Oslo Kringle is a delectable Norwegian dessert, with the flavor and texture of a cream puff, but with a simpler preparation and “fjords” of delicious, almond icing on top. This Kringle recipe will be the hit of your dessert table!
Make the evening a complete Scandinavian affair by serving Instant Pot Split Pea Soup and Burning Love Mashed Potatoes for dinner with Sourdough Rye Bread and a cheese platter on the side. Serve this Kringle recipe alongside a Winter Fruit Tray for a deliciously festive spread.
I come from solid, Norwegian farm stock, the Borges of Bergen. When Heritage Day rolled around at school, and I or one of my siblings was called on to give a presentation, we leaned on Grampa Sigurd and his ancestors.
We toted to school a small, hand-carved wooden Viking ship from Uncle Jim along with the ribbons and lace Aunt Cass brought back from the homeland. For her part, my mom baked this Oslo Kringle recipe.
Whenever I bite into this dessert, it is like taking a bite out of my childhood. Dare I call it a Proustian moment?
The kringle pasty puffs up in weird little hills and valleys. The icing creates little fjords of flavor. The almonds add a nice little crunch. And I am transported back to elementary school as Rosedell Elementary.
Why Make This
It’s way better than what you’ll buy at the store. Wondering if this Kringle recipe is anything like the Kringle pastry you can buy at Trader Joe’s? The answer is sort of. The flavors are very similar, but TJ’s version has an almond paste filling, similar to a bear claw, while this Kringle has almonds and almond flavoring as a topping. My kids devoured both types of kringle in one afternoon, declared them both good, but stated that they liked the crunchy texture of the almond topping of this our Kringle best.
It’s super simple to make. Don’t let the idea of pate à choux intimidate you. This Kringle recipe comes together quickly, especially if you have a stand mixer.
This Kringle recipe is addictingly good. Beware! Oslo Kringle is the kind of dessert that doesn’t last long. The flavors are kind of addicting and there’s no stopping until the plate is empty.
Here’s what you’ll need to make this Oslo Kringle Recipe:
butter – The buttery rich dough of this Kringle recipe is one of its signature flavors. While you could probably use other types of butter, I recommend the real deal.
unbleached, all-purpose flour – I have made this dough with whole wheat flour but it’s not very exciting. Stick with white flour for best results.
salt – Don’t omit the salt in your Kringle recipe. Salt adds texture and flavor to baked goods.
eggs – The batter of Kringle is very much like a cream puff which is a very egg-heavy pastry. Don’t skimp on the eggs or try to bake this without them.
powdered sugar – A necessity for the icing in this Kringle recipe, you can use commercial or make your own powdered sugar.
milk – You only need a bit of milk for the icing. You can use water or cream as substitutes. One will be richer than the other, but both tasty.
almond extract – Almond is a must for this Kringle recipe. Don’t skip it.
lemon zest – You can use bottled or fresh lemon zest, just be sure to use it. The flavor is important here.
slivered almonds – Slivered almonds that you toast yourself are ideal for this Kringle recipe, but you can also use sliced almonds if need be.
As I mentioned before, this Oslo Kringle recipe starts with a pate a choux, or cream puff pastry. It’s simple enough to do, but there are some tricks for best results.
1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the water and bring the mixture to a boil. Add the flour and salt. Cook, stirring, until mixture leaves the sides of the bowl and forms a ball around your spoon.
2. At this point, it’s helpful to have a stand mixer. Transfer the hot dough to the bowl of your mixer and allow it to cool slightly. Attach the paddle attachment and run it on low until the side of the bowl has cooled to just warm.
Please note that you do not have to have a mixer to make this Kringle recipe. However, beating in the eggs takes a little muscle. Apparently, my Norwegian ancestors were a bit stronger than I am. I have my teenage son take turns stirring if I don’t use the mixer.
3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well to combine. The mixture will look really weird after a while and you’ll think you did something wrong. If it looks like scrambled eggs, don’t worry. Keep beating until the mixture looks smooth and creamy.
4. Spread the batter on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silat mat. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 425 degrees. The batter will puff and turn golden and crispy.
Turn off the oven. Remove the pan from the oven and prick holes in the pastry. Return the pan to the warm oven to dry out the insides of the pastry.
Cool the pastry on a rack. While it’s cooling, prepare the glaze.
5. Combine powdered sugar, lemon zest, milk, and almond extract. Stir well with a wooden spoon until smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the pastry and sprinkle on the slivered almonds.
FAQs & Recipe Costs
Despite the variations that abound, a kringle pastry includes a butter-rich dough, a sugar glaze, and almonds. After that it’s up to the variation if it will be a cream puff dough, a laminated dough, or something else, with or without a filling.
There’s debate about traditional kringle. There many variety of Kringle as well as names. They all tend to have in common a puff pastry of some kind as well as heavy almond flavoring. I did a little research on Oslo Kringle. Some are made like a filled danish. Others in an O shape. Still others with a pie crust bottom.
