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Homemade Potato and Cheese Pierogies

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Potato and Cheese Pierogies are a cherished comfort food that exudes warmth and tradition. These yummy potato filled dumplings were always a staple on our dinner table for our Feast of the Seven Fishes celebration on Christmas Eve. Typically, I make them twice a year; during lent, and a few weeks before Christmas. While the process of pierogi making is truly a labor of love, trust me, the effort is truly worth it once you bite into one of these soft handmade dumplings.

A gold rimmed white bowl filled with homemade potato and cheese pierogies covered in brown butter and onions.

What are Pierogies

Pierogies are a traditional Eastern European dish made by wrapping pockets of unleavened dough around various fillings and cooking them in boiling water. They are then typically either pan-fried or boiled and often served with toppings like butter, onions or sour cream.

The choice of fillings makes pierogies an incredibly versatile dish. Growing up we typically made pierogies filled with potato and cheese, sauerkraut or prunes.

While the most traditional and popular filling for pierogi is a mixture of potatoes and cheese, there’s a wide range of alternative fillings you can use to make this versatile dish:

  1. Meat Fillings: Ground meats such as beef, pork, chicken, or a combination of these, seasoned with various herbs and spices, can be used as a savory filling for pierogies.
  2. Vegetarian Fillings: Pierogies can be filled with various vegetarian options such as sautéed mushrooms, spinach, sauerkraut, mashed peas, lentils, or a medley of mixed vegetables.
  3. Sweet Fillings: While pierogies are commonly associated with savory fillings, they can also be made with sweet fillings for a dessert-style option. Fillings like sweetened mashed fruits (such as berries, cherries, or apples), jams, sweetened cheese, or even a chocolate-hazelnut spread can be used to create delightful sweet pierogies.
  4. Cheese Fillings: Apart from the traditional potato and cheese filling, other cheese options can be used. Creamy cheeses like ricotta, farmer’s cheese, cottage cheese, feta, or goat cheese mixed with herbs, onions, or other flavorful ingredients can create delicious variations.
  5. Combination Fillings: Mix and match various ingredients to create unique combinations. For instance, a filling made with mashed potatoes, caramelized onions, and bacon, or a blend of spinach and feta cheese, can offer exciting flavor profiles.

How to Make Pierogi from Scratch

As mentioned earlier, making pierogi from scratch is quite the labor of love. Easily, prepare the filling a day in advance, if you desire. Grab a buddy or two, and the process will go by faster than you think:

  1. Prepare the Filling:
    • Peel and cube the potatoes. Place them in a pot of water with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and cook until fork-tender, ensuring not to overcook.
    • While the potatoes are cooking, shred the cheeses.
    • Once cooked, drain the potatoes and return them to the pot to allow any excess water to evaporate over low heat. Avoid adding any dairy at this stage.
    • Using a hand mixer, gradually incorporate the shredded cheeses into the potatoes in batches. Taste and adjust salt if needed. Refrigerate the potato mixture to cool while preparing the dough.
  2. Make the Dough:
    • In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, cake flour, and salt. Create a well in the center. Add the beaten egg and sour cream. Gently combine.
    • Gradually add water, a little at a time, until a soft dough forms. Adjust by adding more flour if too wet or more water if too dry.
    • Knead the dough on a floured surface for 3 to 4 minutes. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Forming the Pierogies:
    • Divide the dough into four pieces, keeping unused portions refrigerated. Roll out the dough thinly on a floured surface.
    • Use a biscuit cutter or glass to cut the dough into circles. Gently stretch each circle to make it slightly larger.
    • Fill each circle with the cooled potato-cheese mixture. Moisten the edges with water, fold over, and press to seal.
  4. Cooking and Serving:
    • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. In a separate pan, melt a stick of butter and sauté half a diced white onion until golden brown.
    • Gently boil the pierogies for about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer them to the pan with the browned butter and onions.

Tips on Making Homemade Pierogies

  • Ensure the dough is kneaded adequately, but not overworked.
  • Resting the pierogie dough in the fridge will make the dough easier to work with.
  • Cutting the dough into 3″ rounds creates a generous size pierogi.
  • We have experimented with a lot of cheese, this combination seems to suit our tastes perfectly.
  • Avoid overfilling, as the pierogies may burst upon cooking.
  • Seal tightly by pressing the dough with your fingers, or using a fork.
  • Use a large pot to boil the pierogies to avoid overcrowding.
  • Once the pierogi float to the top, allow them cook for just a minute or two before removing them from the pot.
  • Experiment with a variety of fillings.

