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4.68 from 55 votes

Super Easy Potato Knishes Recipe

My grandmother's delicious potato knishes recipe is flaky and melt-in-your-mouth despite the shortcuts that cut the prep time in half. A great appetizer or side dish. Don't count on leftovers!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: Jewish, Vegetarian
Servings (change as needed): 34 pieces approximately
Author: Cheryl


  • 1 package puff pastry dough (2 sheets), defrosted if frozen, Note 1 about 17 ounces dough.
  • 3 1/2 cups (730g) mashed potatoes (fresh, left over, store-bought or instant) Note 2 equivalent of about 4 large-ish potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dry onion soup mix (optional) or salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 egg mixed with1 tablespoon cold water, mixed (for egg wash)


  • Heat oven to 400F/204C.
  • MAKE POTATO MIXTURE: To fry onions, heat oil on medium heat and sauté onions for 5-6 minutes just until slightly brown. Combine mashed potatoes and caramelized onions in a medium bowl with a fork. Season with salt and pepper - or 2 tablespoons of dry onion soup mix - to taste. You can omit the salt and pepper if you are using leftover mashed potatoes that are already seasoned.
  • MAKE KNISHES: You will make two rolls of knishes from each sheet of puff pastry.
    On a lightly floured surface, unroll one sheet of puff pastry dough. It should be about 1/4 inch/0.63cm thick or less. Stretch out or roll dough a bit if necessary.
    Spread potato filling to resemble a log  - about 2 inches/5cm thick - along one side of the rolled dough. 
    Fold dough over the potato about 1 1/2 times in a jelly-roll fashion, making a log/roll. Cut away remaining dough with a sharp knife for the next roll. Tuck ends and pinch seams together well (to ensure filling doesn't seep out).
    Repeat with other half of dough on the same sheet of dough. Then do the same with the second sheet of dough. If you have extra dough and potato mixture left over, make a 5th roll. 
  • BAKE: Place rolls on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper, seam side down. Brush egg wash on rolls which will create a glazed golden look (optional). Bake for 25-30 minutes to a golden brown flaky pastry. If any potato mixture seeps out, tuck it back into the knish roll with a knife.
  • TO SERVE: Cut rolls of finished knishes into 2 inch/5 cm pieces on the diagonal and serve. To make ahead (recommended!) see Note 2


  1. To make your own dough for knishes: see recipe by Food52.
  2. To make your own mashed potatoes: see our recipe for basic mashed potatoes
  3. Filling variations
    • a mushroom and onion filling with a bit of sherry
    • mix in some sautéed hamburger meat with the potatoes for a heartier knish
    • a mashed sweet potatoes filling, or
    • veer off the beaten path a bit with our yummy knish recipe with root vegetable mash to add extra nutrition and flavors.
    • Add schmaltz to the potatoes for extra flavor. Schmaltz is rendered chicken fat, cooked with onions. Delicious flavor that comes with extra calories (oh well).
  4. Make Ahead
    1. Same day: Make the knish recipe a couple of hours before you need it, including baking and cutting the knishes into serving pieces. Let them sit on the counter. Reheat in a 350F/177C oven for 5-10 minutes.  (TIP: I do this all the time and strongly suggest it - they get crispier/flakier this way.)
    2. To freeze: You can make the knish rolls up to 2 months ahead and freeze them. I wrap them in parchment (or plastic wrap) then put them in an airtight container or ziplock bag to freeze.  Bake as per the instructions whenever you need them (no need to defrost). 
Nutrition values are rough estimates depending on on puff pastry dough used, how mashed potatoes are made and how many pieces you cut.  
Calories: 90kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 38mg | Potassium: 15mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 7IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 1mg