Kopytka: Polish Potato Dumplings

PL: Kopytka Ziemniaczane

If you have some leftover potatoes from last night’s meal, don’t throw them away. We will have a use for them in this post :).

But forget gnocchi! Make some kopytka – soft potato dumplings served in a lot of Polish homes, canteens and milk bars.

While the potato-based kopytka recipe is considered a classic, you can change things up and try different varieties. Most popular options are kopytka based on pumpkin, spinach or beets.

Kopytka (Polish Potato Dumplings) topped with breadcrumbs and butter, served on a white plate on a marble background.

Kopytka are so much more than simple dumplings. These bites of chewy clouds are so versatile:

  • They’re are delicious enough to just have on their own with a touch of butter (a perfect side dish!).
  • They’re also dense enough to carry a heavier sauce. Add some veggies and drop in cheese and they’ll make a delightful meal on their own merit.
  • You can turn them into a dessert! Just serve them with a sweet topping of your choice (for inspiration – there is a list below).

Fun fact – in Polish, “kopytka” ( read as ‘koh-pit-kah’ ) means “little hooves”. As you can guess, it’s due to their characteristic shape. I promise, no animals are being harmed while making them :)

How To Make Kopytka Dumplings

You will need 2.2 lbs (1kg) of potatoes (starchy kind is the best), 2.5 cups (300-350g) of all-purpose flour and 2 eggs. (Plus in my case: butter & breadcrumbs too, to prepare a topping).

Top view of ingredients for kopytka - Polish Potato Dumplings: Potatoes, Flour, Eggs, and butter with breadcrumbs for a tasty topping.

Cook the potatoes and mash them with a potato press/ricer. Make sure the consistency is silky smooth.

The first time I made kopytka, I simply mashed the potatoes with a fork – big mistake. My dumplings came out lumpy :(

Next, mix the potato mash with sifted flour and eggs & knead the dough. The next steps are outlined in the recipe at the bottom of this post. Easy-peasy! (says someone who made lumpy kopytka at her first attempt LOL)

Raw uncooked kopytka on the workspace / pastry board,, ready to be cooked.

Kopytka Toppings

As I mentioned earlier, there are many ways to garnish our dumplings before serving. In this recipe, we’ve got my favourite combo: melted butter & breadcrumbs, with a touch of dried thyme.

But the possibilities are endless. Some of the post popular kopytka toppings are:

Savoury

  • Melted butter
  • Golden breadcrumbs fried with butter
  • Pork rinds/ scratchings or fried bacon
  • Chopped & fried kiełbasa
  • Fried onion
  • Meat or mushroom-based sauces (works great when kopytka are a side dish for a roast / goulash stew)

Sweet

  • Melted butter mixed with sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Sweetened cream / farmer’s cheese (twaróg)
  • Fruit jam
Kopytka (Polish Potato Dumplings) topped with breadcrumbs and butter, served on a white plate on a marble background.

If you haven’t eaten them all in one go (doubtful, but possible :-P), they’ll survive just fine in the fridge until the next day. You can reheat them in a microwave, or better yet – gently fry them up. That way kopytka will gain a nice, crispy skin.

Smacznego!

Kopytka: Polish Potato Dumpling with Melted Butter and Breadcrumbs Topping

Kopytka: Polish Potato Dumpling with Melted Butter and Breadcrumbs Topping

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Also known as: Little Hooves, Kopytka Dumplings, Polish potato dumplings, Polish gnocchi, szagówki, kluski ziemniaczane

Ingredients

  • 2.2 lbs potatoes, 1 kg
  • 2.5 cup all-purpose flour, 300-350g
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of salt

For the topping

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • pinch of dried thyme (optional)
  • pinch of pepper

Instructions

  1. Wash the potatoes, cook them in a peel (20 minutes, or until soft).
  2. Peel the potatoes, mash them using potato press or grind them in a food processor. Place the mash on the worktop sprinkled with flour, leave to cool. 
  3. Mix sifted flour with the potatoes, add eggs, season with salt and quickly knead the dough. 
  4. Divide the dough into four or five parts and roll into long "snakes", each as thick as a thumb. Chop the dough into 0.8 inch (2 cm) hoof-shaped pieces. 
  5. Boil the water in a large pot, add salt. Put kopytka into the boiling water one by one, stir gently and cover with a lid.
  6. When they start to boil, remove the lid. Wait for the moment when kopytka start to float. Reduce the heat and cook for another 4-5 minutes until they're soft. Gently stir with a wooden spoon from time to time, so they won't stick to the pan.
  7. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove cooked dumplings from the pan and onto a sieve. Drain them off thoroughly and set aside.
  8. On a small frying pan, melt the butter (on low heat, don't burn it!). Add breadcrumbs and fry them until golden.
  9. Serve kopytka on a plate and top with our breadcrumb topping. Sprinkle with pepper and dry thyme (optional).
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 325 Total Fat: 6g Saturated Fat: 3g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 2g Cholesterol: 58mg Sodium: 100mg Carbohydrates: 58g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 2g Protein: 9g

Save this Kopytka: Polish Potato Dumplings recipe to your “POLISH DUMPLINGS” Pinterest board!
And let’s be friends on Pinterest!

Did this post help you?

Kasia Kronenberger Polish food blogger
Cześć, I’m Kasia.

Here at Polonist I’m spreading the love for the wonderful Polish food. >> Learn more

Never miss a recipe. Subscribe now & start cooking!

Thanks for your feedback!

I’m always looking to improve the articles here to help you become an even better Polish cook :)

While you’re here, why not follow the Polonist on YouTube?

How can I improve it?

How can I improve it?