Småland Ostkaka (Swedish Cheesecake)


Rain is pouring down in Bergen today (I know, I’m shocked as well) and it was cold enough to fire up my wood oven. The good news is that Alfie had really needed a bath after we went on a muddy hike this weekend, and now it looks like the rain has done the job for us. And the other good news is that I decided today would be a good day for a cosy and super easy dessert: Swedish cheesecake!

Scandinavia shares a lot of similar desserts, but one cake that is very different in Norway and Sweden is cheesecake. While Norwegian cheesecake is the crushed cookie crust and cream cheese version Americans also know and love, Swedish ostkaka is entirely different.

ostkaka Swedish cheese cake

Ostkaka, also called curd cake, originally comes from Småland. Traditionally Småländsk ostkaka is made with raw milk and cheese rennet, however these days most people simply use cottage cheese instead, which is much faster and gives the same flavor and texture. Ostkaka is an eggy, crustless cake with cottage cheese, ground almonds, and lemon zest, usually served with whipped cream and jam.

In fact one of my favorite things about Swedish cheesecake is how easy it is to make. You can have the cake batter mixed up and in the oven in under five minutes.

Ostkaka is so beloved across Scandinavia that it even has its own day! November 14th is Ostkakans dag, The Cheesecake’s Day. But don’t worry if November is far away, any day can be ostkakans dag if you have a good ostkaka recipe – which now you do!


If you want a smooth ostkaka you can mash the cottage cheese until it has no more lumps. But I like to keep some of the lumps, so I only mash the cottage cheese a little bit before adding in the rest of the ingredients.

And the same goes for the almonds – you can grind them in a food processor until they’re quite fine, or you can chop them roughly with a knife. I like to have them quite finely ground. You can also omit the lemon zest if you don’t want the lemon flavor. I think it’s nice with lemon zest, but it’s also delicious without.

And if you want a richer cheesecake, you can use heavy cream instead of milk. And you can also reduce the sugar for a less sweet cake that can be a nice high protein breakfast or snack as well.

ostkaka batter

I used a larger form to bake the cake this time, which meant that my ostkaka was on the thinner side. But it still tasted just as good! If you do change the size of the baking form then be sure to keep an eye on the cake in the oven, as it might be ready sooner. I bake mine until the top starts to turn golden brown.

ostkaka Swedish cheese cake

You can serve this cake while it’s still warm, or you can wait and serve it cold – both are delicious. Traditionally Småland ostkaka is served lukewarm. I store the cake in the fridge covered in plastic wrap.

ostkaka Swedish cheese cake
ostkaka Swedish cheese cake with jam and whipped cream

Traditionally you would serve Swedish ostkaka with jam and whipped cream, but I think it’s great on its own as well.

ostkaka Swedish cheese cake

You can switch the recipe from US measurements to metric by clicking from “US Customary” to “Metric” under Ingredients.

ostkaka Swedish cheese cake with jam and whipped cream

Ostkaka (Swedish Cheesecake)

Ostkaka, a Swedish cheesecake from Småland, is an eggy, crustless cake with cottage cheese, ground almonds, and lemon zest, usually served with whipped cream and jam.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Swedish
Keyword: almond, cake, cheese
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 6
Author: Silvia


  • 2 cups cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/4 cups milk or heavy cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • zest of half a lemon (optional)

For serving

  • whipped cream
  • jam


  • Preheat oven to 390°F (200°C) and butter a form about 6×8 inches (16×20 cm).
  • Mash the cottage cheese in a mixing bowl – you can decide how smooth you would like it. Add the flour, milk, eggs, sugar, and lemon zest and stir together.
  • Chop the almonds and stir into the the batter.
  • Pour the batter into your form and bake for 45 – 50 minutes, until the top turns golden.
  • Serve with whipped cream and jam. It's good both warm and cold.


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