The series is loosely based on the memoir Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots by Deborah Feldman, who left the Satmar dynasty, a Hassidic group in New York City. The show has language switching from English to Yiddish to German. The show was written by Anna Winger and Alexa Karolinski, directed by Maria Schrader, produced by Karolinski, and filmed in Berlin. Unorthodox is the first Netflix series to be primarily in Yiddish. Netflix released a 20-minute documentary, Making Unorthodox, that chronicles the creative process and filming.