It might be helpful to first explain what aebleskivers are before explaining what the pans are. And no, it isn’t a brand of pots and pans, but rather a specialized kind of pan.
Aebleskivers are Danish pastries that are a mix between pancake and donut. The only way these snacks can be made is by using this specialty pan called an aebleskiver pan.
It is made from cast iron or aluminum and contains several holes which allow the batter to rise and form a beautiful ball.
So, what are the best aebleskiver pans? The best aebleskiver pans tend to be made from cast iron as this material is sturdy and durable. Alternatively, you can buy one made from aluminum. The pan should also have the perfect amount of holes for your needs. Make sure the holes are also perfectly spherical to create beautiful aebleskiver snacks.
In today’s article, we will be looking at exactly what this pastry is, how to make it, and how this unique pan comes into play. We have also included some of our favorite aebleskiver pans that can all be conveniently found on the internet.
What Is Aebleskiver?
Aebleskiver is a type of Danish dessert that closely resembles donut holes. They are small round fluffy snacks that have a very sweet flavor and are traditionally served with glogg (a kind of mulled wine) during Advent.
Amongst the Danish community, they are extremely popular and even seen as a delicacy!
So how did these light and fluffy donut-like desserts come to exist? Legend has it that a group of Vikings wanted to prepare a meal very similar to pancakes after a battle.
However, they didn’t exactly have the correct equipment to do so. But, that didn’t stop them!
Instead of using pans, they used their helmets and shields as cooking vessels. What they ended up with were these unimaginably light and fluffy round pancakes.
Fascinating story! However, it is a mere legend and the exact origin cannot be pinpointed or even allocated to a specific tribe.
Another legend of how these snacks came to be, and one that we frankly believe to be the truer of all, is that during the Middle ages raw apples had to be utilized to prevent them from rotting.
What the people ended up doing was to wrap the raw apples in the dough, then deep-frying it. This creates a type of apple stuffed donut of sorts.
“Aebleskiver” directly translates to “apple slices”, but today’s versions of this snack don’t contain any.
The snacks are made from a batter that always contains buttermilk, milk, cream, sugar, salt, a leavening agent, and eggs. Some recipes may include some form of fat like butter or margarine.
You will also find recipes that include some warm wintery spices like cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, or even aromatics like lemon or lime zest.
As we have mentioned, the batter always contains a leavening agent. Usually, baking powder is used, however, you will also find some recipes that use yeast to help aerate the batter and create a fluffy product.
These delicious desserts can be served with a wide range of accompaniments. Today, they are dusted in powdered sugar and served alongside some jam.
And, to bring it back to its traditional roots, it is served with some glogg, a type of Scandinavian mulled wine.
Unfortunately, if you were hoping to find these at a typical Danish restaurant, you’re out of luck! This snack is mostly considered to be comfort food. You will be more likely to find it at a street market or at casual family gatherings.
What Is An Aebleskivers Pan?
Luckily for us, today we don’t have to make aebleskiver in Viking helmets or shields! Some very smart people have developed a special type of pan that you can now use to make these delicious snacks.
Believe it or not, but these aebleskiver pans have been around for almost 300 years! Originally they were made from copper and hammered into their unique shape.
The copper eventually was replaced by cast iron, a more sturdy material that better conducts heat evenly.
In today’s more modern kitchen, most aebleskiver pans are, surprisingly, still made from cast iron. A cheaper alternative that has developed over the past few decades is pans made from aluminum.
Both of these materials have their own pros and cons. Cast iron is a much heavier pan that has a bulky size to it; however, it can distribute heat much more evenly and hold it much longer.
This is important to consider because you need something to hold these pancakes warm if needed without continuing the cooking process.
Cast iron is also a type of material that needs some maintenance. For example, you need to season the pan regularly to avoid it from rusting.
Aluminum on the other hand is a lightweight material that is much easier to handle. It also is a much more affordable material for cooking equipment.
It also heats up relatively quickly (quicker than cast iron at least) and is a fantastic option if you aren’t planning on making aebleskiver regularly.
Aluminum isn’t the most durable material and doesn’t conduct heat as evenly, which is mainly why cast iron is better overall.
