15 Hanukkah Recipes to Enjoy for 8 Nights

Back in the 2nd century BCE, a group of brave soldiers called the Maccabees fought against the Syrian army for their religious freedom. During this fight, they reclaimed their temple that had been taken and built an altar for the menorah, an important religious symbol of Judaism. Jewish law dictates that the menorah's candle must always be lit, but the Maccabees only had enough oil for one day. However, by miracle, the candle stayed lit for eight days until more oil was brought to the temple! This is the story of the Jewish holiday Hanukkah, otherwise known as the Festival of Lights. To celebrate this joyous memory, Jews spend eight nights of every year enjoying presents, food and games. Since everyone should get to experience the tasty food of Hanukkah, here are 15 Hanukkah recipes to enjoy for eight yummy nights!

Illuminia Hanukkah Menorah

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1. Matzo Ball Soup

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A Jewish classic at both Hanukkah and Passover, Matzo Ball Soup is a warm, yummy comfort food consisting of two tasty matzo balls in a flavorful broth. Matzo balls are made of matzo meal, chicken fat, and eggs. They float in a chicken broth flavored with veggies like parsnips, onions and carrots. This Hanukkah soup recipe will fill you with contentment and make you wish Hanukkah happened more than once a year!

Get the recipe here.

2. Potato Latkes

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Potato latkes, the Hanukkah favorite! These potato goodies are essentially potato pancakes or fritters, and they can be topped with anything your heart desires. Since Hanukkah is a celebration of oil, fried foods are a central component of the holiday, and Hanukkah latkes are the most popular of all fried Hanukkah foods. For a low-carb option, this recipe can be made with zucchini instead of potatoes. Classic potato latkes are topped with applesauce and sour cream, but they are also delicious with horseradish or smoked salmon if you want to get crazy.

Get the recipe here.

3. Challah Bread

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Challah is another classic Jewish food, enjoyed weekly on Shabbat, another Jewish holiday. Challah is distinctive because of its shape; instead of a typical loaf of bread, challah is braided. This attractive design, along with its flavor and soft texture, makes challah an indispensable Hanukkah food for your holiday table.

Get the recipe here.

4. Slow-cooker Brisket

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This slow cooked brisket recipe is another delicious choice for a Hanukkah meal. Flavored with fennel and herbs, this beef brisket is braised to perfection and seared until perfectly browned. It does braise for for three hours, so it's best to plan ahead with this one. The end result of this Hanukkah brisket recipe is a tender and tangy dish.

Get the recipe here.

5. Sufganiyot

In a holiday based on oil and fried foods, it wouldn't be right to leave out doughnuts, arguably the best fried food that exists! Sufganiyot, a Hebrew word, is a deep-fried donut filled with jelly. For a snowy look and extra touch of sweetness, add a sprinkle of sugar on top to this festive Hanukkah sweet!

Get the recipe here.

6. Rugelach

Rugelach are tasty cookies made into little rolls of sugary goodness. This Hanukkah recipe is flavored with a filling of cinnamon, brown sugar, raisins and walnuts, but chocolate is also a delicious filling. Add this to the texture of cream cheese and the flavor of apricot preserves, and these little sweets are an irresistable addition to your Festival of Lights menu!

Get the recipe here.

7. Roast Chicken

So far, our Hanukkah dinner menu has centered on deep fried carbs and sweets, so it's always good to add in a healthy option before returning to the world of deep fried bliss. This Hanukkah roast chicken is as tasty as it is healthy, seasoned with a mix of lemon, rosemary and thyme. The flavors of citrus and herbs combined with the tender texture of well-roasted chicken, and you'll see why this is an essential Hanukkah recipe.

Get the recipe here.

8. Apple fritters

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Mmm, back to the fried foods of Hanukkah! These are just as scrumptious as potato latkes or jelly donuts, but they are much easier and faster to make. Best with Granny Smith or Honeycrisp apples, these are sweet and sugary. Fried until crispy, these cinnamon-flavored apple fritters are the perfect dessert for potato latkes or beef brisket.

Get the recipe here.

9. Sweet Noodle Kugel

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Noodle Kugel is another soul-filling comfort food, ideal for a wintery Hanukkah night. This recipe is essentially a pasta bake, comprised of eggs, butter, sour cream, cottage cheese and noodles. Sugar, cinnamon and butter are the prominent flavors in this warm, cheesy dish. This classic is a great dinner recipe if you love pasta, butter and cheese.

Get the recipe here.

10. Challah Bread Pudding

So you made a lovely braided loaf of Challah along with some other tasty Hanukkah foods, and you have more leftovers than you know what to do with. This is where Challah bread pudding comes in! If you've never had bread pudding, it's a heavenly combo of bread, milk and butter, baked together into a yummy dessert. It's often topped with raisins or chocolate and can be enjoyed with a dollop of creamy vanilla ice cream. The soft texture of challah is ideal for bread pudding, and this recipe is an excellent way to use up your leftover challah.

Get the recipe here.

11. Babka

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Another dessert loaf, babka features beautiful chocolate swirls, making it as aesthetically pleasing as it is yummy. This sweet, buttery bread is chocolatey and cinnamony and is an excellent choice for dessert, a snack, or even a Hanukkah breakfast.

Get the recipe here.

12. Brussel Sprouts

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Hanukkah is a very carb-centered holiday, and sometimes it feels good to add some vegetables to the mix. This Brussels sprouts recipe is a tasty side dish for your Hanukkah meal, the perfect accompaniment to chicken or potatoes. Flavored with red pepper flakes, these veggies are roasted until tender and golden brown.

Get the recipe here.

13. Applesauce

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We can't talk about potato latkes without including a recipe for applesauce! This is the most important topping for latkes, and many latke-lovers would never consider serving their beloved potato latkes without the option of applesauce. The tart but sweet taste provides the pop of flavor to bring latkes to a new level. Best with Granny Smith apples, this Hanukkah recipe includes brown sugar and cinnamon for spice and sweetness. While this applesauce is on the tart side, you can add sugar to make your applesauce as sweet as you like.

Get the recipe here.

14. Mashed Potato Latkes

If you've ever made latkes, you know how labor-intensive they are. You have to grate every potato, then wring out all the liquid, which takes way longer than you'd think it would. This is why mashed potato latkes are so amazing- you get the tasty, fried result without any of the labor! This latke recipe is the genius solution for anyone with a latke craving who doesn't want to spend hours making them for Hanukkah. You can even switch it up and use sweet potatoes for something different!

Get the recipe here.

15. Spicy Roasted Carrots and Fennel

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A colorful and spicy mix of veggies, this carrots and fennel recipe is a tasty side dish on your holiday table. Roasted vegetables add a healthy and vitamin-rich component to your meal, a great way to balance out all the fried sweets that are so characteristic of Hanukkah dinner.

Get the recipe here.

Now that you've tried all of these yummy Hanukkah recipes, it's time to complete your Hanukkah experience by playing a round of dreidel and winning some gelt!

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