My Family’s Recipe for Potato Blintzes

I so hope you love my family's recipe for savory potato blintzes, soft pillows of mashed potatoes lightened and enriched with cottage cheese and wrapped in tender crepe packets, baked in the oven until steamy hot, the better to contrast with big dollops of sour cream on the side. Sounds sooo good, right?! These pretty golden bundles are perfect for a vegetarian brunch or on the side with other holiday foods. For anyone who's only tasted sweet blintzes, oh my, you're in for one amazing savory treat ...

Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

Homemade Savory Blintzes, Made from Scratch. A Family Tradition for Generations. Hearty & Filling But Surprisingly Low in Calories. Budget Friendly. Great for Meal Prep. Holiday Brunch & Party Friendly. Vegetarian.


ON MY MIND: When Does Christmas Begin, Really?

On My Mind ♥, thinking about the moment when Christmas begins.

This isn’t a calendar question but the consideration of the precise moment when suddenly, inside our heads, it just feels like Christmas, when we call out, "Merry Christmas!" and really mean it.

So what is that first Christmas moment, really?

Is it when the tree goes up? when you switch your playlist to Christmas music? when the kids return home to the “family nest”?

Is it marked by the arrival of the first Christmas card? the first batch of cookies in the oven? an annual concert? settling into It’s a Wonderful Life? finishing the gift wrapping? getting in the car to head for home?

What signifies the “start” of Christmas in your life? Pray tell ...

It Was the Tradition ...

For many years, my closest friends gathered for a Saturday-morning brunch and cookie swap, it came to signify the “start” of Christmas, those special few days before and after Christmas itself, the ones where we gather near, holding dear.

We started in a crowded kitchen with tall glasses of cranberry bubbly, then moved to the dining room for a relaxed breakfast, reveling in real conversation.

Sadly, a cookie exchange seems to be a tradition that’s run its course (all that sugar ...) so I’m in search of a new “start” to Christmas. I wonder, what shall it be? I can’t wait to discover!

What to Serve for a Christmas Brunch

For a holiday brunch, I often turn to this long-time family recipe for potato blintzes, just packets of mashed potato wrapped in crepes.

My mother made blintzes, my aunts made blintzes, my Canadian grandmother made blintzes – served, always, with dollops of sour cream on the side.

That cold creamy finish to the hot potatoes? Dreamy!

You can make blintzes a day or two beforehand, it takes about two hours, start to finish, not counting the oven time. I seem to remember my mother freezing blintzes too.

A Family Recipe Continues.

It’s almost a countdown, ensuring that this “body of work” called Kitchen Parade includes my family’s oldest and most treasured recipes.

This is one.

I remember my Canadian mother and grandmother and aunts making potato blintzes, pillows of soft and creamy mashed potatoes wrapped in crepes, served steaming hot, always-always with dollops of sour cream on the side.

And now I make them too!

Last month, we were heading to Texas to visit my sister before Thanksgiving. There were leftover mashed potatoes in the fridge so an hour before our departure, I quick-quick made blintzes to carry along! They’re that easy!

Usually though, blintzes are “holiday” food, at Christmas for brunch or breakfast and at Easter with ham, saved for special occasions.

But First, What Is a "Blintz" Anyway?

A blintz (plural blintzes) is a small food packet, the outer wrapper is a crepe, the filling is often sweet and creamy but may be savory.

The crepe may be rolled around the filling cigarette-style or folded like an envelope to encase the filling.

"Cheese Blintzes" are usually made with sweetened ricotta or sweetened cream cheese and topped with fruit or fruit sauce. Sweet blintzes are much more common than savory blintzes.

Blintzes originated in eastern European and are often featured in Jewish food traditions.

My recipe originated with my Canadian grandmother. Her parents emigrated from Germany (via Russia, we think) and as an adult, she lived in the North End of Winnipeg, home to many eastern European and Jewish immigrants. How we ended up with savory blintzes, I'm not sure. I just know that in our family, savory blintzes are just "blintzes". They're all we know!

