Traditional Lithuanian Potato Pudding Kugelis Recipe

Lithuanian Kugelis
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Ratings (38)
  • Total: 2 hrs 15 mins
  • Prep: 45 mins
  • Cook: 90 mins
  • Yield: 1 (13x9-inch) pan (serves 12-15)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
254 Calories
9g Fat
30g Carbs
12g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 (13x9-inch) pan (serves 12-15)
Amount per serving
Calories 254
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 4g 18%
Cholesterol 83mg 28%
Sodium 546mg 24%
Total Carbohydrate 30g 11%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Protein 12g
Calcium 96mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This traditional recipe for Lithuanian savory potato pudding, known as kugelis or bulviu plokstainis (literally "flat potato"), produces a dense, heavy affair that is considered a national dish of Lithuania.

It is commonly served with applesauce, lingonberry preserves, sour cream, or crumbled bacon bits. Kugelis can be eaten as a main course or side dish.

Compare this recipe with an easy Lithuanian kugelis recipe and Polish potato pie recipe known as Baba Kartoflana or Kartoflak.


  • 1/2 pound bacon (chopped)
  • 1 large onion (chopped)
  • 5 large eggs (beaten)
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 (7-ounce) can​ of evaporated milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup farina (not quick-cooking kind)
  • 5 pounds red potatoes (or white potatoes, peeled and grated, not shredded)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place oven shelf in middle and heat to 350 F.

  3. Coat a 13- x 9-inch pan with cooking spray and set aside. 

  4. In a large skillet, sauté bacon and onion until lightly browned and caramelized. Leave them in the skillet and do not drain the fat. Set aside to cool.

  5. In a large bowl, combine eggs, milk, evaporated milk, salt, and farina. Add bacon-onion mixture and drippings. Stir until well combined.

  6. Using a food processor or by hand, finely grate potatoes, squeezing out excess moisture. Work quickly so potatoes don't darken

  7. Add grated and squeezed potatoes to the bacon-egg mixture, combining well.

  8. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours or until top is quite brown, but the interior is solid but still moist.

  9. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before cutting into squares.

  10. Serve as a side dish or as a main course with a salad. Leftovers can be browned in butter the next day.

Potatoes Abound in Lithuanian Cuisine

Lithuanian cuisine shares many culinary traditions with Poland, Hungary, Ukraine, Germany, and Ashkenazi Jews. That means potatoes reign supreme and exist in nearly every course. Besides kugelis, also known as kugel, they star in these other potatoes dishes:

  • Lithuanian Zeppelin Potato Dumplings RecipeKnown as cepelinai, these football-shaped dumplings made with a raw and cooked potato dough are filled with meat or cheese.

  • Lithuanian Potato Sausage RecipeVederai or potato sausage can be made entirely meatless or with the addition of bacon. The only other ingredients are grated potatoes, eggs, onion, seasonings, and a few tablespoons of flour.