When it comes to food, the Dutch know what they’re doing. This is especially true when looking at Dutch cookies.
However, unless you have Dutch family or live in the Netherlands, you’re probably not familiar with these delicious cookie treats.
While you may have seen and tasted Dutch stroopwafels, your knowledge of Dutch delicacies may not exceed this.
Therefore, we have compiled a list of the best traditional Dutch cookies – you’ll want to share these recipes with all your friends and family.
Here, in addition to stroopwafels, you’ll also find classic almond lace cookies and pepernoten.
So, if you’re looking for something new and wonderful to try, you’re in the right place. Let’s get started with some traditional Dutch cookies.
These delicious cookies are either known as Kletskoppen in the Netherlands or as Brugse kant In Belgium which translates to ‘lace of Bruges’.
This refers to Belgium city’s intricately laced layout which is mimicked here by the cookies with their delicate design.
If the word kletskoppen is a bit of a mouth-twister for you, don’t worry! These Dutch cookies can also go by almond lace cookies or Florentines.
Whatever you call them, just know that they are utterly delicious. They feature a crispy and incredibly thin base – which could be considered more of a chip than a cookie!
However, their nutty, sweet, cinnamon and caramel taste is everything you could want in a cookie and more!
If you prefer your cookies to have a crunch to them, then these are the perfect ones for you. After trying them, you’ll never go back to regular cookies again.
Kue Kastengel – otherwise known as Dutch-Indonesian cheese tarts – owes its origin to Dutch’s Kaasstengels (cheese sticks) which are a popular festive tart eaten on occasions such as Christmas, Chinese New Year, and Eid Al Fitr in Indonesia.
These savory cheese treats contain the perfect balance of savory and sweet. If you’re a cheese lover, then this is the type of dessert for you.
This recipe takes approximately 40 minutes to make, however, in this time, you’ll make between 40 and 45 cheese tarts – not too bad if we do say so ourselves.
For the best results, these cheese sticks are made with Edam cheese. However, this can sometimes be difficult to find in the United States. In this case, gouda or parmesan cheese works just as well.
If you’ve had the chance to visit any Dutch market, then your nose may have led you to a stand selling delicious Dutch delicacies – the stroopwafel.
These cookies are thin and packed with incredible caramel inside a waffle. They are an absolutely divine sweet treat – loved by both tourists and locals alike.
For this recipe, all you’ll need is yeast, butter, an egg, flour, and caster sugar to make the cookies, and then the decadent caramel filling is made with brown sugar, cinnamon, and molasses.
The outside of the cookie is comparable to a sugar cone or Belgium waffle and once you bite into the cookie, you’re treated with a luscious filling inside.
However, don’t get ahead of yourself and bite into these cookies when they’re scorching hot – you may need to test your patience slightly here.
These flaky krakelingen cookies are made using a puff pastry that is covered in sweet sugar. While they look complicated to make, they are surprisingly easy!
For this recipe, you only need three ingredients: sugar, water, and puff pastry dough – ingredients you probably already have available.
All you have to do is roll the dough, add a splash of water, then cut and shape the cookies. Then, cover in sugar and bake!
From start to finish, these cookies shouldn’t take more than 80 minutes to make – most of the time is spent chilling your dough.
These cookies are so easy to make that you can even get the kids involved.
In the Netherlands, there used to be separate bakers who specialized in cookies and cakes, bread, pies, and sugar work. Hence, this taai-taai recipe falls under the cake baker category.
When translated, these cookies literally refer to ‘tough-tough’. Moreover, these classic Sinterklaas cookies owe their deliciously chewy texture thanks to the honey.
During the festive seasons, these are typically made using festive molds and have a distinct aniseed flavor to them.
Don’t let the ingredients list intimidate you, these cookies are actually surprisingly simple to make. Although, make sure to make the dough at least a day ahead.
The result is a rich-tasting, darkly sweet cookie that combines ground anise, brown sugar, honey, and more for a decadent experience.
If there is one thing we have learned from creating this guide is that the Dutch love their super thin, crunchy cookies – undoubtedly, making them experts in the field.
