Continental Recipe

Traditional Norwegian Pinnekjøtt Recipe

2 Mins read

Traditional Norwegian Pinnekjøtt Recipe

Pinnekjøtt is a traditional Norwegian Christmas dish predominantly enjoyed in the northern and western parts of the country.

Pinnekjøtt, as the dish is served today, is the entire rib cage of a mutton that’s been dry salted for three days, then hung to cure for 6-8 weeks in a dark, cool and well ventilated place.

Traditionally, the ribs are placed on birch branches and steamed until all the water evaporates and the meat becomes juicy and tender. 

This flavorful Norwegian classic stems from the traditional methods of meat preservation and is usually complemented with mashed or boiled potatoes, pureed Swedish turnip, and various salads.



For the meat

2 kg Pinnekjøtt


For the Swede Mash – Rotmos

1.5 kg swede peeled and chopped

3 medium carrots washed and chopped

2 medium potatoes peeled and chopped

50 ml double cream

50 ml single cream

4 tablespoons salted butter

75 ml cooking stock from the pinnekjott

pinch of ground nutmeg (optional)


ground black pepper




For the meat

The day before eating: Place the meat in big bowls and cover with plenty of tepid water. Leave in room temperature for approx. 30 hours. Soaking it ensures it regains its consistency – as well as making it palatable by removing most of the salt.

3 hours before you plan to eat: Pour off the water and place the meat to one side.

In a large casserole, place a metal rack or birch branches in the bottom. Add water until it covers the rack or your branches.

Transfer your meat on top and cover with a lid. Leave to gently steam cook at low heat for approximately 3 hours.( Sausage can be added to the casserole for cooking for the last 15-20 minutes; chop into chunks of 2-3 inches to ensure they cook through). It is done when the meat falls easily off the bone.


For the Swede Mash – Rotmos

Peel your vegetables and chop coarsely into even-sized pieces. 

Under medium heat, boil in a lightly salted water until tender. Leave for 3 minutes to dry, then mash by hand or potato mash.

 Add cream and butter and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add a pinch of ground nutmeg if liked. If you think the mash is too thick, loosen it with some of the pinnekjøtt cooking water.

Serve with pinnekjøtt, lingonberry jam, perhaps some freshly boiled potatoes.







Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.kjv 

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