I learned to make Deruny (Ukrainian potato pancakes) when I was growing up and they’ve been a favorite of mine ever since. They’re easy, budget-friendly, filling, and taste like home! I know you’re going to love this simple but delicious recipe.
What is Deruny?
Deruny, also called Draniki, are traditional Ukrainian potato pancakes made with finely grated raw potatoes, onion, flour, and eggs. The pancakes are pan-fried in a generous amount of any mild-tasting or neutral oil, like avocado oil.
The name Deruny means “to grate” and while it’s a labor-intensive process that requires a bit of muscle work, it is that process that results in an authentic dish. You can combine all ingredients in a food processor to speed up the process. The taste will be slightly different, but it still works.
What to Serve with Deruny
Deruny are traditionally served with a dollop of sour cream as a main dish for dinner or breakfast. In Ukraine, savory dishes, especially potatoes, are a popular breakfast food.
Deruny can also be served as a part of a large spread or as a side dish at large gatherings or celebrations.
You can pair deruny with quick and easy traditional Ukrainian cucumber and tomato salad.
What Else Can I Add to Potato Pancakes?
Deruny is a very simple recipe. However, there are some variations among the families mostly due to personal taste preferences and ingredients available on hand.
I use russet potatoes but yellow Yukon gold or red potatoes will also work. Any potato will work except baby potatoes, of course. You can use yellow or white onion.
You can add a clove or two of freshly grated garlic and a bit of chopped fresh dill. If you have gluten intolerance I am pretty sure you can use all-purpose gluten-free flour, just not almond flour or coconut flour.
How to Store Leftovers
Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 5 days. That’s if you have any! No need to reheat as deruny taste amazing cold!
Tips for Making Potato Pancakes
- Keep peeled potatoes in a bowl with cold water while peeling and grating other potatoes to prevent from browning.
- Make sure to wear gloves when grating potatoes and onion. It is very easy to damage your skin when grating on star-shaped side of the grater.
- Use mild tasting oil like avocado oil, light olive oil or grapeseed oil for frying as deruny absorb quite a bit of oil during frying. Extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil will overpower the taste of potato pancakes.
Deruny (Ukrainian Potato Pancakes)
- 2.5 lbs. russet potatoes ($1.75)
- 1 yellow onion ($0.38)
- 2 large eggs ($0.39)
- 2-3 Tbsp all-purpose flour ($0.02)
- 1 tsp salt ($0.05)
- 1/4 tsp black pepper ($0.02)
- 3-4 Tbsp cooking oil (for frying) ($0.16)
- Peel the potatoes and onion, then rinse with cold water.
- In a large bowl, grate potatoes and onion on the star-shaped side of a grater, taking turns and mixing the grated mixture. This will prevent potatoes from browning.
- Add eggs, flour, salt, and pepper and mix well. The batter will be on a liquid side. Alternatively, you can prepare it in a food processor by grinding all ingredients together until no large chunks are left, for about 3-4 minutes.
- Preheat a large non-stick skillet on medium-high heat and add 1 tbsp of oil. Add a large spoonful of pancake batter and fry until golden brown, flip and cook on the other side. Repeat with the remaining batter.
- Serve the deruny hot with a dollop of sour cream. Makes about 30 deruny.
See how we calculate recipe costs here.
How to Make Deruny (Potato Pancakes) – Step by Step Photos
For these simply potato pancakes you’ll need about 2-2.5 lbs. Russet potatoes, one yellow onion, two large eggs, 2-3 tbsp all-purpose, 1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper, and 3-4 tbsp oil for frying.
First, peel the onion and potatoes, then rinse with cold water.
Grate the potatoes and onion on the star-shaped side of a grater into a large bowl, taking turns and mixing the grated mixture. This will prevent potatoes from browning.
Add eggs, flour, salt, and pepper to the grated potatoes and onions, and mix well.
The batter will be slightly liquid. Alternatively, you can prepare it in a food processor by grinding all ingredients together until no large chunks are left, for about 3-4 minutes.
Preheat a large non-stick skillet on medium-high heat and add 1 tbsp of oil. Add a large spoonful of pancake batter and fry until golden brown.
Flip the deruny and cook on the other side. Repeat with the remaining batter.
Serve the deruny hot with a dollop of sour cream. Makes about 30 deruny.