How to Make Maslenki Cookies: A Delicious Bulgarian Christmas Treat

Hello, Good News! If you are looking for a new and exciting cookie recipe to try this holiday season, you have come to the right place. In this article, we will show you how to make maslenki cookies, a traditional Bulgarian jam-filled cookie that is popular for Christmas. These cookies are sweet, buttery, and flaky, and they go well with Turkish delight sweets. They are also easy to make and customize with your favorite jam flavors.

Maslenki cookies are similar to other jam or jelly cookies from different cultures and traditions, such as kolache or linzer cookies. They are made with a simple dough that contains eggs, sugar, lard or butter, vanilla, flour, and baking powder. The dough is rolled out and cut into circles, and then smaller holes are cut out in half of the circles. The whole circles are spread with jam and topped with the cut-out circles, creating a sandwich cookie with a peek-a-boo window. The cookies are baked until golden and dusted with confectioners’ sugar for a festive touch.

Why You Should Try Maslenki Cookies

Maslenki Cookies Are Fun to Make

One of the reasons why you should try maslenki cookies is that they are fun to make. You can enjoy the process of rolling out the dough, cutting out the shapes, and filling them with jam. You can also get creative with the shapes and sizes of the cookies, using different cookie cutters or making your own designs. You can even involve your kids or friends in the cookie-making activity and have a blast together.

Maslenki Cookies Are Versatile

Another reason why you should try maslenki cookies is that they are versatile. You can use almost any kind of jam or jelly for these cookies, such as raspberry, apricot, prune, rose hip, plum, or strawberry. You can also mix and match different jam flavors for a variety of tastes and colors. Some people even use chocolate or nutella as a filling for a decadent twist. The possibilities are endless!

Maslenki Cookies Are Delicious

The most important reason why you should try maslenki cookies is that they are delicious. These cookies have a tender and flaky texture that melts in your mouth. The jam filling adds a sweet and tangy contrast that complements the buttery dough. The confectioners’ sugar adds a touch of elegance and sweetness that makes these cookies irresistible. These cookies are perfect for serving with tea or coffee, or as a dessert after a hearty meal.

How to Make Maslenki Cookies: Step by Step Guide


To make maslenki cookies, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup melted lard or unsalted butter, cooled to room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 4 cups (510 grams) all-purpose flour, more for rolling
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 (12-ounce) jar tart jam, such as rose hip, plum, raspberry, or apricot
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for garnish


To make maslenki cookies, you will need the following equipment:

  • A large bowl
  • An electric mixer or a stand mixer with a whisk or paddle attachment
  • A medium bowl
  • A whisk
  • A rolling pin
  • A parchment-lined cookie sheet
  • A 2-inch round cookie cutter
  • A smaller cookie cutter of your choice (such as a star or a heart)
  • A wire rack
  • A small saucepan (optional)
  • A pastry brush (optional)
  • A sifter (optional)


To make maslenki cookies, follow these steps:

  1. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar with an electric mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk or paddle attachment until light and foamy, about 5 minutes.
  2. Slowly add the cooled lard or butter to the egg-sugar mixture, whisking continuously. Whisk in the vanilla until combined.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder. Slowly add it to the egg mixture to create a firm dough.
  4. Separate the dough into thirds. On a parchment-lined cookie sheet, roll out one portion of the dough to 1/8-inch thick, flouring the surface of the dough lightly to prevent sticking.
  5. Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out circles of dough and place them on the prepared cookie sheet, leaving some space between them. Repeat with the remaining dough portions, rerolling the scraps as needed.
  6. Using a smaller cookie cutter of your choice, cut out holes in the center of half of the circles. You should have an equal number of whole circles and cut-out circles.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Refrigerate the cookie sheet with the dough circles for 15 minutes to prevent spreading.
  8. If your jam is too thick or chunky, you can heat it in a small saucepan over low heat until it becomes smooth and spreadable. You can also strain it to remove any seeds or skins.
  9. Spread about a teaspoon of jam on each whole circle, leaving a small border around the edge. Top with a cut-out circle, pressing lightly to seal. You can use a pastry brush to moisten the edges with water if needed.
  10. Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly golden. Rotate the cookie sheet halfway through for even baking.
  11. Let the cookies cool slightly on the cookie sheet, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  12. Sift some confectioners’ sugar over the cookies for garnish. Enjoy!

Maslenki Cookies Nutrition Facts

Maslenki cookies are not only delicious, but also nutritious. Here is a table that shows the nutrition facts for one maslenki cookie (based on a recipe that makes 48 cookies):

Nutrient Amount % Daily Value*
Calories 114 6%
Total Fat 6 g 9%
Saturated Fat 2 g 10%
Cholesterol 24 mg 8%
Sodium 10 mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 14 g 5%
Dietary Fiber 0 g 0%
Total Sugars 7 g
Protein 2 g 4%
Vitamin C 1 mg 2%
Vitamin A 3 mcg 0%
Vitamin D 0 mcg 0%
Vitamin E 0 mg 0%
Vitamin K 0 mcg 0%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin) 0 mg 3%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0 mg 3%Vitamin B3 (Niacin) Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) Vitamin B7 (Biotin) Vitamin B9 (Folate) Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) Minerals and Trace Elements
Nutrient Amount % Daily Value
Calcium 8 mg 1%
Iron 0 mg 2%
Magnesium 3 mg 1%
Phosphorus 25 mg 2%
Potassium 23 mg 0%
Sodium 10 mg 0%
Zinc 0 mg 2%
Copper 0 mg 1%
Manganese 0 mgSelenium Iodine

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Maslenki Cookies FAQ

What are maslenki cookies?

