This kugel is the follow-up post to the Honey Cake from yesterday, the two recipes that I contributed to our little Rosh Hashanah dinner celebration (non-Jewish folk that we are). The first time I had ever seen or heard of noodle kugel was while watching an episode of Barefoot Contessa. I don’t remember what else Ina made in that episode, but the kugel definitely struck me. There were noodles, but they were baked in a creamy mixture casserole-style and it was kind of sweet. I honestly didn’t know what to make of it. I was intrigued, but not sure that I would actually like it. I tucked it away inside the foodie portion of my brain for another time. Well, after seeing noodle kugel on a sample Rosh Hashanah menu, I knew I definitely wanted to give it a try after remembering that episode. I am SO glad I did because this one insanely fabulous dish.
I envisioned that this might be a bit like a bread pudding, but it’s even better than that, believe it or not. While assembling it and mixing together the cottage cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, vanilla and eggs, it dawned on me that the mixture was suspiciously similar to a cheesecake batter. I think this is basically a cross between a sweetened baked macaroni and cheese (but firmer, not gooey) and a noodle-laced cheesecake. So in summary, one of the most delicious things I’ve come across in a long, long time.
We originally ate it at room temperature with our dinner, and then busted out some chilled pieces from the refrigerator the next day, and… bam! Dessert! Very, very similar to cheesecake. With noodles ;-) The buttery brown sugar and walnut topping is to-die-for. I might even double it next time so it covers most of the top.
I thoroughly enjoyed trying new and different ethnic foods while getting a taste of Rosh Hashana this week. Love exploring new tastes!
Three years ago: Cream of Mushroom Soup
Four years ago: Cinnamon Rolls[/donotprint]
For the Topping:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- ½ cup (110 g) dark brown sugar
- ½ cup (58.5 g) chopped walnuts
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the Filling:
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 pound (453.59 g) extra-wide egg noodles
- 2 cups (460 ml) sour cream
- 2 cups (452 g) cottage cheese
- 1 pound (453.59 g) cream cheese
- 2 eggs, plus 2 yolks
- ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup (145 g) golden raisins
- For the Topping: Mash the butter, sugar, walnuts, and cinnamon together in a small bowl, using a rubber spatula; set aside.
- For the Filling: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish (or shallow casserole dish of similar size) with 1 tablespoon of the butter; set aside.
- Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add 1 tablespoon salt and the noodles. Cook until almost tender but still a little firm to the bite, about 6 minutes. Drain the noodles, transfer them to a large bowl, and toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Allow the noodles to cool, tossing them occasionally.
- Meanwhile, combine the sour cream, cottage cheese, and cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the eggs and yolks, sugar and vanilla; continue to beat until combined, stopping the mixer and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, as needed.
- Add the cream cheese mixture and raisins to the cooled noodles; toss to combine. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Dot the walnut topping evenly over the noodles.
- Bake until the noodles on the surface are golden and crispy, 40 to 45 minutes. Allow the kugel to cool for 5 minutes. Serve hot or warm, at room temperature, or refrigerate and serve cold.
Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!
This is a wonderful recipe. I’ve made it every Rosh Hashanah for years. I substitute chopped dried apricots for the nuts so my grandchildren can take it to school for lunch, where there is a “no nuts” policy. I’ve also made it vegan, substituting non dairy for the dairy.
This dish is actually Austrian, and as a kid I often ate this before we emigrated to the
States. I suspect it dates back to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which covered many middle European countries, and my guess is that many Jewish people emigrated from there and settled in enclaves in the US and brought their local dishes with them. I recognize many of them as being originally Austrian or German which subsequently became known as being Jewish. Our version had no cream cheese and no topping, but contained a lot more than half a cup of sugar! It was always eaten as a sort of dessert following a soup course, and never as a companion to meat or other main dishes. It’s interesting how recipes sometimes change their ethnic origins as they travel around the globe.
This was really good. Never made it before, but I’ll made it again for sure. I used more nuts, it’s never too many nuts in a dessert in our house:) Thank you for the recipe!
I’m going to attempt to make this but I need a little clarity on a part of the instructions
– 2 eggs
(plus 2 yolks) – is this 2 eggs with 2 additional yolks making a total of 4 yolks? It’s just not obvious to me. LOL Thanks!
Should the cottage cheese be full fat or low fat?
Hi Lisa, I use 4% milkfat.
Thank you for relinking this. I love kugel and yours is beautiful. Pinned!
4 some reason, doesn’t seem as though .5 c sugar (in the filling) would be sweet enough considering the large amounts of other ingredients used for the filling. could it possibly use more sugar??
Yes, 1/2 cup of sugar is the correct amount.
this recipe is surely interesting! and looks delicious…
Made the kugel for supper, it was amazing! And the topping makes the whole thing! Next time I think I’ll double it too :)
The name sounds so funny to me, because “Kugel” is the german word for “ball”. You know, like “bowling ball” for example…
I have never seen a recipe for kugel – I feel like I’ve been missing out big time! I really want to try to make this.
