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The poppy seed cheesecake is a popular baked good enjoyed around the Easter and Christmas holidays in Poland. A unique cheesecake made with a layer of poppy seed paste, it contains ingredients that are unique and recognizable elements of Polish cuisine and culture. This cake makes for a great addition to any traditional Polish Easter spread and that is why we have partnered with one of America’s favorite Polish food bloggers to bring you a homemade recipe! Take a look below for a step-by-step recipe for this unique Polish bakery item from Karolina Klesta of Polish Foodies, complete with ingredients from Polana!


Often served alongside makowiec at Christmas or Easter, the seromakowiec is richer in taste. Although the origins of this traditional Polish cake have been lost to history, it is still very much part of our culture.  

This poppy seed cheesecake recipe differs from the traditional makowiec in some of the ingredients used and the method in which the cake is made. While the yeast-based makowiec is bready and looks like a swiss roll, the seromakowiec features a creamy layer of cheesecake followed by an earthy layer of poppy seeds on a bed of crumbly cake crust. 

Why is the seromakowiec cake an important part of Polish Easter celebrations? Because poppy seeds are a symbol of Christ's sacrifice. It is believed that when Jesus's blood fell on the earth, everywhere the drops fell, the beautiful poppy flowers sprung up.

For Christians, poppy flowers don't just symbolize death; they also symbolize resurrection and new life. As a reminder of this, poppy seeds are added to Easter dishes in Poland.

Dried fruit and nuts add more flavor and texture to the dark-colored poppy seed layer, while vanilla essence gives the cottage cheese layer a certain luxuriousness. 

Taking about 2 hours to prepare, there is some effort involved in making the Polish poppy seed cheesecake. But ending your Easter meal by digging through layers of lush cream and earthy poppy seeds is truly worth it!


Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Total time: 2 hours



  • 6 eggs
  • 1 ½ cup of sugar
  • 2 sticks (220g) of butter
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsps. of baking powder

Cheese layer

  • 18 oz (½ kg) of cottage cheese
  • ½ stick (55g) of butter
  • ½ cup (100g) of sugar
  • 2 eggs

Poppy seed layer


Direction For Making The Dough

  1. Separate egg yolks from egg whites.
  2. Beat egg yolks with sugar and butter until they change color to whitish.
  3. Add flour, baking powder, and beat again.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff.
  5. Using a spoon, carefully add the beaten egg whites to the dough. Stir in one direction, very slowly.

Directions For Making The Cheese Layer

  1. Separate egg yolks from egg whites.
  2. Grind cottage cheese.
  3. Beat egg yolks with sugar, add ground cheese, and mix.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff.
  5. Using a spoon, carefully add the beaten egg whites to the cheese mixture. Stir in one direction, very slowly.
Eggs w poppy seeds

Directions For Baking and Assembling The Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 356°F (180°C).
  2. Place the dough in the baking pan (14” x 9”) lined with parchment paper.
  3. Cover the dough with the poppy seed filling.
  4. Put the cheese layer on top. 
  5. Bake for about 1 hour.


You will have 2 egg yolks left from the poppy seed filling. You can either add them to the cheese filling or use somewhere else.


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