Gluten-Free Traditional Scandinavian Lefse

Ratings (16)
  • Total: 2 hrs
  • Prep: 60 mins
  • Cook: 60 mins
  • Chill potato mixture overnight: 12 hrs
  • Yield: Twelve 9-inch rounds

Potato lefse, a paper-thin potato bread, is beloved by Norwegians and is best served warm with butter and sugar. Lefse-making is a learned skill, and cooks use special tools to prepare it—most often a large, electric round griddle along with a special rolling pin and a long stick to lift and place the thin-rolled lefse onto the hot griddle.

This gluten-free lefse recipe is made like traditional lefse complete with riced potatoes but includes gluten-free all-purpose flour mix instead of wheat flour. Keep in mind the dough needs to rest in the refrigerator overnight so make sure to plan ahead.


  • 2 pounds russet potatoes (about 3 large)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream or whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 to 3 cups gluten-free flour

Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 175 F.

  2. Peel potatoes and cut into 1-inch pieces. Boil until tender and drain. Spread cooked potatoes on a baking sheet in one layer and place in preheated oven for 15 minutes. This helps remove moisture from the potatoes.

  3. Use a ricer to rice cooked potatoes in a large bowl. You should end up with about 4 cups of riced potatoes.

  4. Place shortening, butter, cream or milk, sugar, and salt in a saucepan and heat over medium-low just until shortening and butter melt and sugar is dissolved. Don't let the mixture boil.

  5. Pour this liquid over riced potatoes and use a large spoon or spatula to thoroughly combine ingredients. Potatoes should be smooth and thick.

  6. Pack the potatoes in an airtight bowl and refrigerate overnight.

  7. Preheat a 10-inch to 12-inch round stovetop griddle or an electric lefse griddle to 425 F. Use your hands or a pastry blender to work the gluten-free flour gradually into chilled potatoes. Turn the lefse dough onto a large pastry cloth or board liberally dusted with all-purpose gluten-free flour. Knead in just enough gluten-free flour to form a smooth and pliable dough.

  8. Using either your hands or an ice cream scoop, remove walnut-size pieces of dough. Using a floured rolling pin, roll out each piece into a nine-inch circle on the floured board.

  9. Using a lefse stick, carefully lift the dough and quickly transfer to the griddle. Cook until brown spots begin to appear, then flip and grill the other side. Place lefse between clean cloths to cool, then serve with butter and sugar.

Lefse can be frozen for up to six months. Traditional recipes for lefse call for the cooked and cooled rounds to be folded into quarters, but gluten-free lefse keeps best when stored flat and sealed in zip-top freezer bags. Defrost and reheat before serving.