These Masala Veggie Pancakes are inspired by Yachaejeon (Korean Pancakes). Made with Indian spices and served with a vibrant coconut chutney.
When it comes to pancakes, all I can say is… I’m in.
Irrespective of sweet or savoury, pancakes are one of those things that are all around crowd pleasers. At least for me, anyways. I’d happily choose pancakes for my breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
But make it savoury pancakes filled with vegetables, some spices, and a chutney? Sign me up, immediately. If you’re a fan of crispy savoury pancakes, then this is definitely a recipe I’d recommend for you.
Masala Veggie Pancakes
These Masala Veggie Pancakes are inspired by Yachaejeon (Korean vegetable pancakes) as well as uttapam (south Indian vegetable pancakes). But with the addition of spices used commonly in Indian cooking to bring in some of the familiar flavours that I’ve grown up with.
These pancakes are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside from the vegetables, they’re spicy, and very flavourful. They’re made from a very simple batter of plain flour/all purpose flour and rice flour.
And we’ll be serving them up with a fragrant coconut and coriander/cilantro chutney, which is frankly just epic.
It’s a great way of using up any leftover vegetables you have lying around, and actually a very delicious way of doing so too. This is also a quick recipe to make and you can be done within 30 minutes!
It’s part of my ‘30 Minute Recipes’ series!
This entire series will be full of recipes that can all be made in UNDER 30 MINUTES. They’re perfect for busy days, or for those evenings when you just want something quick.
In fact, they’re all recipes that I make for my own lunches and dinners. Though I’m always cooking for the blog, those recipes don’t make up my lunches and dinners.
You can find the rest of the recipes here.
Yachaejeon (Korean Vegetable Pancakes)
Yachaejeon are Korean vegetable pancakes, the yachae means vegetable whilst the jeon means pancake. They’re crispy pancakes made from a medley of vegetables, it’s one of those recipes where you can literally use anything you like.
The vegetables are tossed in a thick batter made from plain flour/all purpose flour and rice flour. Though cornflour (corn starch for US readers) or potato starch can also be used.
Traditionally the recipe also sometimes contains an egg for binding, but it’s not essential. Yachaejeon are also often served with a dipping sauce but we’ll be serving these masala ones with a chutney.
These Yachaejeon inspired Masala Veggie Pancakes are full of spice
We’re adding in spices commonly used in Indian cooking to give these the masala edge. Such as chilli powder, turmeric, coriander powder, mango powder, garlic, and black pepper.
It’s a versatile recipe so you can absolutely adjust the spices to what you have on hand or to your own preferences. The spices add depth and warmth to the pancakes, whilst the mango powder balances with acidity.
Chutney is arguably the best condiment
I stand by this statement strongly. There is a reason why chutney holds such importance to Indians as well as other south Asians and the diaspora.
The concept of chutney has also take the world by storm. It’s become a fairly common household condiment with a constantly increasing demand. There are now so many varieties of chutneys that it can actually be quite difficult to choose which we want.
For these pancakes, we’re going to go for a south Indian coconut and coriander chutney. And honestly, it really is the best condiment to pair.
