Limburgse Kruimelvlaai

Vlaaien are a typical pie from the south of Holland, more accurately from the province of Limburg. A Limburgse vlaai may only be called such when the whole pie has been baked. Baking the dough first and then filling it with a cream cheese filling or a bavaroise automatically disqualifies the pastry to be called "limburgse": it will have to suffice with being called a vlaai.

My grandma used to tell me stories about the vlaaien they would bake during Kermis, or fair time. Once a year, the fair would come to town and families would bake up to thirty vlaaien to feed friends and family: fancy ones like rice pie, rich puddings and topped with whipped cream, or plain fruit ones. The richer pies would be consumed first, the simple fruit pies would usually be the last ones to be eaten.

A cup of coffee and a slice of vlaai, it is still a traditional way of enjoying time spent with visitors or of celebrating an important milestone in one's life (even if that milestone is having found the perfect shoes on sale that afternoon!) The dough is not the flaky pastry dough as we know it here in America, but rather a yeast dough that needs to rise twice before being baked. 

This kruimelvlaai (crumb pie) is a streusel-topped vanilla pudding pie. This time I chose to use a store-bought vanilla pudding mix, but you can also make this pie with pastry cream. It's a lovely vlaai, with a crunchy top, sweet pudding and a tender crust, perfect for an afternoon treat!

Limburgse Kruimelvlaai
For the dough
1/3 cup milk and 2 Tbsp (100 ml), lukewarm
1 1/2 teaspoons (5 grams) active dry yeast
1 3/4 cup (250 gr) all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons (30 grams) sugar
1/2 teaspoon (4 grams) salt
1 egg
1/2 stick butter (55 gr), soft at room temperature
2 tablespoons breadcrumbs or panko

Sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk and set it aside to proof. In the meantime, mix the flour with the sugar and the salt. When the yeast has proofed, add the milk to the dough and mix for a minute. Add the egg and continue to mix until the dough comes together, then knead in the butter. Knead everything to a consistent whole, not too sticky but certainly not too dry. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover and let it rise.

For the filling
Follow the directions on the cooked pudding box or make the pastry cream per the link above. Make sure you have at least two cups.

For the streusel
1 cup (150 grams) all-purpose flour
1 stick (110 grams) butter
1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar

Cut the butter into the flour and sugar until it feels like wet sand.

Grease an 11 inch/28 cm pie form, roll the dough into a circle and line the form with the dough. Poke holes in the dough with a fork, cover and let rise again until puffy.

Pour the cooled vanilla pudding on top of the dough and cover with the streusel. Bake in a 400F/200C oven for twenty minutes. You may need to place the pie under the broiler for a golden touch.

Eat lukewarm with a cup of coffee and in the company of good friends!


  1. Toffe blog heb je! Ik was net op zoek naar het recept voor een knobbeltjesvlaai, dus ga ik dit recept zéker testen!

  2. Vandaag de Limburgse kruimelvlaai gemaakt..super lekker en niet zo moeilijk als ik dacht. Mijn oma uit Eygelshoven zou trots om me geweest zijn:)

  3. Hi Nicole, kan ik deze een dag of drie van te voren maken? Blijft ie dan goed of wordt 'ie dan minder 'kruimelig' en 'krakerig'? Kan de vlaai ook ingevroren worden? Dat doen ze iig in Nederland bij de Multivlaai wel ;-)

    1. Anna, de vlaai kan goed twee tot drie dagen van te voren worden klaargemaakt, veel langer zou ik niet aanraden. Koel bewaren of zoals je zegt invriezen: dat gaat goed. Als het op kamertemperatuur is mag hij best eventjes onder de broiler om de kruimel wat harder te maken. Door het invriezen en dooien wordt de bovenkant een beetje zachter.

  4. Hello I have never cooked or baked in my live, but I can microwave (dont worry I dont mean the vlaai or waffels). I realy need to have a go at vlaai and limburgse waffels. Do you need a mixer for these as I cant remember mum having one when I was growing up. How will I tell If the yeast has proofed. Frits

    1. There will be small bubbles forming on the top of the mixture.

    2. Hello Anonymous! You don't need a mixer for this, as the dough can be mixed by hand, it just takes a bit more elbow grease. Like Terry says, you will be able to tell if the yeast proofed by seeing bubbles forming on top of the warm milk. Let me know how it's going!

  5. It brings back so many memories from my oma, being in aus its very hard to find a good vlaai. I will have to practice my baking!!


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