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20 Traditional Austrian Desserts

I’m willing to bet that you already know quite a few of these Austrian desserts.

In fact, you’ve likely made a few or even grew up eating some without knowing the exact origins. 

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The truth is, many desserts from this region can be difficult to trace.

Since the countries are so closely linked, you’ll find Linzer tortes and apricot dumplings all over Europe. 

Traditional Austrian Pancake Dessert with Raspberries

That said, this list of 20 recipes consists of desserts you’ll absolutely see all over Austria.

So even if it wasn’t invented there, if it’s on this list, it’s 100% Austrian-approved.

Mahlzeit!

1. Salzburger Nockerl

You could say that this dessert is like an Austrian fruit cobbler. 

There’s a layer of jam in the bottom of the dish, which is typically berry-flavored. Over that, you’ll spread light and airy faux-angel food cake mix. 

It’s more meringue-like than cake, but there is flour in the mix, which adds a spongy element. 

2. Topfenstrudel (Quark Strudel or Cheese Strudel) 

In the UK, there’s a small, humble tart called the Yorkshire curd, and I fell in love with it many years ago. It’s sweet, fruity, and full of fun texture. 

This cheese strudel is very similar, only it’s made with the filling wrapped inside rather than in a pastry case.

Between the cheese curds, plump raisins, and flaky pastry, this is one you won’t want to miss.

3. Linzer Torte Recipe

Named for the city of Linz, Austria, this is one of the most authentic and traditional recipes on the list. 

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Like Linzer cookies, this torte is nutty, buttery, and loaded with sweet and tart raspberry jam. 

One key difference between this torte and a fruit tart is that you won’t use a lot of filling. So it’s essential to get the dough right. Otherwise, it will be pretty dry.

4. Vanillekipferl (Austrian Vanilla Crescent Cookies)

Here’s a recipe that I’m sure looks familiar. These delightful vanilla cookies are dainty, sweet, and, better still, easy to make.

It’s an enriched shortbread dough, which means you’ll need eggs in the mix, too, plus, ground nuts for a super tender crumb. 

5. Sacher Torte

The Sacher torte is one of the most famous chocolate cakes ever.

It has a cult following and was first made for the Austrian State Chancellor by a 16-year-old pastry chef apprentice. 

It’s incredibly rich and sinful with so much chocolate flavor, you won’t want a huge slice.

Traditionally, it’s served with whipped cream to help cut through the indulgence. 

6. Apple Strudel Recipe

Like the cheese strudel, if you want to make this as authentic as possible, you need to make the right dough and wrap the filling. 

By the ‘right dough,’ I mean not pastry. This unique dough is more like bread dough, which you’ll need to stretch until it’s nearly see-through. 

It gets its signature flaky texture from all the layers, which appear after you’ve rolled it up like a burrito.

7. Marillenkuchen (Austrian Apricot Cake)

One of my favorite things about European cakes and desserts has to be that they use fresh fruits a lot.

Also, I love that they don’t rely on sickly-sweet and heavy frosting. 

Now, before you go adding halved apricots to your favorite vanilla cake, wait! This cake works so well because it doesn’t call for baking powder or soda. 

Instead, it uses eggs, which helps the sponge rise more slowly, keeping the fruit from sinking to the bottom.

8. Kaiserschmarrn (Scrambled Pancake)

Also known as a torn pancake or even the emperor’s pancake, this funky recipe is a fun one to make with the kids. 

Once the pancake is cooked, you’ll use two wooden spatulas to tear it apart gently.

Then, you’ll add butter and sugar, frying the pieces lightly until they’re golden and caramelized. 

9. Traditional Gugelhupf (Kugelhopf)

Though this may look like a simple bundt cake on the outside, once you cut into it, you’ll see it’s something much more special. 

Firstly, it’s actually a yeast dough, making it more like bread than cake. In fact, it needs about 3 hours of proofing in total.

Also, it’s rolled and filled like a cinnamon roll, only you don’t cut it into portions.

