Knäck – The Traditional Swedish Treat Sweetening Christmas

In Candy by Skjalden

Knäck is a traditional Swedish candy that people often make during Christmas (In Swedish: Jul). It’s a simple mix of syrup, sugar, and cream, sometimes with added chopped almonds for flavor. The name “Knäck” translates to “crack,” reflecting the candy’s hard, crunchy texture. However, the hardness can vary; some like it softer, while others prefer it very crunchy.

Making Knäck is a common holiday activity in Sweden, bringing families and friends together. You cook the mixture until it’s just right, then pour it into small, paper molds to cool and harden. It’s a fun part of the holiday preparations that many people look forward to every year. To change it up, some add breadcrumbs or coconut flakes to bulk up the candy and baking soda to make it lighter and airier.

The tradition of making Knäck goes back to the late 1800s in Sweden. It’s a bit like butterscotch but has its own unique taste and way of making it. Most often, people use light syrup for a gentler sweetness, but dark syrup can be used for a stronger, nuttier flavor.

Knäck is really just part of what makes Christmas feel like Christmas in Sweden. It’s not just about the sweetness or the crunch; it’s about what it represents—comfort, family, and holiday traditions. Whether you’re someone who has grown up making Knäck every December, or you’re giving it a try for the first time, this candy is a small, tasty symbol of the holiday’s spirit. It’s about bringing a bit of Swedish cheer to the winter, something everyone can enjoy.

Photo credit: Per Enström