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lefse title image copy

Since I was little, lefse has always been a part of my family. My grandma, who was the daughter of a Norwegian and Swedish immigrant, learned how to make multiple Scandinavian treats, but it was the Norwegian treat of lefse that has stuck with all of us. Unfortunately, my grandma is no longer with us to be the lefse queen, but she spent years passing on not only her recipe but also her expertise.  In fact, when I turned 18 I was officially knighted as lefse royalty under the shoulder tap of a lefse stick.  Today I bestow upon you these secrets that were so graciously taught to me by my grandma.

My 17 year-old self is knighted as lefse royalty
My 17 year-old self is knighted as lefse royalty

To start, let me explain this thing I call “Lefse”.  Lefse is a traditional norwegian “tortilla” that has a couple different ways of being made, but the “knightly” way is with a potato base. It’s clearly the best way 🙂

Lefse can be a time consuming process- spanning two different days- but it is totally worth the work!  I have tried to speed up this process, squishing the steps all into one night, and the results are just not the same. The night before you wish to enjoy your lefse, you have to boil and rice the potatoes.

Potatoes in a Ricer for Lefser

This takes a special tool that divides the boiled potatoes into tiny pieces that resembles white rice.  Again- annoying, but makes for perfect lefse.  Add the cream, sugar, salt and butter to the hot potatoes and blend well. Put in a well covered container and refrigerate overnight.

Day 2: After your lefse has chilled add the flour to the potato mix and give it a stir making sure it is all blended. Once its all mixed you’re going to make balls about the size of 1/4 cup. Place the balls on a baking sheet cover with a damp towel and place it in the fridge. You want to keep the lefse moist, it wont roll out if it’s dry.  For cooking these little balls of joy you want to roll them out on a well floured surface and then place the lefse on a griddle (a regular griddle works too) at around 450 degrees.

lefse on the grill with a lefse stick

Once the lefse is on the griddle its gonna take about 4 mins- 2 minutes on each side.

cooked lefse with a char pattern

To enjoy the lefse I suggest a delightful mix of butter and cinnamon sugar, but anything withe a hint of sweet would work.  Jam, nutella or peanut butter are also delicious options!

Rachel Holding a plate of lefse

Oh, and here’s the recipe if you want to Pin it or share it or whatnot!

lefse recipt

A little side note-This past year I also made a gluten free lefse and it actually turned out almost exactly the same. All you need to do is substitute regular flour for an all purpose gluten free flour. Easy peazy.


6 thoughts on “Lefse

    Pam Leaman said:
    January 4, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    We too makelefse every year from a recipe handed down but mine does not use the cream. Ours is potato, crisco, salt, cream of tartar and flour.

    Diane Lancaster Lovejoy said:
    May 14, 2016 at 10:54 am

    My grandma was the daughter of Norwegian Immigrants too. And every Christmas she was around she made lefse, julekaga, Fattigman, and Rosettes with her rosette iron which I just recently found. (it’s real cast iron and not just aluminum) Very fond memories. Your recipe looks very similar if not exactly like hers was. Thanks for posting!

    Johanna said:
    July 19, 2016 at 1:07 am

    I smiled when this post came up on Pinterest 😊. Nice to see a scandinavian recepie in english. In norwegian its probably called lefse and in sweden we call them lefsa. We learned to make them in school but have not made one since. You made me remember them! Probably will try to make them again now that I’ve seen this post! Have a nice week, best regards Johanna!

    Mandy said:
    July 30, 2017 at 9:32 am

    I made your recipe and gifted to my clients. I heard rave reviews on how it was the tastiest recipe they’ve had for lefse!!

    Julianne said:
    October 31, 2017 at 12:45 am

    I, too, learned the wonders of lefse. We make it at Christmas, I don’t know why not any other time. My grandmother taught me, also.

    Cindy Goodale Goodyear said:
    December 11, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    I wish I had fond memories of Lefse but unfortunately it always came with lutefisk. I’m thinking of trying again though as an adult.

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