Potato Filliing for Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

What's In Potato Blintzes? Pantry Ingredients!

In all my recipes and most well-written recipes, every ingredient serves a purpose. Each one matters. Each one contributes to the overall dish. It's not that an ingredient can't be substituted by something else but when choosing the substitute, it's important to understand why the original ingredient was present in the first place.

For these Potato Blintzes, we have two goals. We want the Potato Filling to be light and almost fluffy yet taste rich and potato-y good. We want the Crepe Batter to yield thin, tender crepes that are strong enough to envelop the Potato Filling without breaking and that turn golden when briefly cooked in the skillet.

  • Potatoes For lightness, choose a medium-starchy potato here. If you can, stick with Yukon Gold potatoes which are both inexpensive and easy to find. You'll want to avoid the low-starch new potatoes and red potatoes. High-starch baking potatoes (also called Idaho potatoes and jacket potatoes) would work okay but you may need to adjust the other ingredients so that the Potato Filling doesn't get too heavy and starchy.
  • Cottage Cheese Cottage cheese works especially well here (especially compared to other dairy alternatives like cream cheese or ricotta or farmers cheese or Greek yogurt) because the curds break up the density of the potatoes. I use the cottage cheese that's on hand, that's likely to be a low-fat cottage cheese. Since cottage cheese also enriches the Potato Filling, it's probably good to avoid non-fat cottage cheese.
  • Eggs Eggs enrich the Potato Filling and also add structure that helps the Filling bind together.
  • Onion Onion! It's so important here. The onion is grated (just use a cheese grater or microplane) so that the pieces are super small so they'll cook, just from the heat of the Potato Filling. You really don't want to "just chop up some onion" – it'll be too raw – but if you don't have a grater, then dice the onion as fine as you can with a knife and cook it very gently in a little oil or butter, softening completely without browning.
  • Eggs Crepes really only need a handful of ingredients, starting with the eggs that give the crepes not only structure but lightness and tenderness.
  • Flour Flour helps everything hold together.
  • Milk Milk is another key ingredient, use whole milk if that's what you have, otherwise low-fat milks work fine.
  • Vegetable Oil Be sure the vegetable oil is fresh, just give it a sniff. Over the years, I've started buying only small bottles of vegetable oil and small containers of vegetable shortening. Their shelf life is shorter than you might imagine. Could you substitute butter for oil? Sure.
  • Salt Without salt, the crepes taste very blah. Don't forget the salt!
Homemade Crepes for Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

How to Make Potato Blintzes.

The detailed recipe is written in traditional recipe form below but here are the highlights. It's simpler than you might think! You can do this!

  • Cook the potatoes and mix the Potato Filling.
  • Make the Crepes.
  • Wrap the cooked crepes around the potato filling, forming neat little bundles.
  • That's it! Except baking and digging in!

Extra Tips

How to Make Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

Upper left – Mix the Crepe Batter in a blender. If you have a scale, weigh the ingredients, no need for measuring cups!
Upper right – Set up an assembly line to make the crepes: the skillet, the Crepe Batter, a plate for the measuring cup, a plate for the finished crepes.
Lower left – Cook the crepes until they're golden in color.
Lower right – Stack the crepes as they're finished, they won't stick together.

How to Make Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

Upper left – Make the Potato Filling, mashed potatoes with onion, cottage cheese and eggs.
Upper right – Now it's time to fill the crepes to make blintzes. Think "pillows" or "packets" and they'll come together in no time! First place a crepe on a work surface, dollop some Potato Filling in the center.
Center left – Then fold the left and right sides of the crepe over the filling.
Center right – And then fold the top over.
Lower left – And then the bottom. See what a neat little pillow you've made?!
Lower right – Collect the blintzes in an oven-safe dish, it's okay to stack the blintzes, they don't stick together! You may need to gently pry them apart just a bit but truly, it's no issue.

Potato Blintzes ready for the oven ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.

