Pierogi Recipe

The dough is the most important part of any pierogi. It needs to be firm enough so that it holds a good shape, but tender enough so that it doesn’t get chewy once it’s boiled and/or pan fried. This one is a nice balance I think, and is simplicity itself.

16 ounces sour cream
22 ounces (1 lb. 6 ounces) all-purpose flour
2 ounces melted butter
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle. Stir together until all the ingredients are moistened, then switch to the dough hook (or knead it by hand) until the dough is smooth and even. If the dough is too sticky, add flour a spoonful at a time until he dough is workable.

Roll about a third of the dough at a time, keeping the rest under a towel or a sheet of plastic wrap so it doesn’t dry out.

Fillings

Pierogis can be filled with just about anything. Like most savory pies, their role in the household is as a leftover recycling device. That said, there are several classics that tend to be served at holidays (sauerkraut and mushroom being especially popular at Christmas). So here you go:

Mashed Potato

Pierogis are a superior solution for leftover mashed potatoes. Simply warm them and add any extra seasoning or cream or butter if they need a little extra pizzazz. Or make some up fresh for the occasion. Who says you can’t?

Sauerkraut

2 cups sauerkraut
1 medium onion, chopped and sautéed until tender
Salt & pepper to taste

Sauerkraut & Mushroom

1 cup sauerkraut
1 medium onion, chopped and sautéed until tender
1 cup sautéed exotic mushrooms
Salt & pepper to taste

Cabbage

2 cups cooked fresh cabbage (about 1/4 head, sliced thin and wilted over medium-high heat in bacon drippings or vegetable oil for 10-15 minutes)
1 medium onion, chopped and sautéed until tender
Chopped fresh dill to taste
Salt & pepper to taste

Cheese

2 cups farmer’s cheese, dry cottage cheese, or cottage cheese that has been rinsed in cheese cloth and strained for 1-4 hours
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice

Potato & Cheese

2 medium russet potatoes, boiled, mashed, seasoned and cooled OR about 1 1/2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
6 ounces farmer’s cheese, dry cottage cheese, or cottage cheese that has been rinsed and strained for 1-4 hours hours

Meat

2 cups cooked meat of almost any kind (beef, pork, chicken, turkey)
1 medium onion, chopped and sautéed until tender

Or Creative Combinations

Just about any of the above can be combined as well: cabbage and potato, cabbage and cheese, sauerkraut and potato…or just about anything you have on-hand in the fridge. The possibilities are endless. Cooked spinach, cooked beets, cooked squash, cooked sweet potatoes, dried fruit with sweetened cheese…these are all Central European faves. But…improvise!

4 thoughts on “Pierogi Recipe”

  1. Still use my Baba’s and her mothers tried and true recipe, and no sour cream, the most important is using the potato water and going by feel, the most tender dough, yum !! and for cheese and potato the other must is extra sharp cheddar….I am sure yours is good, but that is one thing I cannot change, kudos to you !
    (my first post ever !)

    1. Hey Tracy!

      That sounds like some excellent pierogi dough! And indeed, going by feel, and adding enough flour, just to the point that the dough an be easily rolled, is key to tenderness. I’ve also had pierogis that use sharp cheddar, and you are right…that’s very good stuff with potato.

      Definitely stick with baba’s recipe. This is more for people who’ve never tried them before. In my case, it’s a reinvention of an old family tradition, since my friends’ Oma can’t really tell us how to make the dough — she just did it from memory as well!

      Have a great New Year!

      – Joe

  2. My mother’s recipe (which I think was my grandmother’s) has potatoes added to the dough. It really is dream to roll out. I made them for Christmas Eve. Of course, with some Kielbasi and homemade sauerkraut 😉

    1. Hey Janet!

      I’m seeing that more and more…some non-wheat starch (i.e. potato) added to the dough. It makes a lot of sense from a tenderness perspective. I think I’ll have to try that at some point. Seems like a great idea!

      – Joe

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