Maslenki cookies are a type of jam-filled cookie that originated in Bulgaria. They are traditionally made for Christmas and other special occasions. They are also known as masleni kifli, which means “buttery crescents” in Bulgarian.

How do you pronounce maslenki cookies?

The correct pronunciation of maslenki cookies is “mahs-LEN-kee”. The stress is on the second syllable, and the “i” is pronounced like the “ee” in “see”. The word maslenki is the plural form of maslenka, which means “a buttery cookie”.

How do you store maslenki cookies?

Maslenki cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week, or in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. You can also freeze them for up to three months. To thaw them, let them sit at room temperature for about an hour before serving. You can also reheat them in the oven at 300 F for 5 minutes to restore their crispiness.

How do you make vegan maslenki cookies?

To make vegan maslenki cookies, you can substitute the lard or butter with vegan margarine or coconut oil, and the eggs with flax eggs (mix 3 tablespoons of ground flax seeds with 9 tablespoons of water and let it sit for 15 minutes). You can also use vegan jam or jelly for the filling, or make your own with fresh or frozen fruits and sugar.

How do you make gluten-free maslenki cookies?

To make gluten-free maslenki cookies, you can replace the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend that contains xanthan gum or guar gum. You can also add a teaspoon of baking soda to help the dough rise. Alternatively, you can use almond flour or oat flour for a nutty flavor and texture.

What are some variations of maslenki cookies?

Some variations of maslenki cookies are:

  • Lekvar cookies: These are similar to maslenki cookies, but use lekvar (a thick prune paste) as the filling instead of jam. They are popular in Hungary and other Central European countries.
  • Rogaliki cookies: These are similar to maslenki cookies, but are shaped like crescents instead of circles. They are rolled from triangles of dough and filled with jam, nuts, poppy seeds, or cheese. They are popular in Poland and other Eastern European countries.
  • Kourabiedes cookies: These are similar to maslenki cookies, but are made with almond flour and flavored with orange blossom water or rose water. They are coated with confectioners’ sugar and often decorated with whole cloves. They are popular in Greece and other Mediterranean countries.

What are some tips for making perfect maslenki cookies?

Some tips for making perfect maslenki cookies are:

  • Make sure the lard or butter is cooled to room temperature before adding it to the egg-sugar mixture. If it is too hot, it will cook the eggs and make the dough greasy.
  • Do not overmix the dough, as it will make the cookies tough and dense. Mix just until the flour is incorporated and the dough is smooth and elastic.
  • Chill the dough before rolling it out, as it will make it easier to handle and prevent it from sticking. You can also dust the dough and the rolling pin with flour to prevent sticking.
  • Do not overfill the cookies, as the jam will ooze out and burn in the oven. Use about a teaspoon of jam for each cookie, and leave a small border around the edge.
  • Do not overbake the cookies, as they will lose their flakiness and become dry and hard. Bake them until they are lightly golden, but still soft in the center.

What are some other Bulgarian desserts?

Some other Bulgarian desserts are:

  • Banitsa: This is a pastry made with layers of phyllo dough filled with cheese, eggs, yogurt, or pumpkin. It can be sweet or savory, and is often served for breakfast or as a snack.
  • Tulumbi: These are deep-fried dough balls soaked in sugar syrup. They are similar to churros or doughnuts, and are often flavored with lemon, orange, or rose water.
  • Kozunak: This is a sweet bread made with eggs, butter, milk, sugar, and raisins. It is braided and baked until golden and fluffy. It is traditionally made for Easter and other celebrations.

Where can I buy maslenki cookies?

You can buy maslenki cookies at some specialty stores that sell Bulgarian or Eastern European products, or online from some websites that ship internationally. You can also make your own maslenki cookies at home with our easy recipe.

How do I say “Merry Christmas” in Bulgarian?

To say “Merry Christmas” in Bulgarian, you can say “Vesela Koleda” (Весела Коледа), which means “Happy Christmas”. You can also say “Chestita Koleda” (Честита Коледа), which means “Congratulations on Christmas”. You can also add “i shtastliva nova godina” (и щастлива нова година), which means “and happy new year”.


We hope you enjoyed this article about how to make maslenki cookies, a delicious Bulgarian Christmas treat. These cookies are fun to make, versatile, and delicious. They are perfect for sharing with your family and friends during the holiday season. If you liked this article, please check out our other articles on how to make other traditional cookies from around the world.

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