This recipe for Ukrainian Pampushky features yeast dough rounds that are baked until golden brown & then slathered in garlic oil & herbs. Best with borscht!

Ukrainian Garlic Bread in a pan

If you want your kitchen to smell like a million bucks, these pampushky will surely do the trick. The yeast dinner rolls would be delicious all on their own, but we had to go and slather them in a savory garlic and herb oil to take it to the next level. 

What is Pampushky? 

Pampushky, which are also referred to as “pampushki”, are yeast rolls that are prepared in a similar way as American-style pull-apart bread. Hailing from Ukraine, they are baked until they achieve a golden crust and then covered in a salty mixture of sunflower oil, fresh dill and crushed garlic.

  • Flavor: The flavor of the rolls is the perfect balance of sweet yeast bread and sharp herb and garlic oil. 
  • Texture: The texture of the rolls is melt in your mouth soft and fluffy. 
  • Time: From start to finish, these rolls take just over an hour of hands-on prep and cook time. However, there is about 2 hours of rising total, so make sure to account for that. 
Ingredients for Ukrainian Garlic Bread

How to Prepare Pampushky from Scratch

All you need to prepare pampushky is a handful of ingredients you likely already have hanging out in your kitchen. 

  • Activate the Yeast: In a large bowl, combine the lukewarm milk, sugar, and active dry yeast together. Cover the bowl with a towel and allow the yeast to activate for 10 minutes.
  • Build the Dough: Combine the salt and flour. Next, add in the eggs and oil to the yeast mixture and stir to combine. In the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment or with your hands, add in the flour mixture in small portions and knead the dough until elastic. Cover the dough with a towel and let it rest for an hour.
  • Divide the Dough: Grease an ovenproof dish with oil and dive the dough into equal pieces. Roll each one into a ball and assemble them on the baking dish with space in between each. Cover with a towel and allow the buns to double in size (about 30 mins).
  • Bake the Pampushky: Next, whisk the beaten egg and water together and brush the tops of the round buns with the egg wash. Bake the pampushky for 30 -40 minutes until golden brown.
  • Whip Up the Garlic Oil: In a small bowl, whisk the oil, garlic, dill together with a small pinch of sea salt. Brush the tops of the fresh bread with it. Enjoy!

5 Pro Tips for the Most Authentic Pampushky

To get the most out of this pampushky recipe, mind the following tips from our kitchen to yours.

  • Use lukewarm milk for the best outcome. Lukewarm milk will help to activate the yeast quicker. All you need to do is warm it up slightly in a saucepan or leave it on the counter for 30 minutes. 
  • Make sure you are using fresh active dry yeast. Be sure to check the expiration date on your yeast before using it. Fresh yeast will get all bubbly on top when it’s activated. If it doesn’t, it’s likely a little old. 
  • Extra garlic is a good thing. Don’t be afraid to go above and beyond with the fresh garlic for the topping. You can add as much garlic as you wish! 
  • Sunflower oil is the most authentic. Sunflower oil is the most commonly used oil for pampushky. If you have a hard time getting your hands on it, olive oil or avocado oil will do the trick. 
  • Choose the right pan size. You can use either three 9-inch round pans or one 18in. x 13in. baking sheet. Either methods will give you the perfect pull-apart effect! 

Typical Ways to Serve Pampushky 

Pampushky are best served alongside hot soup for dipping. Classic borscht with bone-in meat or creamy vegetarian borscht are both great options. Other authentic pairings include salo (Slavic-style pork belly), chicken roulade or homemade kielbasa.

Best Practices for Storage

While pampushky are best eaten straight out of the oven and fresh, you can store them for up to 3 days in an airtight container on the counter. To reheat them, place them back in the oven with more garlic oil to hydrate them. You can also pop them in the air fryer if you have one. 

FAQ

Can you freeze pampushky dough?

Yes, you can freeze Ukrainian pampushky. To do so, bake them and allow them to cool completely. Cover the tray with a lid or clingfilm wrap and place it in a freezer-safe bag for up to 2-3 months. Reheat them directly from frozen and top with the garlic oil with herbs.

Are pampushky typically vegan?

Some pampushky recipes don’t require eggs, while others do. Adding eggs makes the dough so much more fluffy and tasty, but they can be left out if need be. The end result will just be more dense.

What other toppings can you add to pampushky?

You can sprinkle poppy seeds or sesame seeds on top of unbaked pampushky if you’d like. You can also tweak the garlic oil topping by adding any of your favorite herbs. Fresh parsley, dill or basil all work great. You can even make them sweet by swapping out the garlic topping for a honey glaze.

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About Author

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Natalya Drozhzhin

Natalya founded Momsdish to demonstrate that placing a homemade meal on the table is not hard at all. Natalya makes cooking easier and approachable, by simplifying the ingredients, while still producing the same great taste.