Instead, you wrap it around the bundt, leaving delicate lines where the layers are when you cut it open. 

10. Homemade Mozartkugeln

This fun little treat is another great dessert to involve the kids. The most you’ll need to do is melt the chocolate. 

But once the main fillings are ready, I bet the kids will love playing around with the marzipan and making fun shapes. 

11. Krapfen (Austrian Jam Filled Donuts)

You’ll see these donuts at many celebrations, but they’re never more popular than during Faschingsdienstag (Mardi Gras).

Though they’re traditionally served with apricot jam, you can fill these however you like. They’re even tasty on their own with a dusting of powdered sugar. 

12. Cremeschnitten (Austrian Cream Slices)

The French know them as mille-feuille. The Brits call them vanilla (or custard) slices, and in Russia, they’re known as Napoleon cakes. 

No matter what you call them, you can’t beat a thick layer of vanilla custard with crumbly pastry and powdered sugar. 

Please, if you make this recipe, don’t use a box of pudding. Yes, it’s similar, but it won’t be the same!

I promise you won’t regret taking the time to bake from scratch.

13. Palatschinken (Austrian Crêpes)

I like to think of these as a happy middle ground in the pancake world.

They’re neither too thick nor too thin, and they’re crazy-delicious with everything from jam to caramel on top. 

Like French crêpes, they’re much wider, taking up the whole bottom of the pan. But they’re thicker and much more satisfying.

14. Topfenknödel (Austrian Topfen Dumplings)

These are like little cheesecake bites, which means they’re dangerous to have around. I should know, I finished half a batch in one sitting last week!

Unusually, they don’t often use cream cheese in Austria and Germany and instead rely on cheese curds or quark to give them a similar texture. 

If you can’t find either of those, I suggest trying silken tofu.

15. Classic Austrian Linzer Cookies

Linzer cookies are the best, aren’t they? That yummy, buttery biscuit filled with vibrant and fresh raspberry jam is just to die for.

Their signature look depends on that cut out in the middle of the cookie, and it doesn’t take long to do. 

That said, if you don’t bother with it and just sandwich two cookies together, they’ll still taste fantastic. 

16. Austrian Buchteln (Sweet Yeast Rolls)

Without that powdered sugar on top, you might think that these are simple, savory dinner rolls.

Truthfully they could be! Even with an apricot filling, I’ll bet they’ll taste yummy with some chicken. 

However, I much prefer them smothered in creamy vanilla sauce.

17. Marillenknödel (Austrian Apricot Dumplings)

Like Georgia and its peaches, apricots (as you may have noticed) are a beloved and celebrated fruit in Austria.

They grow in the south, and that’s why you see them in so many recipes. 

And like peaches, when they’re fresh, they’re wonderfully bright and sweet.

To make the most of that delightfully natural flavor, they’re kept almost whole for these dumplings. 

So instead of biting into mushy jam, you get a nice bit of texture along with plenty of fruity goodness.

18. Kletzenbrot Recipe (Christmas Fruit Bread)

If you’re looking for something different to serve this Christmas, it doesn’t get more special than this. 

Brimming with nuts and dried fruits, this lightly spiced rye bread is sure to be a hit.

19. Dampfnudeln / Germknödel (Sweet Dumplings)

Dampfnudlen is a difficult dish to describe. It’s a sweet dumpling that uses yeast, though it doesn’t require any proofing. 

They’re usually filled with plum jam before steaming and serving with warm vanilla custard.

20. Austrian Polsterzipf with Topfen Dough

This is the kind of treat I like to enjoy for breakfast. The flaky pastry and sweet filling are just what I need to wake me up!

These little pastries are filled with yummy fruit jam and then fried until golden brown. 

Feel free to use store-bought pie dough if you don’t have time to make the pastry. Just know it won’t have the same rich flavor.

20 Traditional Austrian Dessert Collection

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Austrian Desserts

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INSANELYGOOD

Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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