Frozen pierogi (perogies) are a shortcut to quick and delicious dinners. They're inexpensive, keep well in the freezer, and cook in minutes. Mainstream grocery store pierogi brands even tend to have a vegan friendly option!
On busy weeknights, we'll usually turn frozen pierogi into a satisfying vegetarian dinner by adding colorful veggies and plant based sausage. All it takes are a handful of ingredients and less than 30 minutes to make this delicious and comforting meal.
Pierogi for dinner
Pierogi are Polish dumplings made with a soft dough wrapped around fillings. There are many different pierogi fillings, but it often includes potatoes and cheese. Pierogi are commonly served with fried onions, lardons (small cubes of bacon), and sour cream (source).
We almost always have a bag of frozen pierogi in the freezer, because their convenience can't be beat! While pierogi can certainly be enjoyed on their own, we like to jazz up frozen store-bought pierogies for meal time. Our spin on a vegetarian pierogi dinner involves sauteed vegetables (for flavor and color), plant based sausage (for protein), and sour cream (for dipping).
Our vegetable of choice here are bell peppers. They're a crowd pleaser—even with picky eaters—and they get silky and delicious when browned in the skillet with onions. We usually keep a package of vegan sausages in the freezer. They're an easy way to add tasty protein to meals (like pasta). Since we're reaching into the freezer to grab a bag of pierogi, you might as well add some sausage while you're at it!
Here's the complete list of the ingredients you'll need to make this recipe:
- Frozen pierogi: There are many store bought pierogi options, so pick your favorite. Some of the mainstream brands have an "accidentally vegan" option, so check the ingredients if that's what you're looking for.
- Onion: Sauteed onions are a classic here. This recipe starts with cooking the onion, so that by the end, they're golden brown and super flavorful.
- Bell peppers: Bell peppers are a crowd pleaser—especially with picky eaters—so we use them here for color and veggie goodness. You can use red, yellow, or orange bell peppers—or a mix, like we do!
- Plant based sausages: We used Beyond Meat Mild Italian sausages here, but you can use whichever sausages you have and love. We like adding sausage to pierogi for a boost of protein and to help keep us feeling full.
- Butter (or oil): You can use butter or neutral oil here for cooking. If you're looking to keep things vegan, use a vegan butter or a neutral oil like grapeseed.
- Salt and pepper: We season the dish with some salt and pepper. Frozen pierogi and plant based sausages vary by brand—some are saltier than others—so adjust the seasoning to taste.
- Sour cream (optional): The creamy tang of sour cream pairs well with pierogi. You can use dairy-based sour cream or vegan sour cream—or leave it out entirely.
How to make this recipe
This recipe comes together in a single skillet pan, which saves on dishes and ensures not a drop of delicious flavor is lost.
It starts by sauteing onion and bell peppers in a skillet until tender, then nestling in plant based sausages. Cook everything until it's juicy and golden brown. Once the sausages and veggies are cooked, set them aside while you pan fry the pierogi until crispy and golden brown. The last step is adding everything together in the skillet and letting it cook for another minute or two. We highly recommend serving this pierogi and sausage dinner with a side of sour cream for dipping!
Find the recipe card below for the complete recipe, including all ingredients and instructions.
We recommend using a nonstick or well-seasoned skillet for this recipe. Something where you won't have issues with the pierogi sticking to the pan. If using a seasoned cast iron skillet, the pan will get hotter throughout the cooking process, so you may need to reduce the heat slightly to prevent burning. To read more about cooking with cast iron, check out these resources:
Cooking frozen pierogi
There are many ways to cook pierogi, including (but not limited to):
- Pan frying
- Air frying
- Deep frying
This recipe was developed using the pan fry method, so that the onions, bell peppers, sausage, and pierogi all get crispy and golden brown. For simplicity and speed, we cook the frozen pierogi directly in a skillet pan. It what the package recommends for the brand we buy—and it cuts down on cook time and dishes.
If you prefer, you can boil then pan fry the pierogi. To do this, bring a big pot of salted water to boil. Drop in the frozen pierogi and let cook until they float to the surface, about 3 to 5 minutes. (This step can be done as the onions and peppers are cooking). Drain the pierogi then cook them in the skillet as directed in step 3, but reduce the cook time by a couple minutes. Once the pierogi are golden brown on the exterior, they're done!
Frequently asked questions
Once the pierogi are cooked, refrigerate in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days.
We prefer to reheat pan fried pierogi in a lightly oiled skillet over medium-low heat. Covering the skillet with a lid for the first few minutes helps the filling heat through quicker. Alternatively, you can reheat in the microwave in 30 second increments.
It's easy to make this recipe vegan! Simply use oil or vegan butter for cooking, choose vegan frozen pierogi, and either use vegan sour cream or omit (the sour cream is optional!).
Frozen Pierogi with Vegan Sausage
- 4 teaspoons butter or grapeseed oil, divided (see note 1)
- 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced (1½ cups)
- 2 bell peppers, thinly sliced (red, yellow, or orange)
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Black pepper (to taste)
- 2 plant based sausages (about 7 oz/200g, see note 2)
- 10 to 12 frozen pierogi (see note 3)
- Sour cream, for serving (optional, see note 1)
- Cook vegetables: Melt 2 teaspoons of butter in a large nonstick or seasoned skillet over medium heat (see note 4). Add onion, cook until translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Add bell peppers, cook, stirring occasionally until they begin to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper.
- Add sausage: Push the vegetables to the edges of the skillet, then add sausages in the middle. Cook, until the sausages are golden brown all over, 5 to 6 minutes (during this time, be sure to also stir the onions and peppers around too, so they brown evenly). Transfer the onion, bell peppers, and sausage to a plate and set aside.
- Cook pierogi (see note 3): Return the skillet to the stove over medium heat and melt the remaining 2 teaspoons of butter. Arrange the pierogi in a single layer in the pan. Cook, flipping occasionally, until golden brown on both sides and warmed through, 6 to 8 minutes. (You may wish to cover the skillet with a lid and add a splash of water to help steam the pierogi and cook them faster).
- Combine and serve: Cut the sausage into coins (about ½-inch thick). Add the sliced sausage, onions, and bell peppers back to the pan. Toss to combine. Cook for another 1 to 2 minutes to warm. Season with more salt if needed. Divide onto plates and serve with a dollop of sour cream (if using).
- Vegan option: Use grapeseed oil or vegan butter, vegan frozen pierogi, and vegan sour cream (if using).
- Plant based sausages: Choose your favorite sausage. We usually use Beyond Meat Mild Italian or Hot Italian when making this recipe.
- Cooking pierogi: Since all brands are different, check the package for cooking directions and adjust your cooking preparation if needed. For example, you may wish to boil the pierogi before pan frying. If boiling pierogi, add them a large pot of boiling salted water until they float (avoid overcooking!). Then drain thoroughly and cook in the skillet, in line with step 3, but reduce cook time by about 2 minutes. The brand we buy says to saute directly from frozen, so we follow that method to save time.
- Skillet selection: So that the pierogi don't stick to the pan, use either a nonstick or well-seasoned cast iron skillet. If using a cast iron skillet, you may wish to reduce the heat partway through cooking. (Cast iron retains heat well, so the skillet will get hotter throughout the process. Reduce heat if needed, to prevent burning.)
- Scaling up the recipe: If you're looking to make a double batch (4 servings), we recommend splitting up the cooking into two large skillets so that the pierogi can cook in a single layer.