Norwegian Skolebolle (Skolebrød) custard & coconut buns

Long ago, a friend asked if I had a recipe for Skolebolle. I didn’t, cause I think the industrial version you get in the stores is so god-aweful I never buy them. But then I thought about how they COULD be if they were made well…

So here’s my take on the Norwegian classic called skolebrød or skolebolle. And since I’m a sailor I put rum in it. Yeah, I put booze in everything. That is why my food is so amazing. Let’s cook, shall we?



  • 50 g butter
  • 450 g whole milk
  • 600 g wheat flour
  • 50 g white sugar
  • 10 g fine sea salt
  • 12 g dry yeast
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder


  • 200 g milk
  • 20 g white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla powder or 1 small pod
  • 2 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp rum*

*Use whatever half-decent rum you may have or can find. We used Capt. Morgan Spiced. We use that a lot, both in cooking, and our home made iced tea 🙂


  • 90 g icing sugar
  • 20 g rum

To serve

  • Shredded coconut


Tip: If you absolutely must make a non-alcoholic version (please don’t), simply ditch the rum in the custard and use water in the icing instead of rum.

The icing

Mix the sugar and rum. Done.

The custard

Mix the ingredients except the egg yolk and rum in a small pot, then gently heat to a simmer while stirring. Remove from the heat, then stir in the egg yolk, then the rum, and set aside to cool under lid. Done.

The buns

Just a heads-up before you start: this is a pretty wet, sticky dough, so if you’re not used to working with wet doughs, consider reducing milk by 50 g. The reason it’s so sticky is because we want a very soft and fluffy end result.

As always when I bake, I put my baking bowl on my digital scale, and measure all ingredients into that by weight. Just tare in between so you get the numbers right. It is far more accurate than going by volume, and it’ll leave you with far less dishes to do, so it’s cleaner too!

Melt the butter in a small pot. When the butter is melted, measure the milk into the pot, and set aside, off the heat. This will heat up the cold milk a bit.

In your baking bowl, measure all the dry ingredients and quickly combine. Then add the milk, and combine. Let rest for 15 minutes to let the gluten develop and dough fully hydrate.

I use the stretch and fold technique on this dough cause it’s too wet to knead, and besides, stretching and folding is way less labor intensive too. Look up the technique on Youtube if you’re not familiar with it – it’s a game changer.

Alternatively, use a mixer with dough attachment at the lowest speed. The end result will be a very soft, slightly sticky dough.

Let rise until double in size. Transfer the dough onto a well floured bench, degas thoroughly and divide into 12 pieces, approx. 95 g each. Do use the scale to get them even size.

Next roll into balls to create surface tension. Make sure your hands are dusted since the dough is so sticky. Here’s how to shape the buns (not our video)

This is practically the same technique that I use, but I use my hands to roll against instead of against the countertop.

Let the buns rest for 15 minutes, then dust your hands and flatten them to a approx. 1 cm disc. Then dip the bottom of a glass into some flour and use that to stamp a “well” for the custard, smack in the middle of the bun. Make sure to press down well, but not entirely through the dough.

Let the dough rise for 30 minutes, then stamp down well with your floured glass again. If you get very large air bubbles in your dough, pop them with some kitchen tweezers, a needle, or a knife.

Brush the buns with the egg white left from the custard, then fill the “well” with the custard. There will be no custard left when you’re done, so try to divide things very evenly.

Bake at 170C for 13-16 minutes, until light golden brown. I like to turn the baking sheet 180 degrees halfway through for even baking.

When cooled down a bit, drizzle the icing over, then sprinkle with shredded coconut.

These guys freeze really well, so that’s how we get fresh skolebolle every day for 6 days 😉 just add the icing and coconut after thawing. Less messy that way.

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