Traditional food from Denmark is quite savory and flavorful and remains quite simple in character and easy to make at home. In this article, you can learn more about Danish food and some of the most iconic dishes.
Smørrebrød is perhaps the most well-known food from Denmark, but there are actually more to Danish food, although I’m the first to admit that some good Smørrebrød is hard to beat.
Let’s start with a real classic, the Aebleflæsk which is made with apples, pork belly, and sugar. It’s a hearty dish that goes well with some rye bread and danish beer.
The dish is especially common in Funen, which is the third-largest island in Denmark, and home to the city of Odense.
Stegt flæsk med persillesovs og kartoffler
Denmark doesn’t have an official national dish, but in 2014, some 60 000 people voted for this to be acknowledged as the Danish national dish. Translated into English, it would be named fried pork with parsley sauce and potatoes.
It’s a beloved food from Denmark that is easy to make at home.
Karbonader, also known as Krebinetter is another traditional food from Denmark. These are meat patties, often made of pork and served with potatoes and green peas.
The potatoes can either be boiled or mashed.
This is a traditional soup in Denmark, which consists of chicken balls, carrots, and broth. It’s another simple dish, and it’s commonly eaten during the colder months of the year.
Frikadeller is more or less the Danish version of meatballs, and they can be made with pork, beef, fish, or even hen. Frikadeller made from meat is often served with potatoes and parsley sauce.
The fish version is commonly eaten cold with remoulade sauce.
Rød Pølse is basically a red sausage which is a very common street food in Denmark, sold all over the country. It’s typically served with a special kind of hot dog bread on the side along with ketchup, fried onions, and Danish mustard.
It can be eaten in the bread with some gherkins on top, but the most common way to eat Rød Pølse is by using your hands and dipping the bread and sausage in the mustard and ketchup as well as the fried onions.
Medisterpølse is another traditional sausage in Denmark and is often served with pickles, potatoes garnished with parsley.
Smørrebrød is a quintessential part of the Danish cuisine, and what used to be a poor man’s food made from leftovers, has not become one of the trademarks when it comes to food from Denmark.
A Smørrebrød is a kind of open-faced sandwich that can come with various toppings. The base is often rye bread, and you’ll find places selling these across the whole country.
Danish restaurants will serve Flæskesteg all year round, although Danes typically eat it for Christmas. Flæskesteg is roasted pork, and the Danish version was first described in a cooking book by Frk. Jensen that dates back to 1901.
If you visit Denmark for Valentine’s Day, you should definitely order Brændende kærlighed, which can be translated to “burning love”. It’s made with mashed potatoes and bacon, and it’s a quick dish that you can easily cook at home.
Rye Bread (Danish: Rugbrød) is a staple food in the Nordics, and it’s the most common type of bread in Denmark. It can be served on the side to various dishes, and the rye bread is also eaten for breakfast and used as the base for Smørrebrød.
Danish pastries and desserts
There are lots of traditional pastries and desserts in Denmark, and the Danes are known for having a sweet-tooth.
- Danish Wiener bread (Wienerbrød)
- Coconut Tops
- Cinnamon rolls (Kanelsnegle)
What is a traditional breakfast in Denmark?
Danish breakfast typically consists of bread, cold cuts, coffee, cereals, yogurt, and cheese. Most Danes will eat breakfast at home, and it varies individually a lot what is eaten.
Traditional Christmas Food in Denmark
The Danish Christmas Dinner is one of the highlights of the year and a time of the year when families gather and feast on various dishes. Below are some typical foods that you will find on a traditional Christmas table in Denmark.
- Roast pork
- Chicken and Asparagus tartlets
- Christmas duck
- Old-fashioned brawn
- Sugar-browned potatoes
- Homemade rolled sausage
- Rice Pudding
The Danish Cuisine
Denmark has a lot of original dishes compared to other Scandinavian countries, although the ingredients are similar to the ones used in Norwegian Food, Swedish Food, Icelandic Food, and even Finnish Food.
Pork is a staple food in Denmark and the Danish cuisine along with potatoes. Other kinds of meat are eaten as well, but most dishes will include pork and potatoes.
Danish chefs are nowadays trying to reinvent the local cuisine by using top-quality ingredients sourced from local farms. Copenhagen has several restaurants that have been awarded with Michelin stars, and it’s one of the food capitals in Scandinavia.
Danish Beer and Akvavit often go well with traditional food from Denmark.
What is your favorite Danish food? Leave a comment below!