Julesnaps – Danish Christmas snaps

Christmas in Denmark just isn’t Christmas without…snaps!  (Also known as akvavit or brændevin).  I got this recipe from one of my DDSILs (Dear Danish sister-in-laws) back in 1999.  It tastes of coffee and orange so, though not really suited for drinking with sild (herring), it’s a lovely wee warming drink on a chilly afternoon.  You don’t live in Denmark and can’t get snaps?  Never fear, you can also make it with a bottle of neutral vodka.  It ideally needs to sit and brew for 35-40 nights so, if you want to make some for the coming festive season, you’d better get your (ice) skates on! 😉

 You’ll need:

  • one orange (appelsin)
  • 30-40 cloves (nelliker)
  • 100g soft brown sugar (brun farin)
  • 40g coffee beans (hele kaffe bønner)
  • vanilla pod (vanillestang)
  • bottle of neutral snaps, e.g. Brøndums or vodka (en flaske snaps uden ‘smag’ som Brøndums)

First of all, find a very large glass (e.g. pickling) jar that will be big enough to hold the snaps and the orange.  Stick the cloves into the orange.  Or get one of Santa’s little helpers to help you… ;D 

Mmm, it’s already beginning to smell of Christmas… 


Put the brown sugar into the jar. 

 Add the coffee beans. 

 Pop in the orange and the vanilla pod (split in two, if you’re so inclined). 

 Pour in a bottle of neutral snaps or vodka. 

 Clamp the lid down and give the jar a good shake. 

And now comes the hard part…waiting 35-40 days before you drink it!  (Though go ahead and shake the jar occasionally, if that would make you feel better.).  When the time is up, you can sieve it through a coffee filter, or just pour out what you need straight from the jar.  Skål!  (Cheers!) And – God Jul! – which, as you will remember, has nothing to do with God…

Hope you have a terrific Tuesday! 🙂


By Diane • November 22, 2011
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  1. Posted November 22, 2011 at 9:29 pm by Barbara Rowe | Permalink

    What is that other Jule drink Danes serve warm? Glog? Sorry, no Danish keyboard. I remember having some in a Bank in Horsens around Christmas in 1970. Is it the same stuff?

  2. Posted November 22, 2011 at 9:56 pm by Diane | Permalink

    Hi Barb! You’re thinking of gløgg (mulled wine) which is usually accompanied by donuts (æbleskiver). This stuff (snaps) is very potent and will have you under the table if you don’t watch out! 😉

2 Trackbacks

  1. […] on the heels of yesterday’s how-to-make-your-own-Danish-Christmas-snaps post, I’m reposting an old favourite – our family recipe for æbleskiver – Danish […]

  2. […] So now we’ve made Julesnaps (Christmas Snaps), Æbleskiver (Danish Christmas donuts) and some Danish Christmas decorations. I think we’ve […]

Diane's Daily Denmark


Never too serious but always informative, Diane is a Scot who moved to Denmark in 1998. Author of "Death comes to Strandvig", a Scandinavian cozy crime novel. Mentor at FlyladyPremium ...