Baking “Safron Cats”



Making the lussekatter “cat” shapes…


When I was in Uppsala last weekend, we baked “Lussekatter” (literally “safron cats”) which are sweet buns flavored with saffron and decorated with raisins. They are made in other countries beside Sweden but can have other ingredients, such as cinnamon, in them. In Sweden they are traditionally eaten during Advent, and especially on Santa Lucia Day which is December 13 every year.


Letting the dough rise before baking…


They’re called “saffron cats” because of the most popular “S” shapes (but there are other shapes) is supposed to look like a sleeping cat, with the raisins as eyes. But I can’t quite see the cat myself!


Ready for the oven…


My friend, Helen, who’s been making these for decades whips them out incredibly quickly and it was all I could do to grab some photos. They looked delicious! (I can’t eat gluten and we didn’t have time to bake gluten-free this time but I had some delicious ones bought at a store.)

Here is Gretchen’s Cookbook’s  recipe and ingredients:

1 stick butter (8 Tbsp.)

1 1/3 c. milk

pinch saffron

3 Tbsp. yeast

2/3 c. sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

2 eggs (1 in dough, 1 to brush)

4 c. flour

raisins for garnish

And here is the whole recipe. Why not try making a batch this Christmas?


Baking in the oven…Yum!


  • Monica-USA

    They look delicious. Sorry you couldn’t sample the goodies. :o )

    • Kristin Lund

      No worries! The glutenfree ones were really good, too!