Meat and Potato Knishes

Updated December 19, 2022
This image courtesy of Shutterstock

These Deli knishes (a variation on the real thing, since they’re not wrapped in pastry) are substantial enough to make complete meals in themselves with a salad or vegetable on the side. You can make your patties in the morning, refrigerate them, and fry them up any time within about 3 days.


Cooking MethodPan-frying, Sauteeing


Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

Recipe CourseMain Course, Side Dish

Dietary ConsiderationHalal, Kosher, Lactose-free, Peanut Free, Soy Free, Tree Nut Free

EquipmentFood Processor


Taste and TextureCrisp, Meaty, Rich, Salty, Savory, Spiced


  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 tablespoons corn oil
  • 1 cup finely chipped onions
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped or crushed fresh garlic
  • ¼ pound corned beef
  • ¼ pound pastrami
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/8 cup water
  • 2 cups seasoned bread crumbs, placed in a shallow pan or dish
  • Corn oil for frying


  1. Set a pot of water to boil, and cook potatoes 15 to 20 minutes, until tender. While the potatoes are cooking, heat corn oil in a large skillet, and sauté onions. At the last minute, add garlic, and brown quickly. Remove onions and garlic to a large bowl with a slotted spoon. Drain potatoes, add them to bowl, and refrigerate while chopping corned beef and pastrami very fine (for best results, use a food processor).

  2. Mash potatoes and onions (use a hand masher, not a food processor or blender) to a smooth consistency. Add all the remaining patty ingredients, except the bread crumbs, stir them in thoroughly with a fork, and then continue working them together with your hands. Still using your hands, mix in the cup of bread crumbs.

  3. Form the potato mixture into 3-inch patties (about 3?4 inch high), and place them on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper. Place in freezer for 1 hour.

  4. Remove patties from freezer. Beat eggs and water together in a bowl. Dip each patty to coat completely, then dredge in bread crumbs, covering thoroughly. Return patties to wax-papered cookie sheet, and refrigerate 15 minutes.

  5. Heat an inch of corn oil (it must be high enough to completely cover the knishes) in a deep skillet (unless you cook them in batches, you’ll probably need 2 skillets). Carefully place knishes in the pan and cook for 5 minutes. Using a spatula and a fork, turn and cook for another 2 minutes until deep golden brown on both sides. Remove, and drain on paper toweling before serving.


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