Swedish Rye Cookies

December  1, 2014
6 Ratings
  • Makes dozens of tiny cookies, fewer if you are cutting them larger
Author Notes

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.

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 or all of the sugar—turning it into a buttery rye cream-cheese herb cracker. Recipe originally published on —Heidi

What You'll Need
  • 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)
  1. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. 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 mix 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.
  3. Heat your oven to 350° F 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.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • jenncc
  • Blixie
  • Ashley Mackey
    Ashley Mackey

3 Reviews

jenncc February 4, 2019
Really enjoyed these simple, earthy cookies! I followed the recipe closely but baked an extra minute or two, which in my opinion did not dry them out. In fact these cookies were more tender than I expected perhaps due to the addition of cream cheese? Also, I did not have powdered sugar on hand but felt it wasn't necessary, with the lovely sprinkle/sparkle of sugar before baking these were elegant and not too sweet.
Blixie December 5, 2015
Yum, yum, yum. These are rich without being too sweet. The dough is easy to work with. Plus, I got to use the rye flour that's been lurking in the freezer! I brushed on some egg white and sprinkled on some sugar before baking.
Ashley M. December 14, 2014
These sounded like the perfect little treat for a cold winter day and they did not disappoint. Hubby and I enjoyed these with a cup of Earl Grey tea while the kiddos had them with a cup of hot cocoa. These were incredibly easy to make and will definitely be put into the rotation for our cookie jar. Thank you so much for the recipe!