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No matter the shape of your Rugelach, whether crescent-like or jelly-rolled or studded with chocolate chips, these little gems make the perfect treat for any Hanukkah celebration. This recipe can be made and frozen for up to 1 month, so make these sweets ahead time and enjoy them throughout the holiday season.

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  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 12-ounces cream cheese, about 1 1/2 (8-ounce) packages, brought to room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 granulated sugar
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 1/2 cups assorted toasted nuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups thick apricot or prune lekvar, homemade or store-bought
  • 2 cups assorted dried fruits, diced if large, plumped if dry
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, optional
  • 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon cream or milk, for egg wash


Servings 2
Preparation time 420mins
Cooking time 460mins
Adapted from


Step 1

Beat the butter, cream cheese, and salt together until smooth in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mixing on medium-low, gradually add the sugar and beat until light. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour, mixing only until the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a counter and work it gently into a ball. Divide the dough in half and press each half into a rough rectangle.

Wrap each half in plastic and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours. The dough can be wrapped well and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. It can also be frozen for a month; thaw, still wrapped, in the refrigerator.

Whisk together 1/2 cup of granulated sugar, the brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside. Put the remaining 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 2 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon, and 1 1/2 cups of the assorted nuts into the work bowl of a food processor and pulse until the nuts are finely chopped. Turn into a bowl and reserve for topping the rugelach. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper.

Working with one piece of the chilled dough at a time, place it on a lightly-floured work surface or pastry cloth and let it soften for a few minutes. Flour your rolling pin and roll the dough into a rectangle 14×10-inches and 1/4-inch thick. Don’t be tempted to roll the dough thinner--you need a sturdy wrapper for all the chunky filling ingredients. Trim the edges of the dough and using a long knife or a pizza cutter, cut the dough in half lengthwise, to make two 14×5-inch rectangles; leave the halves in place.

Spread each half generously with one quarter of the prune or apricot lekvar. Sprinkle with one quarter of the brown sugar-cinnamon mixture, pressing lightly with your fingers to spread it evenly if necessary, then finish by strewing 1/2 cup of the remaining chopped nuts and 1/2 cup of the dried fruit over each dough half. Starting with a long edge of dough, roll up each rectangle jelly-roll fashion, tucking in any fruit or nuts that fall out along the way.

Transfer the rolls to the paper-lined baking sheet and roll and fill the remaining dough. Cover the rolls with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.

Position the oven racks so that they divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. If possible, double up the baking sheets, a precaution against burning the sugar on the bottom of the rugelach. Push the egg wash through a sieve and reserve.

Although you can bake two rolls’ worth at a time, you will probably have to bake these in batches, so work with one roll of dough at a time. Brush the roll all over with the egg wash. Using a serrated knife and a sawing motion, slice the roll into pieces that are 1 to 1 1/2-inches wide. Toss each slice in the cinnamon-sugar-nut mixture to coat generously, you may need to press the topping onto the rugelach with your fingers.

Transfer the rugelach to the prepared baking sheets, cut sides down, leaving an inch between each pastry. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, rotating the pans top to bottom and front to back halfway through the baking period. The rugelach are done when the tops are golden and the bottoms are caramelized. Cool the pastries on the pans for 5 to 10 minutes, then release them from the parchment by running a thin spatula under them. Cool to room temperature on a rack. Repeat with the remaining rolls of dough.

The rugelach will keep for a week in airtight containers; sealed in plastic bags, they can be frozen for up to a month. Thaw, still wrapped, at room temperature.

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