Author Elfie V
Elfie V.

I find inspiration and joy in the kitchen as a passionate cooking enthusiast and culinary artist.

A Dutch meat-based snack that has a creamy taste and is loaded with minced beef.
Easy to cook and delicious Bitterballen.

Bitterballen is a snack from the Netherlands, generally in form of small balls. It is very similar to croquette, the only difference is in its size and shape. Bitterballen is a bit small and round, while the croquette is a bit large and oval. Both have several variants of fillings, soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside. The word Bitterballen is taken from the type of alcoholic beverage, which means a savory snack that can be enjoyed while drinking alcohol. Bitterballen was founded in the 17th century when the Spaniards occupied the country, and the wife of the owner of an Amsterdam pub made this dish and served it with beer and jenever. Making bitterballen might be a little time-consuming, but it is not difficult to make. There are many variants of filling, from veal to vegetables and from shrimp to cheese, but the classic version uses beef. The ingredients used in Bitterballen and how to make it are very similar to croquettes. The filling of this bitterballen is minced beef/pork thickened with flour. After that, make it round and wrap it with breadcrumbs, then deep-fried. For the filling, not only use minced meat, but you can also add chopped carrots or other vegetables to add flavor. Check out the Bitterballen recipes below.

YIELDS 12 serving(s)
TOTAL TIME 55 minute(s)

  • 100g minced beef
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, cut into small pieces
  • 80g flour
  • 250 ml of liquid milk
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp nutmeg powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 100g breadcrumbs



Cook the beef until cooked like in the photo, remove from heat.

Step 1 of cooking Bitterballen.

Saute the onions in butter until fragrant.

Step 2 of cooking Bitterballen.

Mix the liquid milk with wheat flour, stir, then add to the sauteed onion, stir quickly until thickened.

Step 3 of cooking Bitterballen.

Add the minced beef, pepper, nutmeg powder, salt, and sugar. Stir well, make sure the taste is good.

Step 4 of cooking Bitterballen.

Then add the celery chunks, mix well.

Step 5 of cooking Bitterballen.

Make a small round shape like in the photo.

Step 6 of cooking Bitterballen.

After that, coat it with breadcrumbs, then dip it in the beaten egg, and then coat it again with breadcrumbs. Put it in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

Step 7 of cooking Bitterballen.

Remove from refrigerator, fry it in hot oil until it is golden brown, then serve on a plate. Bitterballen is ready to eat!

Step 8 of cooking Bitterballen.

Author Elfie V
Elfie V.

I find inspiration and joy in the kitchen as a passionate cooking enthusiast and culinary artist.

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