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The Best Perogies in Toronto

Posted by Dayna Winter / September 15, 2010

Perogies TorontoThe best perogies in Toronto are a far cry from the frozen variety my mother used to make. These were typically a generic-brand sort filled with mashed potatoes and cheddar (and, not to mention, preservatives). As a child it's all I knew. Luckily, the Polish/Ukrainian staple found around the city is made the way it should be - homemade and fresh. (Sorry mom, I'll never go back.)

End-of-summer plans to lay off the carb inhalation have suffered, but for a good cause. It's been a week full of slippery half-moons of unleavened dough boiled and fried and crammed and topped and slathered with things I couldn't have imagined. Yeah, I should probably have a salad now.

Whether they're the authentic potato version, hand-pinched by old ladies in a church basement, or a new-spin variety stuffed with gourmet goodies like smoked gouda, the perogies in Toronto don't disappoint.

Here are the 14 best perogies in Toronto.

Inter Steer

Inter Steer

Inter Steer is an immaculate European tavern where chatty regulars sip imported tap beer, and where food doesn't come second. With a former sous chef of Susur Lee at the helm, the menu is a good reason to visit. Six versions of the perogy dish are homemade and appetizer-priced, but fill like an entree. Try the Nacho perogies. They’re traditionally-filled, deep fried, then topped with guac, sour cream, salsa and cheese. (No, you’re not dreaming.) More »

Cafe Polonez

Cafe Polonez

Cafe Polonez serves its house-made perogies boiled, and I convince myself that they’re healthy, just so I can finish the plate. The sweet and attentive staff prepares me a mixed plate, so that I can try them all. Four varieties are up for grabs, in both dinner and appetizer sizes. I am smitten with the mushroom and sauerkraut-stuffed option. It’s a pleasant alternative to potato and has an earthy, meaty flavour. More »

Roncesvalles Bakery

Roncesvalles Bakery

Do-it-yourself perogies are up for grabs here. Ok, they’re not pretty, but they’re handmade in-house and amazingly cheap ($4 per dozen), ready to be fried or boiled at home and dolled up with toppings. Pre-boiled or raw and frozen, these little pasty pockets come filled with a choice of cheese or meat. More »

Future Bakery

Future Bakery

Famous for filling the homesick bellies of many a U of T freshman, Future Bakery packs a serious amount of food into its student-priced meals. On a normal day, eight perogies plus two generous sides will run you less than $8, but come on a Wednesday and the potato-and-cheese packets are all-you-can eat. All I can eat, I discovered, is nine. More »

St. Demetrius Ukrainian Orthodox Church

St. Demetrius Ukrainian Orthodox Church

An unusual addition to our list, St. Demetrius typically serves sermons, not food. But every month, this way-West-end church dishes out lunch to churchgoers and the community. Handmade perogies and borscht are prepared by the senior members of the church, and won’t run you much more than a fast-food lunch. More »

Pravda Vodka Bar

Pravda Vodka Bar

Pravda means truth. The truth is that this Russian inspired vodka bar has more to offer than just an impressive library of spirits. The tapas-and-nibbles menu is designed for sharing and pairing. Vodka is the star here. It even makes an appearance in one of two perogy dishes. Potato and mushroom packed pockets are served with a vodka cream reduction, onions and double-smoked bacon. More »

Starsky's

Starsky's

The deli counter staff isn’t really the most pleasant on my recent visit, but I’m not here for chit-chat. I come for the perogies. Faced with several choices, I select a mix of potato-cottage cheese and cabbage-mushroom. They come bulk and pre-cooked, only requiring a quick re-heat at home. Starsky’s perogies earn big points for convenience and wallet-friendliness. More »

Czehoski

Czehoski

Technically, these are perogies, but you won’t find any of the expected ingredients here. Cheddar is swapped for smoked gouda, and potatoes for yams. The chef personally delivers six crisp pockets towering over a bed of braised cabbage, a tart companion to the smoky-sweet filling. The side of thick crème fraiche takes four days to make, he says (but only four seconds to finish). Czehoski succeeds in reinventing a classic! More »

Amber European

Amber European

Friendly staffers keep us happy with bread and drinks while we wait for our perogies. They take 15 minutes, we’re told, because they’re made from scratch. My discerning Polish friend joins me, and admits that while they’re not her Babcia’s perogies, they do belong on this list. Choose from beef, cheddar, cottage cheese, mushroom and sauerkraut, lamb and even fruit-filled. More »

