The Festival of Lights features plenty of traditional foods for ample kitchen inspiration. Whether you’re looking for dinner, sweet sufganiyot, or crispy latkes, with these simple Hanukkah recipes, you’re sure to find a divine delight!
Things like menorahs and dreidels might symbolize the eight days and nights of Hanukkah. Alongside these traditional items, there are a host of foods to celebrate the Jewish holiday! Since Hanukkah commemorates the miracle of the oil lamps burning, it’s fitting that the best Hanukkah foods are deep-fried in oil.
The holiday features famous potato fritters called latkes as well as sufganiyot, which are special donuts. Both foods are deep-fried in oil, commemorating the Hanukkah miracle.
Easy Latkes Recipe for Hanukkah
It may be a simple meal, but potato latkes are still a popular way to celebrate the holiday. In fact, potato pancakes have been prepared by Ashkenazi Jews as part of the Festival of Lights since the 1800s!
Easy Potato Latkes
- 2 large russet potatoes (about 1 pound) scrubbed and cut lengthwise into quarters
- 1 large onion (about 8 oz.) peeled and cut into quarters
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp coarse kosher salt plus more for sprinkling
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
- peanut oil or canola oil for frying
- With a box grater, grate the potatoes and onion. Transfer to a clean dishtowel and squeeze and wring out as much of the liquid as you can. You can also rinse and spin dry in a salad spinner!
- Quickly transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the eggs, flour, salt, baking powder, and pepper and mix until the flour is completely absorbed.
- In a medium heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat, add about 1/4 inch of oil.
- Heat oil or schmaltz over medium-high heat and drop some mixture into the pan, pressing to flatten it. Make the latkes in bathes. Your pan should sizzle if you’re looking for crispy latkes. When the edges are brown and crispy, about 5 minutes, flip. Cook until the second side is deep brown, about another 5 minutes. Transfer the latkes to a paper towel-lined plate and sprinkle with salt. Repeat with the rest of the batter..
How Do You Make Sufganiyot for Hanukkah?
Often known as a Berliner, this jelly donut is especially eaten in Israel in celebration of Hanukkah.
- Start by microwaving milk until it’s warm, then add in sugar and yeast. Set aside for five minutes until it’s frothy, then transfer to a large bowl.
- Add eggs, then butter and salt, followed by lemon zest and flour to form the dough. Knead for five minutes. Then oil a bowl and transfer the mixture, covering it until it doubles in size.
- Once ready, remove the dough and flatten to a ½ inch thick, cutting into 3-inch rounds.
- Place the rounds on an oiled baking sheet and cover with a damp towel until puffed.
- Heat oil and submerge each donut into it using a slotted spoon until it’s golden brown.
- Cover in icing sugar, then cut a slit in each side and use a piping bag to fill it with jam!
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What Are Some Good Hanukkah Recipes for Dinner?
1. Matzo Ball Soup
This Jewish classic is one of the best Hanukkah recipes for a crowd!
- To make the matzo dough, combine eggs, schmaltz, broth, dill, matzo meal, and seasoning. Chill for at least 30 minutes.
- Cook the chicken, then add it and its juices to a pot with onions, parsnips, celery, carrots, parsley, peppercorns, and water.
- While it’s simmering, you can make your matzo balls by rolling and cooking over low heat. Add it all together for one’s of the season’s most popular meals!
2. Brisket for Hannukah
When it comes to Hanukkah recipes for dinner, brisket is the place to start.
- Begin by seasoning a brisket with salt and pepper.
- Add it to the bowl of a slow cooker with some crushed tomatoes and garlic.
- Follow the slow-cooking instructions and cook until tender.
- Before serving, roast red and yellow onion with olive oil until browned to top the brisket. For the special Hanukkah twist, serve it with latkes and roasted root vegetables.
3. Challah Hannukah Recipe
This traditional bread is not only usually consumed on Shabbat but also a must-have for other Jewish holidays. Luckily, it’s one of the easiest Jewish recipes to make at home!
- Whisk together yeast, sugar, and warm water. Leave for 10 minutes.
- In another bowl, make a mixture of eggs, salt, shortening, sugar, and warm water. Then, add it and flour to the yeast mixture until the dough pulls away from the bowl. Set it in a warm place until the mixture doubles.
- Then place it on a floured surface—separate three pieces of dough. Roll them into equally long strands so you can braid them into a rope. Sprinkle with sesame if you like.
- Let sit for about an hour until it doubles in size, and then bake!
4. Hannukah Recipe for Dessert: Rugelach
Kids love sweets, and this is the kind of Hanukkah pastry that they’ll want every year.
- Make a dough of flour, sugar, salt, and butter, adding vinegar and water in the food processor. Mix it until the dough is crumbly.
- Roll out the dough and sprinkle it with cinnamon and sugar, then refrigerate it.
- Once chilled, cover in cream cheese. Then combine pecans, sugar, and apricot jam and spread over the top.
- Roll up the dough, cut it into ¾ inch pieces, and curl the ends in. Now, you’re ready to bake them!
One of the best parts of any holiday is the food, and it’s no different when it comes to Hanukkah! While potato latkes might be a staple, there are plenty of other traditional foods to enjoy.
Do you have any favorite Hanukkah recipes? Share them with other families in our comments! Whether you take time to make matzo balls or just fry some sufganiyot, these foods make for an extra-special season.