Where to find the best "semlor" Lenten buns in Stockholm
Updated 24 Feb 2020
The information in this guide may be affected by covid-19.
"Semlor" Lenten buns (singular "semla") were traditionally eaten on Shrove Tuesday but are now available from January until Easter so if you're in Stockholm during this period don't miss the chance to sample these creamy, cardamom-scented delights. The competition among Stockholm bakers to make the best semla of the year gets hotter every year, and the quality varies considerably, so to make sure you find the real gems - from classic buns to creative takes on the traditional semla, as well as gluten-free and organic buns - we've listed the cafés, konditoris and bakeries where you're guaranteed to find a superb semla. Here are some of the best semlor in Stockholm - sample a few and pick your own favourite!
Bullar & Bröd StenugnsbageriValhallavägen 65, Östermalm
Semla of the year 2020!
Bullar & Bröd won Best Semla in Stockholm in 2020 for the second year in a row, in a major competition organised by Thatsup and Smakdomarna Stockholm. Their moist bun, almond paste full of almond bits and excellent whipped cream sent Bullar & Bröd straight to first place.
Grillska HusetStortorget 3, Old Town
Super semlor for charity
Stadsmissionen's Lenten buns were voted best in town in 2015, in a competition arranged by the Association of Swedish bakers and confectioners. Not too shabby! They use top quality ingredients such as real cream, and by buying your semla from this charitable organisation you're also doing your good deed for the day.
Vete-kattenKungsgatan 55, Norrmalm/City
A truly classic konditori well known for their popular semlor. They bake them here every year, and you don't need to worry about missing the season as they're sold from the beginning of the new year until Easter. Perfect for a long coffee break in one of the charmingly old-fashioned rooms. You can even order the semlor online, with gluten-free or lactose-free options.
Ritorno Konditori Etc.Odengatan 80-82, Vasastan
Semlor and ice skates
This uberclassic café between Odengatan and Sankt Eriksplan came in in second place in a major 2018 semlor judging. A perfect semla stop for anyone who fancies doing a little ice skating in Vasaparken before or after their semla.
BriocheGustavslundsvägen 34, Bromma
Semla of the year 2018
Winner of the Best Semla of the Year award in 2018, in a test organised by a group of expert tasters. Delicious bread, top notch ingredients and unsweetened whipped cream sent Brioche on Alviks Torg straight to first place.
TössebagerietKarlavägen 77, Östermalm
Wrap or traditional bun?
Tössebageriet was the talk of the town in 2015 when their award-winning pastry chef Mattias Ljungberg came up with the innovative 'semmelwrap' - an ordinary semla flattened out and rolled up, wrap-style, to make a handy takeaway variation on a semla. Traditionalists can of course stick to the bakery's prize-winning classic semlor buns.
Konditorn & BagarnPepparvägen 11
Worth a detour
Drop by Konditorn & Bagarn in Farsta for breakfast, lunch or a coffee or to buy freshly baked bread, pastries and other goodies. They also took third place in a 2018 judging of the best semlor of the year.
Haga Tårtcompani och Bageri4 addresses
Haga Tårtcompani och Bageri's first class semlor are filled with cardamom, almond paste with Tahitian vanilla and real cream - well worth waiting for. You can also buy them online.
Haga Tårtcompani & Bageri Södra
Haga Tårtcompani & Bageri Kungsholmen
Haga Tårtcompani & Bageri Vasastan
Brunkebergs Bageri & Brunkebergs Bageri & Bistro2 addresses
Artisan bakers Brunkebergs Bageri, one of the best bread bakeries in town, often come up in discussions about the best semlor. Large, round 'lids' and the bakery's own special filling with almond paste and thickly whipped cream are part of the secret. No additives of any kind.
Lillebrors BageriRörstrandsgatan 12, Vasastan
Artisan bakery in Birkastan
Tuesdays during semla season are dedicated to the beloved bun at this artisan bakery on Rörstrandsgatan, and it's always packed. The semlor are large, well made and extremely popular, so you'll need to hurry if you want to get your mitts on one.
Mr CakeRådmansgatan 12A, Östermalm
The new nacho semla
Do you like new twists on old classics? Then get yourself down to Mr Cake, where star pastry chefs Roy Fares and Mattias Ljungberg have launched the new nacho semla. The nacho semla consists of "nachos" made from wheatflour dough flavoured with cardamom, served with cream and almond paste to dip into.
Kalf & HansenMariatorget 2, Södermalm
Petit choux semla
Kalf & Hansen has taken temptation to the next level - they've created a petit choux semla with walnut filling, lemon cream and toasted almonds. A must for semla lovers.
Bröd & Salt7 addresses
There's masses to choose from here. If you don't feel like a classic semla with luxurious almond paste, perhaps you'd prefer a semmelwrap. There are also whole semla cakes to share with a group. Vegan semlor too, and all their products are lactose-free.
Bröd & Salt SoFo
Bröd & Salt Sveavägen
Bröd & Salt Birkagatan
Bröd & Salt Tullhus 3
Bröd & Salt Hammarby Sjöstad
Bröd & Salt Rådmansgatan
Popular sourdough bakery in Östermalm
Small and very popular hole in the wall famous for being sourdough pros. They serve traditional semlor baked in small batches several times a day to be eaten in peaceful reverie at home. Valhallabageriet bakes semlor from January until Easter.
Viggbyholms stationskaféSödervägen 5, Täby
Täby talking point
The Lenten buns at Viggbyholms Stationscafé in Täby draw in semla fans from near and far, and they're a regular feature every year. Their semlor are made entirely from scratch using cardemom, whipped cream and coarsely chopped almonds. They also make a gluten-free semla roll.
Bageriet BullebodenParmmätargatan 7, Kungsholmen
A small organic bakery and café on Kungsholmen that sells semlor like hotcakes. Pick up your Lenten buns to go or eat in in the cosy café along with a cup of coffee from the local roastery Johan & Nyström.
Älvsjö Konditori & BageriJohan Skyttes väg 204
Award winners beyond the city centre
This old konditori has become a really popular spot, partly thanks to their award-winning semlor. The butter-rich wheat flour buns also come with alternative fillings, such as vanilla cream, if you're not a fan of almond paste. Lactose-free cream and gluten-free buns are some of the other options.
Gunnarsons SpecialkonditoriGötgatan 92, Skanstull/Södermalm
Reliable semla spot
A good old-fashioned konditori on Södermalm whose semlor, finely powdered with icing sugar, are always popular during semla season. The buns are classically composed, with proper almond paste and freshly-whipped cream. The go-to place for numerous semla fans leading up to Shrove Tuesday.
Gorgeous buns at one of the city's favourite bakeries
This popular stone-oven bakery (which also has branches in London) produces some of the best bread in the city, and they also make a mean semla, which coarsely ground cardamom, beautifully piped whipped cream and thickly powdered triangular lids. Branches all over town, see below for a selection.
Klockargårdens VåffleriGrödinge Kyrkby 6, Norrmalm/City
A "såffla" south of the city
As the name suggests, Klockarårdens Våffleri south of the city specialises in waffles, but the café is also worth a detour for anything craving a semla. The owners have created their own extremely popular waffle/semla hybrid called a "såffla".