Nalysnyky is a Ukrainian dish of cottage cheese filled crepes that are baked in cream until puffy and golden.

Nalysnyky from the kitchen of Nutmeg Disrupted

I remember the day like it was yesterday. Which is so completely strange that it would stay with me like that. I dare say,  it was the day I started thinking about and looking at food differently.

I was playing at a friends place, just like any other Saturday afternoon. Her mom and baba were busy in the kitchen. Perhaps there were more people there, of the details of the day, the people are not what peaked  my interest. It was the food.

They were using one of the girls rooms to cool and store everything while they worked. I remember being told to stay out! But being 9, the words stay out made us want to go in even more so. I remember the door being cracked and we peaked inside. Every surface was covered with clean sheets and on those sheets were 1000’s of tiny little lightly golden walnut sized buns.

1000’s. The aroma of freshly baked bread filled the space. Of course, once you have entered there was no going back. We had to taste just one. The dough has just the slightest hint of sweetness and they were filled with cottage cheese. They were the most fabulous thing I had ever tried. I am not sure how many we ate that afternoon? In fact I don’t even remember the rest of the day but I can still see the room like it happened yesterday.

And I never forgot those amazing little buns.

When I got older and began cooking I found myself being drawn to traditional Ukrainian foods. The labor intensive dishes that you not only cooked to eat that night but always made extra for the freezer. Things like perogi (verenyky) and cabbage rolls (holubitsi) . Where you make 30 – 40 dozen in one sitting. Essentially what is known as peasant food.

Peasant Foods

If you google peasant food Wikipedia describes it as the following:

Peasant foods are those dishes specific to a particular culture made from accessible and inexpensive ingredients. Peasant foods often involve skilled preparation by knowledgeable cooks using inventiveness and skills passed down from earlier generations.

Such dishes are often prized as ethnic foods by other cultures and by descendants of the native culture who still desire these traditional dishes even when their incomes rise to the point where they can purchase any food they like.

I grew up in a predominately Ukrainian area of Alberta, just north of Edmonton. Both my Baba and Gido spoke Ukrainian and English, my great Baba only spoke Ukrainian. Well except for all the names of her great grandchildren and a few words like keep, as she would hand you a $20 bill. I never knew where she got her money from, but she always spoiled her great grand children. As would my baba and gido as well.

Going back to my roots in gardening on Nutmeg Disrupted

They were a huge influence on my first experiences of growing your own food. They had 2 gardens. One in town that grew the main foods for fresh eating and the freezer. The garden on the farm was raspberries and potatoes. Rows and rows of raspberries and potatoes. I remember many hours out there picking berries and digging for potatoes. Or the hours of watching Baba turn her garden goodies in to pots of Borscht or freezing beans for winter.

I learnt that not only can you create amazing food in your kitchen I learnt that the best food is the food you grow yourself.

Those memories have fostered two of my greatest passions, cooking and gardening. It is who I am.

Here is a dish that has it roots in Ukrainian cooking. These are fantastic as a side with ham. The cream and dill really work well with the saltiness of ham.

Nalysnyky Ukrainian Crepes
Recipe type: Nalysnyky
Cuisine: Ukrainian
  • Crepes:
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 6 tablespoons of water
  • 1 cup of sifted flour
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • canola oil
  • Filling:
  • 2 cups of dry cottage cheese
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons of whipping cream
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of dill (fresh chopped) or dried
  • also:
  • 2-3 cups of whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • ½ of a small white onion (chopped fine)
  1. Beat the eggs with a beater until light, add milk and water, beat again.
  2. Gradually add the flour and salt, continuing to beat as you add the flour.
  3. Beat until smooth.
  4. The batter will be thin.
  5. Using a paper towel, just lightly oil the surface of a non stick pan and heat on medium.
  6. Using a small measuring cup pour roughly 3 tablespoons of batter into the center of the pan.
  7. Tilt to distribute the batter evenly across the bottom.
  8. Cook over moderate heat.
  9. They will have air bubbles like what you see when making pancakes.
  10. When the bubbles pop it is a good indication that the crepe is ready.
  11. When lightly browned on the bottom and the top firm to the touch remove to a plate.
  12. Continue until all the batter is used.
  13. For the filling combine the cottage cheese, egg yolks, 2 tablespoons of whipping cream, salt and dill.
  14. Spread the filling down the center of each crepe and roll into a tube.
  15. Lay the Nalysnyky side by side in a butter casserole dish.
  16. Spread 1 tablespoon of butter over the each layer.
  17. Add the chopped white onion to the 2 - 3 cups of whipping cream and pour over the Nalysnyky. Cover with foil and bake at 325 for 30 minutes.
  18. Uncover and bake another 5 minutes.


