20 Nordic Recipes to Try Right Now ~ sure, you’ve baked spritz cookies during the holidays, and maybe you’ve had a Swedish meatball or two, (thanks Ikea), but do you really know what Scandinavian food is all about?
These 20 recipes run the gamut from light, bright, and minimal all the way to uber cozy and comforting ~ and that’s what’s so exciting about Nordic cuisine, it’s got it all covered, and more. The Nordic countries ~ Finland, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, have made an art out of cold weather cooking, and it’s what I’m craving as we head into February. If you happen to have some Scandinavian DNA, share your favorite recipes in the comments!
NORDIC GRANOLA : CARAMELIZED GRAINS AND SOURED MILK (Melkering) ~ My Nordic Kitchen
Rye, spelt, and oatmeal are caramelized with butter and honey, and then served in a puddle of soured milk. Don’t be afraid of the soured milk ~ it’s cultured, like kefir, or yogurt.
FINNISH SMOKED SALMON AND FARRO SALAD ~ Kira Åkerström
Kira is a Finnish blogger who now lives in San Francisco (she won the Finnish Masterchef competition!) and she makes this grain salad super fresh with lots of cilantro and dill. The smoked salmon makes it a healthy complete meal.
GRAVADLAX WITH CUCUMBER PICKLE AND DILL MUSTARD MAYONNAISE ~ Donal Skehan
This gorgeous silky cured salmon with fresh dill is probably what comes to mind first when you think Scandinavian food. And for good reason, it’s one of the best ideas to come out of the far North, thanks to the plentiful fish in their icy waters. I add edible blossoms to my Nordic Open Faced Sandwiches for an elegant look.
CHOPPED STEAK WITH BACON AND MUSHROOM GRAVY ~ The View from Great Island
Served with a big plate of boiled parslied potatoes, this chopped steak is a meal fit for a (Viking) king.
LIGNONBERRY JAM ~ Masala Herb
No, you probably won’t find lingonberries in your area, but try this method with any foraged berries. Lignonberry jam, which you will find on most large supermarket shelves, is an essential side to Swedish Meatballs.
MEATBALLS WITH CELERIAC AND APPLES ~ Refinery 29
Celeriac, apples, and a touch of fresh nutmeg makes this meatball skillet quintessentially Scandinavian. These are definitely not mom’s meatballs ~ I love the fresh green color! Celeriac also features in these Celeriac and Sardine Toasts.
DANISH KRINGLE RECIPE ~ Culinary Hill
Meggan’s mother-in-law from Racine Wisconsin makes this authentic almond Kringle (Wisconsin’s official state pastry.) I’m so glad she passed on the recipe!
SHAVED WINTER VEGETABLE SALAD ~ The View from Great Island
I was influenced by Scandi minimalism in this colorful salad ~ it proves that just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean you can’t have a bit of fresh crunch in your diet.
This classic sticky chocolate cake comes straight from the sidewalk cafes of Sweden, and the pages of the Fika and Hygge cookbook. You can use your favorite type of chocolate for this cake.
SWEDISH CINNAMON BUN (Lussekatter) ~ Call Me Cupcake
Saffron and cinnamon (or cardamom) makes these classic Swedish yeast buns special. Linda brushes them with a sugar/milk/egg syrup just as they come out of the oven for a lovely shine.
This unusual dessert is made with rutabaga puree and lots of warm spices. This blogger (born in Utah, living in Norway) also makes an intriguing raw Rutabaga and Apple Salad.
TRADITIONAL DANISH RYE BREAD WITH SOURDOUGH ~ Wholesome Nordic Living
Rustic rye bread is a staple of Nordic cuisines. Danish blogger Helene makes this nutritious fiber filled bread from scratch, using a sourdough starter.
FINNISH SALMON SOUP (Lohikeitto) ~ The View From Great Island
This pretty soup has a light creamy broth infused with dill and allspice, and of course, chunks of tender salmon. I make a quick fish stock, which is essential for the flavor, using the salmon skin. Waste not want not :)
ICELANDIC PANCAKES (Pönnukökur) ~ Fun & Food Cafe
These light crepe-like pancakes are a traditional Icelandic breakfast, served with fresh jam or whipped cream. The recipe is from The Great Scandinavian Baking Book.
MIDSUMMER AQUAVIT COCKTAIL ~ Honestly Yum
A beloved Nordic spirit, Aquavit (water of life) is a neutral alcohol, like vodka, flavored with caraway, and sometimes dill, fennel, coriander, citrus and anise. Everybody drinks it up North. Skoal!
BEETROOT RISOTTO WITH MUSHROOMS ~ Our Kitchen Stories
This stunningly simple risotto comes from a Berlin based blog with a decidedly Scandinavian flair.
CHANTARELLE AND GOAT CHEESE SKILLET (Kantareller og Geitost) ~ North Wild Kitchen
Scandinavian food isn’t all yogurt and lignonberries…there’s a strong tradition of comfort food, too ~ it’s cold up there, for Pete’s sake! I love this cozy cheesy skillet, and I think you could use whatever mushrooms you can get your hands on.
RICE PUDDING WITH WHIPPED CREAM AND MARINATED ORANGES (Ris a la Malta) ~ Call me Cupcake
This traditional Scandinavian Christmas dessert can also be eaten for breakfast…I bet it helps keep one’s mind off the long dark days of winter.
SMOKED MACKEREL ON RYE WITH HORSERADISH CREAM AND PICKLED RADISH ~ Olive Magazine
Open faced sandwiches are a way of life in the North. They make a lunch or light dinner, and the toppings are endlessly variable. Move over avocado toast!
ROSEMARY AND THYME ROASTED RADISHES WITH SKYR ~ @scusatema
Skyr is the Icelandic version of yogurt, but it has a milder flavor. You can sometimes find it in larger supermarkets or whole foods type stores, (I think Trader Joe’s sells it) and I’ve got a skyr recipe coming up on the blog soon, so stay tuned.