Doris Knutson’s Lefse Recipe

5 CUPS RICED POTATOES20130921_110132






DAY 1:

  • Boil No. 1 (good quality, unblemished) white russet potatoes just until done.  Pour water off immediately and set back on burner (burner turned off).  With cover off, shake every few minutes to get as much moisture off as possible.
  • Put hot potatoes through a ricer (Foley food mill or cone) as quickly as possible.
  • Measure 5 cups riced potatoes in a bowl.
  • In a small sauce pan, heat cream and butter together until butter is melted, add that to riced potatoes and 1 tsp salt.  Mix with mixer and put back in bowl.  Leave bowl set out on cupboard to cool for a while, then cover and cool in refrigerator overnight.
  • Prepare rolling board by covering with a heavy dish towel, pinned tight so it doesn’t move around.  Also put a sock type cover on the rolling pin.  Take another heavy dish towel, fold over and on top half of the inside, pin two sheets of wax paper.  You’ll need two of these dish towel/wax paper creations – one you’ll use to put lefse on as it comes off the grill, and the other you’ll transfer the lefse to for cooling.  For cooling you’ll put your dish towel/wax paper inside a bath towel.

DAY 2:

  • Take potato mixture out of refrigerator to warm up; let sit out about 1 ½ hours.
  • Add 1 ½ cups of flour to potato mixture, working it in well with your hands.
  • Divide into 12, 14 or 16 balls (whatever is easy to handle)
  • Roll ball in hands to warm and evenly round.
  • Work some flour into the cloth covered board, and roll the rolling pin in some flour.  If using a grooved rolling pin, you won’t need as much flour.
  • Roll ball out until thin and round
  • Roll up on a lefse stick and un-roll onto lefse grill.  Grill should be almost 500 degrees, so lefse fries quickly.  If too slow, it dries out.
  • Fry on first side until lightly brown speckled, then turn over and do same on other side.
  • Take off and leave second side (or top side) up, on towel, brush only that side with a soft brush to get rid of excess flour.
  • Cover lefse with waxed papered side of towel.  This helps to keep moisture in and softens the lefse.  Keep putting the lefse on top of each other and brushing excess flour off each one.
  • Transfer batch to your second heavy dish towel/wax paper, and set inside a bath towel.
  • Tuck towel in all around and let set that way until it is cold.  When completely cooled, separate each piece of lefse and cut for putting in bags.  Can put about ten on top of each other for freezing.
  • When taking out to defrost, don’t open bag, just leave on cupboard until thawed out.


  • 10 lbs. of potatoes makes three of these five cup batches.  Each batch makes 12 lefse when rolled as big as lefse grill or more smaller lefse if making balls smaller.
  • Wash all towels and pin covers with unscented detergent and do not use scented fabric softener!  Vinegar in rinse is good.

Doris Knutson’s Lefse Recipe in printable format