Is there a dish that’s more quintessentially Pittsburgh than a plate of fresh-made pierogies? We don’t think so. From the Pierogie Races at PNC Park to Pierogi Fest at Kennywood, our city knows how to celebrate these little pockets of goodness.
There are lots of local places to find these Eastern European delicacies (and one that sadly isn’t around any more) and this is just a sampling of some of our favorites. But if you’re up for the challenge of a day filled with, well, potato-filled dumplings, this foodie road trip is for you.
So hop in the car, buckle up, and get ready for the perfect Pittsburgh excursion.
Stop 1: Forgotten Taste
This takeout storefront may not offer a full sit-down restaurant experience, but it does provide some of the best pierogies in all of western Pennsylvania. The pierogies are sold hot and ready to eat, or frozen, and come in about a dozen varieties, like Potato & Bacon, Cabbage, Roast Beef, and Lekvar (prune butter). Plus, you can also find other Eastern European favorites, like haluski, goulash, and stuffed cabbage.
Stop 2: Pierogies Plus
Pierogies Plus serves up pierogies (as they say) “like your Grandma used to make.” They’ve been in business since 1991, and offer traditional pierogies (Cottage Cheese & Chives and Hot Sausage pierogies are local favorites), along with speciality pierogies, like Apricot & Cream Cheese and Reuben pierogies. They also offer platters loaded with dishes like dumpling haluski and kielbasa. One extra bonus: You can order online, and they’ll ship anywhere you’d like.
Pierogies Plus (342 Island Avenue, McKees Rocks)
Stop 3: Stuff’d Pierogi Bar
You’ll find pierogies, pierogies, and more pierogies at downtown’s Stuff’d Pierogi Bar. The restaurant has only been open since September, and has already begun a go-to for Pittsburgh pierogie fans. The restaurant’s menu centers around platters of fresh-made pierogies, all served with different fillings and toppings, from Pulled Pork Pierogies to Mac & Cheese Pierogies. And for dessert? You guessed it – sweet pierogies that come in Creamsicle, Kahlua and Jalapeno Caramel Apple.
Stuff’d Pierogi Bar (130 Seventh Street)
Stop 4: Penn Brewery
Not only will you find pretty great beer at Penn Brewery, but you can also get your fill of house-made pierogies, too. Grab a drink at the bar and tuck into a platter of Traditional Potato & Cheese (served with caramelized onions and sour cream), or order their specialty Buffalo Chicken Pierogies, made with roasted chicken, hot sauce, and bleu cheese crumbles.
Penn Brewery (800 Vinial Street)
Stop 5: S&D Polish Deli
This classic Polish store and deli in the Strip District offers hot pierogies for lunch and dinner, and frozen pierogies to take home with you (they ship nationwide, too). S&D’s pierogies are made with a Polish flour, which they say causes the dough to be soft and stretchy, resulting in pierogies that have “a thin and delicate shell of dough.” They have 15 different types of pierogies, including Mushroom, Strawberry, Kraut, Spinach and classic Potato & Farmers Cheese.
S&D Polish Deli (2204 Penn Avenue)
Stop 6: Gooski’s
Looking for some of the best bar food in town? You’ve found it here. Gooski’s is known as one of the greatest dive bars in Pittsburghand they have some pretty decent pierogies, too. They’re super cheap, and available in Potato & Cheese, Sauerkraut and Cottage Cheese.
Gooski’s (3117 Brereton Street)
Stop 7: Church Brew Works
Church Brew Works serves traditional pierogies (Potato & Cheese, served with sautéed onions and melted butter), and untraditional pierogies (their special changes daily), but what they’re really known for is their Pierogi Pizza. And while it’s isn’t exactly a pierogi, it’s worth a try – a pizza, topped with mashed potatoes, sautéed onions, and cheese.
Church Brew Works (3525 Liberty Avenue)
Stop 8: Burgh’ers
You might head to Lawrenceville’s Burgh’ers for their delicious burgers, but you’d be remiss not to order a side of their perfectly-made pierogies, served hot with caramelized onions and a side of sour cream. Or, combine the two and order the Polish Hill Burger, a beef burger topped with cheddar, caramelized onion, mayo, and its very own pierogi right on top.
Burgh’ers (3601 Butler Street)
Stop 9: Franktuary
Another Lawrenceville stop on our pierogi journey is Franktuary, where you can pop in for a quick taste of their Potato Cheese Pierogi appetizer. Get an order of six for the table, or enjoy them on their famous Pittsburgh Hot Dog, which is topped with vinegar slaw, Miller’s Mustard sour cream, and (of course), a sliced pierogi, too.
Franktuary (3810 Butler Street)
Stop 10: Cop Out Pierogies
This tiny shop in Etna churns out hundreds of hand-made pierogies a day, and offers an extra-special little something in your order of a dozen… two extra pierogies. They have a huge selection of fillings, from Sweet Potato and Cheeseburger to Chicken Marsala and Spinach Feta. Plus, if you give them fair warning, they say that they can create any flavor filling you want.
Cop Out Pierogies (350 Butler Street)
Stop 11: Apteka
These aren’t pierogies like your Grandma made… and that’s what makes them so good. Apteka’s Kate Lasky and Tomasz Skowronski earned their Pittsburgh dining stripes by running Pierogi Night Pop-ups, and now have an entire Bloomfield restaurant where they can serve a vegan menu with a focus on Central and Eastern European food (including their beloved pierogies). The pierogi menu changes regularly, but look for options like Smoked Cabbage & Potato and Sauerkraut & Mushroom.
Apteka (4606 Penn Avenue)
Stop 12: Butterjoint
Tucked inside of Oakland stalwart Legume is the Butterjoint, a cocktail bar that not only serves up killer drinks and local brews, but also offers a stellar food menu, with some of the best homemade pierogies you’ve ever had in your life. These little bite of heaven are stuffed with white potatoes and grass-fed cottage cheese, and are serve with golden caramelized onions and a side of sour cream. They also offer a specials menu, with a regularly-changing option of additions, including pickled beets, spicy newchi and lamb Merguez.
Butterjoint (214 N. Craig Street)
Stop 13: East End Food Co-op
For your final stop of the tour, head to the East End Food Co-op and pick up a pack of Gosia’s Pierogies to take home with you. Gosia’s is a Pittsburgh-based small-batch pierogi company that sells in farmers markets throughout the summer and fall, and in shops like the EEFC, McGinnis Sisters, and Bardines in Crabtree throughout the year. Their family-recipe pierogies are stuffed with everything from Potato & Feta to Sweet Cabbage. You can see their full menu online.
East End Food Co-op (7516 Meade Street)
If you really want to go the extra mile (and if they’re offering a sale), your absolute final stop on your pierogi road trip should be St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in McKeesport. They regularly offer pierogies for sale by the dozen (check their website for more details and sale dates), and also serve up other Eastern European favorites, like Sweet Cabbage and Haluski.
Did we miss any amazing Pittsburgh pierogi spot? Let us know in the comments!