Nalysnyky Ukrianian Crepes from Nutmeg Disrupted















Fill trays nice and snug. If you are going to freeze your nalysnyky do not add cream. Wrap tightly and freeze.

A finished pan of nalysnyky for the freezer from the kitchen of Nutmeg Disrupted












If baking cover with cream and bake until lightly browned. It is a good idea to place the pan of Nalysnyky into a larger pan as the cream make cook over.

A pan of nalysnyky before being baked from the kitchen of Nutmeg Disrupted


Published by Redawna

Cannabis, Garden & Food Writer/Educator/Photographer. SMM in the Cannabis space. Management Professional. Community Builder. Entrepreneurial spirit.

28 Replies on “Nalysnyky

    1. Thanks Joanne! They are a staple in my home during the holidays. Those are some of the first recipes I started work with in the kitchen when I was young. Was a great learning experience.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    1. Hi Sarah!

      Most Ukrainian recipes are heavily based on technique. I know it took me a few tries to nail down perogy dough and good cabbage rolling technique. It was worth the extra effort though and I formed good labour intensive patience for the more difficult recipes.

      Plus when in doubt, add cream, lots and lots of cream. Oh and butter as well!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  1. Beautiful memory!
    I never knew my great-baba (I was a newborn when she passed away) but I have great memories of making dozens and dozens of perogies, pedahea (spelling?? lol) and cabbage rolls with my aunts and babas. Even one of my uncles would sit at the table with all us girls/women and pinch perogies 🙂

    Not surprisingly, your Nalysnyky recipe is the same (or very similar) to the one we use.

    Take care,
    – Deb

    1. Hey Deb!

      Fantastic seeing you!

      I am actually a self taught cook who did a lot of watching when I was young. Little did I know I would refer back those days once I became interested in food.

      I would love to be able to go back and talk food with my baba and my great baba. Knowing how lean times were back then I imagine they would have had some great stories to share.

      I suspect most of those recipes from back then would be quite similar. Now a days we have so many more ingredient choices and are less limited by money so we an really change them up if we so choose. Though I love sticking with the original recipes, simple comfort food!

      Thanks for stopping by!

    1. They are pretty fabulous! And pretty easy to whip up.

      Glad you liked the pictures.

      Thanks for stopping by.

  2. Redawna,
    So interesting to hear you retell a story so vividly from your 9 year old perspective. How profound those childhood food memories are! Yup, love that Northern Alberta is so saturated in the yummy Ukrainian food heritage. How lucky are we? I do find it interesting, though – that I don’t know how we have changed those food from their authentic versions. For example, in the US, Veal Parmigiana evolved from Eggplant Parmigiana in the new country as the immigrants became a little wealthier and could add meat to that dish… it doesn’t exist in Italy. Is there anything similar that has evolved from the Canadian perspective with the Ukrainian food?

    1. I don’t believe it has changed at all with Ukrainian fare Valerie.
      I still use the recipes that have been handed down from many many years ago.
      Always the same, with simple ingredients, not changing anything.

      The only difference in my kitchen is that I have modern equipment to use for the preparation of what I make.
      I know my baba hand made every loaf of bread where I may be inclined to use my Kitchen Aid mixer!
      And you know, if anyone had bought her one, I doubt she would ever have used it.

  3. I love that you shared a Ukrainian recipe 🙂 Having been born in Ukraine, we eat a lot of these foods at home on a regular basis but its interesting to see how everyone has their own different recipes.
    Great post!

    1. Genia!

      I would love to see your versions of the recipes. Mine come from cookbooks from a Ukrainian community within Alberta.
      I am now curious as to how traditional they are compared to the ones you would use.

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  4. Hi Redawna,

    These look so tasty and I loved your story. I’ve also read your comments and I think that it is simply amazing that the recipes have remained the same over the years. I think it’s a real testament to wanting to preserve the culture of the Ukraine. I often wonder if the desire to hang on to culture is a fervent desire of those who’ve left vs. those who remain behind.

    Looking forward to reading more from you.

    1. Rhonda, So great seeing you!

      Most of the recipes I use tend to be fairly simply flavors but at times with labor intensive production.
      Funny, I have never thought of ways to modify the Ukrainian dishes I make. Which is strange because I usually love to play with recipes to give them a different twist or just make changes to better suit my families tastes.

