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Hungarian Nut Rolls

It isn't officially the holidays until I've made this treasured nut roll recipe from my husband's grandmother. The apple-walnut filling is moist, subtly sweet and flavorful. —Donna Bardocz, Howell, Michigan
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. + rising Bake: 30 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    4 loaves (12 slices each)


  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm 2% milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4-1/2 cups ground walnuts
  • 1 large apple, peeled and grated
  • ICING:
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons 2% milk


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm milk. Add the sugar, salt, butter, sour cream, eggs and 3 cups flour. Beat on medium speed for until smooth, 3 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough (dough will be sticky).
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine the sugar, butter, egg and cinnamon. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat; gently stir in walnuts and apple. Cool completely.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into 4 portions. Roll each into a 12x10-in. rectangle. Spread filling to within 1/2 in. of edges. Roll up jelly-roll style, starting with a long side; pinch seams to seal. Place seam side down on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  • Bake at 350° for 30-40 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Combine icing ingredients; drizzle over loaves.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 222 calories, 12g fat (5g saturated fat), 36mg cholesterol, 87mg sodium, 26g carbohydrate (13g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.
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  • bernerlover
    Dec 20, 2020

    these were wonderful! I made them as is. Just make sure you put them on a large baking pan. I put them on a smaller one and when they baked they rose a bit more then I thought they would and stuck to one another, but were still really good. The taste on these is fantastic and I will definitely make them again

  • Stephanie
    Dec 9, 2020

    We also call them Kolaches Lou! I love love love them. I've grown up having them every Christmas. My mother is aging and just beat cancer. As the oldest, these recipes and baking are being passed down to me. She always made them and shipped them or froze them until family came to pick theirs up. Otherwise we would eat every piece lol I've decided to try a new recipe and I think this is it. Wish me luck :)

  • Amy
    Dec 5, 2020

    I had to respond when I saw Lou's note. I too was raised Hungarian from a Hungarian ancestry/family. My grandmother made these rolls all the time. Nut, poppyseed, lekvar, cabbage and cheese. I loved these rolls. She would never give any of us her recipe. So after she passed away I went on the internet and found a recipe that tasted pretty much like hers. But I can't wait to try this recipe. All of my family is now gone so when I make these I will freeze what I can't eat. The rolls freeze well.

  • LOU
    Oct 25, 2020

    **OH MY GOSH!! Being raised HUNGARIAN from a HUNGARIAN ancestry/family; my grandmother made these every holiday. She called them "KOLACHES", not sure where the term came from, but thats OK. She made some with walnuts, and we had to crack the MANY lbs. of walnuts all the time, and she made some with poppyseed and some with lekvar, and back in time, the lekvar came from the bakery. ITS NICE to see they are STILL HERE and if anyone makes them, I KNOW THEY WILL ENJOY it immensely!!

  • asnunez
    Sep 18, 2020

    Oh My Gosh! This is such a delightful roll to make! We only made one change. That was to take the hint from “Mildred”. We added zest from one orange. WoW! Such an amazing pop of flavor. Will definitely be making this again and again. In the very near future, I’m going to attempt making with pecans or perhaps almonds of course, with the addition of the zest. That IS a must, no matter what.

  • Mildred
    Dec 28, 2019

    This is a very good recipe! I just made one adjustment that added that extra flavor— I zested orange peel into the dough which gave the bread that little extra flavor!

  • SaraM15
    Dec 29, 2015

    Delicious! I will be making these nut rolls year after year!

  • Gladys99
    Jan 20, 2015

    Yes they can be frozen! My Hungarian sister in law makes these all the time when visiting the US. Before she leaves, she makes about 8 and I freeze them.

  • khiller
    Nov 15, 2014

    Can these be frozen? I made them for gifts but did not freeze them as I wasn't sure. I sure would appreciate any help with this.

  • Dallasgirl
    Dec 26, 2013

    This is my new keeper for holiday giving. I revised the filling somewhat and made 35 for family, friends and neighbors. I made the filling as written, but added 1/2 cup sugar to chopped walnuts, 1 cup chopped shredded coconut, and 1 tspn pure almond extract. I blended the walnuts into cooked mixture immediately prior to filling as this aided smoother spreading of filling. I have baked nutroll for 30 years, but this new version using this recipe and my additions received rave reviews. No need to add prepared confectionery sugar topping to rolls.