Chopin

Chopin

The fifth Roncesvalles location on this list, Chopin still competes. The restaurant has been churning out its popular perogy dish for 25 years. The ample entree-sized portion is perfect for sharing over beers while catching a game on the big screen in the sport-bar-like atmosphere. More »

Yummy Market

Yummy Market

This North York grocery store carries a world of imported delights from kim-chi to pirozhky. Most impressive is a section of frozen food dedicated entirely to perogies. Yummy Market clearly made our list for variety. Pick up do-it-yourself perogies stuffed with anything from cherries to beef. More »

Discussion

35 Comments

Rachel / September 15, 2010 at 11:34 am
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If I am under the impression that some of these places serve vegetarian perogies...oh, glory be!
autovit / September 15, 2010 at 11:58 am
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I am new in Toronto and i watch this site whit joy. I came from Romania last year and i find Toronto kitchen very good. Like in my country.
Jordan / September 15, 2010 at 12:15 pm
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Whoah now - is this your personal list of perogie places or one based of votes from the readers? Usually they're the later, but it sounds as if it's not in this case.
Obi Wan Perogi / September 15, 2010 at 12:23 pm
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Try the perogi in the basement of the St Lawrence Market, and the Eastern European Deli. They are some of the best in the city.
Dayna replying to a comment from Jordan / September 15, 2010 at 12:30 pm
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The results were absolutely based on a recent reader poll. Thanks!
Astin / September 15, 2010 at 12:36 pm
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No Baby Point lounge? I question the validity of this list without it. An army of old Ukrainian ladies making real Ukrainian food can't be wrong.

Also, no way St. Demetrius UKRAINIAN Orthodox Church is selling "perogies". Varenyky or pyrohy maybe, but not "perogies", their evil Polish name.
Lara replying to a comment from Rachel / September 15, 2010 at 12:39 pm
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I've only eaten at a couple of these places but I know that the perogies at both Shanghai Cowgirl and Future's are veggie if you hold off on the bacon. On that note though I would definitely skip Future Bakery if you're looking for the BEST perogies; they are definitely cheap but certainly not the best by any stretch of the imagination.
Mimi / September 15, 2010 at 12:50 pm
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"Perogies" is actually their evil Canadian name if anything;) the Polish one is "pierogi"...
kat / September 15, 2010 at 01:10 pm
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wow! the steer? really? that's a joke. the steer has EXCELLENT food thanks to chef mike cross, but NOT pierogies. the best ARE at polonez. hands down.
LMIH / September 15, 2010 at 01:36 pm
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Wow, I've never seen Czehoski's perogies look like that...anytime I've ordered them it's been a soggy plate full of beige lumps.
dolce / September 15, 2010 at 01:50 pm
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Cafe Polonez in Roncesvalles really does serve delicious pierogi. Super cheap and you can get them in a batch of four, six or eight!

Also, their cold borscht is AMAAAAZING. I got four pierogi, three huge potatoes and cold borscht for about ten bucks! It was awesome.
Danny / September 15, 2010 at 02:06 pm
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cafe du lac??? why are you not going there for poutine?
Mikey / September 15, 2010 at 02:08 pm
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Inter Steer used to be such a dive. The only food they served was pierogis, a mixed-plate of pickles, sausage and rye bread and cabbage roll priced by weight. It was the best place to drink under age before they moved to their new location two doors down a few years back. The layout of the new place is exactly the same but 100x nicer. Ava is the best!
Rodion / September 15, 2010 at 07:08 pm
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There none better then the ones my mother makes. Home made is always best. Also the Hoof on Dundas West at Trinity Bellwood Area are pretty good, but you only get 4 per serving and they are NOT for the health conscious due to load of good butter.
Miriam / September 15, 2010 at 11:20 pm
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Nah just come on over to my place, in 5 hours I will have some homemade ones prepared with cottage cheese & potato and covered with bacon. Mmmm! :)
St. Lawrence Market / September 16, 2010 at 08:43 am
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There's a vendor in the basement of the St. Lawrence Market. I'm not sure what but they're Russian, Ukranian, or Polish, one of those and they've got great pirogies there.
TG / September 16, 2010 at 11:19 am
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I second Amber European, stopped there on a whim and had the best perogies of my life.
kd / September 16, 2010 at 02:27 pm
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As a pure-bred Uki, any perogie/pyrohy variations involving guacamole, spinach and cherry tomatoes are like blasphemy to us! My babas would laugh in your face!

