appetizer, breakfast, Brunch, Cakes and Desserts, Cheese, Recipes, Snack

Sweet Farmer Cheese Russian Pancakes

The following pancakes are quite different than the more familiar American pancakes, as their main ingredient is curd cheese, rather than flour.

Known as Syrniki, or Tvorozhniki, in Russia, and in other East European countries, these pancakes are a popular dish, served mostly for breakfast, or as a light dessert for lunch. They are mildly sweet, and usually topped with cherry confiture, and served with sour cream on the side. 

There are many varieties to these tasty pancakes: some are flatter than others, while others are more plump and thicker, as the version I have here. Some are plain, while others include. raisins, or other dried fruits, and some use semolina instead of flour. 

Yet, the cheese in all these varieties is a grainy curd cheese, known in the US as “Farmer cheese”. It has a texture that is quite similar to that of Ricotta cheese, but is drier and has tangier flavor. 

The pancakes are high in protein and contain a fairly small quantity of flour, so they can be easily adapted to gluten free diet, if needed.

As Hannukah holiday starts today, these pan-fried pancakes are perfect for serving as a nice addition to the traditional savory potato-onion Latkes.

These pancakes will delight anyone who loves sweet cheese dishes, and can be served as a tasty snack any time of the day. Try them and enjoy.

Makes: 12-15

Prep time: 15 minutes

Frying time: 15 minutes


¼ cup golden raisins and/or dried cranberries (optional)

1 package (15 oz (425 grams)) Farmer cheese

1 L egg

1 L egg yolk

¼-½ cup sugar

½ tsp vanilla

A few drops lemon oil (optional)

¼ cup flour + for coating

Oil for frying

For serving:

Sour cream

Cherry confiture  

Powdered sugar

  1. If using raisins/dried cranberries – place them in a small bowl and top with boiling water. Let stand for 5 minutes, then drain.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the cheese with all the rest of ingredients. Add the drained raisins/dried cranberries, if using, and mix well.
  3. Form 2-3 Tbs size patties from the mixture, and dredge them in a bit of flour.
  4. Heat oil for shallow frying in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to medium and fry, a few at a time, until golden-brown on both sides. Place on paper towels, to absorb extra oil. Halfway through, clean the pan and use fresh oil, to avoid bitter burnt flour flavor.
  5. Serve warm, with sour cream and cherry confiture, or simply dusted with powdered sugar.

48 thoughts on “Sweet Farmer Cheese Russian Pancakes”

  1. Ronit, you know we love our pancakes over here and we’re planning a ham and pea soup night this week, so I’m thinking why not go Russian for our pancakes? Here in Sweden you always have Swedish pancakes with jam of choice and whipped cream for dessert after pea soup.
    We have Quark readily available in our markets. I think it’s the same as farmers’ cheese, so I’ll give it a go with that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Ron, I’m glad you liked the pancakes. They were delicious, and definitely perfect as a light dessert.
      The Quark cheese I know has much creamier texture than that of Farmer cheese, but maybe the Swedish version is different. I hope it will work well for you. Enjoy your dinner! 🙂


  2. Oh, those look scrumptious and so very versatile to use over the course of several days with savory accompaniments as well as sweet. I have a friend who cannot have flour, so as you point out, this would be perfect recipe for subbing out the flour for that expensive mixture. I must write to her immediately! ;-> Virtual hugs,


    Liked by 2 people

  3. I have never used farmers cheese and after a quick search know I cannot get it here but I have found a recipe to make my own Farmers Cheese…I love the sound of this recipe plus it looks delicious, Ronit 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Carol, I’m glad you liked the recipe. The cheese that is sold here is called Farmer cheese, rather than than Farmer’s cheese – not sure why…
      As much as I understand, it’s fairly easy to make, but I’ve been spoiled with having it available, so never tried. I hope you’ll be able to make it and enjoy these tasty pancakes. Good luck! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you, Ronit I have tried that but no joy..Cheese is not something really eaten by Thais and most cheese is imported here…but the recipe seems easy enough and once I have finished my Christmas baking I aim to give it a go as in my search I have also found a couple of other lovely recipes…as you do…lol

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the sound of these! I haven’t seen farmers cheese in the market for years, but that’s because I probably don’t shop at the right stores. 🙂 I love the topping with the cherry confiture and the side of sour cream. Reminds me of the blintzes I used to get at the Russian Tea Room.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you David, I’m glad you liked the recipe. The cheese is indeed the same used in blintzes, so I’m glad it brought back tasty memories.
      Luckily, I can easily find a few brands in my area, including an Amish one, so I use it often. I’m still not sure why it is known both as Farmer cheese and Farmer’s cheese. A mystery! 🙂


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