Dive into the culinary heritage of Estonia with Vastlakukkel, a delightful pastry cherished during the festive season of Shrove Tuesday, known as Vastlapäev. This traditional Estonian sweet treat consists of a fluffy bun filled with whipped cream or marzipan, adorned with powdered sugar, and enjoyed alongside warm beverages like hot chocolate or mulled wine. Discover the cultural significance of Vastlakukkel as it symbolizes the indulgence before the fasting period of Lent, bringing friends and family together for joyful celebrations. Experience the taste of Estonia's rich history and traditions with each delectable bite of Vastlakukkel.

Here's a recipe for Estonian Vastlakukkel, the sweet bun filled with whipped cream traditionally enjoyed during Shrove Tuesday:


For the dough:

  • 500g all-purpose flour
  • 7g instant yeast
  • 50g granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 250ml lukewarm milk
  • 75g unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the filling and topping:

  • 300ml heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Additional powdered sugar for dusting


1- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, instant yeast, sugar, and salt.

2- In a separate bowl, whisk together the lukewarm milk, softened butter, eggs, and vanilla extract.

3- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms.

4- Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 8-10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.

5- Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and let it rise in a warm place for about 1-2 hours, or until it doubles in size.

6- Once the dough has risen, punch it down to release the air and divide it into 10-12 equal-sized portions. Shape each portion into a smooth ball and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving some space between each bun.

7- Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F).

8- Cover the buns with a clean kitchen towel and let them rise for another 30-45 minutes, or until they have doubled in size.

9- Once the buns have risen, bake them in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until they are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

10- Remove the buns from the oven and let them cool completely on a wire rack.

11- While the buns are cooling, prepare the filling by whipping the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form.

12- Once the buns have cooled, slice them in half horizontally and generously fill them with the whipped cream.

13- Place the top halves of the buns back on and dust them with powdered sugar.

14- Serve the Vastlakukkel buns immediately and enjoy the sweet indulgence of this Estonian tradition!

These Vastlakukkel buns are best enjoyed fresh but can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Nutritional Values:

Here are approximate nutritional values for the ingredients used in the Estonian Vastlakukkel recipe:

All-Purpose Flour (500g):

  • Calories: 1,825 kcal
  • Protein: 50g
  • Carbohydrates: 382g
  • Fat: 4g
  • Fiber: 15g

benefits:Provides carbohydrates for energy, contains protein for muscle repair and growth, and offers some dietary fiber for digestive health.

Instant Yeast (7g):

  • Calories: 20 kcal
  • Protein: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 2g
  • Fat: 0g

benefits:Helps the dough rise by fermenting sugars in the flour, contributing to the light and airy texture of the buns.

Granulated Sugar (50g):

  • Calories: 200 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 50g
  • Fat: 0g

benefits:Adds sweetness and flavor to the buns, providing quick energy due to its high carbohydrate content.

Salt (1/2 teaspoon):

  • Negligible caloric value

benefits:Enhances the flavor of the dough, regulates yeast activity, and strengthens gluten formation for a better texture.

Lukewarm Milk (250ml):

  • Calories: 103 kcal
  • Protein: 8g
  • Carbohydrates: 12g
  • Fat: 3.6g

benefits:Adds moisture and richness to the dough, contributes protein and calcium for bone health, and helps activate the yeast.

Unsalted Butter (75g):

  • Calories: 540 kcal
  • Protein: 0.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.5g
  • Fat: 61.5g

benefits:Adds richness and flavor to the dough, provides essential fats for energy and nutrient absorption, and contributes to the tender texture of the buns.

Large Eggs (2):

  • Calories: 140 kcal
  • Protein: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 1g
  • Fat: 10g

benefits:Bind the ingredients together, add structure and moisture to the dough, and provide high-quality protein and essential vitamins and minerals.

Vanilla Extract (1 teaspoon):

  • Negligible caloric value

benefits:Enhances the flavor of the buns with its aromatic and sweet notes, adding depth to the overall taste.

Heavy Cream (300ml):

  • Calories: 1,040 kcal
  • Protein: 7g
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Fat: 110g

benefits:Creates a rich and creamy filling for the buns, providing energy-dense fats and some protein.

Powdered Sugar (for filling and dusting):

  • Calories: 60 kcal per tablespoon
  • Carbohydrates: 15g per tablespoon
  • Fat: 0g

benefits:Used for dusting the buns and filling, adds sweetness and a decorative touch, enhancing the visual appeal of the finished product.

These values are approximate and may vary based on factors such as brand, freshness, and specific product variations.


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