17 Most Popular Food In Sweden: Foods To Try In Sweden

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Sweden is known for many things, like its stunning natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. From savory meatballs to sweet delicacies like Kladdkaka and Semla, Swedish dishes are known for their fresh, flavorful ingredients, like seafood, meats, and berries.

The popularity of traditional Swedish cuisine has grown globally, resulting in many restaurants and chefs incorporating Swedish flavors into their menus. But did you know that Swedish cuisine is also something to marvel at? Swedish food is a treat for the taste buds, from delicious meatballs to scrumptious mud cake.

Here we’ll take you on a culinary journey through Sweden’s most popular food in Sweden. With 17 sumptuous delicacies to choose from, including Falu sausage and pickled herring, there’s something for everyone. So sit back and relax as we explore the flavors of Swedish cuisine and learn what makes them so unique.

Popular Food In Sweden

17 Popular Food In Sweden – Traditional Swedish Dishes

Traditional Swedish dishes are a testament to the rich culinary heritage of Sweden. From meatballs to gravlax, these dishes showcase fresh and locally sourced ingredients, such as seafood, berries, and meats. One popular dish is Prinsesstårta, a layered cake made with sponge cake, whipped cream, and raspberry jam.

Its beautiful green outer layer is made of marzipan and gives it a delightful texture. Another favourite dish is Jansson’s Temptation, a creamy potato casserole made with anchovies. These dishes are just a few examples of why traditional Swedish cuisine has become increasingly popular worldwide. Here are the 17 Most popular food in Sweden:

1. Köttbullar (Meatballs)

Köttbullar, or Swedish meatballs, are among the most iconic dishes in Sweden. These little balls of flavor are made using a blend of ground beef and pork, breadcrumbs, egg, and spices such as allspice and nutmeg.

At the same time, it might seem like a simple dish, but the perfect köttbullar requires a delicate balance of ingredients. Not only do they need to be cooked until they’re juicy and tender on the inside, but they must also be crispy on the outside.

This classic Swedish dish is often served with lingonberry sauce, mashed potatoes, and pickled cucumber. It’s no wonder that it has become synonymous with Swedish cuisine worldwide. Whether you try them at a restaurant or make them at home using traditional recipes, köttbullar is an absolute must-try for anyone looking to explore Sweden’s culinary delights.

2. Räkmacka (Shrimp Sandwich)

An iconic Swedish dish, Räkmacka or shrimp sandwich is a go-to snack for locals and tourists alike. This simple yet delicious sandwich typically consists of boiled shrimp, lettuce, and mayonnaise on top of a slice of bread.

The flavor combinations are perfect, making it an ideal meal for any time of the day. If you want an authentic Swedish culinary experience, try this popular dish in one of the many cafes or restaurants nationwide. It’s a great way to taste Sweden’s unique flavors and food culture.

3. Falukorv (Falu Sausage)

Falu sausage, or Falukorv, is a popular traditional Swedish sausage that has remained a staple of the country’s cuisine for centuries. Named after the town of Falun, where it was first created, this sausage is made with ground beef and pork. It is known for its distinctive red colour from being cooked in copper mines.

Falukorv can be enjoyed cold or hot, sliced or fried, and is often accompanied by mashed potatoes or lingonberry jam. It’s rich flavour and versatility make it a must-try dish for anyone exploring Sweden’s culinary delights.

4. Pytt I Panna (Swedish Hash)

Pytt I Panna, also known as Swedish Hash, is a delicious and hearty dish staple in Swedish cuisine. This dish dates back to the 19th century when it was created to use leftover meat and vegetables. Today, it is a popular meal in many restaurants and cafes throughout Sweden.

The diced potatoes, onions, and meat are pan-fried until crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. A fried egg on top adds even more flavour and texture to this satisfying dish. Pytt I Panna is perfect for lunch or dinner, especially during colder months when something warm and filling is needed.

5. Surströmming (Sour Herring)

Surströmming, a traditional Swedish dish of fermented herring, has gained notoriety for its solid and pungent smell. While it may be an acquired taste, many Swedes enjoy this dish during the late summer months and even celebrate it with annual festivals.

People typically serve Surströmming with potatoes, onions, and sour cream on crispbread or tunnbröd. Pairing it with schnapps or beer is also common. Despite its divisive reputation, Surströmming remains a beloved and unique aspect of Swedish cuisine that visitors should try at least once while visiting Sweden.

