Swedish Rye Cookies Recipe

Powder-kissed and pretty, these Swedish Rye cookies are perfect for holiday cookie enthusiasts who are after a not-too-sweet, shortbread-style butter cookie.

Swedish Rye Cookies

Powder-kissed and pretty, these Swedish Rye cookies are perfect for holiday cookie enthusiasts who are after a not-too-sweet, shortbread-style butter cookie. I make them with a blend of rye and whole wheat pastry flours, and also break with tradition when it comes adding my secret ingredient. Because I love the taste of toasted rye bread slathered with cream cheese, I use a butter/cream cheese combination for the dough - instead of only butter.

Swedish Rye Cookie Recipe

I suspect you could experiment with other flours in place of the rye and expect good results - barley or oat flours might work well. I also got to thinking about doing a savory version of this cookie with herbs and grated cheese in place of most/all of the sugar - turning it into a buttery rye cream-cheese herb cracker...

Swedish Rye Cookie Recipe

I know right now many of you are on the lookout for Christmas cookie recipes, so I've compiled a bunch from past holidays into once place.

weeknight express

Sign up for my weekly-ish, ad-free newsletter, with recipes, inspirations, what I’m reading / watching / shopping.
(You’ll get a link for a free PDF e-book with 10 recipes)

weeknight express

Swedish Rye Cookie Recipe

I use whole wheat pastry flour here, but you can substitute unbleached all-purpose flour if you like.

1 cup rye flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/2 cup cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup fine grain natural cane sugar, sifted

large grain sugar (for sprinkling)
organic powdered sugar (for snow)

Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium-sized bowl combine the flours and salt. Set aside. In an electric mixer (or by hand) beat the cream cheese until light and fluffy, add the butter and do the same, mixing until the two are well combined. Beat in the sugar and mix until well incorporated. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir only long enough to combine the two. The dough should no longer be dusty looking. Turn the dough out onto the counter, knead once or twice to bring it together, shape into a ball, flatten, wrap in plastic and chill it in a refrigerator.

Heat your oven to 350F degrees, and arrange the racks in the top and bottom thirds.. When you are ready to roll out your cookies do so on a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness, and cut into shapes with the cookie cutter of your choice. Place on the prepared baking sheets an inch apart, and sprinkle each cookie with a bit of large-grain sugar. Bake for six or seven minutes, just until cookies are fragrant, and getting a bit golden at the edges - avoid over-baking or they will come out on the dry side. Allow to cool, and dust cookies with a bit of powdered sugar.

Makes dozens of tiny cookies, less if you are cutting them larger.

Prep time: 30 minutes - Cook time: 7 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

Apologies, comments are closed.


Heidi, would this work with Coconut flour and adding a bit of candied ginger?


I've gone a little crazy for rye this year. So much so that I almost stomped my feet and threw a little fit when the grocery store was out of rye flour yesterday. This cookies sound perfect!

Glad that you included gingerbread cookies in your list. I just wanted to mention that gingerbread houses are a longtime favorite in Sweden this time of year, as I believe that is where they originated.

Very yummy recipe! And the pictures are simply lovely!

yumyum..these cookies, looks so good and rye's my favorite too, am gonna make today..thanks so much..........


mmmm.....love the sound of these cookies. i'm going to experiment w/home made yogurt cheese to replace the cream cheese and use oat flour since where i live in the world no one has heard of rye flour. thanks so much!!!!!!!!!


Looks interesting and looking forward to making these. How about a cookie recipe with almonds? My Mom used to make something like this for the holidays.Thanks

These cookies look so pretty! I've never made a cookie with cream cheese before, looking forward to trying this combination :)

These cookies look beautiful and delicious. Thanks!

Freshly ground cardamon would be a lovely AND Swedish addition... thoughts?


Hi there, I just wanted to tell you that I made the pine nut-rosemary shortbread, and I really like it. So buttery and crispy and exotic. Perfect with a cup of tea, I think. Thanks for the good recipe! -JJ Ps. I may post about it later, so thanks in advance...

The white powder sugar against the white background looks so amazing. That's a photo worth selling for an ad.

I love the photos of these cookies and the stages of preparation. So many contrasts - both in aesthetic and taste - and so many lovely, delicious variations. Thanks for yet another fantastic recipe that's getting me back into cooking!

Whole wheat pastry flour changed my life :)


I was wondering if I could use a different flour besides the Wheat? Rye is fine, don't have any issues with that but the Wheat is a problem. I wonder if a brown rice flour would work? Anyone have any ideas:)?


Heidi- This may be out of the question, but in December 2005 you did a gingerbread recipe and instead of baking as one cake, you did individual cakes. Do you remember how long you baked them and if you adjusted the oven temp as a result of the baking dish modification? My intention is to make these for my office and any help would be greatly appreciated!!! Thanks! HS: Hi Betsy - I think you might be referring to the time I featured Regan Daley's Black Sticky Gingerbread. Love, love, love her recipe.


These look excellent...I make a thumbprint cookie with a cream cheese dough, and I bet these would be great with a little jam on top, too!

The shape of your cookie cutter makes the cookie. And I appreciate the idea for a use for rye flour--I just picked up some over Thanksgiving and bread or crackers were my thoughts about using the flour. Also, you said the cookie was Swedish? Any story or history on that? I love the anecdotes that go with food, especially if it's a non-native food.

These look really yummy! I also think substituting Almond flour for the Rye flour would be tasty. Health food stores carry Almond flour. By the way, I just love this site! There are so many fabulous new ways to prepare foods. Keep up the good work, and I wish you much good fortune and good health in the coming year. Junecutie


I love how simple these sound. And I love that cookie cutter! I enjoy the site, but am often intimidated by all the wonderful ingredients that I don't (but should/would like to) have in my pantry. This looks like a great one to get me started, and will look great in my holiday goodie boxes. Thanks for sharing!


Comments are closed.

Apologies, comments are closed.

More Recipes

Popular Ingredients