Cheese Dumplings Recipe

A must try cheese dumplings recipe with Ricotta cheese. These lazy vareniki are very easy and require only about 20 minutes, from start to finish to make.

Traditional Ukrainian cheese dumplings (aka Lazy Vareniki) are made with Tvorog; a homemade farmers cheese. This is an even lazier (I mean easier) version. The Ricotta cheese is inexpensive and simple, but I do have the recipe for farmers cheese posted.Well, here you have it. Enjoy! 

This is a modified version of SheSimmers recipe.

Ingredients for Lazy Vareniki:

15 oz Ricotta cheese
2 large eggs
3 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt + 1/2 Tbsp of salt for water
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour + more to dust
4 Tbsp butter, soft or melted

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Lazy Dumplings

How to make Cheese Dumplings:

1. In a medium size bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 3 Tbsp of sugar, 1/2 tsp salt and 15 oz of Ricotta cheese just until well blended.

Cheese Dumplings Recipe

2. Use a spatula to mix in 1 1/2 cups of  flour, add more flour if needed just until you can form a ball. Don’t over-mix or dough can become tough. The less you mix the dough the softer it will be.

Cheese Dumplings Recipe-1

3. Dust a cutting board with flour and divide the dough ball into quarters and roll each section into a 1/2″ thick strip.  Cut each strip into 1/4 to 1/2-inch pieces on the diagonal (only because they are prettier at an angle).

Cheese Dumplings Recipe-2

4. Bring a pot of water with 1/2 Tbsp salt to a boil. Carefully drop in the dumplings (try to  keep them close to the level of the water when dropping them in or they may splash).

Lazy Dumplings-11

5. Lightly boil for about 2 minutes without stirring until dumplings float to the top. Remove with a slotted spoon into a colander and lightly rinse with cold water to remove excess starch. Toss/swirl with melted or softened butter. I boiled it in two batches using the same water, but you could probably boil them all at once.

Cheese Dumplings Recipe-3

Lazy Dumplings-16
Serve with sour cream. We love to sauté dumplings; especially leftovers. Oh yum.

A must try cheese dumplings recipe with Ricotta cheese. These lazy vareniki are very easy and require only about 20 minutes, from start to finish to make.

Cheese Dumplings Recipe

5 from 16 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
A must try cheese dumplings recipe with Ricotta cheese. These lazy vareniki are very easy and require only about 20 minutes, from start to finish to make.
Traditional Ukrainian dumplings are made with Tvorog; a homemade farmers cheese. This is an even lazier (I mean easier) version. The ricotta cheese is inexpensive and simple, but I do have the recipe for farmers cheese posted.
Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $4-$5
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 15 oz Ricotta cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt + 1/2 Tbsp of salt for water
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour + more to dust
  • 4 Tbsp butter soft or melted

Instructions

  1. In a medium size bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 3 Tbsp of sugar, 1/2 tsp salt and 15 oz of Ricotta cheese just until well blended.
  2. Use a spatula to mix in 1 1/2 cups of flour, add more flour if needed just until you can form a ball. Don't overmix or dough can become tough. The less you mix the dough the softer it will be.
  3. Dust a cutting board with flour, divide the dough ball into quarters and roll each section into a 1/2" thick strip. Cut each strip into 1/4 to 1/2-inch pieces on the diagonal (only because they are prettier at an angle).
  4. Bring a pot of water with 1/2 Tbsp salt to a boil. Carefully drop in the dumplings (try to keep them close to the level of the water when dropping them in or they may splash).
  5. Lightly boil for about 2 minutes without stirring until dumplings float to the top. Remove with a slotted spoon into a colander and lightly rinse with cold water to remove excess starch. Toss/swirl with melted or softened butter. I boiled it in two batches using the same water, but you could probably boil them all at once.
  6. Serve with sour cream. We love to sauté dumplings afterwards until they are golden brown; especially leftovers. Oh yum.

