Crumbly, warm, and still fresh from the oven: “the best cookies in Amsterdam” are often said to be those from Van Stapele Koekmakerij. Located down a little cobbled alley off Spui and close to Amsterdam’s main Begijnhof, you’ll smell this nostalgic sweet shop before you even see it. Often with a long line out the door and decorated in traditional wooden furniture, this is one bakery you won’t want to miss off your Amsterdam bucket list…
A brief history of Van Stapele
With a reputation for serving up the ‘best cookie in Amsterdam,’ it may well surprise you to learn that the bakery actually only opened its doors in 2014! There is only one variety of cookie for sale: a crunchy Valrhona dark chocolate base with a soft white chocolate centre.
The story goes that when the founders were deciding on a recipe, they all sat down to try their various creations. As soon as they bit into what has since become the iconic Van Stapele cookie, they all looked at each other with pure delight: the bakers had found ‘the one’. Fast forward to today, and as you can imagine, cookies pretty much fly off the shelves, with 46 baked every 10 minutes!
How to visit Van Stapele (and buy a cookie for yourself!)
You should know that if you’re planning to purchase a cookie for yourself (and I highly recommend that you do), then the queue can quite often be out of the door. As such, I recommend visiting mid-week and as early in the day as possible. Wait ’til the end of the day, and sometimes the cookies have proven so popular that they’ll often sell out early!
Cookies cost €2, meaning that they’re a little on the pricier side of things, but this is a once in a lifetime cookie experience! If you’re planning to share, or want to eat the cookies over the period of a couple of days (it’s recommended that the cookies will keep for up to three or four days), then you can buy a box of 6 for €10. Though the white chocolate centre is pretty rich, the cookie itself isn’t too sweet!
Wander into the Van Stapele cookie shop at No. 4 Heisteeg at any given moment, and you can expect to be able to purchase a freshly baked biscuit. The store itself is filled with hints of historical features; the vintage cash register, golden chandeliers, and mirror-backed panelling are all lovely touches.
Though you can pay to get your cookies wrapped in gift packaging, the biscuits are sold in grease-proof paper, ensuring you can pack them to bring back from your travels, or simply head to a secret and secluded park to enjoy your treat! Alternatively, if you head back to Spui, then you can sit on the benches close to the Athenaeum Boekhandel.