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Tørre Vafler: Not Quite a Waffle, Not Quite a Cookie

Dec 16, 2013

My aunt Gudrun was one of the best cooks I have ever known. She was widely known in my hometown of Sykkylven for being an extremely knowledgeable and talented baker and homemaker, preserving traditions from our region of Norway that were hundreds of years old. 

Every time I went home to Sykkylven on holiday, I would look forward to visiting my aunt Gudrun who only lived a 5-minute walk away from the house I grew up in.

I would always find her in the kitchen, where she felt most at home. It seemed she always had a project going on her kitchen counter, the coffee machine was constantly brewing coffee for all the guests that would stop by during the day and the house smelled heavenly and lived in. 

My aunt Gudrun’s house was a warm and welcoming house where we would learn about life in the old days, and how she tended to the animals in the barn intermingled with baking everything from flatbreads to lefse, breads, and desserts from morning to night.

I can still hear her laughter and see her big smile—she reminded me so much of my father, who had passed on several years before. Unfortunately, my aunt Gudrun left us a few years ago too, at the age 92, and I still miss her and all her delicious food but I am happy to keep her alive in my heart through her recipes.

Aunt Gudrun was in great shape for most of her life, kept her own house, and tended the farm after her husband died, and she baked everything from scratch even after she turned 90 years old. 

This is her recipe for “tørrevafler”—her recipes were always rich and never skimped on anything, and was really a depiction of the type of generous person she was, always sharing with others and giving whatever she had. 

I haven’t experienced or seen tørrevafler in many other households in Norway, and they always seem to be derived from somebody’s grandmother or great-grandmother. They look like regular waffles but are actually made into a dough rather than a batter, and then baked in a waffle maker.  

They are a bit sweet, but not too sweet, and many people include this in the “seven types of cookies” they make for Christmas. I choose to make these any time I want to think of my Aunt Gudrun and our times together in her kitchen. 

This is a very special recipe that evokes many wonderful memories of a fantastic woman I was lucky enough to call my aunt, and I would like to share it with you all today.

Ever since posting a photo of tørrevafler on my Facebook page, I have received many requests to share the recipe, so here it is. 

Think of it like a cookie or a biscuit with a little extra softness, and unlike fresh waffles, these taste good for a week or two after you bake them as long as you keep them stored in a cookie jar. 

They taste great with Norwegian gjetost, which is the classic way to serve these but you can certainly use your own imagination and use whatever topping sounds good to you!


2 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter or margarine, room temperature
1 cup full-fat sour cream (or vegan sour cream)
2 eggs + 1 egg yolk (or 1 large banana or 1 cup applesauce)
2 tbsp hornsalt (or baking soda)
2 tsp vanilla sugar or vanilla extract
about 400 grams all-purpose flour (a little under 4 cups or enough all-purpose flour to release dough from bowl when stirring)

In a stand mixer, combine sugar and butter and whip until light and fluffy. 

Gradually add in the eggs or banana or applesauce, then the sour cream. 

Fold in the hornsalt, vanilla sugar, and enough flour to form a firm enough batter to roll out. Be careful not to add too much flour, as the waffles will end up being too dry. This you may have to try a couple of times before you perfect it.  

Divide the dough into pieces and roll each out to about 1/4 inch thick, that fits your waffle iron.

Place the piece in a prepared waffle maker (spray with baking spray or coat with butter) and cook according to your waffle maker’s instructions. 

The waffles should be nice and golden and you will have extra dough around the heart or square-shaped cookie that you can peel off once the waffles have cooled on a rack.

Top with your favorite Norwegian brown cheese and/or jam!


  1. Haley

    I really enjoyed this post, your aunt seems like a lovely woman and talented baker! Such interesting cookies as well

    • Sunny

      Thank you so much Haley for your kind comment and for visiting my blog! My aunt was a very special woman who I miss every day. Hope you keep checking back for more recipes!! 🙂

  2. Marilyn J Smith

    Nice, nice recipe. I have a great time honored vaffler recipe that is rich with sour cream but not rolled out. Looking forward to trying yours. I am a first generation American on my Norwegian mother’s side so have very close ties to Norway and its food! Thanks for sharing so many recipes.

    • Sunny

      Great to hear from you Marilyn, thanks for your comment! I hope you continue to check back as I will post more recipes. While I appreciate and respect old traditions in Norway I also try to update them to fit our modern life… but old stories and family recipes will always be part of my blog! Happy holidays to you!

  3. Cecile

    I so enjoyed reading about your aunt – what a wonderful person she was. I had a woman like your aunt in my life – my beloved neighbor Milly, who died about 10 years ago, sadly. Her parents were from southern Italy and she taught me how to make meatballs and spaghetti and,of course, lasagna. Like your aunt, her home was always full of delicious smells and she had the biggest heart ever! She was widowed at a young age and raised three children. I loved and admired her – and – she was actually more of a ‘mother’ to me than my own mother. (Too funny, her daughter adored my mother!) These looks fabulous – thanks for sharing these !!!

    • Sunny

      Hi Cecile – how wonderful to hear from you and to read about your neighbor Milly – that is exactly how I felt about my aunt Gudrun! We are blessed to have come across such people in our lives (blood relatives or not) that make such an impact on us. I wish you and your family a wonderful and peaceful Christmas/holiday and thanks for all your support this year! 🙂

      • Cecile

        Thank you Sunny ! We had our ‘Roy Christmas’ Saturday night and my son (who loves locally) came back with his family Sunday morning for brunch. Also, my twin brother was with us for ‘Roy Christmas’ with his family – plus one of his daughters just had a baby girl. I was so thrilled to have all four of my grandchildren with me! It was just one of those wonderful, wonderful times that you treasure forever!! (Of course, we had French Canadian Meat Pies!!) I’ll still be celebrating Christmas Eve & Christmas but, for me, having my sons and their families here is my REAL Christmas!! I hope you have a wonderful and blessed Christmas Sunny !!

        • Sunny

          Wow that sounds amazing, Cecile – lucky you!! So happy to hear that you had a great time and I agree with you, having family there with you is REAL Christmas! Thanks for the well wishes and we’ll be in touch !! xo

  4. Tidious Ted

    Thanks a lot for this post. My grand aunt Augusta in Gudbrandsdalen used to make tørr vafler and she passed away years ago and I had forgotten all about them. I think it’s time to bring out the vaffeljern and try my hand on some my self for this x-mas –

    • Sunny

      Thanks for your comment, Tidious Ted, and great to hear you will make these!! Hope you’ll keep checking back for more Norwegian recipes – happy holidays to you!!

      • TidiousTed

        Happy holidays to you too Sunny,:-) and although I’m a Norwegian living in Oslo your blog have given me lots of ideas to Norwegian food I’ve neither made nor eaten before. So Yes, I’ll be checking back often 😉

        • Sunny

          Thanks TidiousTed – and happy new year to you!! Godt nytt aar! 🙂

  5. TidiousTed

    Et riktig Godt Nytt År til deg og Sunny (For all you English speaking viewers; I just wished Sunny a really Happy New Year 😉 )


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