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Read comments/reviewsAdd comment/review

  • EK
    February 9, 2018

    Hi! Would it be possible to use half whole wheat flour? Thanks 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 10, 2018

      Hi EK, I honestly have not tried that substitution so I’m not sure what it would do to the texture of these. Sorry I can’t be more help. Reply

    • Andrey
      March 3, 2018

      Yes…they taste a lot better…much more tender.Try 1/2 to 3/4 cup flour. Reply

  • Polina
    January 2, 2018

    For anyone who has wondered in the past or will wonder in the future, I used 16 oz of Russian tvorog (farmer’s cheese) and this required 1 cup of flour (instead of 1.5 cups). Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 2, 2018

      Thanks for sharing your helpful tip with other readers Polina! Reply

  • Cindy
    June 23, 2017

    I love all your recipes!! i tried a few of them already 🙂

    by the way, what camera do you use? your food picture looks great! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 23, 2017

      I’m so happy to hear that! 🙂 I use a canon 6d and for food I use a 100mm lens. I have more info on these in the resources section of my blog. Reply

  • Kristina
    June 14, 2017

    I like vareniki very much but I cant imagine that i can make them with Ricotta. I will try! thank you! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 14, 2017

      Hi Kristina! It does work with the right proportions. I hope you love it! Reply

  • Martha Calle
    April 9, 2017

    I like many of your recipes and I have made several of them and they come out perfect, but this recipe does not taste neither salt nor sugar, I add the flour content that you say taking great care of not over mix and I could form a ball, but when I had to put on the counter I need add a lot of flour in it to be able to grind it a bit .For me took more than 2 minutes to cook, ??. My question is what flavor does it have ?, I think the amount of flour in the recipe is not enough, ? what texture should it have ?? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 10, 2017

      Hi Martha, these are supposed to be very mildly sweet. They are similar to the classic dough-only dumplings but adding the cheese gives them a little more flavor than just flour, milk, egg and salt. They should be boiling for 2 minutes so once you add them, bring the pot to a boil and boil 2 minutes. I hope that helps! Reply

  • Ione
    January 31, 2017

    I made this on the weekend. Super easy and really yummy. Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 31, 2017

      I’m happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for sharing 🙂 Reply

  • Mary
    November 18, 2016

    My mother made this dish, only the cheese is rolled flat with flour, then cut in a diamond shape. After they were boiled, she fried them sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon. I made some years ago, but it didn’t taste as good as it did when I was a child. Thank you for posting. This is an old recipe called Serinicki (spell?) in Lithuania. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 18, 2016

      Mm that sounds so yummy sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar! 🙂 Reply

  • Natalie
    October 1, 2016

    Hello-what can you substitute for flour in all of your recipes for someone who is gluten free?
    Thank you Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 2, 2016

      Hi Natalie, it really depends on the recipe. I haven’t tested gluten free options but I have had readers tell me that gluten free flour works for some recipes such as my sponge cake (biskvit). Reply

  • Emily
    July 31, 2016

    I made these yesterday and served them with a lemon-dill sauce. They were incredible – thank you! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 31, 2016

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe! 🙂 Reply

  • olga
    May 22, 2016

    what if I use farmers cheese would I get the same results? I know it is dryer…. would I mix I with something? add sugar? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 22, 2016

      Hi Olga, I think they would be yummy with farmers cheese; that’s the original way Ukrainians made them! 🙂 However since it is dryer, I would suggest using less flour. I don’t think you would need to add any more sugar. Reply

  • Oksana
    April 28, 2016

    I will be making these today for the first time, and hope that they will come out great. I’ve been checking several recipes for Ricotta gnocchi (with parmesan, without sugar), and those are served with tomato sauce or browned butter. But I do like the idea of sweet lazy vareniki, so will make both versions just in case. Do you think a berry syrup would go well with these? My husband does not care for sour cream. I appreciate your website, Natasha! Used your recipes so many times, and still coming back for more ideas. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 28, 2016

      Mmm I think a berry syrup would go well with these. You’re making me hungry! 🙂 Reply

  • JoAnn Palmer
    March 27, 2016

    Lithuanian cheese noodles Reply

  • JoAnn Palmer
    March 27, 2016

    my Lithuanian grandma made these with farmer’s cheese or dry cottage cheese 60 yrs ago. She patted them flat and simmered them for a few mins, removed with slotted spoon and added butter. She called them “Bundukies” Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 27, 2016