6. Ostkaka (Cheesecake)

Ostkaka is a beloved Swedish dessert synonymous with the country’s culinary culture. Made from curdled milk, cream, and eggs, this sweet treat has a texture similar to cheesecake but is less sweet and has a milder flavour. Typically, people serve the dish with whipped cream and lingonberry jam, making it the perfect complement to any meal.

Ostkaka is delicious and carries cultural significance as a staple of Swedish cuisine. Whether enjoyed during holidays or special occasions, Ostkaka is a must-try for anyone looking to indulge in traditional Swedish cuisine.

7. Kladdkaka (Mud Cake)

Kladdkaka, also known as Mud Cake, is a quintessential Swedish dessert that has become increasingly popular worldwide. This delectable cake is renowned for its gooey texture and rich chocolate flavour, making it an indulgent treat for anyone with a sweet tooth.

Kladdkaka originated in the 1930s and now people of all ages consider it a staple in Swedish cuisine. The best part about this dessert is its straightforwardness, which can be whipped quickly. Whether you’re hosting a fancy dinner party or need to satisfy your chocolate cravings, Kladdkaka is the perfect choice.

8. Pickled Herring

Pickled herring is a beloved and traditional Swedish dish enjoyed for generations. People typically serve this salty and savoury appetizer with bread, potatoes, and sour cream or as part of an array. There are many ways to prepare pickled herring, including onions, mustard, or dill. They even hold festivals dedicated to this dish in Sweden. With its unique flavour and texture, pickled herring is a must-try for anyone visiting Sweden who wants to experience its rich culinary traditions.

9. Stekt Strömming

Generations have enjoyed the classic Swedish dish, Stekt Strömming.  They typically serve this fried herring dish with boiled potatoes and lingonberry jam to create a perfect balance of flavors. Herring is a staple food in Sweden, thanks to the country’s abundant waters.

Swedes often serve Stekt Strömming during festive occasions such as Midsummer celebrations when they come together to enjoy good food, drink, and company. This dish has deep cultural significance and embodies the country’s culinary traditions, making it a must-try for anyone visiting Sweden.

10. Gravad Lax

Gravad Lax is a dish that’s popular both in Sweden and beyond. They make this traditional Swedish delicacy by curing raw salmon with salt, sugar, and dill. Gravad Lax has a delicate texture and flavour that pairs perfectly with creamy sauces or tangy mustard.

This dish is unique because it is easy to prepare at home with fresh salmon and the right ingredients. People typically serve Gravad Lax as an appetizer or on open-faced sandwiches called smörgås. It’s a must-try for anyone who loves seafood and wants to experience Sweden’s rich culinary heritage.

11. Havskräftor

It introduces Havskräftor, a traditional Swedish dish that locals and tourists love. People typically serve this dish cold and accompany it with bread, cheese, and snaps – a traditional Swedish spirit, due to its delicate flavor and tender texture. What makes Havskräftor stand out is the preparation method.

They boil the crayfish with dill and salt, and then leave them to marinate in their juices for several hours. While it’s traditionally served during a crayfish party, you can also find it at most Swedish restaurants. Whether you’re celebrating or simply looking to indulge in some authentic Swedish cuisine, Havskräftor is an excellent choice.

12. Knäckebröd (Crisp Bread)

Knäckebröd, a traditional Swedish crisp bread popular for over five centuries, is a staple in Swedish cuisine. The bread is thin, crunchy, and made from whole-grain rye flour, water, and salt. People often serve it with cheese or other toppings, and it has a long shelf life, making it perfect for winter when fresh food is scarce.

The simplicity of the ingredients used to make Knäckebröd and its ability to last for extended periods have made it an essential item in almost every Swedish household. People worldwide are quickly discovering this delicious snack.

13. Filmjölk

Swedes enjoy a popular fermented milk product called Filmjölk which resembles yoghurt but has a thinner consistency and a unique tangy taste. People often enjoy it for breakfast with muesli, berries, or bread. Besides being delicious, Filmjölk also provides health benefits as it is a good source of probiotics that can help improve gut health. It may be harder to come by outside Scandinavia although most grocery stores in Sweden easily find it. So if you’re ever in Sweden, try this traditional breakfast staple locals have enjoyed for generations.

