7 Croatian Desserts That Will Delight Your Taste Buds
Image Credit: Unsplash

Croatia is a centre of mouthwatering flavours and pleasant aromas that provide a fantastic culinary adventure. Travelling here gives guests the opportunity to experience a diverse range of unique fusion cuisine, which draws inspiration from its neighbouring nations.

Croatian desserts are pleasantly rich. They range from sophisticated, creamy cakes to delicate, cheesy pies. Everything from crispy cookie bits to the well-known kroštule.

Every province, from north to south and west to east, has its own pleasures and specialisations. These breads and pastries, cookies, cakes, and other confections are bestowed onto and encouraged upon the following generation.


Most likely the first doughnut in the European style to exist was the krapfen, which was followed by other nations' equivalents. Traditionally, leavened dough is used to make these pastries, which are then deep-fried until the surface is golden and crispy and the centre is still soft, light, and airy.

Krapfen can be made without any fillings, although they are typically filled or topped with jams, vanilla or chocolate custards, and chocolate drizzled or sprinkled on top. The word "krapfen" has its roots in the ninth century, and there are German recipes dating back to the fourteenth century.


A well-known French delicacy called "Île flottante," or "floating island," is made of meringues poached in vanilla custard and frequently garnished with toasted almonds and caramel sauce. Typically, sugar, vanilla essence, and beaten egg whites are used to make meringues.

One of the mainstays of French comfort cuisine, this traditional dessert is also popular abroad, often with minor modifications and adjustments, in nations like Austria (Schneenockerln), Hungary (Madártej), Croatia and Serbia (šnenokle), and Italy (uova di neve).

Samoborska Kremšnita

The well-known dessert Samoborska kremšnita comes from the Croatian town of Samobor. It is composed of two custard cream-filled layers of puff pastry. There are occasions when the custard is covered with a thin layer of whipped cream.

Usually, the cake is chopped into cubes before serving and is covered with powdered sugar. You can eat kremšnita warm or cold. This delicious treat is thought to have been created by pastry chef Đuro Lukačić, who worked in Vienna and Budapest before coming to Samobor. He created Samoborska kremšnita, which is still a big hit today, by modifying some of their recipes.

Međimurska Gibanica

Međimurje in Croatia is the home of the traditional, very rich layered pastry known as Međimurska gibanica. Although typically served as dessert following an elaborate dinner, you may eat it on its own because of its high-calorie content. Phyllo dough is used to make many layers of pastry, which are then filled with a mixture of fresh cow's milk cheese, grated apples, crushed walnuts, and ground poppy seeds. Depending on the filling chosen, other ingredients may include raisins, cinnamon, rum, and sugar.

Layers of thin dough alternately divide the contents. Međimurska gibanica is quite similar to Prekmurska gibanica, which is protected by the EU, with a few minor differences in the fillings and dough type. Once the pastry has baked in the oven and turned golden brown on the outside, it's ready to eat. It can be eaten warm or cold and is usually sliced into squares.


A mainstay of Croatian cookie jars, paprenjaci, or pepper biscuits, are aromatic, crunchy cookies. The cookies have their origins in the Renaissance when nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves were among the spices referred to as papar. Originating in Stari Grad, on the Island of Hvar, paprenjaci were baked for Christmas and served as presents for newlyweds, among other important events.

Paprenjaci, although they look simple, have a complex flavour character. Flour, eggs, honey, olive oil, prošek (sweet dessert wine), saffron, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and cloves are the ingredients used to make them.


Mostly made in Dalmatia and Istria, kroštule are crispy sweet pastries that are well-liked all across Croatia. This is a simple dish that originated in Venice, despite the claims of many that it is a local speciality. During the prosperous years of the Venetian Republic, Venetian croissants were exported to several nations. There are variations in Hungary, Greece, France, Italy, and Poland. The main religious holidays when Croatians create kroštule are Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, Christmas Eve, and Carnival.

Served with coffee or tea or after a meal, they are meant to be eaten as soon as possible, while they're still crumbly. The majority of traditional taverns in Istria and Dalmatia serve them on their menus since they are simple to cook.


The classic poppy seed roll, known in Polish as makowiec, is a cake in which layers of dough are filled with poppy seed paste. To improve the cake's flavour, raisins, almonds, honey, and orange peels are added. Makowiec should ideally not be very sweet.

When sliced, it has a distinctive look because the poppy seed filling and dough form a spiral around one another. Makowiec is typically sprinkled with powdered sugar before serving. The cake is usually made for celebrations like Christmas or other winter holidays, and it is frequently eaten with tea or coffee.