Catie’s Kitchen: Oliebollen

Happy New Year’s Eve everyone! I love how New Year’s Eve is filled with traditions around our house. One of them is making a traditional Dutch treat called ‘oliebollen’. Oliebollen are literally translated to oil balls, but you might know them as Dutch Doughnuts or Dutchies. The tradition is to eat them on New Year’s Eve and they are also sold in the street at mobile stalls in wintertime. Some people even say that they’re the precursor of the famous American doughnuts. It seems like early Dutch settlers brought this recipe over to the New World, where it evolved into the Doughnuts you know and love.

Since we use a mixture of our own recipe and a oliebollen mix from the store, I looked into our family’s recipes to find one that will show you how to make oliebollen from scratch. The recipe is in grams and liters, you might need to convert it to cups if you use those.

Let’s start to make these delicious treats!

The ingredients: 

500 grams flower

350 milliliter lukewarm water

150 milliliter room temperature beer

25 grams yeast (or 7 grams dried yeast)

250 grams raisins

(optional) 100 grams bigarreaux

a pinch of salt

Don’t worry about adding the beer. The alcohol will completely dissolve, so it’s safe to use for children or anyone who doesn’t drink alcohol. Also, it does not taste anything like beer or alcohol. It does add a great flavor to the olieballen though!


Take your raisins and clean them with water. Grab a bowl filled with warm water and let the raisins sit in the bowl for 10 minutes. Let them dry on a towel.

Oliebollen Recipe

Mix the flower, yeast, beer, water and a pinch of salt together to make the batter.

Oliebollen Recipe

Add the bigarreaux and raisins to the batter and softly stir them together. 


Cover the batter with a towel and put it in a dry, warm space to let it rise for about 45 minutes to an hour. Do not stir or mix the batter after this step.


Use a frypan filled with sunflower oil and set the temperature to 190 degrees celsius (374 ºF). The best way to make round and same sized olieballen is to use a ice scoop. Wet the scoop with sunflower oil, fill it with the batter and carefully place the round balls in the frypan. Turn them every so often until they’re an even light brown color.


You can eat them like this! Other great ways to eat them are with powdered sugar or a mixture of sugar and cinnamon.


That’s it! You now know how to make awesome and delicious Dutch oliebollen. If you try to make these send me a picture on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #catieskitchen and I’ll come over to take a look!

I wish you a blessed, creative, healthy and happy 2014! Enjoy your oliebollen!


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