Beef Piroshki (Жареные пирожки) are a fried Russian hand pie, or meat pie. Simple, like an empanada. A favorite Russian snack stuffed with beef and onion. A Russian comfort food, popular across the former Soviet Union.
There are many variations of fried meat pies across many cultures. Hand Pies you'd recognize are known as Samosas, Empanadas, Belyashi or Pasties. Similarly across Europe, there are different versions of these hand pies. In Greece, they're known as Piroski. In Latvia as Piragi. Finland has Karelian Pasties. Iranians enjoy Pirashki. The Volga Germans introduced Bierocks to the Americas. Variations of Piroshki are made in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Mongolia, Kazakhstan and across Central Asia.
What do you Stuff Inside?
They can be stuffed with many different ingredients. They can also be baked in an oven, for a healthier version of a hand pie. Common fillings are;
- Potato and Onion
- Beef and Potato
- Braised Cabbage
- Beef and Onion
- Sautéed Mushrooms and Onion
Yeast Dough for Piroshki
Dough can be prepared using a bread maker's dough cycle. It's such an easy way to prepare yeast dough. Drop all the ingredients in, then press the dough setting, and you have yeast dough ready to go in 90 minutes! I bought a bread maker just so I can make easy yeast dough.
However, not everyone has a bread maker, and I've updated my recipe to include the traditional method of making Piroshki dough. Either method is fine, use your preference. The bread maker dough recipe is here.
If you want to make a more traditional Yeast Dough Recipe, watch the recipe below! Not everyone has a bread maker, and it's easy enough to make the dough from scratch, the traditional way.
Popular Piroshki Recipes on my Site
- Baked Beef and Potato
- Baked Blueberry
- Fried Cabbage (vegetarian)
- Baked Beef and Onion
- Sweet Apricots
- Fried Chebureki (not Piroshki but similar street food)
Can You Freeze Piroshki?
Usually I make 2 batches of dough, as I can double the recipe. I figure after all the work to make Piroshki, I want to save some for later! It's perfectly fine to freeze them. Just microwave to heat them up when you're ready to eat. They're the perfect snack for the kids after school.
When frying Piroshki, make sure you place them seam side down to fry in the oil first. In the photos, you will see that I made some by sealing the edges with a fork. That's not the usual way they're made, but my kids were helping me and it was easier for them. Otherwise the seam is usually in the middle of piroshki.
Traditionally Piroshki are usually eaten with sour cream. I loved always eating them with ketchup, because all kids love ketchup! Everyone loves eating Piroshki, and this recipe is sure to be a family favorite. Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
For the dough
- 1 ⅓ cups lukewarm milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 4 cups flour
- 1 egg
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
For the filling
- 1 lb/500g ground beef
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 small onions finely diced
Preparing the Yeast Dough
- Pour yeast, sugar, salt, and ½ of the lukewarm milk in a bowl. Whisk together and mix in 2 tablespoons of flour. Allow to sit for 15 minutes until it starts to bubble and foam, seeing the yeast is activated.
- In a larger bowl, add the flour, egg and melted butter. Pour in the yeast mix and combine all together until it forms a dough ball. Knead on a floured surface for about 5 minutes until smooth and elastic.
- Place back into an oiled bowl, cover loosely with cling wrap and a kitchen towel. Place in a warm place until it rises, about 1 ½ hours. Punch down dough to remove air, gently knead again before using.
- In a frying pan, over medium high heat, the ground beef until cooked and evenly browned. Add onions and continue to fry until translucent. Add salt and pepper, set aside to cool.
- When the dough is ready, carefully place onto a very lightly floured surface. Careful not to overwork the dough, it needs to be soft. Using your hands, roll out the dough into a long sausage shape. You want to cut into pieces that are approx the size of a golf ball. Or you can pinch off golf ball pieces from the dough. You should get at least 24 pieces from this recipe. Cover pieces you aren’t working on with cling wrap so they don’t dry out.
- Shape dough balls into the shape of an oval about 4 inches across (using your hands to shape, or gently with a rolling pin). Place about 1 tablespoon of the meat mixture in the centre. Pinch both sides of the edges of the dough together, creating a seal all around. Don’t allow the filling to touch the edges or the seal will come apart. Flatten the pinches edges, or leave like a perogy.
- Heat a skillet with about 1″ of oil until hot. Gently place about 4-6 piroshki into the oil (pinched side down) and cook until they’re golden brown, around 3-4 minutes. Flip over and cook other side.
- Remove onto a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil. Serve immediately.