Brune Pinner (Norwegian Christmas Cookies)

brune pinne Norwegian Christmas cookies

Norwegians typically make seven types of cookies for Christmas (7 slag til jul). Each family will have its own favorites, but there are a few traditional cookies that make it in most people’s seven, including krumkaker, fattigmann, and brune pinner.

Brune pinner, or “brown sticks,” are sliced cookies that are crispy on the edges and soft on the inside, spiced with cinnamon and cloves and topped with sugar and sometimes chopped almonds, or other nuts.

They’re a bit like Swedish chokladsnittar and Swedish cardamom cookies, except instead of chocolate or cardamom, brune pinner feature Christmas spices and nuts.

Actually Norwegians seem quite divided on whether brune pinner should be topped with almonds (or other nuts) or only pearl sugar. To be on the safe side, I topped half of this batch with almonds and half with sugar, so everyone would be happy. While I do love almond cookies, I actually do prefer brune pinner topped only with sugar – but I’ll happily eat them with nuts as well!

brune pinne Norwegian Christmas cookies

Brune pinner dough is very easy and quick to make. And you don’t even have to roll the dough into cookies with brune pinner. You simply roll it into four long sausages and press them down with your hands. Because you’ll be slicing the baked cookies lengths, you don’t have to worry too much about what the dough looks like when you put it into the oven.

The dough will spread quite a bit as it bakes, so leave plenty of room between them.

brushing brune pinner dough with egg white

Norwegian pearl sugar is different from Swedish pearl sugar. Swedish pearl sugar is white and opaque, while Norwegian pearl sugar is clear crystals. Use whatever you have, or if you have neither you could always use regular granulated sugar or whatever other sugar you have on hand instead.

decorating brune pinner with pearl sugar and almonds

Be sure to slice the cookies quite quickly when they come out of the oven, as they’re much easier to slice when they’re warm and soft. I use a pizza wheel to slice them, but you could also slice them with a knife.

slicing brune pinner cookies

Brune pinner are a rare cookie that actually tastes better a day or two later . Or at least I think they taste better then, though that might also be because most of the brune pinner I’ve eaten out of cookie tins were baked earlier. At any rate, they will last pretty well when stored in an airtight cookie tin!

brune pinne Norwegian Christmas cookies
brune pinne Norwegian Christmas cookies

Brune Pinner (Norwegian Christmas Cookies)

Brune pinner are sliced cookies that are crispy on the edges and soft on the inside, spiced with cinnamon and cloves and topped with sugar and sometimes chopped almonds, or other nuts.
5 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Norwegian
Keyword: almond, Christmas, cinnamon, cookies
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 40 cookies
Author: Silvia


  • 14 tbsp butter (softened)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp light syrup or light molasses
  • 1 egg separated into yolk and egg white
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar (or extract)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour


  • pearl sugar
  • chopped or sliced almonds, or other nuts (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 355°F (180°C) and line a baking sheet with baking paper.
  • Add the butter, brown sugar, and syrup to a mixing bowl and beat until fluffy. Add the egg yolk, setting aside the egg white for later, and stir until smooth.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients and mix together, first with a spoon and then kneading with your hands until the dough comes together in a ball.
  • Divide the dough into four sections and roll them out into long sausages. Place two sausages on the baking sheet and press them down with your hands until flat.
  • Brush the dough with the egg white and sprinkle with pearl sugar and nuts (if desired).
  • Bake for 12 – 15 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for a couple of minutes and then cut into diagonal slices and cool on a wire rack.


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