How This Pan Works
A traditional aebleskiver pan is made from cast iron and usually has 7 small holes inside. Many brands vary in materials used to make the pan, the design of the pan, as well as the number and size of these holes.
First, the pan is pre-heated to make sure the batter immediately puffs up to create a fluffy product. Then, the aebleskiver batter is dropped inside each hole and left to cook for a few minutes.
Halfway through the cooking time, the balls are flipped around to cook on the other side and until they are beautifully golden brown.
You can also find electric aebleskiver pans that are extremely convenient products. You don’t have to control the heat at all and you only have to wait until they are completely cooked.
Do You Even Need An Aebleskiver Pan?
What if you don’t have an aebleskiver pan? Can you still make this Danish delicacy?
As much as we love giving you a thousand alternatives, for these pastrie there simply aren’t any. To get the unique fluffy and light inside with crispy outer texture, you need this pan.
And before you go looking at what they used before this pan—it was literally helmets and shields. So unless you have some of those lying around, you’re out of luck.
Some people have however come up with alternatives, but again, it isn’t close to what actual aebleskiver is.
Some people make small round balls and place them in tiny cupcake pans. The reason this method won’t work is that you aren’t working with a dough that can be shaped; you have a batter.
So to make balls, you have to change the consistency of the batter and ultimately affect the flavor and texture.
Next, the shape of the aebleskiver snacks isn’t that close to what they should be, but even looking beyond aesthetics, the texture isn’t the same.
Baking these snacks doesn’t create hot enough instant heat to make them puff up. You can try pre-heating the muffin tray, but that doesn’t solve other issues.
Nevertheless, investing in one of these pans will make your life so much easier, more convenient, and most importantly, make perfect traditional aebleskiver pastries.
Plus, aebleskiver pans don’t necessarily have to be used to create just aebleskivers! Buying a pan that only has one purpose and takes up space is not a great idea but buying a multipurpose pan comes in handy!
Aebleskiver pans can be used to create a few treats and snacks from all over the world.
- Takoyaki – A Japanese savory snack stuffed with fillings such as octopus, pickled ginger, and scallions.
- Poffertjes – A traditional Dutch version of this snack. The recipe differs slightly and is leavened with yeast and whipped egg whites. Poffertjes are flatter and have a more disc-like shape.
- Serabi – A sweet coconut and rice pancake made throughout Southeast Asia.
- Neyyappam – These are similar to Serabi, but they are made in Indonesia with rice flour and coconut.
- Paddu – This is an Indian batter made from rice and lentils. The Paddu’s are dipped in a savory dipping sauce such as herbed yogurt.
- Mini Dutch babies – An egg-based pancake that is light and puffy.
- Kue Cubit – An Indonesian Pinch Cake made from white flour, milk, and sugar.
The idea of buying a pan can be quite daunting, especially something like aebleskivers pans which many aren’t familiar with.
There are many factors to consider: materials used to make it and how it will affect the product, the durability, the usability, is it easy to clean, will it create perfectly shaped aebleskivers?
These are only a few factors that you have to keep in mind.
The material and design of the aebleskiver pan will determine not only the texture and shape of the aebleskivers, but also determine how long the pan will last.
The pan needs to be made from durable material that distributes heat evenly.
Cast iron, when properly seasoned, is a non-stick material that will ensure your pastries don’t get stuck. It also conducts heat very well and stays heated for a long time.
It is a very durable material but has to be seasoned to prevent it from rusting and giving an off-color to your pastries.
Aluminum is a lightweight and easy-to-handle material. While it does conduct heat well, it isn’t a match for cast iron and is also not as durable, especially when used regularly.
You will also find that your cast iron aebleskiver pans are much more expensive compared to aluminum pans and even electric ones.
Design And Size
Traditional aebleskiver pans have 7 holes—1 in the center surrounded by 6 on the outsides. More modern pans do vary in shape and size. You can find pans that even have 24 holes!
These larger pans can be used to prepare more aebleskiver at a time and we would recommend choosing a cast iron material.
We know that a pan of this size made from a heavy material will be difficult to handle, however, seeing you are probably making a ton, you need a pan that will last a while.
The holes are uniform in shape to ensure a consistent product. The diameters of each hole can range between 1.5 to 2.5 inches. The depth of these holes also varies between 0.75-1.5 inches.