How to Serve and Store Homemade Pierogies

  • To enjoy immediately, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. In a separate pan, melt a stick of butter and half an onion, diced. Allow both to brown. Gently boil the homemade pierogies for about five minutes. Once they float to the top, cook for another minute then transfer the pierogies directly to butter and onions with a slotted spoon.
  • Serve freshly cooked pierogies hot with a side of sour cream and/or a sprinkle of fresh herbs.
  • Leftover pierogies can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Freezing:

  • To freeze uncooked pierogi, arrange the formed pierogies on a baking sheet in a single layer and flash freeze before transferring them to an airtight container or bag. This prevents them from sticking together.
  • Frozen pierogies can be cooked directly from frozen, adding a few extra minutes to the cooking time. They will last up to 3 months in the freezer.

More Family Recipes to Love

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An up close shot of potato and cheese pierogies in a grey bowl covered in butter and onions.

Homemade Potato and Cheese Pierogies


Description

Potato and Cheese Pierogies are a cherished comfort food that exudes warmth and tradition. While the process of pierogi making is truly a labor of love, trust me, the effort is truly worth it once you bite into one of these soft handmade dumplings.


Ingredients

Scale

Filling:

  • 8 to 10 Idaho potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/4 pounds Colby or Longhorn cheese, shredded
  • 6 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded

Dough:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  1. Peel and cut the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a pot. Cover with water to just about an inch over the potatoes. Add salt. Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, shred the cheeses.
  3. Once cooked, drained the potatoes and return them to the pot. Place back on burner to allow the residual heat to evaporate any excess water.
  4. Using a hand mixer, slowly incorporate the cheese. Do this in batches until all of the cheese is used. Taste for salt. Refrigerate to cool while preparing the dough.
  5. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours and salt. Create a well in the center and add the beaten egg and sour cream. Gently combine.
  6. Gradually, start adding the water, a little at a time, until a soft dough forms. If the dough is too wet, add more flour. If the dough is too dry, add more water. A cup is typically the exact amount needed.
  7. Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 3 to 4 minutes.
  8. Wrap in plastic wrap and rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  9. To form the pierogi, divide the dough into four pieces, keeping the unused portions refrigerated.
  10. Roll out the dough, thinly, on a floured surface.
  11. Using a 3″ biscuit cutter or opening of a glass, cut out circles. 
  12. Grab a circle and gently stretch each side to make the circle slightly larger. 
  13. Fill each with the cooled potato/cheese mixture, making sure not to overfill.
  14. Moisten the edges with water. Fold over and press to seal, forming the pierogies.
  15. Continue this process until you either run out of dough or filling.
  16. To enjoy immediately, melt a stick of butter in a pan with 1/2 diced onion. While that is browning, boil a pot of water.
  17. Salt the water, turn down the heat just a bit and gently boil the pierogi.
  18. Once they float to the top, allow the pierogies to cook for another minute.
  19. Transfer directly to the butter/onion mixture using a slotted spoon.
  20. Optionally, serve with sour cream.
  21. ENJOY!

Notes

  • Try not to overcook the potatoes.
  • Be sure to salt the water for the potatoes and when boiling the pierogi.
  • Do NOT use bagged cheese. Shred your own!
  • Place the drained potatoes back in the pot and back on the burner to release excess moisture.
  • Work quickly to combine the cheese, but do so in batches to avoid clumping.
  • Taste the potato/cheese mixture for salt prior to chilling in the fridge.
  • Do not fill the pierogi dough with hot/warm potato filling.
  • Although I have never used one, you can try making the pierogi with a dumpling maker.
  • This dough is really easy to work with. The ingredients given will combine to create a most perfect dough. 
  • If you want your pierogi on the thicker side, do not roll out as thin.
  • Fill generously, but do not over fill to over the pierogi from bursting.
  • If serving immediately, brown butter and onions. 
  • Gently boil the pierogi. 
  • Experiment with the filling. Feel free to use your favorite cheese.
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Moderate
  • Cuisine: American, Polish

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GET TO KNOW ME!

A photo of me in a black floral dress cooking at the stovetop at Williams-Sonoma

WELCOME! My name is Melissa Latin aka. Charlotte Fashion Plate. Happy to meet you! I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him!

Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!

In addition, I’m so very excited to announce I have published my first e-book and paperback, “Mastering Thanksgiving – A Guide to Perfecting Your Thanksgiving Dinner.” Your support would mean the world to me.

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Be sure to follow me on social media! I’m always talking food, fashion, and family! I also love sharing some of my favorite Amazon Finds too. Click here to check out my Amazon page! FacebookInstagramTikTokTwitter and Pinterest! THANK YOU!

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3 Comments

  1. Tried these recently and they were wonderful…thanks for sharing Melissa 😋

  2. […] Seriously…how many of you ate Salmon Patties growing up? I have a confession…I made these the other day for the first time for my Hubby…it was the first time he had ever tasted them in his life…and he hated them…hated them…can you believe? Not because my recipe was bad…they were just not something he ever had growing up in Michigan. I could not even convince him that they were good…so…needless to say…I will only make when he is away…haha! What does he know anyway? This coming from a guy who also does not like Pierogies! […]


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