You Might Wonder Be Wondering ...

Have another question? Ask away, I'll do my best to answer!

  • Can you use leftover mashed potatoes for the Potato Filling? Yes! So long as the potatoes taste good, you should be good to go except, maybe, adding an egg or two.

  • Could you add a little cheese to the Potato Filling? Sure. A little grated cheddar or smoked gouda would work well.

  • Can Potato Blintzes be made ahead of time? Absolutely. Make blintzes up to a day, maybe two, ahead of time. That makes them perfect for holiday meals and parties.

Bookmark! PIN! Share!

How do you save and share favorite recipes? recipes that fit your personal cooking style? a particular recipe your mom or daughter or best friend would just love? If my family's recipe for Potato Blintzes hits the mark, go ahead, save and share! I'd be honored ...

Potato Blintzes ♥, savory mashed potatoes wrapped in tender crepes, sour cream on the side.


Hands-on time: 65 minutes over 2 hours
Time to table: about 3 hours, can be made ahead
Makes about 26 blintzes
    (Makes about 3 cups)
  • 6 medium Yukon gold potatoes, about 26 ounces, peeled or unpeeled, your choice
  • Cold salted water
  • 1 cup cooking water plus more as needed
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup (250g) low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated onion
  • 2 large eggs
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 cups (250g) flour
  • 2-1/2 cups (585g) milk (low-fat works fine)
  • 1/3 cup (60g) vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • For the pan, a little vegetable oil

MAKE THE POTATO FILLING Cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks and rinse under running water. Cover with cold water plus an inch, bring to a boil and let cook until soft.

(I usually mix the Crepe Batter now, while the potatoes cook.)

Set aside about 1 – 2 cups hot cooking liquid. Drain and return the potatoes to the hot pan to cook off excess liquid. Mash the potatoes with about 1 cup cooking water, salt to taste, then add more water as needed for soft, smooth mashed potatoes. Let the potatoes cool a bit.

Whisk together the cottage cheese, onion and eggs, stir this into the potato mixture. Taste and adjust the seasoning, make sure it tastes good! Set aside while making the crepes.

MIX THE CREPE BATTER Mix all the ingredients in a blender.

LET THE BATTER REST Let Crepe Batter rest at room temperature for 45 minutes (more is fine too, even up to a couple of hours) before cooking the crepes. Before beginning to make the crepes, give the blender one last whirl: don’t skip this step, it makes all the difference!

MAKE THE CREPES Heat a small non-stick skillet on medium high, brush the surface lightly with vegetable oil, then wipe the pan with a tissue to leave just a bare film. You won’t need to oil the pan again.

Pour a scant quarter-cup of crepe batter into the skillet, lifting and swirling the skillet to cover the skillet's bottom, it should sizzle a bit. Let the crepe cook until the edges begin to brown a bit and “air bubbles” pop in the center, just a minute or two, then turn the crepe over with a spatula and cook just for 30 seconds or so. Set aside to cool, stacking the crepes as they’re done.

Don't stress if the first crepe comes out pale and disappointing, this happens all the time. It'll till taste good, just won't be as pretty. The crepes will become prettier and prettier as your crepe-making skills increase and the skillet somehow just gets more responsive.

FILL THE CREPES Put a crepe on a work surface, the “first side cooked” down (it usually has more color). Add a dollop of Potato Filling in the center, then fold over the two sides, then the top and the bottom to form a neat package. Place in an oven-safe baking dish, it’s fine to stack two or three layers deep. Finish with the remaining crepes.

MAKE-AHEAD BLINTZES If you're making the blintzes ahead of time, stop here. Wrap the baking dish in foil and refrigerate for one to two days. Let come to room temperature for one to two hours, then bake at 350F(175F) for an hour, longer if the baking dish is coming straight from the fridge.

OTHERWISE BAKE NOW Heat oven to 350F(175C). Cover the baking dish with foil and bake until sizzling hot, about 45 minutes.