      I do agreed with what you mentioned about hanging on to the culture of those who have left us. To pass the recipes down to our children exactly the same as what we grew up enjoying.

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

  5. What a nice post to read. It’s nice that you are talking about Ukrainian food, growing up in Quebec I was not exposed to that cuisine. Thanks!

    1. Helene,

      Great seeing you! I have a feeling many of my posts for the Canadian Food Experience Project will be featuring Ukrainian dishes. Eating the foods of my heritage is what inspired me to begin cooking so many years ago. Simple peasant food that takes me back to my earliest childhood food memories.

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

  6. Thank you for sharing your story. Ukrainian food is amazing. I love how simple and healthy it is, everything is made from scratch. I’ve never heard of Nalysnyki before, but they look look yummy! Going to try this recipe as soon as I make dry cottage cheese. I am Russian and this food always brings me back home.

    1. Anya, thank you so much for stopping by!

      I hope you enjoy the Nalysnyky! I would love to hear your review of it. That is neat the you make your own cottage cheese. I think I would eat it everyday if I made it at home. So glad this food takes you back home. I plan of posting many Ukrainian recipes during the Canadian Food Experience Project. I hope you come again.

      Have a fantastic weekend.

    1. Hi Phil.

      They are a really nice side that most don’t see to often. They are definitely a treat. Hope you give them a try.
      Thanks for stopping by!

  7. thank you for the amazing recipe, my grandmother used to make this when i was younger. she also make a sweet version stuffed with cottage cheese and strawberries or blueberries sometimes prunes. then cover with whipping cream sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and baked……sandy

    1. Sandy, welcome!

      Your grandmothers version with fruit sounds absolutely amazing! I will definitely be giving it a try. I recently created a keto friendly version that was awesome and I hope to get it up on the site soon.
      Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to share that food memory.

  8. My mother in law is Ukranian. My husband’s favorite nalysnyky are filled with sautéed mushrooms. Her recipe calls for canned mushrooms, fried onions, sour cream and salt and pepper but over time I’ve changed the way I make them by using fresh mushrooms and adding a bit of garlic. One memory I have of my first experience with real Ukranian food is being leery of trying the “pink soup” at a family dinner at my husband’s grandmother’s house. Her borscht was the absolute best I’ve ever tasted. No one in the family has been able to re-create it. When she passed away we were given much of the contents of her deep freeze and it was a sad day when we consumed the last container of her borscht.

    1. Shelley, thank you so much for stopping by!

      I love mushrooms and look forward to making some nalysnyky filled with them.
      It sounds wonderful with fresh mushrooms and garlic. I may actually try it this weekend!

      I have a lovely simple beet soup that might be worth a try. It freezes well so it could be close
      to the one you have enjoyed. You can find it here.

      Stay safe and have a wonderful weekend!

  9. I could not believe my good fortune at having found this recipe.I see many recipes for Ukrainian cooking on Pinterest but so many have just not got the ingredients or methods down that I am looking for. Can you picture my surprise when I saw that you are from a town north of Edmonton like me. Or that baba had two gardens(or possibly more)like me. Or those wonderful memories baba gave us when we were young. My baba could only speak very little English but she was the cutest little homemaker and I miss her so much. Now that I am getting a bit up in years I see her in the mirror when I look at it. I am so pleased.Nothing is like Ukrainian food. Real authentic Ukrainian food.And memories of our parents and grandparents will never be matched by anything’s else.
    I also had to laugh about a certain other memory I have. I married a Scott and the first time I was invited to Christmas supper there was turkey, mashed potatoes,stovetop stuffing, frozen vegetables,and a dessert I cannot even remember. I think it was store bought pie. Needless to say I passed it up. I thought they were joking and were going to bring out the rest of the meal any minute. This supper was what they considered very extravagant. So although I got over my shock I am sure you can appreciate how I felt confronted with this meal. Priceless

    1. Carol,

      What a fantastic story! They must have been impressed when it was your turn to host!
      Everything from scratch, most likely grown by yourself! Including all 6 kinds of pickles!

      There is just something so beautiful about the simplicity of good homemade classics.
      Such amazing memories can be evoked from the food we prepare and share.

      I need to expand the Ukrainian Dishes section of the site, I have a good start but these is much room to go.
      I look forward to some amazing meals!

      Thank you for stopping by and sharing a story! Wishing you and your a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New year!

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