It is important to take into account the type of Aebleskivers you want to make. Deeper holes will ensure more stuffing can be added.
This might be one of the most important factors when looking at the design of an aebleskiver pan.
We are sure you agree with us that there is nothing worse than getting burned on a panhandle or being unable to save a perfect product because of a hard-to-handle pan.
The handle should preferably be covered with or made from a material that doesn’t conduct heat—even when the pan is smoking hot! This will prevent burns and accidents from happening.
Great options for handles are usually wood, heat-resistant silicone, or plastic.
Traditional pans however are usually made from all cast iron, meaning the handle will heat. Luckily, you can buy detachable silicone panhandle covers or even use a potholder.
Admit it, we all hate cleaning pots and pans. It is arguably the worst part of cooking! Scrubbing for hours on end to remove all the burnt pieces and stains. But, it doesn’t have to be like this!
Cast iron ablesskiver pans are easy to clean as long as you don’t burn your pastries to charcoal! Aluminum can sometimes become a little difficult, especially when dealing with burnt parts.
However, the best material to clean, if your pan has this feature, is anything non-stick.
Some aluminum pans are coated in a non-stick material specifically to prevent the items from sticking but also to make cleanup much easier and quicker.
Electric models can save you time and the hassle of controlling heat! They heat up quickly, distribute the heat very evenly, and maintain it during the cooking process.
And, they are usually made or coated in a non-stick lightweight material, making handling and cleaning a breeze!
These pans usually don’t have a handle, so they take up less space as well! Electric models however can sometimes be more expensive than good old traditional pans depending on the material it’s made from.
The pan doesn’t have to be washed, only wiped down with a damp cloth—very convenient in our opinion!
Electric models can sometimes have interchangeable surfaces to make other items such as cake pops or donuts.
The 11 Best Aebleskiver Pans Of 2021
So, without further ado let’s jump right in to some of our absolute favorite aebleskiver pans on the market!
|1.||CucinaPro Electric Aebleskiver Baker||Best overall aebleskiver pan|
|2.||StarBlue Electronic Takoyaki Machine||18 holes for making large batches|
|3.||Health and Home Electric 3-1 Multifunction Nonstick Baking Maker||Includes multiple attachments|
|4.||Shlia Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan||Comes pre-seasoned|
|5.||Norpro Nonstick Aebleskiver Pan||Great affordable option|
|6.||Norpro Cast Iron Stuffed Pancake Pan||Sturdy cast iron build|
|7.||KUHA Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan||Comes with cotton oven mitt and silicone handle|
|8.||Cabilock Takoyaki Pan||Great small-batch option|
|9.||Kasian House Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan||Has two side handles for easy transportation|
|10.||G&D 12 Hole Aebleskiver Pan||Comes with a lid|
|11||CookKing Takoyaki Nonstick Aebleskiver Plate||Unique square shape|
1. CucinaPro Electric Aebleskiver Baker
We start our list with an electric aebleskiver pan. This appliance has a very simple and functional design.
It is made from aluminum with a non-stick material.
This material makes it extremely easy to clean and will prevent any product from sticking to the surface.
It also only has an on and off switch, making it convenient and hassle-free for you.
You don’t need to set any temperatures or timers; simply check the progress of your pastries after a couple of minutes before flipping them over.
It also has the traditional 7 holes in which you can obviously make aebleskivers, but also donut holes, cake pops, pancake puffs, and many more products!
2. StarBlue Electronic Takoyaki Machine
Even though this appliance is specifically promoted as a Takoyaki maker, it is the perfect machine for aebleskiver as well!
The appliance has 18 holes so that you can make bulk pastries! Despite it being larger in size it is still compact and lightweight.
It is made from the thick aluminum non-stick coated plate and HDPE plastic (a type of durable hard plastic) – basically meaning it is a very durable product.
This product is easy to clean but cannot be submerged in water because it is electronic. Easily clean the non-stick surface with a damp cloth and some soap.
3. Health and Home Electric 3-1 Multifunction Nonstick Baking Maker
This is the ultimate multifunctional appliance for making aebleskiver, takoyaki, cake pops, and a wide variety of fried foods.
The set includes a flat grilling plate that can be used for grilling sausages, burger patties, or vegetables.
Then you have a 6-hole plate used to make various pastries, eggs, and omelets.
And finally, you have a 24-hole plate perfect for making bulk aebleskiver.
This appliance is easy to operate with only an on and off switch and automatic temperature control. All the interchangeable plates are covered in a non-stick coating which also makes them easy to clean.
4. Shlia Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan
This pan is made from cast iron which is both non-stick and durable.
But what’s even more convenient is that it has already been pre-seasoned so you don’t have to go through the extra trouble.
This pan has the ability to withstand direct and extremely high heat while simultaneously distributing it very evenly.
It can be used on any type of stovetop, a grill, and even on an open fire.
And, it also comes with a silicone handle which makes it easier to manage the pan and not get burnt. This pan has 7 holes and also includes two sticks to help turn the aebleskiver balls.
5. Norpro Nonstick Aebleskiver Pan
This is an aebleskiver pan on the more affordable side of things.
It is made from a combination of aluminum and cast iron, commonly known as cast aluminum.
This material offers the best of both worlds: a more durable product that can conduct heat quickly and evenly.
It has the traditional 7 holes that if slightly deeper compared to traditional holes. This makes it much easier to create a stuffed aebleskiver.
The overall design is also very compact and lightweight with a handle that will stay cool during use.
6. Norpro Cast Iron Stuffed Pancake Pan
This product is very similar to the Norpro pan we have mentioned above.
However, this one is made from pure cast iron instead of cast aluminum.
This means it has all of the benefits of pure cast iron like durability, the ability to be naturally non-stick, and conduct heat very evenly. The whole pan is made from a single piece of material meaning the handle won’t break off.
Unfortunately, it also means that the handle will heat along with the pan. Luckily, as we have mentioned before, you can buy silicone pot handle covers to prevent burning.
And what we love about this specific product is its unique hexagonal shape, making it a truly unique pan and addition to your kitchen.
7. KUHA Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan
This set will make the perfect gift for someone looking for an aebleskiver pan.
It includes the pan, a convenient cotton oven mitt, and two special bamboo skewers that will aid in turning the aebleskiver balls.
The pan itself is made from pre-seasoned cast iron and has a silicone heat-proof handle.
So you have a very durable long-lasting product that will be able to make aebleskivers for virtually centuries!
This product has been designed with 7 holes, each measuring roughly 2 inches wide and about 1.3 inches deep.
8. Cabilock Takoyaki Pan
Here is a product that is the ideal size for larger batches of aebleskivers but not bulk quantities.
This 12 hole non-stick cast iron pan is ideal for families or small gatherings.
It is made from a continuous piece of material which makes the handle a lot more durable and sturdy.
You can simply buy a heat-proof silicone cover to prevent the handle from heating up.
The handle has also been designed in such a way that you can easily hang it up, saving you some kitchen space.
9. Kasian House Cast Iron Aebleskiver Pan
This is an aebleskiver pan with a unique design compared to traditional pans.
This one has 15 holes making it perfect for medium-sized batches.
But, what makes it more unique is that it doesn’t have one handle, but rather two side handles.
To say that this makes controlling the pan much easier is an understatement. You will be able to grip the pan much easier and hold the heavy cast iron better.
Seeing it is made from cast iron, you have all the usual benefits, but this product has also already been pre-seasoned so you can simply take it out and get baking.
We would still recommend using oven mitts or silicone grips to prevent burning as the pan is made from one piece of cast iron.
10. G&D 12 Hole Aebleskiver Pan
This product is a great multifunctional pan.
It can be used for a wide variety of round donut-shapes baked goods like Takoyaki, poffertjes, and aebleskiver.
Included in the set is also a special sponge that will help prevent any scratches during cleaning, as well as a wooden stick for turning and flipping the balls.
The pan itself is made from non-stick aluminum and includes a stainless steel glass lid. This one also has two handles on the side which makes it much easier to handle and pick up.
11. CookKing Takoyaki Nonstick Aebleskiver Plate
Even though this product is originally made for Takoyaki, it still works perfectly fine to make traditional aebleskiver.
This plate includes 16 holes and has a very unique square shape.
Attached are two handles on the side to make handling more manageable.
This pan is also made from cast aluminum, making it a fantastic conductor and distributor of heat while also being non-stick and easy to clean.