TO SERVE Serve hot with sour cream. If you're serving buffet- or family-style, you may need to coach people to serve themselves individual blintzes rather than cutting into the baking dish like a casserole.

ALANNA’s TIPS If you peel the potatoes (I never do), add an extra potato to make up the lost volume. You could also use leftover mashed potatoes, just add the cottage cheese, onion and eggs to lighten the potato-y denseness. Crepes are easy to make but a few tips will help you get the hang of it faster. Don’t worry about the first one or two crepes, they usually (though not always) turn out pale and doughy and unappealing. It takes a bit to figure out exactly where to set the heat, how much batter to use in your own pan, how to gauge when the crepes are ready to turn over, etc. But don’t worry, even imperfect crepes taste great. Plus when you make the packets (aren’t they just cute?) they hide the crepe edges. Pay more attention to color on the first side since it will be the “outside” of the blintz and color is more appetizing. For more color, turn up the heat a bit, though not so much for the edges to become dry and crinkly. If you have more than one skillet, it’s possible to keep two or even three skillets going at once. Every six or so crepes, put the blender container back on the machine for a whirl, this keeps the batter from getting floury near the bottom.

FOR MORE INFO If you "skipped straight to the recipe," please scroll back to the top of this page for ingredient information, ingredient substitutions, tips and more. If you print this recipe, you'll want to check the recipe online for even more tips and extra information about ingredient substitutions, best results and more. See .
NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Blintz (assumes 2% milk): 117 Calories; 4g Tot Fat; 1g Sat Fat; 59mg Cholesterol; 158mg Sodium; 14g Carb; 1g Fiber; 2g Sugar; 6g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 2 & PointsPlus 3 & SmartPoints 4 & Freestyle 3 & myWW green 4 & blue 3 & purple 2 & future WW points NUTRITION NOTE One reason why our Potato Blintzes are relatively low in calories is because the richness/flavor in the potatoes comes from low-fat, high-protein cottage cheese and eggs. If you mash your potatoes with cream and butter first, well, as they say, “results may vary at home”.
Adapted from my Canadian family’s recipe that’s been passed down to at least three generations.

More Recipes for Holiday Brunches & Christmas Morning

~ more Christmas recipes ~
Christmas Recipes, another seasonal recipe collection ♥, special recipes for holiday baking, food gifts, Christmas Eve, Christmas morning, Christmas dinner and more.
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Overnight Coffeecake ♥, easy, adaptable coffeecake recipe, mix it the night before, bake to serve hot and fresh in the morning.

Swiss Bircher Müesli, classic overnight oats ♥, a breakfast treat with dried fruit and nuts.

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(helping home cooks save money on groceries)

~ potato recipes ~
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~ How to Save Money on Groceries ~

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail, you'll find my current address in the FAQs. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, for more scratch cooking recipes using whole, healthful ingredients, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. If you make this recipe, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below.

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2013 & 2022

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Alanna - brilliant! I'm always looking for something a little different (and not sweet!) to bring for our family's Christmas brunch - thanks so much for sharing your family's tradition.

    I wish you and your the merriest of Christmases.

  2. Will you STOP (sending recipes I am anxious to try)?

    This might work for our Christmas Eve Brunch-at-Dinner Time along with fruit and the Cranberry cake for dessert. How about adding bacon? Love your columns!

  3. So I took the leap and tried new recipes for our Christmas Eve brunch-at-dinner. The potato blintzes were a real hit, though I had to tweak a little to make it come out right. They started out too watery, so I added some leftover mashed potatoes, and a little more seasoning. Then decided to sprinkle a little grated Colby-Jack in each one. I know you approve of that sort of thing.

    In all of my 46 years of good (so I'm told) cooking, I had never made a crepe and what fun it was! I'm on the way now to making many more, as we sat around the table and discussed what else could go in them: chives, more cheese, fruit?

  4. Alanna,
    I've been scared to try crepes since I don't have the right skillet for them, but I love your process photos--they make it look very do-able for me.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna