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Home Columns Culture Oliebollen in Utrecht: Everything you should know

Oliebollen in Utrecht: Everything you should know

Last updated 3 weeks ago by Michael Darmanin

Calling all oliebollen lovers! It is the best time of year to enjoy our favorite deep fried desert. Stands and shops around Utrecht are now selling oliebollen in the runup to New Year’s Eve. Check out where to find them in Utrecht and how to make them yourself.

What are Oliebollen?

Oliebollen are balls of dough that have been deep fried and covered in powdered sugar. Essentially, fried balls of heaven (in our humbled opinion). The dough is mostly made from flour, eggs, and milk and also sometimes contains raisins and currants.

Traditionally served during winter, oliebollen are especially enjoyed by all on New Year’s Eve. Starting in October through to around the 3rd of January, stands pop-up throughout Dutch cities in the Netherlands selling all kinds of oliebollen. Along with oliebollen, you can also typically find apple fritters, berliner buns, waffles, churros and more at these stands. The perfect deserts to keep you warm this winter!   

Fun Fact: In the early 19th century, Dutch colonists arrived in New Amsterdam (now known as New York) and introduced oliebollen. Americans, deciding to be different, punched a hole right in the middle of an oliebol and thus the donut was born.

Where in Utrecht can I get this deliciousness?

Luckily, Utrecht has a lot of options to satisfy your oliebollen addictions. You can buy oliebollen around the city at stands, bakeries and supermarkets. Below we have listed a few notable places you can find them around Utrecht.




Get them Delivered

Look, we get it. It’s rainy, Corona is scary, and oliebollen is just too far. If this sounds familiar, have no fear, delivery is here! You can also check out which services are delivering to your location. If you’re near Neude, you can get oliebollen delivered from the oliebollen stand at Neude via Uber Eats and Deliveroo.

Who has the best?

There is truly nothing worse than an overly greasy oliebol. While we have listed places around Utrecht to find oliebollen, the quality might differ depending on where you choose to go. Now, if you are an addict like us, oliebollen is oliebollen, ya know? However, we also want your oliebollen experience to be as heavenly as possible. This is why we have provided some resources for the quest for the best oliebollen in Utrecht.

For 25 years, AD.nl conducted an annual test for the best oliebollen in the Netherlands. However, the test was concluded in 2017 due to controversy. In 2019, an anonymous panel of judges at oliebollentestonline.nl, decided to continue on with the test per province. You can see the Utrecht results from 2019 here. The test is also happening this year. From the 2nd until the 28th of November, panelists will collect and test oliebollen from the nominated locations. The results will be announced on December 18th, 2020.

We also know that tests can be subjective. If you (like us) are serious about your oliebollen, you probably want to consult like-minded people! Check out reviews on Google and Facebook. Local Facebook groups like Expats Utrecht also have some threads with recommendations from local residents.

Can I make it myself?

Yes! In case the options we mentioned above just aren’t convenient or you are looking for a more sustainable oliebollen addiction solution, then make them yourself! You’ll need milk, yeast, sugar, flour, eggs, sunflower oil and powdered sugar. You can use a pan on your stove or a deep fryer to make them. Fry the dough at 180 degrees celsius until golden brown and don’t forget your sieve for the powdered sugar finishing touches. Check out this recipe (in Dutch) from Albert Heijn for more in-depth instructions.

Happy oliebol season! Eet smakelijk!

Sources: Netherlands Bureau for Tourism and Congresses (Holland.com), Thuisbezorgd, oliebollentestonline.nl

Allison Chambers
Allison Chambers
Allison is an American from Florida who has been living in Utrecht for the last 2 years. Sales and Marketing are her passions by day and writing by night. Allison loves being part of the diverse Utrecht community and learning about culture and innovation. When she's not working, she enjoys traveling, food, spending time with family and the occasional cheesy joke.


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