With only five ingredients, these sugar-coated, flat wafers cookies feature a tangy and sweet taste that is surprisingly complex given the somewhat sparse ingredients list.
For this recipe, you’ll first start with the puff pastry squares, where you add cardamom, cinnamon, lime zest, and vanilla sugar.
These are somewhat contrasting ingredients, however, the flavors they provide are utterly divine – the tray will be empty before you know it!
These pinda koeken repechage cookies are moist and nutty – containing a unique look with an utterly delicious taste. The best part? They are relatively simple to make with seven ingredients needed.
Similar to some of the other cookie recipes mentioned, you’ll need to prepare your dough a day ahead to allow it to chill.
Other than that, this is a straightforward recipe that doesn’t take too long to prepare and bake – plus, chances are, you already have all the ingredients you need in your pantry.
For this recipe, all you need is simple ingredients, including flour, butter, light brown sugar, sugar, unsalted peanuts, an egg, and salt.
Also referred to as Dutch Windmill Cookies, while these Speculaas cookies may not be shaped as windmills, they contain a crisp texture and spiced flavor that is even better.
In the Netherlands, Belgium, and other parts of Germany, these cookies are a staple during the Christmas season.
Traditionally, they are molded or stamped before baking with a classic image such as a windmill or a St. Nicholas figure.
While there are no stamps in this recipe, you can still enjoy the traditional flavors of these cookies. Once topped with almond slices, they’ll be gone from the platter before you know it.
These tasty cookies are comparable to tiny pies that are packed with delicious marzipan filling.
Not only are they super simple to make but they have a lemon and tart sugar flavor that is exceptionally scrumptious.
On the outside they are crispy, however, in the middle, they are fluffy and soft – perhaps even cake-like.
Traditionally enjoyed over the Dutch Sinterklaas festivities. These old-fashioned pepernoten cookies feature gorgeous flavors of anise and honey – achieving a fragrant batch.
These cookies shouldn’t be confused with kruidnoten, while they are confusingly similar names and both are eaten around St. Nicholas’ Day – they are nothing alike.
Pepernoten is made using ground aniseed and honey that provides a subtle licorice flavor and chewy texture. On the other hand, kruidnoten is more comparable to gingerbread.
Generously spiced with cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, white pepper, nutmeg, and cloves, with notes of molasses, you’ll want to make these kruidnoten cookies every Christmas!
These are gingerbread-style cookies that are typically eaten around the holidays. While you can purchase them from the store, they are infinitely better homemade!
This pindakoeken recipe differs slightly from other traditional recipes, since, here, you’re leaving the cookies in the refrigerator overnight – ensuring a soft and moist cookie.
Nonetheless, you’ll be left with those iconic peanut butter flavors and crips crunch and snap of the cookie.
For this recipe, all you’ll need is butter, flour, sugar, light brown sugar, salt, unsalted peanuts, and an egg – ingredients you probably have in your pantry right now!
These Bitterkoekjes are classic Dutch almond cookies that have a flavor reminiscent of Italian amaretti. However, these cookies are chewy on the inside.
They are made up of sugar, almond paste, and eggs – similar to macarons! – however, making these treats takes some practice.
While Bitterkoekjas can be eaten throughout the year, they are most popular during the Christmas season.
Are any of the New Year’s Eve cookies on your list inspired by classic Dutch cookies? Adding a unique twist to your celebration, try incorporating new year’s eve cookie recipes inspired by the Dutch. These traditional treats feature delicious flavors like speculaas, almond, and cinnamon, bringing a delightful taste of Dutch tradition to your festivities. Bake a batch and enjoy the sweet flavors that will certainly leave a lasting impression on your guests.
Frequently Asked Questions
There is nothing better than homemade cookies, however, to ensure their freshness, you’ll want to ensure you’re storing them properly.
The best way is to store them in an airtight container at room temperature.
Nobody makes cookies quite like the Dutch. From pepernoten and stroopwafels to bitterkoekjes and kletskoppen – the Dutch certainly know how to make cookies.
So, grab a glass of milk and some oven mitts and get ready to make some of these delicious classic Dutch cookies.