Homemade Pierogis


One of my best friends is Ukrainian and my family attended her family’s Ukrainian Catholic church for a period of time when I was in high school. At this church they always had a lunch after the Mass and many times pierogi (or varenyky) were on the menu. Pierogi are basically dumplings that can be stuffed with a variety of fillings…most often potato, sauerkraut, beef and variations thereof. They’re somewhat similar to ravioli except larger and traditionally served simply with a dollop of sour cream. They’ve been on my list of recipes to try for awhile but I’ve been daunted by how complicated I thought they would be to make. They’re actually quite simple…just time consuming to assemble. I wouldn’t suggest attempting to make these alone! That being said the process is worth it and you’re rewarded with a ton of delicious pillows of carby goodness. We made ours with two fillings: a tangy potato sauerkraut and an earthy beef mushroom. We know these aren’t strictly authentic fillings but we just went with what we thought would be the tastiest combinations!

Pierogi-033 Katryn’s Wine Pairing: Robert Mondavi Private Selection Pinot Noir, 2013
Rating: 8.5 out of 10.0

Yes, yes…a Mondavi wine. I’ve always had the impression that Mondavi is a very run of the mill mediocre wine and I decided to buy this to put it to the test and confirm (or disprove) my assumptions. Wellll, this pinot is actually quite good. It smells of strawberry and vanilla and the taste is dominantly cherry and raspberry. It was the perfect amount of fruity and dry to nicely contrast and compliment the savory pierogi. It’s very good on its own as well!

Pierogi-034 Nathan’s Beer Pairing: Smitten Golden Rye Ale, Bell’s Brewery Inc.
Rating 7.75 out of 10.0

This was a great beer to pair with our pierogis! The best way I can think to describe this beer is if a pale ale and a rye ale had a baby they would make this beer as a baby. You get the citrus and pine aromas from the hops in a pale ale and the dry bite of the rye. Overall, the beer is crisp and clean and a great beer to wash down a rich and tangy meal like our pierogis. My only complaint is that the beer lacked body and could use a little more backbone.


Homemade Pierogis

Makes approximately 40 Pierogi


For the dough:
2 cups sour cream
5 cups all purpose flour
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons olive oil

For potato-sauerkraut filling:
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup sauerkraut, drained and minced
2 cups cold mashed potatoes
¼ cup feta cheese
1tbs. lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

For beef filling:
2 tbs. olive oil
½ cup chopped onion
½ pound ground beef
4 baby bella mushrooms
½ cup fresh spinach, chopped
Freshly ground black pepper


For the dough: In a large mixing bowl, combine the sour cream, flour, butter, 2 whole eggs, egg yolk, 2 teaspoons salt and olive oil. Knead the mixture into a soft dough. Divide the dough in half and cover for 10 minutes. This is a good time to start on the fillings!

For potato-sauerkraut filling:

To prepare the potato-sauerkraut filling, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the drained sauerkraut and mashed potato and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and add feta cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then remove to a plate to cool.

For beef filling:

To prepare the beef filling, heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the beef and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and spinach and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from the pan and drain mixture on a paper towel-lined plate.

Final Assembly:

On a floured surface, roll each half of the dough into a thin circle, 1/4-inch thick. Cut the dough using a 3-inch circle cutter. Place 1 tablespoon of a filling in the center of each circle of dough and fold over. Press and seal into half-moon shapes. Brush beaten egg on edges of dough to seal the pierogi. In a pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pierogi for 8 minutes, or until they float. Remove from the water and drain. In a saute pan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Sear the pierogi for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until they are golden brown. Remove from the pan. The pierogi will need to be sauteed in batches. Arrange the pierogi on a platter. Serve with sour cream.

One Response to Homemade Pierogis

  1. Kent Norman says:

    Wow! If the pierogis at Holy Trinity Ukrainian Church looked this good, I would go back!

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