These homemade Cheddar Pierogies with Caramelized Onions and Bacon are the perfect meal to make with family and friends. Simple potato-filled Pierogi dumplings tossed in a nutty, buttery pan sauce and topped with crispy caramelized onions, sharp cheddar cheese, and bacon. Every bite is a little cheesy, a touch buttery, and full of creamy potatoes layered with delicious caramelized onions and salty bacon. Nothing is better…or cozier…on a cold winter night.
I could not be more excited about this recipe. Pierogies are one of those foods that bring back all the best memories. Tell me you all grew up eating Mrs. T’s cheddar Pierogies too? The frozen bags of Mrs. T’s were always stocked in our freezer. My mom would make them for the two of us on cold winter days. Yes, way back when my family still lived in Cleveland. Of course, back then, my mom would simply boil up the frozen pierogies, top each with a handful of cheddar cheese, and then melt the cheese in the microwave. And then?
We’d proceed to eat them by the fire…
We also did this with top Ramen (another tried and true favorite). Mom and I really knew how to live it up on bitter cold Cleveland days. It was literally a three-step, two-ingredient meal, but I loved it. So much so that when I got a little older, my best friend and I would come home from school and do the very same thing. And yes, I got her hooked on pierogies as well.
When I first started cooking for the family, I remember one long summer spent up at Mt. Hood. It was the first summer (of many) that we spent there, and I recall it doing nothing but rain. It was cold and I was bored. So bored. So what did I do? I taught myself how to make homemade pierogies. From that day on I knew I could never go back to Mrs. T’s…nothing beats a homemade pierogi.
Once I discovered how to make homemade pierogies, I’d make a HUGE batch and freeze them. My younger brother Kai says that to this day, pierogies are still one of his favorite meals I’ve made him.
It’s been ages since I last made pierogies (over two years…see my first pierogi recipe here). A couple weeks ago I found myself really wanting to make a more classic pierogi. One topped with onions and cream…and bacon too.
Enter today’s recipe…and it’s probably my favorite recipe of the week.
Here is how you make homemade pierogies.
Start with the dough. It’s your basic, flour, egg, salt, combo, but what’s unique about most pierogi recipes is the use of sour cream in the dough. The sour cream keeps the dough moist and adds the slightest tang. Since I don’t cook with sour cream, I always use plain greek yogurt instead, which works perfectly. However, you can certainly use an equal amount of sour cream if you prefer.
Next, the filling…cheesy, creamy, buttery potatoes, simple as that. Don’t mess with it, so good.
Let me tell you about the toppings.
I’ve had a lot of people message me in the past to tell me about all the different ways they top their pierogies. But what I believe to be most classic are onions with a dollop of sour cream. Or even just butter and a dollop of sour cream. I’m not 100% sure (because I googled this and multiple answers came up), BUT I do think these are semi-classic toppings. Either way, they’re DELICIOUS.
Next up, crisp up some bacon. You can use the same skillet used to caramelize the onions with a touch of apple cider vinegar for a bit of tang. Finish with some fresh thyme. Now, toss in the pierogies and serve each serving with addition cheddar and a dollop of cream. I like to use more yogurt, but use what you love most. These cheddar pierogies with caramelized onions and bacon are going to be good no matter what.
Freeze for later.
Here’s the thing about pierogi making. Just like ravioli, these take time. Please do not let this scare you away. Making pierogies is very simple. The dough is incredibly easy to work with. If you can roll out a basic bread dough, you can certainly make pierogies. You don’t need any special equipment, just a bowl, a spoon, and a rolling pin. And if you don’t have a rolling pin – use a wine bottle.
So, while making pierogies does take a little effort, you can make them in bulk over the weekend…or whenever you have time. Then just freeze what’s left over for the quickest, easiest lunch or dinner…any day of the week. Once the pierogies are frozen, simply boil them up from frozen, they take just minutes to cook.
And yes, these are far better than Mrs. T’s.
Find some time this week, over the weekend, or maybe even over Christmas break. You can even gather up some friends and make it a holiday Pierogi Night. Everyone can help in making the pierogies. Enjoy some fun drinks, maybe a cheese board too, and of course…Christmas music!
Sounds to me like the perfect way to spend a cold December night!
If you make these Cheddar Pierogies with Caramelized Onions and Bacon, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Watch the How To Video:
Cheddar Pierogies with Caramelized Onions and Bacon
Servings: 8 (about 40 pierogies total)
Calories Per Serving: 380 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
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- 4 Russet potatoes, peeled and quartered (about 3 pounds)
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese. plus more for topping
- 2 ounces cream cheese
- kosher salt and black pepper
Onion Butter Sauce
- 4 thick cut slices bacon, chopped
- 4 tablespoons salted butter
- 2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1. To make the dough. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt, butter, yogurt, and egg, and mix until combined. Knead the dough for 2-3 minutes. Cover and let sit 30 minutes.2. To make the filling. Bring the potatoes to a boil in a large pot of cold water. Salt the water and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 20 to 30 minutes.3. Drain the potatoes, return the potatoes to the pot and mash over low heat, adding the butter, cheddar cheese, and cream cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 4. Roll the dough out onto a floured surface to 1/8 inch thickness. Using a biscuit cutter, cut out 3-inch circles. Spoon 2 teaspoons of filling into the center of each round. Brush the edges with water and fold half of the dough over the filling to enclose it. Press down the edges to seal, pressing out all the air. Be sure to keep the dough covered as you work to prevent from drying out. At this point, the pierogi can be flash-frozen on a baking sheet for 30 minutes, then transferred to a freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. 5. When ready to cook, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pierogies in batches for 2-3 minutes, or until they float. Drain.6. To make the butter sauce, cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Drain onto a paper towel. Wipe the skillet clean, then set back over medium-high heat and melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add the onions and cook 5 minutes, until softened. Add the apple cider, season with salt and pepper and continue cooking another 5-8 minutes, until the cider has evaporated and the onions are golden and caramelized. Add the remaining butter and thyme and cook 2-3 minutes, until the butter is browned. Remove from the heat.7. Drop the pierogies into the sauce, gently tossing to combine. Spoon the pierogies and onions onto plates. Top with cheddar and bacon. EAT!
- 1. Combine the potatoes and 1 1/2 cups water. Cover and cook on high pressure/manual for 12 minutes. Once done cooking, use the natural or quick release function and release the steam. Drain the potatoes well.2. Finish as directed above from step 3 on.