The Swiss are famous all over the world for many things. There are watches, gorgeous mountain vistas, and food, and cheese. But nothing beats Swiss sweets.
One of the most famous Swiss products is high-quality chocolate treats that people of all ages absolutely love.
Switzerland, along with many other places around Europe, is famous for Christmas markets and all of the treats sold there. They’ve spent centuries perfecting their craft, and the best eventually made their way to other parts of the world.
Whether you’re planning a trip to Switzerland for Christmas or want to try some Swiss treats at home wherever you are, here are nine of the most delicious Swiss Christmas desserts.
1. Swiss Chocolates
This, of course, has to be at the top of your list. If you go into most grocery stores in any country, there is going to be a section for Swiss chocolates. Their chocolate quality and variety of flavors are unmatched.
You can buy a wide range of chocolates in different darknesses, with or without nuts, in different sizes, etc. Some come with beautiful patterns or decorations on them.
Chocolatiers are constantly upping the level of chocolate candies and other chocolate foods.
Some of the most famous Swiss chocolate brands include Toblerone (that you see in every duty-free shop in airports) and Lindt. As you move up the price scale, you can find smaller chocolate producers that make amazing chocolates.
The Swiss’ history with chocolate dates back to the early 1800s. They were the first to combine milk with chocolate, which changed the trajectory of desserts globally.
In addition to being famous for their chocolates, the Swiss are also expert cookie makers.
Cookies are a very popular Christmas dessert in Switzerland. And, as with most things in Switzerland, their cookies are full of history.
The Tirggel cookie is made with sugar, honey, and flour. It’s a thin, hard cookie that sits on tables and kitchen counters during the holiday season.
You’ll see them at Christmas festivals around the country, and you can spot them with intricate art on the cookies. Believe it or not, the first mention of tirggel cookies was found in trial court records from 1461!
3. Basler Lackerli
If you’re looking for something sweet and full of nuts and honey, see if you can buy or make Basler Lackerli.
This is a Swiss dessert that dates back to the Middle Ages. They’re considered to be a Basel specialty and are a popular Christmas treat these days, though you can find them throughout the year.
Basler Lackerli is a hard dessert that’s a bit like biscotti, but with candied citrus peel inside and a light sugar frosting.
It’s usually cut into small rectangles and served to guests fresh out of the oven.
4. Basler Brunsli
Basler Brunsli, or Brune De Bale in the French-speaking areas of Switzerland, is another cookie famous for Christmas cutout shapes and a rich chocolate flavor.
A lot of Basler Brunsli cookies have nuts like almonds or hazelnuts inside.
They also have cloves and cinnamon included to give them a distinct holiday flavor. They’re a great cookie to add to your holiday mix because their darker color contrasts most of the light cookies we so often see at Christmas.
5. Yule Log
If you ever visit a Swiss bakery during the holidays, you are bound to see intricate Yule logs with amazing designs. These roll cakes filled with cream are decorated to look like logs, animals, and other shapes associated with the holidays.
The Yule log goes back to a European tradition of when people would decorate real logs to bring in the winter solstice.
Now we get to eat delicious cake that looks like logs!
6. Advent Calendars
Ok, so this is not your typical idea of a traditional dessert, but the advent calendar is a rich tradition with sweets associated, so we’re including it in this list.
The advent calendar is meant to count the days until Christmas. It’s made from a hollow box with holes filled with treats for every day of December.
Every evening children get to take turns opening a calendar slot that reveals delicious Swiss chocolate they can eat for dessert.
Advent calendars are sold in almost every country now, but it’s still a cherished tradition back home in Switzerland.
Zimtsterne cookies, or cinnamon stars, are another traditional Swiss Christmas dessert. They are similar in consistency to Basler Brusnli, with nuts and all, but they are heavy on cinnamon.
The sugar glaze goes on the star-shaped cookies before they go into the oven, and they don’t need to cook for long.
Out comes a delicious biscuit with a creamy glaze on top that almost resembles a meringue.
8. Apple Strudel
Apple Strudel is a year-round dessert in Switzerland that gets extra love during the holiday season. Apple strudel is the Swiss equivalent of apple pie, though strudel is a bit more of a delicate dessert.
With some fresh clotted cream on top, you’ll love biting into a strudel full of fresh apples, sugar, and cinnamon.
Though apple strudel didn’t originate in Switzerland, you’ll still find it in most bakeries or restaurants. When it’s cold outside, it’s tough to beat a hot apple strudel with a creamy sauce drizzled over it to keep you warm and happy.
We’re at the end of our list, and by now you’ve probably guessed that Swiss people love their Christmas cookies. The Spizbuben rounds out our top 9 must-try Swiss desserts because it’s a tasty cookie made in all of the traditional Christmas and holiday shapes.
You’ve got your bells, stars, leaves, and trees, etc. to choose from. They’re a smooth cookie that’s dusted with powdered sugar and filled with different types of jelly.
These cookies are a great Christmas decoration that looks amazing on a coffee table that you can serve up to guests visiting for the holidays.