July 18, 2023

Dreikönigskuchen With Spelt Flour

My food intolerances have once again tempted me to try something new! Instead of the traditional Dreikönigskuchen with wheat flour and butter (in my case margarine), I tried my hand at a few alternatives.

A Dreikönigskuchen, also known as a Three Kings' Cake or Epiphany Cake, is a traditional pastry that is associated with the Christian holiday of Epiphany, which is celebrated on the 6th of January. The cake is particularly popular in German-speaking countries. The cake is meant to commemorate the biblical story of the three wise men, also known as the three kings or magi, who visited the newborn Jesus on the day of Epiphany.

The most distinctive feature of the cake is that a small figurine, a dried bean or a nut is hidden inside it before baking. The figurine represents baby Jesus or the Three Kings, and the person who finds it in their slice is considered to have good luck and is sometimes crowned as a "king" or "queen" for the day.

In many places, the Dreikönigskuchen is enjoyed as part of a festive gathering or celebration on Epiphany, where family and friends come together to share the cake and enjoy each other's company. It's a delightful tradition that adds a touch of excitement to the holiday festivities.

So, how did I bake mine? First, the classic wheat flour was replaced by spelt flour. It should be noted here that this makes the pastries a little more compact. This is due to the lower gluten content in spelt flours. This weaker gluten leads to less elasticity and a denser texture. This should be taken into account when preparing recipes that require a strong gluten network, such as our Dreikönigskuchen.

Spelt flour also tends to absorb more liquid than wheat flour. Because of the spelt flour, you may need to use a little more liquid than is specified in the recipe. It is best to start with my suggested amount and then add more as needed to achieve the desired consistency.

Spelt flour also has a flavour of its own, which is often described as "nutty". Either way, I really enjoyed this somewhat untraditionally prepared version!


Makes eight small and one larger roll

500g spelt flour

3½ tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

½ cube (approx. 21g) yeast

3dl plant-based milk

50g melted cocoa butter

Some plant-based milk for brushing

1 handful of almond flakes

1 tablespoon of sugar crystals


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Dissolve the yeast in the plant-based milk.
  3. Mix the spelt flour, sugar and salt in a separate bowl.
  4. Add yeast with plant-based milk and melted cocoa butter and gently knead into a dough.
  5. Cover and leave to rise for 2-3 hours.
  6. Weigh out 8 portions of approx. 80g each, shape into small rolls and add an almond into one of the rolls. Shape the remaining dough into a bigger roll and arrange the smaller ones around it. Brush with some plant-based milk.
  7. Leave to rise again for 30 minutes and sprinkle with almond flakes and sugar crystals.
  8. Bake in the bottom half of the oven for about 30 minutes.
  9. Take out, let cool and see who will be king on the 6th of January!

Tipp: The Dreikönigskuchen tastes best fresh. However, it can also be baked the day before and stored in cling film or aluminium foil.