      Mmm that sounds lovely! Thank you for sharing that with us! 🙂 Reply

  • Zhanna
    February 21, 2015

    Thank you for this recipe. I am always looking for something that both the 1 year old and the 5 year old will/can eat. This sure did the trick! They came out fluffy and soft so the baby can eat them no problem and they have a nice texture for the 5 year old too. I have had numerous unsuccessful attempts at making tvorog and its really great being able to make these with ricotta. I have made these several times now and they come out perfect every time. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 21, 2015

      Zhanna, thank you so much for the great review. I’m so happy your family enjoyed it and I agree that it’s awesome to discover recipes that your whole family can eat together :). Reply

  • alina
    January 6, 2015

    I am making them right now but its terrible! they’re sticking to the pot when I saute them with butter and they stick, help please 🙁
    I need them for tomorrow for my russian class Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 7, 2015

      Hi Alina, these work best in a non-stick pan. You don’t have to sautee them; they can be eaten as is, but we like to do that with leftovers. It’s best to sautee cooled dumplings and not while they are hot and stickier after boiling. I hope that helps! Reply

  • Sara
    July 10, 2014

    I used organic rice flour and the texture was a bit grainy..wondering if it’s because i didn’t use regular flour? Sauteed them with onions and drizzled maple syrup to eat with the sour cream. Tasted just like German cottage cheese dumplings that we make:) Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 10, 2014

      I haven’t tried the organic rice flour so I’m not sure the difference it would make, but they do have cheese so they will have some of that texture naturally and won’t be as smooth as plain dough dumplings. German cottage cheese dumplings sound amazing! Reply

  • Aliona
    June 6, 2014

    Great recipe, Nata, thanks a lot! Quick and easy and taste good!. G Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 6, 2014

      In so happy you enjoyed it 🙂 Reply

  • Maria Haxton
    April 18, 2014

    Natasha, a mozno real tworog ? U menja jestj iz ruskowo magazina… Thank you! Blessed resurrection day to you and yours! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      April 18, 2014

      My mom used to make these with real tvorog. That would probably work great! 🙂 Real tvorog is dryer than ricotta so you might need less flour. Reply

  • Miranda
    December 21, 2013

    Great and easy to make. Thanks for the recipe. Even though I’m Mexican I sure delight in other culture’s cooking. What can I do with the leftover? Freeze or just refrigerate. Thanks. xxx Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 21, 2013

      I haven’t tried freezing, but we have refrigerated and just sautéed them up on the skillet in some butter to re-heat. Reply

  • puka
    November 21, 2013

    Skip the sugar. Fry up some chopped bacon and onions or mushrooms (or both) -> Galushki so shkvarkami, nyaaaammm. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 21, 2013

      Oh my gosh that sounds so so good! Major craving now! Thanks alot! 😉 Reply

  • Oksana
    October 29, 2013

    Natasha, these were delicious. I had to add about 2 cups of flour because the dough was beyond sticky. I did not sauté the dumplings because I grew up eating them straight from the pot with some sour cream. Yum yum yum. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 29, 2013

      I’m so glad you liked the recipe! Maybe it was a difference in the cheese? I’m not sure, but I’m really glad it worked out 🙂 Reply

  • Andrea
    September 14, 2013

    I made these and they were great! My Ukrainian husband had never had them but loved them!

    One thing that I had a problem with was the stickiness of the dough. After I made the first quarter of dough, I decided to add some more flour to reduce the stickiness but then they became tougher from the extra mixing. Is your dough sticky? Do you use more than 1 1/2 cups of flour? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 14, 2013

      Yes it was pretty sticky. I dusted with flour when rolling it into a log, but yes it was sticky. They turn out softer if they are still sticky 🙂 Reply

