract, and lemon zest, and mix until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and potato starch.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until a dough forms.
  5. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 1/4 inch.
  8. Using cookie cutters or a sandkaker mold, cut out shapes and transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are lightly golden.
  10. Allow the cookies to cool completely before serving.

Enjoy these delightful Norwegian sand cookies with a cup of hot cocoa or a glass of mulled wine, and let the flavors transport you to the cozy Christmas markets of Scandinavia.

Norwegian Christmas Recipes: Risboller | Chocolate Puffed Rice Balls

If you’re looking for a fun and easy holiday recipe to try this season, look no further than risboller, also known as chocolate puffed rice balls. These delightful Norwegian treats are a popular addition to Christmas cookie platters and are loved by both kids and adults alike. What makes risboller so special is not only their delicious chocolatey flavour but also their no-bake simplicity. With just a few ingredients and minimal effort, you can create a batch of these tasty treats in no time.

The key to making perfect risboller lies in the combination of chocolate, puffed rice, and butter. These ingredients are melted together to create a smooth and creamy mixture that serves as the base for the balls. Once the mixture has cooled slightly, you simply shape it into small balls and let them set in the refrigerator. The result is a cookie-like texture with a crispy outer shell and a soft, gooey centre.

You can also customize them to your liking. You can add different flavourings such as vanilla extract or almond extract to enhance the taste. Additionally, you can mix in other ingredients like chopped nuts or dried fruits for added texture and flavour. Whether you enjoy them plain or with some extra ingredients, risboller are sure to be a hit at any holiday gathering or as a special treat for yourself.

“Risboller are a beloved holiday treat in Norway. They are incredibly versatile and can be made with various flavorings and mix-ins. The combination of chocolate and puffed rice creates a satisfying crunch that everyone will enjoy.” – Norwegian Food Enthusiast

Risboller Recipe

Ingredients Instructions
150g dark chocolate Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering water.
75g unsalted butter Add the butter to the melted chocolate and stir until fully combined.
150g puffed rice cereal Gently fold the puffed rice into the chocolate mixture until well-coated.
Optional: flavourings, nuts, or dried fruits Add any desired flavourings, nuts, or dried fruits to the mixture and stir to combine.
  Shape the mixture into small balls and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  Refrigerate the balls for at least 1 hour or until firm.
  Serve and enjoy!

So, this holiday season, why not add a taste of Norway to your festivities with these delicious risboller? They are a simple yet delightful treat that will surely bring joy to your family and friends. Whether you’re a fan of chocolate or looking for a no-bake recipe that’s fun to make, risboller are the perfect choice. Give them a try and savour the delightful flavours of one of the easiest Norwegian Christmas Recipes.

Norwegian Christmas Recipes: Mandelflarn | Almond Lace Cookies

When it comes to Norwegian Christmas cookies, Mandelflarn, also known as almond lace cookies, are a must-try treat. These thin and crispy delicacies are a staple in Norwegian cookie boxes and are sure to add a touch of elegance to your holiday dessert spread.


  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract


  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the ground almonds, sugar, and flour.
  3. Stir in the melted butter, heavy cream, and almond extract until well combined.
  4. Drop teaspoonfuls of the batter onto the prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Flatten each mound of batter with the back of a spoon to create thin, lace-like cookies.
  5. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown around the edges.
  6. Remove from the oven and let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

These almond lace cookies require careful attention during baking to prevent them from burning, so keep a close eye on them. Once cooled, they will have a delicate texture and a nutty flavour that pairs perfectly with a cup of hot cocoa or a festive holiday tea.

So, embrace the Norwegian holiday baking tradition and surprise your family and friends with these delightful Mandelflarn cookies. They are sure to become a favourite addition to your Christmas cookie repertoire!

Norwegian Christmas Recipes: Vepsebol

Vepsebol, also known as wasp nests, are a unique Norwegian Christmas cookie that adds a touch of whimsy to any holiday gathering. Made with meringue, dark chocolate, and finely chopped almonds or hazelnuts, these cookies are as delightful in taste as they are in appearance. The process of making vepsebol can be a bit challenging, but the end result is well worth the effort.

To make vepsebol, start by whisking egg whites and sugar together until they form stiff peaks. Then, fold in the finely chopped almonds or hazelnuts. Using a piping bag or a spoon, shape the cookies into small peaks resembling wasp nests. Bake them in the oven until they turn crispy and golden.

Once the vepsebol are cooled, melt the dark chocolate and drizzle it over the cookies to create the intricate patterns of a wasp’s nest. Allow the chocolate to set and harden before serving. These cookies not only taste delicious, but their unique appearance is sure to impress your guests. Include them in your holiday cookie tin or serve them as a standalone treat.

