A Hanukkah Recipe Box

The Niv editors curated a selection of recipes from food writers from all over the world who shared the dishes they make for Hanukkah with us. Dive into this eclectic and wide-ranging Hanukkah Recipe Box.

From Jewish Food Hero’s Recipe Box

A healthier donut to enjoy during Hanukkah. This recipe offers a gluten-free baked donut hole dipped in chocolate sauce. The almond and oat flour mixture creates a lovely texture for this gluten-free treat. These donut holes are perfectly sweet with a moist crumb and not at all heavy.

This recipe is from Beyond Chopped Liver, 59 Jewish Recipes Get a Modern Health Makeover. Jewish recipes with modern health upgrades, without dairy or meat, inspired from Jewish pre-modern diaspora communities: Ashkenazi, Sephardi, Mizrahi, Beta Israel/Ethiopian and Indian Jewish communities, and from the modern Israeli and American Jewish food cultures

Read more recipes from Jewish Food Hero.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Serves: 8 donuts


2 teaspoons ground flaxseed
1 ½ tablespoons water
¼ cup (50g) sugar
¼ cup (60 ml) maple syrup
½ cup (120 ml) unsweetened soy milk (or any plant-based milk)
3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (95g) almond flour (finely ground)
¾ cup (70g) oat flour (finely ground)
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt

Chocolate sauce:

1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
¼ cup (60ml) full-fat coconut milk


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and spray a donut pan with some cooking spray. 
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the ground flaxseed with the water and set aside for a few minutes to let the mixture thicken up.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, maple syrup, soy milk, coconut milk, and vanilla extract until smooth. Set aside.
  4. In a separate medium mixing bowl, sift the almond flour, oat flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Give all ingredients a good stir to incorporate the baking powder and baking soda. 
  5. Add the flax “egg” to the wet ingredients and stir to combine.
  6. Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet. The batter will be fairly thick. 
  7. Divide between 8 donut holes in your prepared baking pan and place in the oven to bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, around 12-15 minutes.
  8. In the meantime, work on the chocolate sauce. Add the chocolate chips, cocoa powder, and coconut milk into a small saucepan and place over very low heat. Gently melt the chocolate, stirring constantly, to prevent the chocolate from burning. Once the chocolate is fully melted and the sauce is shiny, remove from heat and set aside.
  9. Let the donuts cool completely before drizzling with chocolate sauce. The un-topped donuts will last for 3-5 days in a sealed container at room temperature.

*Vegan Gluten-Free Baked Donuts Holes Variation Ideas 

Peanut Butter and Jelly: spread ½ tablespoon of peanut butter on top of each donut hole and swirl with a teaspoon of grape or strawberry jelly.

Sticky and sweet: use fruit jam instead of chocolate for a fruity, sticky topping.

Powder: roll the baked donut holes in confectioners sugar for a traditional powdered finish.

From Faith Kramer’s Recipe Box

My current favourite Hanukkah recipe is just a few years old but it’s based on two long-time personal Hanukkah favourites—latkes and cheesecake.

This savoury cheesecake is full of balsamic onions and topped with cherry tomatoes and I like it as a first course or an impressive main dish.

Faith Kramer has been writing a Jewish food column for more than 12 years for the J. The Jewish News of Northern California. Her upcoming cookbook 52 Shabbats: Friday Night Dinners Inspired by a Global Jewish Kitchen will be published on December 14. 


