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Polish Makowiec (Poppy Seed Roll) Recipe

Polish Makowiec (Poppy Seed Roll) Recipe

Makowiec (or poppy seed roll) is a Polish dessert made of a yeast dough that is rolled over with a poppy seed filling containing ground poppy seed, butter, sugar, honey, raisins and walnuts. Makowiec is traditionally served during the Christmas season but is also enjoyed by many all year round.

Origin & Cultural Significance

Makowiec is traditionally eaten during Christmas and was said to be connected to Christian legends that state that the poppy seeds grew from the fallen blood during the crucifixion of Jesus. It is associated with pre-Christian beliefs that the Slavs used the plant as an aid to cross between life and death. 


Polish Makowiec Recipe

Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 47 minutes


  • All purpose flour - 500g
  • Dry active yeast - 1 ½ tbsp
  • Sugar - 100g
  • Warm milk - 150ml
  • Butter - 50g
  • Large Eggs - 1 whole egg + 2 yolks
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Raw black poppy seeds - 500g
  • Raisins (drained) - 100g
  • Walnuts - 100g
  • Sugar - 250g
  • Honey - 4 tbsp
  • Butter - 100g
  • Egg whites - from 2 eggs
  • Sugar Glaze - ½ cup


For the dough:

  1. In a small bowl, let the raisins soak in hot water then set aside.
  2. In another bowl, mix together the warm milk, sugar, and dry yeast. Place the bowl in a warm area for about 10 minutes to activate the yeast.
  3. While the yeast is activating, melt the butter in the microwave and allow it to cool slightly.
  4. Place the flour in a mixing bowl then add in the whole egg and 2 yolks. Mix in together.
  5. Add the milk, sugar and yeast mixture earlier and mix. Add the melted butter into the mixture then combine.
  6. The consistency of the dough should not be sticky and should be malleable (if the dough is too dry, add a few tablespoons of milk).
  7. After combining, form the dough into a bowl and place it in a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm place for about 1 hour.

For the filling:

  1. In a large pot, pour water add poppy seeds then let it soak for 10 minutes. After soaking, bring it to a boil for 20-25 minutes (add some water just enough to cover the seeds if it becomes dry). Drain the water and let it cool.
  2. Transfer the boiled seeds into a food processor and grind them twice.
  3. In a large pan, heat up the butter. Add the ground poppy seeds, raisins, sugar, and honey and constantly mix them until the sugar is dissolved. Add in the walnuts and mix. 
  4. Whip the egg whites with the salt until stiff and add the poppy seed mixture. Fold gently.


  1. Divide the risen dough into two and roll each into a rectangular pan (12”x 9”). Transfer one dough on parchment paper. Put half of the filling on top and spread, leaving a small space on all sides. 
  2. Roll the dough starting on the longer side. Continue rolling the dough twice with parchment paper, leaving some space for the roll to rise. Set aside for 30 minutes. Repeat with the other dough.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F then bake for 45 minutes.
  4. After baking, allow it to cool and remove the parchment paper. Add in the sugar glaze on top then serve.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1137Total Fat: 54gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 36gCholesterol: 181mgSodium: 215mgCarbohydrates: 145gFiber: 16gSugar: 77gProtein: 26g

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