This looks delicious. A friend of mine used to make a delicious cheese based noodle kugel, so good! I’ve always made a non-dairy noodle kugel, which is more traditional. (As an observant Jew, I can’t eat a dairy Kugel with a meat meal.) In fact, I just posted a recipe for my non-dairy noodle kugel. Generally, they are mostly egg based- and surprisingly delicious!
I’m excited that you are getting into Jewish food. I’ve grown up with it, but it will be great to see a whole new take on it!
Miriam, went to your site to find your recipe for non dairy kugel but could not find it.
Michelle, what a phenomenal looking kugel! But did you know that on Rosh Hashana there’s a tradition not to eat nuts??
I did not know that (I’m not Jewish, just took the opportunity to try some new ethnic dishes).
Looks very delicious! Any recipe with cinnamon and walnuts will make me go straight to the kitchen :)
Man, that looks good! I haven’t made a noodle kugel in many years, but when I did, it didn’t have that topping! That pushes it over the top, I reckon.
Interesting! Looks good and I love your description!
I can’t believe I’ve never made this classic! It’s on the list . . . thanks for the wonderful inspiration.
I love noodles, This looks delicious….
I have yet to try kugel. Like you, I have heard about it and have wanted to try it. Looks delicious!
This looks wonderful! Ive always wanted to try something like this but this is by far the best recipe I think ive seen, gorgeous! :)
I’ve always loved this dish….I think it’s great that you made a couple of traditional Jewish dishes. I’ve never had this, but it always sounds delicious!
Looks great! A great way to start off the new year. I particularly like the abundance of walnuts!
Do you think you could substitute ricotta cheese for the cottage cheese? Sounds great!!
Yes, absolutely. In fact, a few recipes I looked at used ricotta.
I use an authentic receipt from a synagogue cookbook and use orange marmalade for the topping!
I can’t wait to make this. I just want to make everything you post!! Everything has been SOOO good! No fail amazing recipes! Thank you!
Your recipe looks very tasty, but it is for a dairy meal and not for a meat/chicken dinner. Maybe you can find one that doesn’t use cheese in it.
looks delicious! my mom makes its every year! even though it already is super sweet, if you want a little more sweetness, sprinkle frosted flakes when you bake it! it adds a nice, sweet crunch
Thanks for posting the kugel recipe–I have a lot of Jewish cookbooks, but I’m always looking for the “perfect” one.
Great recipe… love it.
Yum I grew up on challah! I’m glad you gave it a try!
I have always wanted to try kugel but just never have for some reason. Maybe now that I see a recipe and endorsement from a trusted source, I’ll give it a whirl. Thanks!
I have seen it before on menus but have never tried it. Looks quite good!
This is a combo iwould never have even considered. Guess I live a sheltered life. Def going to give this a try. Too curious not to. Looks delish.
Ooo I only get this once a year – at Christmas! A friend of the family brings it every year for the holiday party my god parent’s host. Even though I got the recipe from her, I only think of it at Christmas when I am eating hers. I really need to work on that because yours looks splendid!
looks and sounds amazing! I do not celebrate this holiday, but I’d happily partake in some of the food :)
We grew up eating a very similar dish, and I just made it recently. I used whole wheat noodles, and it was great, since the noodles have a “nutty flavor”. The recipe I have you simply top with raisin bran cereal. So delicious!
Oy, so geshmak! Make this, and you’ll kvell and plotz. Happy Rosh Hashana to all.
I especially love that topping!
Looks delicious! In the version I’ve made, I use crumbled graham crackers on top instead of nuts. Need to do it again soon!
You make the most interesting dishes. I am very intrigued by this and I must make it!
Sweet noodle kugel is one of my favorite holiday foods!
Kugels are the BEST!!!
Sooo…is this a dessert? Or just a regular side? Sounds yummy whatever it is!
Hi Katrina, The beauty of this dish is that it can be either. The recipe from Cook’s Illustrated says it be served hot, warm, room temperature or cold. If you serve it as a side dish, I would recommend warm or room temperature. Eaten cold, it tastes like dessert. YUM!
I’ve never had one, but it looks amazing. Maybe I can find a few places in Squirrel Hill specializing (other than people’s homes :D)
lovely recipe…i make a version using small noodles (i think it serves up better).
after all of this wonderful food…it’s exercise time!
I’ve never had this before, but I think I’d really enjoy it…carbs + cheesecake? Sign me up!
I think noodle kugel is one of those dishes that you have to taste to really understand how it all works – this sounds like an absolutely delicious version.
One of those receipt’s love it or hate it will make this over the weekend and deceid
Oh my word, this looks so good! It does kind of remind me of a bread pudding based on the ingredients, but I’ll take your word that it’s more like a cheesecake. I’ll have to give this one a try :-)
What a different blend of flavors. This dish sounds really good. The cinnamon and brown sugar sound especially good with this combination of ingredients.
Loved seeing your Rosh Hashanah menu. I am SO going to make your Challah bread and possibly the honey cake. Yummy!
For several years I have made a version of this Noodle Kugel with apples OH.SO.GOOD.!
Can’t remember from where I got the original but quite possibly Bon Appetit? It was something the family tried with trepidation but ended up loving it.