Nürnberger Lebkuchen


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Welcome to the world of German baking with our Authentic Nürnberger Lebkuchen recipe. These aromatic and spiced gingerbread cookies have been a beloved holiday treat in Nuremberg, Germany, for centuries. With their rich flavors and tender texture, Nürnberger Lebkuchen are a delightful addition to any festive occasion. Join us as we explore the history and flavors of this traditional German treat and guide you through the steps to create your own batch of homemade Nürnberger Lebkuchen.

Nürnberger Lebkuchen, often simply referred to as Lebkuchen, is a type of traditional German gingerbread cookie that originates from the city of Nuremberg in Bavaria, Germany. These cookies have a rich history dating back to the 14th century.

  • Medieval Roots: The history of Lebkuchen can be traced to medieval times when ginger, honey, and spices were considered valuable commodities. Initially created by monks and apothecaries for their medicinal properties, these cookies evolved into a beloved holiday treat.
  • Nuremberg Tradition: Nuremberg has long been associated with Lebkuchen production, and it’s even mentioned in historical documents dating back to the 14th century. The city’s Lebkuchen are renowned for their quality and have been protected by the European Union as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) product.
  • Holiday Delicacy: Today, Nürnberger Lebkuchen are an integral part of German Christmas traditions, enjoyed during the holiday season. They come in various shapes and sizes, often heart-shaped or round, and are known for their spicy, sweet, and nutty flavors.

Nürnberger Lebkuchen

Authentic Nürnberger Lebkuchen are gingerbread-like cookies made with a blend of aromatic spices, nuts, candied fruits, and honey. These cookies are known for their soft and chewy texture and are often topped with a sweet glaze or a sprinkle of powdered sugar. Traditionally enjoyed during the holiday season, Nürnberger Lebkuchen are the perfect treat to indulge in during cozy winter evenings or to share with family and friends.

Tools and Equipment

Prep Time 30 mins Cook Time 15 mins Rest Time 2 hrs Total Time 2 hrs 45 mins Difficulty: Intermediate Servings: 36 Calories: 95.84 Best Season: Winter


For the Cookies:

For the Glaze (Optional):

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, ground almonds, ground hazelnuts, candied orange peel, candied lemon peel, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. Mix well to evenly distribute the ingredients.

  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the honey, granulated sugar, eggs, and rum (if using) until well combined.

  3. Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, mixing with a spatula or electric mixer until a soft dough forms.

  4. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight to allow the flavors to develop and the dough to firm up.

  5. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

  6. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and divide it into small portions. Roll each portion into a ball and flatten slightly to form a cookie shape.

  7. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, leaving some space between them to allow for spreading.

  8. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes, or until they are lightly golden brown around the edges. Be careful not to overbake, as the cookies should remain soft and chewy.

  9. Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

  10. If desired, prepare the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth. Brush or drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies and allow it to set before serving.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 36

Amount Per Serving
Calories 95.84kcal
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2.04g4%
Saturated Fat 0.22g2%
Cholesterol 10.33mg4%
Sodium 25.05mg2%
Potassium 25.27mg1%
Total Carbohydrate 18.31g7%
Dietary Fiber 0.62g3%
Sugars 11.63g
Protein 1.62g4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Please note that the nutritional values provided are approximate and may vary depending on the specific ingredients and portion sizes used. It's always best to double-check with your specific ingredients and measurements for accurate nutritional information.


Tips and Variations:
  • For a more intense flavor, let the dough rest in the refrigerator for 24-48 hours before baking.
  • Customize the cookies by adding chopped nuts, raisins, or other dried fruits to the dough.
  • Decorate the cookies with a drizzle of melted chocolate or sprinkle them with chopped nuts or colored sugar before baking.
  • Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks.
Serving Suggestions:
  • Enjoy Nürnberger Lebkuchen with a cup of hot tea or mulled wine. They also make a delightful addition to holiday cookie platters or gift baskets.
Allergen Information:

Nürnberger Lebkuchen recipes may contain common allergens. Be mindful of the following:

  • Nuts: Many Lebkuchen recipes include ground almonds or hazelnuts, which can be allergens for some individuals.

  • Gluten: Traditional recipes use wheat flour, making Lebkuchen unsuitable for those with gluten allergies or sensitivities.

  • Dairy: Some variations might contain dairy products, such as butter, milk, or eggs. Check the recipe or packaging for dairy-free alternatives.

Wine or Drink Pairing:

Pairing a beverage with Nürnberger Lebkuchen can enhance the experience:

  • Mulled Wine (Glühwein): The warm and spiced flavors of mulled wine complement the spices in Lebkuchen, making for a cozy and traditional pairing.

  • Coffee: A cup of coffee, whether black or with cream, pairs well with the sweetness of Lebkuchen and balances the spices.

Storage and Leftovers:

To keep your Nürnberger Lebkuchen fresh and enjoy leftovers:

  • Airtight Container: Store your Lebkuchen in an airtight container to prevent them from becoming stale. You can also place a slice of bread in the container to help maintain their moisture.

  • Cool, Dry Place: Keep the container in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

  • Freezing: If you have a large batch or want to save some for later, Lebkuchen can be frozen in an airtight container for several months. Thaw them at room temperature before serving.

Keywords: Nürnberger Lebkuchen, German gingerbread cookies, holiday baking, traditional cookies, spiced treats

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