Kroket and Bitterbal


Kroket or bitterbal, a typical Dutch snack

Een lekker kroketje that is what we say when we fancy a kroket. If you need a boost or feel like something spicy than it is time for a kroket or portion bitterballen.

A kroket and bitterbal are basically the same. The ingredients, cooking, preparation and even the flavour is simular, the only difference is the shape. A kroket has the shape of a role and a bitterbal is a little round bal.

The word “bitter” has nothing to do with a bitter taste. Bitterballen used to be served with a bitter, this is a Dutch herb-flavoured alcoholic beverages.

Nowadays almost nobody makes them at home. In Holland you can buy them in supermarkets to deep-fry them at home or you eat them in a snack bar, fastfood cafetaria or pub. Or order them for lunch or dinner in a fancy restaurant, stylishly served on a plate.

In the olddays kroketten and bitterballen were made out of meat leftovers. Meat was turned in to a thick ragout, made by a roux, covered with breadcrumbs and fried in vegetable oil or deep-fried.

The Van Dobben kroket is the best kroket made in Holland, they even have a vegetable kroket for vegetarians.. In Amsterdam there are two Van Dobben eatsalons, one is on the Korte Reguliersdwardsstraat 5-7-9 and the otherone you find on the Ferdinand Bolstraat 53. The Van Dobben kroket is sold in most snackbars. So if you gone eat a kroket or bitterbal make sure it is a Van Dobben.

Bitterballen are often served as a tasty snack at pubs and receptions. Eat them hot, and I don’t mean the taste but the temperature must be hot. Be carefull, if you eat them to fast you will burn youre mouth. Bitterballen are usually served with mustard.

An kroket or bitterbal is one of the things an Dutch person or expat missed the most when they are abroad for a long time.

Kroket out of the wall

This is an absolute must to do, put it on youre things to do list when you visit the Netherlands. There are about 60 snack automats in Holland. Put some change in youre pocket and get yourself a kroket out of the wall.



  • 600 gram (1 1/4 pound) cooked meat, chicken or beef
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 60 gram (4 Tbsp.) butter
  • 60 gram (1/2 cup) flour
  • 1/2 liter (2 cups) bouillon
  • Pepper, salt, mace, nutmeg, curry powder, mustard


  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Toasted breadcrumbs



  • Chop the cooked meat and onions very finely.
  • Melt butter, keep the butter light and add all flour at once. Stir until it has blended to a paste. Keep stirring on a low fire for a few minutes, dont let the paste colour. Slowly start adding little bits of bouillon (hot or cold), keep stirring and adding little bits of bouillon till its a smooth sauce.
  • Add the copped onion, garlic, herbs and spices
  • Add the cooked meat and stir gently till its a thick smooth and hot ragout.
  • Let the ragout cool completely.
  • Keep the ragout refrigerated until use, cover it with a peace of greaseproof paper so there is no skin formed.


  • Putt the flower on a plate.
  • On a separate wide dish mix the egg with a little bit of milk.
  • Cover another plate with breadcrumbs.
  • Use your hands to form either sticks (about 10 by 3 cm/4 by 1.25 inches) or balls (diametre 4 cm/1.5 inches).
  • Dip each kroket first in the flour, then in the egg mixture , and finally in the breadcrumbs to coat all over.


  • Heat a deep-frying pan or an electric deep-fat fryer up to 180C.
  • Deep-fry the krokets for about 5 till 7 minutes meanwhill turning them occasionally, until there golden brown all over.
  • Drain on paper towels. 
  • Serve the hot Krokets and Bitterballen with spicy mustard or put them on a roll or eat them as the are.

 Deep fried Kroketten en Bitterballen

Baking Kroketten and Bitterballen in the Airfryer

Its very well done to fry deep frozen Kroketten and Bitterballen in the Airfryer.  Less fat and a healthy way to fry. An Airfryer works with hotair, baking with less oil than normaly.


About Author

Hello, my name is Joop and I am the creator/designer of this blog. Always looking for new adventures. I travelled the World and would like to travel some more. Well, that's who I am in a nutshell. Together with some friends and family we like to show the Netherlands to the World. I hope you will enjoy our blog and persuade you to visit our lovely country. Love to see you soon in Holland.

4 reacties

    • It is great you use our recipe. Using an air fryer I would use the highest temperature, say 200 degrees and bake for 8 to 10 minutes till they are golden brown. Roll the croquettes or bitterballen through (olive)oil before putting them in the air fryer. Good luck. Share a picture with us.

  1. Corrie Vanderlinde on

    Are you saying that I have to cook the kroketten first in the deep fryer, than freeze them and can later air fry them? I want to do the whole deal in the air fryer after making them from scratch

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