14. Semla (Sweet Roll)

With a history dating back to the 16th century, Semla is a traditional Swedish sweet roll that has stood the test of time. Made with cardamom-spiced wheat flour and filled with almond paste and whipped cream, Semla is a treat for the senses.

The Swedes initially ate this beloved pastry during the Lenten season, but it has since become available year-round. Whether enjoyed with a cup of coffee or tea or during a “Semla Day” competition, it’s clear that this sweet roll has earned its place as one of Sweden’s most popular foods.

15. Kaffebröd (Coffee Bread)

Kaffebröd is a staple pastry in Sweden, often enjoyed with a warm cup of coffee or tea. It is a versatile treat, coming in various forms, such as cinnamon rolls, cardamom buns, and almond tarts. Swedes have a tradition of fika, which means taking a break to enjoy coffee and pastries with friends or colleagues.

Kaffebröd’s light and fluffy texture and rich buttery flavour make it the perfect accompaniment to any hot beverage. It is widely available in most bakeries and cafes across Sweden and will satisfy your sweet tooth cravings.

16. Christmas Beverages

Swedish Christmas beverages are a cherished tradition during the holiday season. Glögg, a spiced mulled wine, is a popular choice that warms up even the coldest winter nights. Rich in spices like cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom, it is perfect for sipping on while enjoying traditional Swedish Christmas foods like gingerbread cookies or saffron buns.

For those who prefer a non-alcoholic option, julmust is an excellent choice. This soft drink has a unique taste similar to root beer and pairs well with classic holiday dishes. Combining these beverages and delicious foods makes for an unforgettable Swedish Christmas experience.

17. Sweet Drinks

Swedish cuisine often enjoys sweet drinks with traditional dishes as an essential part. Julmust is a popular sweet drink, a non-alcoholic beverage made from malt extract, spices, and carbonated water. It is trendy during Christmas when Swedes indulge in festive treats and gather with loved ones.

Another well-liked sweet drink is Glögg, a warm spiced wine typically served in winter. This comforting beverage is perfect for warming up on a chilly evening. Swedish cider is also a popular sweet drink that comes in many different flavors. Its refreshing taste makes it an excellent choice to pair with savoury dishes to balance the flavors.


Swedish cuisine has a wide range of delicious and unique dishes worth trying. Swedes have created some of the world’s most comforting and flavorful meals, from meatballs to crispbread. From meatballs and lingonberry sauce to crispbread and pickled herring, Sweden offers a wide variety of delicious and unique foods.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor, exploring the diverse flavors of Swedish cuisine is a must-do experience. So why wait? Start planning your culinary adventure today and explore the rich flavors of Sweden. Share this blog about popular food in Sweden with your friends who love food, and arrange a trip to Sweden together to experience these mouth-watering delicacies. Who knows, you might just discover your new favorite food.

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Most Popular Food In Sweden

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What Foods Is Sweden Famous For?

Ans: Sweden is popular for its delicious meatballs, often served with lingonberry jam. Gravlax, a type of salmon cured with salt and sugar, is another popular dish. For a traditional Swedish dining experience, smörgåsbord offers a buffet-style meal with various cold and hot dishes.

2. What Is Sweden’s National Dish?

Ans: Sweden does not have an official national dish, but some of the most famous traditional dishes include meatballs, pickled herring, and gravlax. Other Swedish delicacies include cinnamon buns, Princess cake, and buffet. Swedish cuisine often incorporates fresh seafood, game meat, and foraged ingredients.

3. What Food Is Stockholm Famous For?

Ans: Stockholm is famous for its traditional Swedish meatballs, a must-try when visiting the city. Other popular foods in Stockholm include pickled herring, crispbread, and smoked salmon. Fika, a beloved tradition in Stockholm, involves taking a coffee break with pastries or cakes.

4. What Is The Food Lifestyle In Sweden?

Ans: The food lifestyle in Sweden is generally healthy and balanced, with an emphasis on fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Traditional Swedish dishes include meatballs, gravlax, and pickled herring.

In addition to meals, Swedes also enjoy a daily coffee break known as fika, which typically includes sweet treats like pastries or cakes.

5. What Is A Typical Breakfast In Sweden?

Ans: A typical Swedish breakfast often includes open-faced sandwiches, cheese, cold cuts, and boiled eggs. Porridge, yogurt with muesli or granola, and fresh fruit are popular breakfast choices in Sweden. Swedes typically enjoy their breakfast with coffee or tea.

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