Pastrami on Rye Latkes

Who needs bread when you have Pastrami on Rye Latkes?! Make these for a fun appetizer or hearty meal! 

Pastrami on Rye Latkes |

As a kid Chanukah in my family as a big affair.  The house was fill with decorations from homemade to dusty old cardboard cut-outs of menorahs and dreidels.  Then there were the gifts, so many gifts! My mom would spend weeks shopping and hiding them around the house, then when no one was around would carefully wrap each one and stack it tall on our dining room table. I can’t tell you how photos there are of me behind the mountain of presents.  We would gather every night to light the menorah and open one gift each.

This lasted for years but as we got older the extravagance of the holiday started to die down.  There was no longer a need to open a gift every night and we were all dispersed into our own homes with our own celebrations.  However we always made a point to gather for a family celebration.  Sometimes it landed on Chanukah, sometimes it didn’t but for us it was more about spending time together as a family during the holidays.  I don’t know how or when it got started but one year the latke-off began.  As I previously mentioned, we are latke-loving family and it isn’t a Chanukah celebration without frying up potatoes!  Apparently one type of latke just wasn’t enough – to be honest they never last that long once they touch down on the table anyway.

Pastrami on Rye Latkes |

This years latke-off entry is still up in the air but our latke-series with the Idaho Potato Commission is a great practice round and hopefully it gives you some ideas for your own family latke competition!

These pastrami on rye latkes is not exactly what you are going to find at your Jewish deli but I can promise you one thing – you’ll never look at bread the same way again once you try these guys.

So how do you get that rye flavor into the latkes? Easy with a generous dose of caraway seeds tossed into the mix!

Pastrami on Rye Latkes |

These latkes are then topped with a slice of pastrami (from the deli or go all out an make your own), a dollop of spicy mustard and don’t forget the pickle!

Perfect for an appetizer or one hearty meal, you can even go all out and sandwich it together but I prefer mine open faced!  The only thing that’s missing at this point is a can of Dr. Brown’s!

For more information on Idaho® Potatoes visit them on Facebook , Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

This post is sponsored on behalf of  Idaho® Potatoes.  As always all opinions are my own and thanks for supporting brands that I work with. 

Pastrami on Rye Latkes |

Pastrami on Rye Latkes
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  • 2lbs Burbank Russet Idaho Potatoes
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tablespoons caraway seeds
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • ½ lb deli pastrami
  • 1 large dill pickle, sliced
  • spicy brown mustard


  1. Peel the potatoes and grate either by hand on a box grater or using the shredding blade on your food processor.
  2. Repeat with the onion.
  3. Place the grated potato and onion in a large bowl fitted with a tea towel instead and squeeze all excess liquid from the shredded potatoes.
  4. Remove the liquid from the bowl, trying to leave the potato starch at the bottom if possible and add the potatoes.
  5. Mix in the flour, caraway seeds, salt and baking powder. Toss to coat evening.
  6. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat with enough oil to cover the bottom, have a sheet tray ready lined with paper towels and heat your oven to 250 ° to keep the completed latkes warm.
  7. Check to see if the oil is hot enough by placing a small amount of potato in the skillet, if it sizzles immediately you are good to go.
  8. Scoop about ? cup potato mix from the bowl, squeeze to drain any excess moisture that may have accumulated and flatten into a round disc. Gently place in the oil and fry about 3-4 minutes per side or until crispy. Depending on the size of your skillet, fry about 3-4 latkes at a time. You do not want to crowd the skillet while cooking.
  9. Once finished, transfer to the paper towel lined sheet tray and sprinkle with kosher salt. Keep warm in the heated oven. Repeat with the remaining potatoes.
  10. When ready to serve top each latke with a slice of pastrami, a dollop of mustard and a pickle slice.
  11. Latkes can be made in advance and either frozen in a single layer or stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Heat in the oven to crisp up before serving.


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2 thoughts on “Pastrami on Rye Latkes

  1. Mike Major

    G’Day Susan, Two things you should know…I’m a guy & I live down under (Australia). I love latkes & as a young boy ate mountains of them. Unfortunately all of the wonderful women who cooked them for me have passed on without leaving a recipe. I have been trying to recreate the taste of my childhood using the web. I have not quite got there, although close. I like your site for your adventurous recipes taking latkes into a new dimension. (although chocolate covered latkes maybe taking things to a 5th dimension??)
    Just wanted to touch base to say I appreciate your efforts.

    1. Susan Palmer Post author

      Thanks for your note Mike! I’m happy I can help on your quest to latke yumminess! I’m with you there on eating loads of them as a kid and I still do as an adult. They don’t last long when I make a batch! I do suppose the chocolate covered ones are taking it above and beyond but like I said in the post, don’t knock it until you try it lol! Have a great one!


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