What’s the deal with Swedish fika?


Have you heard about the famous Swedish fika? In Sweden we have a fika culture with regularly fika breaks at our workplaces, fika at our events (as weddings, birthdays parties, and so on) and we also love celebrating yearly days in the calendar as the day of the cinnamon bun. By the way, you haven’t missed that the cinnamon bun is the Swedish pastry number one? 


But actually, what’s the meaning of fika? When we’re talking about fika we are meaning a sweet pastry and we often enjoy the pastries with a cup of coffee. Actually, Sweden is one of the countries with the biggest coffee consumption per capita (but our neighboring country Finland is topping the list). Traditionally we had a tradition in Sweden of “sju sorters kakor” (seven kinds of biscuits). During the 1800s and forwards it was a norm to serve seven different kinds of small biscuits at social events. It was a question of manners, of at social etiquette. Today it isn’t quite usual with seven kinds of biscuits at events, but the term “sju sorters kakor” is still alive.


Swedish pastries you can’t miss:

 Cinnamon buns. Picture source
  • Cinnamon buns (kanelbullar) are sweet rolls with a filling of butter and cinnamon. A variant of cinnamon buns is cardamom buns which are buns filled with butter and cardamom. In Sweden we traditionally eat our cinnamon buns without the white frosting that’s common in other cultures

Semlor. Picture source
  • Semlor. A semla is a bun sliced into two pieces that’s filled with almond mass and whipped cream. Traditionally semlor are eating in January-March. We’re celebrating the day of the semla at the Shrove Tuseday (the day before the Ash Wednesday). 

 Småkakor. Picture source
  • Småkakor. As mentioned earlier, we have a tradition of “sju sorters kakor” in Sweden and what we normally count as “småkakor” are small little biscuits. Often småkakor is baked with shortcrust pastry. It’s really easy to bake småkakor because they often don’t contain many more ingredients than butter, sugar and flour. 


In Sweden we also have a capital of town of fika: Alingsås. Alingsås is located in western Sweden, near Gothenburg, and in Alingsås you can find a lot of cafes. Many of the cafes in Alingsås are mentioned in White Guide. White Guide is a guide to the best fika places in Sweden (it has similarities with other guides, for example  the Michelin GUIDE). If you’re in Sweden och really want to try some authentic Swedish fika, then we recommend a visit to Alingsås. Ask us for recommendations. 

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