  • Aya
    August 19, 2013

    Hi Natasha:)
    I made these yesterday. I did not saute them but it was so delicious:) This morning when I wormed them up I sauteed them and it was sooooo good!! I had them with vanilla yogurt because I did not have sour cream. It was amazing. My 2 year old girl inhaled them!! My husband said he wants these for breakfast and also for lunch or dinner with meat sauce:) I am from Japan and my husband is from Brazil so these dumplings as breakfast were so new for us but this is going to be our breakfast menu from now on for sure;) Thank you for sharing your awesome recipe. I am going to try more recipes from your blog. By the way do you eat these dumplings for lunch or dinner? If yes, what do you serve with??
    Thank you Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 19, 2013

      I’m so glad you all really enjoyed the dumplings! We usually serve them for lunch with sour cream or plain yogurt. My son is wild about them too 🙂 Reply

  • Diana
    July 20, 2013

    Natasha I want to say thank you so much for all your recipes. I just made this and they are beyond yummy. I never before made anything with dough(I’m married now for 6 years, how embarrassing) but your site brought me to baking and I’m glad. They taste so good both of my kids approved. One question my husband likes Varenyky with potato would it be possible to just mix in mashed potato with onion? Would they still come out right? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 21, 2013

      I just checked with my mom and she said you can use potatoes and finely diced and sautéed onions instead of the cheese. Let me know how it works out! 🙂 Reply

      • Diana
        July 22, 2013

        I just made these with mashed potatoes and onions. They are very very good. Especially if you sauté them on both sides. Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          July 23, 2013

          That’s my favorite way of eating them as well :). Reply

  • Me
    June 15, 2013

    Actually, Varenyky is Ukrainian version of pirogies, and what you made is called Tvorog Galushki Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 15, 2013

      duly noted 🙂 Reply

  • Galya
    June 1, 2013

    Hi Natasha,
    You might want to add you logo to these lovely print outs so that people will always remember where they can get more recipes from! 😀 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 2, 2013

      That’s a great idea! Thanks Galya! Reply

  • Dasha
    May 13, 2013

    I am super excited to have found this recipe! My grandma is Ukrainian and she (and later on – my mom) made them for us all the time! Note that these are not typical in Russia’s north, for instance (neither are cherry dumplings, by the way), so I am psyched to be able to make these for my husband who is from Tver’.

    And thank you Natasha for the wonderful blog! I am always happy to see a fellow Russian- or Ukrainian-American sharing our culture with others. I teach Russian to adults in NYC and I just emailed the link to your blog to my students. I brought I few things I made to class before and this blog just inspired me to do more! 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 14, 2013

      Dasha, you are awesome! Thanks for sharing my blog with your students. I hope you love the recipe and hope it brings back memories for you!! Reply

    • Irina
      December 12, 2013

      I grew up in Moscow, and my mother used to make these, with tvorog, all the time.
      Vareniki with sour cherries – we had a friend who visited from Ukraine, and she made those for us. As well as the real vareniki – the dough filled with tvorog filling (a lot of work, not for a Lazy person…;)) Reply

      • Natasha
        natashaskitchen
        December 12, 2013

        For sure! Vareniki take some work but they sure are my very favorite things in the world!! 🙂 Reply

  • March 30, 2013

    Natasha with sugar and cinnamon 🙂 Reply

  • Rachael
    March 12, 2013

    I have a son adopted from Ukraine and a daughter adopted from Russia and I like to incorporate little bits of their first culture into our family. My son especially – because he was adopted at age 14 – likes to have Ukrainian food. I made these tonight for my family and they were a huge hit! I will be adding this to the regular rotation. Thank-you!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 12, 2013

      That’s awesome! Thanks for sharing your story with me 🙂 Reply

  • Reed
    March 10, 2013

    OH MY GOSH! I’m from Ukraine, and I’m definitely going to make this sometime this week as part of a dinner, I’ll tell you what I think of them, they look delish! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 10, 2013

      Hope you love the recipe! Reply

  • Olga
    March 7, 2013

    Do you think they will still work well without ricotta cheese? so if i only use the farmers cheese? I’m making some right now 😀 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 7, 2013

      I think they would be yummy with farmers cheese; that’s the original way Ukrainians made them 🙂 Reply

  • Sveta
    March 6, 2013

    Oh yes! Does this bring back childhood memories!!! My grandma used to make these! Love them! Will make them for my little trouble now! Thanks, Natasha! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 6, 2013

