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Smörbakelser (Swedish Butter Cookies)

Smörbakelser (Swedish Butter Cookies)

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Reminiscent of extra-buttery, almond-flavored shortbread, Smörbakelser are a Swedish Christmas tradition!

These cookies, like all of my Swedish recipes, hail from my moms side of the family. We have them every  Christmas without fail. For her, they’re a family tradition going back to childhood!

To make Smörbakelser, you will need some mini tartlet tins, such as these below. These decorative tins come in shapes such as hearts, shells or diamonds. The ones I use are about 3-4 inches in diameter and about an inch deep. Search for “tartlet tins” or “mini tart tins” and you will find an abundance of what you are looking for. They are pretty but they are also necessary for the baking process!



When forming your cookies, lightly press a small amount of the dough into the bottom and up the sides. Make it sort of concave, as shown above, instead of flat and flush with the top. They will fill out as they bake!

Smörbakelser are delicate cookies that are very easy to burn. One way to prevent this is keeping an eye on them and taking them out right when you start to see the edges turn golden brown. I know all ovens are different, but this really is consistently right at 10 minutes for me.

Another thing you can do is get them out of the tartlet tins before they cool. This can be tough! I recommend using an oven mitt to grab them individually, turning them upside down (so the open cookie side is facing the counter) and dropping them lightly from about 6 inches up. If you have greased your tins well they should come right out!

We often double this recipe because they are just so good. But if you end up with too many on your hands, these cookies are totally freezer-friendly. Just toss them in a freezer safe bag and you are good to go!

Looking for more Swedish food? Try my Swedish Pancakes, Swedish Corn Pudding and Swedish Meatballs recipes!

Smörbakelser (Swedish Butter Cookies)

Reminiscent of extra-buttery, almond-flavored shortbread, Smörbakelser are a Swedish Christmas tradition! 

Course Dessert
Cuisine Swedish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 20 - 25 cookies


  • 1 cup (226 g) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (105 g) white sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 cups (275 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp almond extract


  1. Preheat oven to 400.

  2. Cream together the softened butter, sugar and egg yolk until smooth. Mix in flour and almond extract until a smooth dough forms.

  3. Press into the bottoms and up the sides of the tartlet tins, as pictured above. Keep your shaped dough concave- they will fill out the tins as they bake!

  4. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until starting to turn lightly golden brown.

  5. Remove from oven and get the cookies out of the tins immediately- before letting them cool. The best way to do this is by grabbing them individually with an oven mitt, flipping them upside down and dropping them lightly from about 6 inches above the counter. You should be able to lift the tins right off!

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