Makes 8-inch cheesecake

For toppings:

1 cup small cherry tomatoes, halved
3 tablespoons chopped parsley

Balsamic Onions:

3 tablespoons olive oil
5 cups of thinly sliced onions
1/2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

Latke Crust:

1/2 cup shredded onion
4 cups shredded potato
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoons ground black pepper, to taste
2 large eggs, beaten
1-3 tablespoons flour, or as needed
2 tablespoons oil
Savoury Cheesecake Filling
2 cups ricotta cheese
16 ounces cream cheese (use brick Philadelphia-style)
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoons ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoons paprika
1/4 teaspoons ground cumin
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup finely chopped parsley


  1. Grease an 8-inch springform pan with oil. Wrap outside bottom and sides with foil to catch any leaks.
  2. For the balsamic onions, heat oil in large skillet over medium heat and stir in onions and salt. Cook until beginning to soften then add vinegar, stirring well to coat. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until onions are very, very soft and any remaining liquid is very syrupy. (Timing will vary, but allow 30-45 minutes.) Measure out 1 cup for filling. Cover and refrigerate remainder to use as topping.
  3. Squeeze out and discard any liquid from onion and potato shreds. In large bowl, mix together onion, potato, garlic, salt, pepper and eggs. Stir in 1 tablespoon of flour, adding more if mixture seems very loose.
  4. Heat oil in large skillet over medium high heat. Fry spoonful of batter. Taste. Add more salt and pepper to batter if desired. Spread remaining potato mixture out in a single layer (work in batches if necessary) and fry, breaking into sections and flipping as needed to until latke crust pieces are crispy and well browned. Press warm latke pieces into bottom of greased springform pan.
  5. Squeeze out and discard any liquid from onion and potato shreds. In large bowl, mix together onion, potato, garlic, salt, pepper and eggs. Stir in 1 Tbs. flour, adding more if mixture seems very loose.
  6. Heat oil in large skillet over medium high heat. Fry spoonful of batter. Taste. Add more salt and pepper to batter if desired. Spread remaining potato mixture out in a single layer (work in batches if necessary) and fry, breaking into sections and flipping as needed to until latke crust pieces are crispy and well browned. Press warm latke pieces into bottom of greased springform pan.
  7. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Top cheesecake with halved tomatoes (cut side down). Place pan on rimmed baking sheet. Bake 50-60 minutes, until  puffed, beginning to pull away from pan, and set but still jiggly in the centre.
  8. Cool in pan, cover, then refrigerate until cold. (Cheesecake can be made 2 days in advance.) To serve, bring remaining Balsamic Onions to room temperature. Remove springform sides and serve cheesecake cold, topped with onions and parsley.

From Lauren Schreiber-Sasaki’s

Recipe Box

Everything I Love, Fried.

Fifteen years ago, when I was in Japan visiting my then boyfriend and now husband, I first tried Okonomiyaki. It is a savoury Japanese pancake, which translates roughly to “everything I love, fried.” It was salty and delicious, and vaguely familiar. As I always do with a new cultural experience, I immediately tried to map it onto what I already knew.

“Oh, it’s like a Japanese latke”.

“I guess?” my husband replied, and then I remembered we had yet to celebrate Hanukkah together as a couple. Of course, once he had a festival of lights under his belt he would agree, and Okonomiyaki would become our Japanese latkes from that day forward and our annual tradition.

As a mixed heritage Jewish& household, I am always trying to fuse our cultures (Ashkenazi and Japanese) to create experiences that feel uniquely us—tsukune matzoh ball soup,  yuzu hamentaschen, kabocha challah—our Jewpanese union on a plate. Since living in the diaspora means that many of our holidays have two nights to shine, the overly ambitious part of me has a tendency to think, “PERFECT: Night One’s menu will be nostalgic, and Night Two will be a chance to play!” Inevitably, the second night finds me bloated, exhausted, and lacking the energy to pull together two disparate holiday experiences. Enter Hanukkah, an eight night festival that can let a Balabusta breath for a minute. Now we do a classic opening and a creative close, with six days in between to eat a salad and catch our breath.

Okonomi-latkes, are a mash-up of okonomiyaki and traditional potato latkes for Hanukkah. Okonomiyaki is a popular street food from Osaka, Japan, made with flour, eggs, shredded cabbage, and your choice of protein, and topped with a variety of condiments. Here, we’ve subbed out the traditional pork and shellfish for a more kosher friendly vegetarian version.

