The Golgi enzyme UDP-GlcNAc:lysosomal enzyme N-acetylglucosamine- 1-phosphotransferase (GlcNAc-1-phosphotransferase), an α2β2γ2 hexamer, mediates the initial step in the addition of the mannose 6-phosphate targeting signal on newly synthesized lysosomal enzymes. This tag serves to direct the lysosomal enzymes to lysosomes. A key property of GlcNAc-1-phosphotransferase is its unique ability to distinguish the 60 or so lysosomal enzymes from the numerous nonlysosomal glycoproteins with identical Asn-linked glycans. In this study, we demonstrate that the two Notch repeat modules and the DNA methyltransferase-associated protein interaction domain of the α subunit are key components of this recognition process. Importantly, different combinations of these domains are involved in binding to individual lysosomal enzymes. This study also identifies the γ-binding site on the α subunit and demonstrates that in the majority of instances the mannose 6-phosphate receptor homology domain of the γ subunit is required for optimal phosphorylation. These findings serve to explain how GlcNAc-1-phosphotransferase recognizes a large number of proteins that lack a common structural motif.