It's the same argument as the poutine challenge - some dishes are revered for their simplicity, so don't mess with the tried-and-true ingredients and still claim they're perogies.
Jennai replying to a comment from Obi Wan Perogi / September 16, 2010 at 09:43 pm
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Yeah, agrees. St Lawrence Market Basement perogi, should be on this list, near the top.
Hungry Person / September 18, 2010 at 10:39 am
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Hi Miriam,

What time is dinner? Should I bring the wine?
MZ / September 18, 2010 at 11:58 pm
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St. Demetrius make AWESOME varenyky (the word means boiled, as that's how they're made), among other delectibles for lunch! But I'm intreguied by Inter Steer and Polonez - I will definitely try these out!
yummers replying to a comment from LMIH / September 19, 2010 at 04:04 pm
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Agree.. They were really bland too
Deeker / September 28, 2010 at 10:50 pm
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Well all... the traditional "varenyky" are made by a group of awesome people down at St. Demetrius's (Longbranch), known as the "seniors". I grew up on them, ate alot of em and truly do miss them, since i am 1400 miles away now. You have to understand our culture to appreciate this staple of our heritage. Support this parish as they not only make the best "varenyky, periories, pyrohy, dumplings" (call them what you want)in town, but they do it from the heart. Not only will they fill your tummy, but most important, this group shares a piece of our AWESOME UKRAINIAN HERITAGE, by sharing with you our cuisine. ENJOY!!! ... love u ma and all.. KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!!!!
Kate / November 16, 2010 at 06:52 pm
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Oh god I love Polish food.
Polonez has the best perogies!
Meera / November 16, 2010 at 07:27 pm
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Any leads on vegan perogies?

Some of the frozen no-name sort are vegan, but I can't think of any restaurants I've encountered that advertise theirs as vegan.

Incidentally, the European grocery store on Dufferin, south of Finch, has a whole freezer aisle devoted to every type/nationality of perogy imaginable (including fruit varieties).
Oksana / January 6, 2011 at 05:34 pm
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The place in the St Lawrence Market is called "Dnister"
These are definitely the best varenyky in Toronto
Darcy / June 9, 2011 at 09:02 pm
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Whomever thought future bakery had good Perogies should be shot. They are horrible, frozen, and when i was there they forgot both the onions and the sour cream. If you Want to wait for frozen nuggets of shit in some dough without any of the fixins, than you should finish up the crack you're smoking and come on down and eat some blasphemous dung.
Nancypants / January 20, 2012 at 03:27 pm
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Coming from a family whose mother was Ukrainian and my father was Estonian, I grew up making pierogies since I was 10 years old and trust me, I know a good pierogie when I taste one. For Christmas I did not have a chance to make enought so I did some investigation to see if I could find pierogies just like my moms. Well, I did.. In fact, they were so good, that I fouled my entire family as they honestly thought they were my own. So if you want mom's homemade pierogies - Go to "European Delight" at the St. Lawrence Market (downstairs) and see Boris. He will hook you up! Amazing that's all I have to Say!!!!!
jh / March 27, 2012 at 06:58 pm
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I think you all should try the varenyky at Natalie's Kitchen. By far the best varenyky in Toronto. Made exactly the way they should be, by a bunch of ladies in the kitchen of a church and with alot of love. THEEE best in TO.
COSPLAY / September 26, 2012 at 11:31 pm
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Wow, I've never seen Czehoski's perogies look like that...anytime I've ordered them it's been a soggy plate full of beige lumps.
PerogyBoy / December 20, 2012 at 01:10 pm
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Hi,
I was wondering if there were any other restaurants that serve perogies? Anything in Mississauga, Brampton or Orangeville? I would like to try 2 or 3 different restaurants that were not mentioned above as sometimes you can find a great place not in the top 10.
miranda / January 5, 2013 at 11:19 pm
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Definitely the St. Lawrence Market ones, if you don't have a Baba handy to make you some.
Rita replying to a comment from St. Lawrence Market / April 3, 2013 at 09:55 am
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Mariam - How do I get in touch with you? If your pierogies are really good as you say I would like to talk to you.
louis vuitton outlet usa / April 25, 2013 at 08:31 am
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Dido / May 9, 2013 at 01:23 pm
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IMO St. Lawrence market perogies have gone down hill at the usual vendors over the last year or so. Lots of thick dough and little filling (very flat). I suspect powdered/flaked potato too. I heard they are factory made now. Did you see the ones in the basement of St. Lawrence how yellow they are???? That is not natural, has to be some colourings... Just my opinion. I'll pass on St. Lawrence basement perogies.

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