      You are welcome Sveta, let me know how they turn out :). Reply

  • Hm, it’s an interesting idea to panfry them after boiling. Never seen that before. My husband would love this! He panfries perogies, buckwheat, potatoes, spaghetti, you name it after they have already been cooked.:) I guess different traditions in different parts of former USSR. Reply

    • March 22, 2013

      I agree. Never seen that before. But it _is_ interesting idea, I love it 🙂 Reply

  • Lina
    February 22, 2013

    Can I replace honey for sugar? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 22, 2013

      That should work; I bet it would taste even better! 🙂 Reply

  • Keith
    February 20, 2013

    Hello, Natasha!
    I just had one quick question about the tvorog. I was walking around the store earlier today and noticed there are wetter tvorogs, and dier; for this recipe which type of tvorog would you recommend?
    Thank you! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 20, 2013

      It’s hard to say without looking at it myself. You don’t want too dry or too wet. Pick the one that’s closest to ricotta cheese. Hope that helps. Reply

  • Galina
    February 20, 2013

    Made these yesterday, doubled the recipe and they turned out great! I sautéed them like you recommended and husband just ate them up. Natasha, thanks for helping us all to be better ‘hospodinyas’. I have to say, your web site is quite popular among my relatives. My mom told me the other day that she was talking to her sister (my aunt), and she was saying that her daughters rarely ask her for recipes anymore, they just use Natasha’s kitchen all the time, lol! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 20, 2013

      Uh oh 😉 I hope your aunt isn’t unhappy with my blog! Well, as they say, nothing beats mom’s cooking so I hope they still try to get their Mama’s recipes 🙂 Reply

      • Galina
        February 22, 2013

        I’m sure they still do, but it definitely helps us be more independent 🙂 Reply

  • Lena
    February 19, 2013

    Just got done making these yummy babies!. They are delicious! Thank You for your always so yummy recepies! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 19, 2013

      Oh so happy you liked the recipe 🙂 Reply

  • Tonia
    February 19, 2013

    I don’t have ricotta cheese, but I have fresh mozzarella. Do you think it will still work? Or I could just wait and buy ricotta. 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 19, 2013

      I don’t think the fresh mozzarella would blend well with the rest of the ingredients. I haven’t tried it, but I don’t think it would work. Reply

  • Nadia
    February 18, 2013

    Hi Natasha. How much flour do you add? Thanks n Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      1 1/2 cups Reply

  • February 18, 2013

    I love how easy these are. I bet they’re a dream with sautéed onions and sour cream. Great recipe!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      Yes, they are, just omit the sugar in :). Reply

  • Oksana
    February 18, 2013

    I made these once with Farmer’s Cheese and absolutely LOVED them! Can’t wait to try this recipe! 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      Let me know if you can tell the difference after making them, between Farmer’s Cheese and Ricotta. Reply

  • Rosie Kuzmicz
    February 18, 2013

    These look super yummy. A must try for my Hubby. One question though, you have ricotta cheese on the recipe but on your first instruction it says cottage cheese? I’m thinking cottage cheese is a typo. Thanks for another yummy recipe Natasha! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      Good eyes Rosie, just got it fixed in both places, thank you :). Reply

  • February 18, 2013

    My grandma used to make them a lot..except she didn’t saute them.. they look delish 😉 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      They taste great either way :). Reply

  • D
    February 18, 2013

    My mom made these too when I was little! They go great with sour cream. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      They do indeed, we ate ours in two sittings :). Reply

  • YanaP
    February 17, 2013

    Oh yum! I remember my mom making these for us when we were little! Yum!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      These were my husbands memory 🙂 my mom made them plain; just the dough from pelmeni in water; my favorite! Reply

      • YanaP
        March 14, 2013

        I made these last night and they were yummy! Very easy to make. Thank You for sharing. =) Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          March 14, 2013

          They are very easy indeed, I’m glad you like them Yana :). Reply

  • February 17, 2013

    I love making these, it so easy and the taste is rewarding:) Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 18, 2013

      They are very easy :), my 3 year old ate them with sour cream and jam. Reply

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