Hungarian Christmas Cake Recipe

hungarian christmas cake recipe

The Allure of Hungarian Christmas Cake: A Baker’s Secret Treasure

Ah, the holidays. It’s the time of year when family recipes, rich in history and love, shine. And as a seasoned baker, there’s nothing I cherish more than the magic of a traditional Hungarian Christmas cake. Today, I’ll take you on a delectable journey to the heart of Hungary and unwrap the secrets behind this Christmas masterpiece.

hungarian christmas cake recipe
hungarian christmas cake recipe

Hungarian Christmas Cake: More Than Just a Dessert

It’s crucial to understand the significance of this cake in Hungarian culture. In addition to being a delicious treat, it also represents celebration, harmony, and the spirit of the season.

hungarian christmas cake recipe
hungarian christmas cake recipe

What Exactly is Hungarian Christmas Cake?

Often referred to as “Beigli” in local parlance, this rolled cake is filled with mouth-watering walnut or poppy seed paste. The aroma, the texture, and the taste—everything about it screams Christmas!

The Historical Roots

Beigli traces its roots back to the 14th century. Its popularity grew during the Austro-Hungarian empire, with each region contributing its unique spin to the recipe.

Crafting the Perfect Hungarian Christmas Cake

The cake’s outer layer is a beautifully golden-brown, delicate, crisp pastry. Inside, you’re greeted with a rich, sweet filling that’s pure bliss.

hungarian christmas cake recipe
hungarian christmas cake recipe

Health Benefits:

 It’s Not Just a Sugar Rush! Surprisingly, this indulgence is not without its health perks:

Walnuts: Rich in antioxidants, they help reduce oxidative damage in the body.

Poppy seeds have many nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium.

Let’s Talk Fillings

While walnut and poppy seed fillings are traditional, modern renditions have seen additions like chocolate chips and dried fruits.

Serving Suggestions:

What about a slice of Hungarian Christmas cake and whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream? It’s perfect for the holiday season!

Making it Your Own

Remember, while traditions provide a blueprint, the best recipes are often those infused with personal touches.

Lets Start Our Recipe


sugar 50 g

flour 500 g

milk 100 ml 

butter 200 g

fresh yeast 25 g

eggs 2

Walnut filling 

ground walnuts 200 g 

sugar 150 g

apricot jam or orange marmelade 2 tbsp

milk 75 ml

raisins 100 ml 

Poppy seed filling (mákos)

ground poppy seeds 200 g

sugar 150 g

apricot jam or orange marmelade 2 tbsp

75 ml milk 

100 ml raisins 

Brush with egg

1 egg


Step 1:

Make the milk and sugar hot (around 37°C)

Step 2:

Using the milk and yeast, mix the mixture and wait until it rises

Step 3:

Mix the butter with the flour (with your hands) after softening it.

Step 4:

Put the yeast mixture and eggs in the middle of the flour mixture with a dent.

Step 5:

Combine all the ingredients and knead them

Step 6:

Let it rest for one hour under a cover.

Step 7:

While you’re waiting, mix the filling ingredients (but leave out the raisins)

Step 8:

Divide the dough into two parts

Step 9:

Make each dough square by rolling it out with a rolling pin

Step 10:

 Add the raisins after spreading the filling with a spatula, except for 1 cm from the edges.

Step 11:

Roll up the dough by folding the edges over the filling and pressing down on all four sides.

Step 12:

Use a fork to poke small holes on top and sides to prevent cracking

Step 13:

Apply an egg wash

Step 14:

Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes at 180°C (356°F)

Step 15:

Place it under a towel to cool

Pro Baking Tips for the Best Hungarian Christmas Cake:

Tip 1: Make sure your ingredients are of high quality. In terms of flavor and texture, it really makes a difference.

Tip 2: Refrain from overworking the dough. A gentle touch ensures a flaky, soft pastry.

Tip 3: Let the filling cool before spreading it on the dough.

Tip 4: For a beautifully shiny finish, brush the top of your cake with an egg wash.

Tip 5: Monitor the baking time. Overbaking can dry out the filling.


1) Can I use store-bought fillings?

While homemade is best, store-bought can work in a pinch but Don’t forget to choose a high-quality product.

2) Is it possible to make a gluten-free version?

Replace regular flour with gluten-free flour.

3) How long can the cake be stored?

If stored at room temperature in an airtight container, it will stay fresh for up to a week.

4) Can I freeze the Hungarian Christmas Cake?

Yes! Make sure it is tightly wrapped and placed in the freezer. Thaw before serving.

5) What’s the best drink to pair with it?

A warm glass of mulled wine complements the cake’s flavors wonderfully.


A slice of Hungarian culture and tradition, the Hungarian Christmas cake has a rich history and delicious taste. With the holidays just around the corner, 

This cake will make your Christmas sweet and memorable, whether you are honoring your Hungarian roots or exploring international desserts. Let’s bake!

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