Wisconsin kringle, sold at Trader Joe’s nationwide, is an oval pastry, filled with almond paste and topped with glaze and almonds.
German Kringle refers to an alternate name for Santa Claus. In Danish, kringle means pretzel, the original shape of some traditional kringle pastries. There are also Norwegian variations of kringle pastry as well.
Knowing how much it costs you to prepare a recipe can help you decide if it’s the type of recipe to make regularly or one you might want to save for special occasions. Let’s crunch some numbers and see how this recipe pencils out.
- butter – $0.75
- flour – $0.17
- salt – $0.01
- eggs – $0.60
- powdered sugar – $0.12
- milk – $0.04
- almond extract – $0.23
- lemon zest – $0.10
- slivered almonds – $0.28
While your costs may vary depending on where and how you shop, you can expect to pay about $2.30 for a full batch of this Oslo Kringle recipe, about 10 cents/serving.
How to make this good and cheap:
You know I don’t typically want to make something if I can’t make it good as well as cheap. Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:
- Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. When I find regular kitchen staples on sale, I buy a lot. I’m currently using a price book to track prices and that’s saving me money. For this recipe, keeping an eye on the price of flour, butter, and sugars can help keep the price down.
- Buying in bulk – It’s rare that I would buy a small bag of flour. I hedge my bets by buying in bulk. I also have gotten into the habit of buying cases of flour from Bob’s Red Mill or VitaCost so that I always have baking supplies on hand.
- Load up on post-holiday clearance specials. You’ll find great deals on baking ingredients after holidays. There are lots of ways to use holiday baking items creatively.
Tell us what you think!
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- 1 cup water hot
- ½ cup butter
- 1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 egg
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoon milk
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoon slivered almonds toasted
- Preheat the oven to 425°. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
- In a medium saucepan, bring the water and butter to a boil.1 cup water, ½ cup butter
- Add the flour and salt. Cook over medium, stirring, until the mixture leaves the sides of the pan and forms a ball around the spoon.1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour, ½ teaspoon salt
- Remove the pan from heat and beat in the eggs one at a time. You can do this in the pan by hand or transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer. Allow the mixture to cool slightly before adding the eggs.4 egg
- Spread the batter in a large rectangle on the prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden.
- Turn off the oven. Prick holes in the pastry with a sharp knife or fork and allow to rest in the hot oven for 20 minutes more to dry out the insides of the pastry.
- Cool the pastry on a rack.
- In a small bowl combine the powdered sugar, milk, almond extract, and lemon zest.1 cup powdered sugar, 2 tablespoon milk, 1 teaspoon almond extract, 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- Place the pastry on a serving platter. Drizzle the icing over the top of the pastry. Sprinkle the almonds over all.2 tablespoon slivered almonds
This post was originally published on December 6, 2013. It has been updated for content and clarity.
There’s a similar one I had the first time I went to Norway, called Vannbakkelse. I looked and looked for the recipe, and finally found it in ‘The Great Scandinavian Baking Book’ by Beatrice Ojakangas under the name Norwegian Cream Puff Pretzel, or Vandbakkelskringle. The directions call for shaping it like a Danish kringle. I just spooned it in strips.
Good to know!
I have been experimenting with my Kringla recipe: Baking at 350 degrees for 45 min. gives a lighter result on top and the custard is lovely. It gets eaten fast doesn’t it!
Thanks for the tip!
I think you should make a video of this. 😉
Instruction #4 ‘bean the eggs’… Haven’t tried this kind of kringle, looking forward to making this! kringle is a tradition in this family at Christmas — purchasing it, that is! Thanks for the recipe, have enjoyed your blog. K
Ha! Good catch! Thanks.
Sharon @ savormania
I had never heard of Oslo Kringle until I stumbled upon your blog! What a beautiful discovery. I can’t wait to try this at home!
I tried a similar recipe from my sister but it had a crust which was not good at all. Searching the internet I found this recipe and I loved it! The pastry reminders me of popovers. I may try to flavor it using lemon during the summertime.
Thank you, this is now a family favorite.
Lemon sounds lovely! Yes, I saw the same recipes with crust. Didn’t understand that at all. Glad you liked it!
Hi, i an norwegian and was so happy to see this recipe. IT is quite similar to what we call wienerbrød which is very popular in norway, i can basically find it anywhere. Try Google it 🙂
Thanks for sharing!!! When I was a kid my aunties would make this and it was called Oslo Kringler…and round shaped. Now, no one seems to have the recipe and I was heartbroken – But no more!! Thanks again!
Love this! Thank you for the recipes; we will be making it Christmas morning. We called it Oslo Kringler my whole childhood! 🙂
Loved this post. I’m half Norwegian.
LOVE! This brings back memories… my Danish great grandma used to make something similar to this for “coffee klatsch” when I was a child. SO good.
