Pelmeni (Russian Meat Dumplings)




About: Hi, I love cooking new and interesting recipes. I want to share some Russian cooking recipes as well as my other favourite recipes here on instructables.

A recipe for traditional Siberian pelmeni (meat dumplings).

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Step 1: Ingredients

For the Dough:
1/2 cup water

1/2 cup milk

3 large eggs

1 tsp salt

5 cups plain (all purpose) flour

For the Filling:

600g beef mince

400g pork mince

(you can buy the mince ready-made but we think that mincing your own rump-steak makes for tastier pelmeni and if you don't have a meat grinder at home you can always order one from amazon)

2 large onions (finely chopped)

1 and 1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

1/2 cup cold water

For boiling:

2-3 bay leaves

1 onion

2 tsps salt

Step 2: Make the Dough

Whisk together the water, milk, eggs and salt with a wooden spoon in a large mixing bowl.

Gradually add 3 1/2 cups of flour to the mix combining them together.

When it becomes hard to mix the dough in the bowl, place the rest of the flour on a clean counter and turn the dough out onto it.

Gently fold the dough on itself, flattening and folding again until the dough is firm enough to knead.

Knead the dough adding more flour until the dough is not sticking to your hands or the counter.

Continue kneading for about 10-15 minutes until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.

Place the dough back to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 45–60 minutes to rest.

Step 3: Make the Filling

Very finely chop the onions.

Mix the beef, pork and onions in a bowl.

Add salt and pepper to the mince and mix well.

Add half a cup of very cold water to the mince and combine (this will make the dumplings juicier).

Step 4: Wrap the Dumplings

Take a tennis ball size lamp of dough (keep the rest of the dough covered with clinging wrap to prevent drying) and roll into a log about 1-1.5cm in diameter.

Cut the log in to 1cm long pieces. Dust them in flour.

Poll each piece into a thin circle with a rolling pin.

Place ½ tsp of filling into a middle of each dough circle and fold in half-circle shaped parcels pinching the ends firmly together, then connect the edges to finish.

Dust a baking tray with flour and place the pelmeni on to it in rows.

When the tray is full of pelmeni, then you can freeze the tray.

Step 5: Cook the Pelmeni

Boil a large pan of water, add salt and bay leaves.

When the water is boiling strongly add the pelmeni.

It is better to cook pelmeni in batches, so that the pan is not overcrowded.

Stir the pelmeni carefully so as not to break them.

Bring to boil (the pelmeni should float on the surface of the water) then reduce the heat and cook for 7 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon remove the pelmeni from the pan into a large plate.

Place a knob of butter on top of the pelmeni and sprinkle with black pepper.

Serve them the Siberian way with a dollop of sour cream.


PS - if you liked this recipe then check out our Russian pies (pirozhki) recipe.

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    8 Discussions


    4 years ago

    A Russian girlfriend taught me to make these, after roughly mixing the minced filling she pounded the mix to make it a smooth paste, she also froze them by sticking the trays out on the balcony (-20 and ten floors up nothing was going to come and get them) It seems to me to me to be what the Italians call Tortellini though I'm sure both will say what they make is different.

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago

    Cool. Yes, they're very similar. I think the main difference is the dough (as the pelmeni dough doesnt really taste like pasta sheets) but I'm sure other people can think of more differences.


    4 years ago

    I ate them often with my friends in the Russian Far East (Yakusk) and they were quite delightful!


    4 years ago

    I'm Russian to and we made pelemeni rarely! Спасибо!

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago

    They're great huh! Making the dough and wrapping them takes a bit of effort but it's totally worth it :)


    Reply 4 years ago

    Its one of my favourites too - we get the whole family involved in wrapping them and then there's a freezer full of pelmeni that lasts us about a month or so.


    4 years ago

    oh, i am Russian and i can say it surely- this meal is awesome :D