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Classic Potato Knishes

Delicate, flaky pastry covers the most savory potato filling for these four-bite knishes. One will never be enough, so think about doubling the recipe as these will be the first to go at your next get together. Whichever variety you make--don't forget the deli mustard!
Course Appetizer, Lunch, Sides
Cuisine Jewish
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 12 knishes


For the Dough

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil, plus extra for brushing
  • pinch of Kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 3 1 beaten egg for glaze, 2 eggs for dough

For the Beef Filling

  • 1/2 lb. Kosher lean ground beef
  • 6 tbsp. rendered chicken fat (you can get this from your Kosher butcher)
  • 2 cooked Kosher chicken, skin removed, cut into medium size chunks
  • 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 eggs, beaten

For the Sauerkraut Filling

  • 2 cups canned or packaged sauerkraut
  • 1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, medium dice
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • freshly ground black pepper

For the Potato Filling

  • 6 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 2 small onions, medium dice
  • 1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. Kosher salt


Prepare the Dough

  1. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt onto a pastry board or marble slab. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the eggs, water and oil. Mix these together with your fingertips, slowly bringing in the rest of the flour with your hands to form a dough. Do this gently until the dough is smooth. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove dough from refrigerator and flour the board or marble. Roll out dough to 1/8" thick and brush with oil. Cut out 3-4 inch rounds with a pastry cutter or glass. Place a spoonful of filling (see filling recipes below) onto the center of each round and pinch the edges to make a ball.
  2. Place each knish, pinched side down onto an ungreased baking sheet. Brush the tops and sides with the beaten egg. Bake for 30-35 degrees until golden brown. Serve hot with deli mustard and enjoy!!

Prepare the Beef Filling

  1. In a medium frying pan on low-medium heat, melt the chicken fat and saute the onion until translucent and soft. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the ground beef and cook until the meat is well-browned and cook through. Add the allspice, and salt and pepper.
  2. Allow the beef to cool. Stir in the beaten eggs and mix well. The beef is now ready to be used as a filing for the knishes.

Prepare the Sauerkraut Filling

  1. Note: This filling takes a little longer--about 45 minutes to 1 hour to cook. Wash the sauerkraut and drain it very well. In a medium dutch oven, heat the oil, add the onion and saute until the onion is soft. Add the sauerkraut, sugar, and a little black pepper and stir together. Cover and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the sauerkraut is extremely soft and golden. Add a little water if the sauerkraut sticks to the pan during the cooking process. Once the sauerkraut is finished, cool slightly and proceed to use as a filling for the knishes.

Prepare the Potato Filling

  1. In a large pot, salt the water and bring potatoes to a boil. Let potatoes cook until they are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat oil and fry onions, stirring often, until they are well browned but not caramelized. Set aside.
  3. Mash potatoes with potato masher. Add onions, sugar and salt and mix until well combined. The mixture is now ready to be used to fill the knishes.