Hurray for Kringle!! My husband and I both have Norwegian in our backgrounds, and one Christmas he asked me to call his aunt and get Grandma’s recipe… and now it’s been our Christmas morning tradition the last 4 years. His family always called it “Kris Kringle.” 🙂 We don’t do the almonds on the top, and my instructions are slightly different, but yours looks just like ours! We actually do two long narrow strips (like 3″ wide, the length of the pan), and ours separates into two layers — a flour/butter sort of pie crust botom layer, then the egg/flour/almond layer poured overtop. Bake and glaze. Traditions are so fun!
Ok, confession time: I left a comment on your FB page saying I was making an Oslo Kringle but I had a different recipe. HUGE FLOP. Ugh, I don’t like wasting ingredients. I will be trying yours, because I don’t think you’d steer the rest of us wrong. 😉
I am German, but we grew up eating kringle because my sister was a pro at making it (Danish kringle). My husband is half Dutch, half Danish, and he grew up eating it, too. I never had the knack for making the Danish kind (way too putzy), so maybe this will make our breakfast a bit more special. And Christmas! I was going to order some kringle from our favorite Danish bakery in southern WI but it is so expensive!!
Bummer on the flop. 🙁
If you know how to make cream puff dough, this should be easy. And keep in mind, all my research says this is very different than the Danish kind. (I’ve never had the Danish variety, so I can’t compare.)
My ALDI has it for the season. It’s with the breads.
I did not see it when I was there this week. Will have to look. Thanks!
I have never heard of this, although from the links it seems more of a Danish thing (I can’t find recipes in Norwegian), but since the Scandinavian countries have such a connected history there are quite a few things that overlap.
That said, it does look like a punctured vannbakkels without cream.
It’s been hard to do this research since my Gramma passed away 13 years ago and my Norwegian is non-existent. My fear is that this is an Americanized version of something.
Happy to hear any new research you have. But, yes, a google/translate search of vannbakkels looks like they are in the same family.
My grandmother from my stepfather’s side emigrated here from Norway just a year before he was born, and this is almost the exact same recipe as hers. She didn’t use salt in the dough because she used salted butter and figured that was enough. For the frosting, it was 1c powdered sugar, 1tbsp room temp butter, 1tsp almond and 1.5 tbsp heavy cream or half and half.
We also shape it like a giant ring. Very similar though. Pretty sure it’s not americanized because that was a family recipe from Norway.
Yay! Thank you for letting me know!
I am Danish (as in full blooded Dane, who lives in Denmark 😉 ) and you are right; this is a punctured vandbakkelse or Waleskringle.
If you bake the puff pastry in individual serving sizes and let them cool without puncturing them, you can fill them with jam and cream, and it is called a “vandbakkelse”. If you bake it as a big cake and do the same, its called a Waleskringle.
Hope it clears Things up a bit 🙂
Love reading your site, by the way!
Yay! How fun to know!
I have a very similar recipe a friend gave me years ago. It is called Danish Puff and was served for breakfast. Yours looks like it would be delicious with a good cup of coffee!
SOOO excited! LOVE Kringle and Julekake! Have not had Kringle b/c I am too cheap to order it.. I definletly will be trying this! I get a loaf of Julekake for Christmas from my aunt! YUM!
Remember there are lots of different recipes for kringle, so this might not be what you think of when you think kringle. I hope it is, though.
Christina @ It's a Keeper
I’m of Norweigen heritage too! I’ve been to Norway a few times and am fascinated with the culture! My family makes a Kringle (pronounced Kring-la) that’s a little different than yours. It’s like a braided cinnamon bread with a sugar glaze. I am going to give your recipe a try, too! It’s sounds great! I’m going to ask my aunt about it too — she still lives in Norway. Thanks for sharing this great recipe!
Poke holes in and let it rest in the turned off oven. A few holes? All over holes? Sounds fantastic, but I think I will use the stand mixer. This would be a perfect job for a Danish dough whisk
I do all over holes, maybe ten?, with a toothpick.
My great grandmother was 100% Norwegian and emigrated to New York. My grandmother made Yulekake and Vetekake during the holidays. I was never fond of the citron. My kids and husband do not like it either so I do not bother making them. My grandmother would also make Krumkake. I did love those thin cookies. My family is ok with them but the recipe makes so many that they end up spoiling before we can eat them all so that tradition has also gone by the wayside. One time I made Lefse and again that made way to many and no one ate it. Thank you for sharing this Norwegian recipe. Norwegian recipes are hard to find. I will give this one a try.
1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour?
Yes, thank you for catching the typo. It’s fixed now.
I grew up eating this. My grandma and mom made it a lot. My mom made the crust and then spread lemon curd over it with a powdered sugar glaze. Or sometimes she would use canned pie filling. So delicious no matter how it’s made!
Sounds delicious with the lemon curd. Wow! Great idea!