Food Culture and Tradition

Food, People and Culture Resources

Swedish Domestic Life and Foods Commonly Used


Swedes enjoy most modern kitchen facilities and appliances, use electricity widely, and should they lack anything, it is sure to be imported. Beautiful tableware is prevalent in all homes and there is scarcely a meal where flowers do not grace the table.

Enjoying a variety of produce in season and imported fruits and vegetables in the winter months, Swedes are said to be second only to the United States in their consumption of frozen foods. Convenience products, delicatessens, canned and frozen foods all combine to make the Swedish kitchen as up-to-date as any in the world.


The Swedish cuisine, like its people, is a cosmopolitan one. Indigenous Scandinavian cooking makes the most of fine dairy products, rye, wheat and barley grains, domestic meats, game and herring. All are prepared with the combination of centuries-old skills, concern for appearance and natural flavors, and the gentle intermingling of French and German dishes that have filtered down into daily use from the royal courts of old.

Swedes prefer the robust natural flavors induced and preserved by salting and smoking, stewing and simmering. Seldom are any Swedish foods deep-fried. And the pride of the Swedish cuisine – baked delicacies – take their taste from fresh eggs, butter, and cream gently enhanced with cardamom, ginger, and  freshly grated citrus peel. Great eaters of meat, potatoes, and fish, the Swedes prefer to take their milk in the form of cheese, and their grains in the form of pastries, light rye breads, and crackers.

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