Tips for Making Perfect Vepsebol:

  • Whisk the egg whites and sugar until stiff peaks form to achieve a light and airy texture.
  • Finely chop the almonds or hazelnuts for a delicate crunch in every bite.
  • Use a piping bag or a spoon to shape the cookies into small peaks resembling wasp nests.
  • Allow the vepsebol to cool completely before drizzling them with melted dark chocolate for a beautiful and visually appealing finish.

By incorporating vepsebol into your holiday baking, you can add a touch of Norwegian tradition to your Christmas celebrations. These unique and delicious cookies are a testament to the creativity and culinary delights of Norwegian cuisine.

Norwegian Christmas Recipes: Krumkaker

Krumkaker are traditional Norwegian Christmas cookies that are light and crispy with delicate, waffle-like patterns. They are typically made using a special krumkake iron and a wooden roller. The dough is made from a mixture of flour, sugar, butter, eggs, and vanilla extract. It is then cooked on the iron to create the signature shape and pattern.

Once cooked, the krumkaker can be shaped into cones and filled with whipped cream and fresh fruit for a festive touch. These cookies are not only delicious but also visually stunning, making them a perfect addition to any holiday dessert table. The combination of the crispy cookie and the creamy filling creates a delightful contrast of textures and flavours.

To make krumkaker, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and sugar.
  2. Add the melted butter, eggs, and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined.
  3. Preheat the krumkake iron according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Place a small spoonful of the dough onto the iron and close it.
  5. Cook for about 30 seconds or until the krumkaker are golden brown.
  6. Using a wooden roller, quickly roll the krumkaker into a cone shape.
  7. Allow them to cool completely before filling with whipped cream and fresh fruit, if desired.

Enjoy these delightful Norwegian krumkaker as a traditional Christmas treat or any time of the year for a taste of Norwegian tradition!

Note: If you don’t have a krumkake iron, you can try using a pizzelle iron as a substitute. The cookies won’t have the same shape, but they will still be delicious!

Norwegian Christmas Recipes: Sarah Bernhardt cookies

Sarah Bernhardt cookies, named after a French actress but beloved in Norwegian Christmas cookie boxes, are a true holiday delight. These decadent cookies consist of a chocolate base topped with a rich almond-flavoured cream. The cookies require multiple steps, but the end result is well worth the effort. They make an elegant addition to any holiday dessert table and are sure to impress your guests.

“These Sarah Bernhardt cookies are the perfect combination of rich chocolate and creamy almond. The flavors complement each other beautifully, and the texture is incredibly indulgent. They are definitely a showstopper on any holiday dessert spread!” – Martha, avid baker and lover of Scandinavian cuisine

To make Sarah Bernhardt cookies, you’ll start by baking a batch of chocolate cookies as the base. Once the cookies are cooled, you’ll prepare a luscious almond cream filling that is piped onto the cookies. Finally, the cookies are dipped in melted chocolate and left to set. The end result is a mouthwatering treat that is both visually stunning and exquisitely delicious.

These Norwegian Christmas cookies are a must-try for anyone who appreciates the art of baking. They capture the essence of Scandinavian Christmas food and are a delightful addition to the festive season. So gather your ingredients, put on your apron, and let’s get baking!

Ingredients Instructions Yield
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract to the creamed butter mixture and mix until well combined.
  4. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until a dough forms.
  5. Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a log. Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Remove the dough logs from the refrigerator and slice them into 1/4-inch thick rounds.
  8. Place the cookie rounds on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until set.
  9. Allow the cookies to cool completely on a wire rack.
Approximately 24 cookies


Delve into the delightful world of Norwegian Christmas recipes and discover a treasure trove of traditional dishes that will bring warmth and joy to your holiday season. These festive recipes from Norway are rich in flavour and steeped in Scandinavian tradition, making them the perfect addition to your holiday table.

From the tangy and gluten-free Sandkaker cookies to the crispy and nutty Almond Lace cookies, each recipe has its own unique charm. The Norwegian holiday baking tradition of choosing seven types of cookies adds a sense of variety and excitement to your cookie tin.

But the culinary journey doesn’t stop there. Explore the world of Vepsebol cookies, with their meringue peaks, and the delectable Krumkaker, with their delicate waffle-like patterns. These traditional Norwegian holiday dishes will transport you to a winter wonderland of flavors and textures.

So, embrace the festive spirit and infuse your holiday celebrations with the magic of Norwegian cuisine. These recipes will not only satisfy your taste buds but also help you create cherished memories with your loved ones. Let the traditional Norwegian holiday dishes be your culinary guide this holiday season. And if you’re looking for more articles about Christmas, try this one about Santa Claus around the world for starters.

Andy Higgs
Andy Higgs

I know what it's like to go from being a crazy backpacker without a care in the world, via being a vaguely sensible parent to being an adventurer once more. In other words, evolving into a Grown-up Traveller.

Like everyone else, I love to travel, have visited a lot of countries and all that but my big thing is Africa.

I also own and run The Grown-up Travel Company as a travel designer creating personalised African itineraries for experienced adventurers

Articles: 1259

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