Gluten Free Kasha Varnishkes

Kasha Varnishkes

Kasha Varnishkes is the first of what I hope will be many Easy Gluten Free Recipes. By easy, I mean 5 ingredients or less for a main dish, and three ingredients or less for a side dish. Of course, if you scroll ahead, you’ll see that the Kasha Varnishkes has six ingredients. I’ve decided not to count the water though, as I didn’t want to fail on the first night of my new experiment =)

When I cook, I tend to make a mess. Tend is probably the wrong word. I do make a mess and I can’t seem to help it! T. My dad recently told my husband that he could always tell, as soon as he walked in to the door, whether my mom or I was cooking. Big mess = me; No mess = mom.

Since the kitchen is getting more and more out of hand, I’ve decide to do an experiment. I think that if I limit the number of ingredients in my dishes, then I will make less of mess, supper will be ready soon, and therefore I’ll have the energy to blog and clean up. We’ll see.

I’m somewhat anxious about this experiment because I’m afraid that it will limit the number of spices that I can use. I use a lot of spices, and I love that! I don’t want to give that up. We’ll see.

Kasha Varnishkes is a Jewish/Russian dish that is usually served as a side dish. I have to say, this is not the best meal I’ve ever eaten. It was rather blah. But maybe that’s just me. I checked a few other blogs – blogs written by Jewish cooks – and I seem to have prepared it correctly. Since they raved about it, it must just be me. A few people said that it’s better as leftovers, so here’s hoping for tomorrow’s lunch. (I will be taking some cranberry sauce with me, just in case!)

Kasha Varnishkes

1 large onion, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 c. sliced mushrooms
6 oz. gluten free pasta (bowties are tradition, but I could only find penne)
1 large egg
1 c. kasha
2 c. water, boiling (or chicken stock, if you wish)

1. Saute onion and mushrooms in a tablespoon of canola oil and then set aside in a large serving bowl.

2. Beat the egg in a small bowl. Add the kasha to the egg and stir until well combined.

3. Wipe out your skillet, and put it on high heat. Add the kasha/egg mixture and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes until the grains are toasted and separate.

4. Turn the heat down to low. Add two cups of boiling stock. Stir, cover and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.

5. Put a pot of water on to boil. Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and cook according to package directions. When the pasta is done, reserve the water and add the pasta to the serving bowl.

6. Add the kasha to the pasta and veggies. Toss and then add salt and pepper to taste.


  1. yep, you did it right! steps 2 & 3 are the most important. dunno if you’ve seen my GF kasha varnishkes recipe here but that is basically my family recipe. I have since discovered that GF egg noodles make a good varnishke. It’s really sad to me that I can’t find GF bowties though! there’s something about bowties…. anyway i love that more people are discovering the deliciousness of kasha varnishkes!

  2. Oh, I’m so glad you came by. I was going to email you today to make sure that I’d done this correctly. I checked your recipe last night and thought I was okay, but I’m glad to have that verified by someone who has grown up with it =)

  3. so glad you ran this – it is the ultimate comfort food and is very very high in protein – kasha has the highest protein of any grain. I did find rice bowties in the passover section this year. Hurrah!


  5. @HELENE: I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  6. I have been making Kasha for years and this is good but you need to add some zip to it! My mother, who is 85, insists on dried onions, garlic powder, lots of salt, pepper and of course, butter. I add a 1/4 of a cup to each cup of kasha. When she’s not around I use reduced sodium beef or chicken broth. I made this for my mother-in-law on the night we buried her husband of 54 years and she actually smiled. It has become a staple in her house. One more suggestion: I have tried other brands but Wolff’s medium is by far the best.

  7. Shelley Orentein says:

    Where do you get the gluten free bow ties? I can’t seem to find any. thanks.