The Japanese specialty ingredients can be found at most Asian grocery stores; we recommend Sanko or PAT if you’re in Toronto, Ontario. Okonomiyaki are highly customizable so feel free to play around and make it yours. However the Kewpie mayonnaise/okonomi sauce combo is integral to the experience, so we suggest giving those a try.

Itadakimasu & Beteavon!

Lauren Schreiber-Sasaki is a Montreal-born, Toronto-based arts and culture programmer who has turned her focus to Jewish community, specifically supporting “Jewish&” families through her work at the Miles Nadal JCC.

Everything I Love Fried will be presented at Limmud Toronto on Nov 21 at 12 p.m. EST.



1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup dashi (fish or veg stock)
4 large eggs
2 white potatoes
1 small cabbage
1 cup corn
1/4 cup pickled red ginger
1/4 cup chopped green onion
neutral-flavoured oil

Toppings (optional):

Red pickled ginger
Kewpie (Japanese) Mayo
Okonomi Sauce (vegan version)
Aonori (dried green seaweed flakes)
Bonito (fish) flakes


  1. In a large bowl, combine 1 cup all-purpose flour, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon sugar, ¼ teaspoon baking powder, ¾ cup dashi (fish or veg stock) and mix all together till combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Tip: this relaxes the gluten in the batter and improves the flavour and texture (makes it fluffier). Meanwhile, you can prepare the other ingredients.
  2. Discard the core of the cabbage and then mince the cabbage leaves. Peel and shred the potato. Keep these ingredients in cold water until you’re ready to use to prevent browning.
  3. After one hour, take out the batter from the refrigerator. Add 4 large eggs, 1 cup corn, ¼ cup chopped green onion, ¼ cup pickled red ginger into the bowl. Mix until well combined. Add chopped cabbage and shredded potato to the batter ⅓ at a time. Mix well before adding the rest.
  4. In a large pan, heat vegetable or other neutral oil on medium heat. When the frying pan is hot (400 degrees), spread the batter in a circle on the pan, about 6″ in diameter and ¾” thick. If you’re new to making okonomiyaki, make a smaller and thinner size so it’s easier to flip. When the bottom side is nicely browned, flip it over.
  5. Gently press the okonomiyaki to fix the shape and keep it together. Cover and cook for another 5 minutes.
  6. Flip over one last time and cook uncovered for 2 minutes. If you’re going to cook the next batch, transfer to a plate and keep it warm in your oven.
  7. The most fun part is applying the toppings (okonomiyaki is sometimes called “Japanese pizza” and you’ll soon see why)! Apply okonomiyaki sauce with a brush or spoon, add Kewpie mayo in zigzagging lines (optional), and sprinkle dried bonito flakes (katsuobushi). You can also put dried green seaweed (aonori), more chopped green onions, and pickled red ginger on top for garnish.

From Sibel Pinto’s Recipe Box 

Patties prepared with cooked vegetables are common on the Sephardic table. Some of the most known ones in our Turkish Sephardi community are with leeks, spinach or celery. The patties can be prepared with meat or with cheese or with walnuts for a different flavour. The mixture can be thickened with breadcrumbs, matzah meal or with mashed potatoes. They can be deep fried, shallow fried or baked in the oven. I have seen and read so many different recipes that I can easily say every Sephardic family make their own leek patties! 

My grandmother Elisa always prepared the crispy ones fried in oil for Hanukkah. These patties are also favourites for Rosh Hashanah or Passover holidays. I love the leeks’ sweet, almost nutty taste when they’re fried, and I could easily eat four or five at a time!

I prepared this Hanukkah specialty with leek greens for the Slow Food Terra Madre Salone del Gusto 2020 program. (Terra Madre is the most important international Slow Food Festival dedicated to good, clean and fair food, which unites our food, our planet and our future.) Leek greens have a wonderfully rich, vegetal flavour that’s perfect for this recipe. Do not ever throw away the leek greens—turn them into patties, use them to prepare a stock or bake a quiche/pie; they also make a delicious addition to a winter soup. 

Sibel Pinto is a Sephardic Jew born and raised in Turkey, and now lives in Paris. She is a Cordon Bleu trained chef-instructor, NoWaste Kitchen specialist, and founder of Action Kashkarikas mission. 

Makes about 10 patties



1 kilograms medium sized leeks (use the whole leek with the green parts)
100 grams feta cheese (or similar)
100 grams kashkaval cheese (or similar)
100 grams walnuts, finely chopped (optional)
3-4 tablespoons breadcrumbs (or matzo meal)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
100 grams yogourt
1 clove of garlic (minced)
A few tablespoons water to dilute

To fry:

4-5 tablespoons flour
2 eggs (beaten)
Frying oil


  1. Slice the leeks into 1 cm pieces. Wash and rinse. Steam them until they are soft. Squeeze the leeks to get rid of any remaining liquid. 
  2. Put them in a bowl; add the cheeses, breadcrumbs and walnuts. Mix and blend well, season with salt and pepper.
  3. Put the mixture into the fridge for 30 minutes. Make balls and let it sit in the fridge for 15 more minutes.
  4. Dip them first into flour, then into the beaten eggs. 
  5. Heat the frying oil. 
  6. Fry the patties on both sides until golden. 
  7. Remove and drain on paper towel.
  8. Serve the patties hot or at room temperature with some garlicky yogourt sauce.

From Bonnie Stern’s Recipe Box

In addition to enjoying way too many latkes and sufganiyot, our family tradition for Hanukkah that we enjoy the most, is a gift exchange. But there are rules. Everyone must bring a wrapped gift (extra points if the wrapping is elaborate or misleading!). The gift has to be under $20, anonymous and appropriate for anyone to receive. It does not have to be funny or useful but both things are bonuses. Everyone picks a number out of a hat (one number for each person). Everyone gathers around. All the gifts are in the centre. The first participant chooses a gift and then unwraps it in front of everyone to oohs and ahhs. The second person can choose a new gift or steal the first persons’, and it goes on from there. The best moments are when people steal each others’ gifts but usually in our game everyone is so nice they hate to steal so we end up having to beg someone to get it going. Without fail, every year, some mystery family member brings a wrapped large box of Halloween candy and that’s the gift that gets stolen most! It is always so much fun! Happy Hanukkah.

Potato pancakes (latkes) are one of the most delicious Jewish foods and are traditional during Hanukkah. Everyone has their own favourite recipe and this is mine. They are usually served with apple sauce or sour cream and best hot out of the pan. You can add shredded sweet potatoes, carrots, or celery root, and even make them with half finely grated potatoes and half coarsely grated potatoes.

Bonnie Stern is a cookbook author. Her next release, Don’t Worry Just Cook, will be written alongside her daughter Anna Rupert and will be released next fall. 

Makes 16 to 20 pancakes


1 medium onion, cut into chunks
2 eggs
3 large baking potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 tbsp cornflake crumbs or breadcrumbs
1/2 cup unflavoured vegetable oil
applesauce or sour cream


1. Place onions in food processor and chop. Add eggs and blend. Add potato chunks and process on/off until potatoes are chopped/grated into eggs and there are no large chunks of potatoes. Do not overchop. Mix in salt, pepper and cornflake crumbs. (If you do not have a food processor – the modern miracle of Hanukkah – combine grated onions with eggs in a bowl and grate potatoes into eggs. Stir in salt, pepper and cornflake crumbs and continue.)

2. Heat about 1/4″ oil in a large non-stick skillet. Add batter by the tablespoonful, flattening them with the back of a spoon. Cook until browned and crisp, turn and cook second side. Drain pancakes on paper towels. Repeat until all batter is used. If pan seems dry, add additional oil in between batches and heat before adding more batter.

3. Serve with applesauce or sour cream.

Header image design by Orly Zebak. 

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