Other types of vegetable or spiced pancakes
- South Indian Uttapam – another type of vegetable pancake, though not usually spiced except for some green chillies. The batter is made from fermented ground rice and urad lentils
- Indian pudla or chilla – a spiced pancake made from besan or chickpea flour. These are savoury pancakes that are incredibly delicious, and they’re also commonly served with chutneys
- Okonomiyaki – a famous Japanese pancake which is made in a similar style to yachaejeon and sometimes contains taro or nagaimo to bind the batter together
- Kimchijeon – these are very similar to yachaejeon except that they contain kimchi. Essentially Kimchi pancakes if you will
- Cong you bing – these are spring onion/scallion pancakes originating from China
- Bánh Xèo– these are Vietnamese savoury crepes made from rice flour, water, and turmeric powder, and then often filled with a variety of vegetables
What you’ll need to make these Masala Veggie Pancakes
I’ll cover the main ones below but the full recipe can be found at the end of the blogpost
- Plain flour – also known as all purpose flour
- Rice flour – this can be substituted with cornflour (corn starch for US readers) or potato starch
- Mango powder – one of my favourite spices to add to dishes as it adds acidity. If you don’t have this, a little squeeze of lemon or some rice vinegar will work (just a tiny bit)
- Ice cold water – try and use ice cold water if possible, it helps to prevent gluten development when mixing the batter. Less gluten means a crispier and lighter batter
- Coconut – I’ve used desiccated coconut for the chutney as that’s what I’ve always got on hand
- Curry leaves – these are aromatic leaves used in much of Indian cooking and are often tempered in oil to release their flavour. These are quite a key flavour for the chutney so if you’re able to use them, please do
The KEY TIPS to getting these pancakes right
- Using the right flours – this forms the batter so using the correct flours and ratio will ensure a crispy exterior on the pancakes
- Ice cold water – this really does make a difference, just place around 5 or 6 ice cubes into the jug of water and it’ll be ice cold within minutes
- Flip at the right time – wait for the underside to be crispy and the edges set before flipping. Otherwise you risk the pancakes breaking
- If you find you’re a slow chopper, you can also grate the vegetables on the large side of a box grater to save time
How to make these Masala Veggie Pancakes
Let’s start with the pancake batter
1) Start by chopping the vegetable into matchsticks, carrots work great for pancakes like these
2) Courgette/zucchini is also brilliant
3) Slice the green pepper into long thin strips
4) Slice some mushrooms too, you can use whichever variety you like
5) Slice some spring onions/scallions lengthways, these are also great for these type of pancakes
6) I like to use a combination of spring onions and red onions, they both add a different flavour and texture
7) I’ve added in some green chillies for heat, these are optional and you can leave these out if you wish
8) In a large mixing bowl, add the plain flour/all purpose flour, rice flour, and the spices and whisk together
9) Gradually pour in ice cold water whilst whisking to form a thick, lump-free batter like 10)
11) Add in all the vegetables and fold till they’re all combined in the batter
12) It will be a thick batter – which is perfect
Next let’s cook the pancakes
1) To cook the pancakes, pre-heat a wide frying pan over a medium heat with a small amount of oil (around 2tbsp should suffice). Spoon the pancake batter in to your desired size and thickness. I usually split the batter into two and make two large ones
2) Flatten the pancake with the back of a spoon or with a spatula, and allow to cook until the base has turned golden brown and crispy. This can take 4-5 minutes
3) Once golden and crispy on the underside, flip the pancakes over
4) Drizzle another 1-2tsp of oil around the outside of the pancake to help crisp the base and continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes
5) The masala veggie pancake will be brown and crispy on both sides now
And finally we can make the coconut and coriander chutney
1) For the chutney (I like to make this as the pancakes are cooking), place coriander/cilantro, desiccated coconut, ginger, green chilli, and curry leaves into a blender jug. I also add in water to help everything blend (full recipe at the end of the blogpost)
2) Blend till thick, then transfer to a bowl
3) Temper some mustard seeds, dried lentils (urad dal), and curry leaves in oil till the seeds are crackling, the dal has turned golden brown, and the curry leaves are popping
4) Pour the tempering over the chutney and mix together. Your coconut and coriander chutney is now done
Frequently asked questions
How long can these pancakes be kept? And what’s the best way to store them?
The leftovers (after cooking) can be kept in an air tight container and refrigerated for up to 3-4 days. You can also freeze the pancakes for up to 3 months.
To reheat, either toast in a hot pan or place into an air fryer. I strongly vouch for the air fryer to reheat, it works very, very well!
Can these Masala Veggie Pancakes be made gluten free?
I’m not entirely sure, as I don’t have any experience with gluten free flours. But if the binding is strong enough to hold the pancake together, then I honestly don’t see why not.
Can these pancakes be made vegan?
These masala veggie pancakes are already naturally vegan! So you can make the recipe as instructed without needing any substitutions.
If you enjoyed this recipe
Please do let me know! Leave a review and a rating below, I’d love to know how you got on.
Until then, happy cooking!
For the Masala Veggie Pancakes:
- 1 carrot
- 1 courgette/zucchini
- 1 small green pepper
- 100g mushrooms, any variety
- 3 spring onions/scallions
- 1 small red onion
- 2 green chillies
- 150g plain flour/all purpose flour
- 150g rice flour
- 1/2tsp black pepper
- 2tsp Kashmiri chilli powder, or paprika
- 1/4tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2tsp coriander powder
- 1tsp mango powder, also known as amchoor
- 1tsp garlic powder
- 2tsp salt
- 300ml ice cold water
For the Coconut and Coriander Chutney:
- 20g fresh coriander/cilantro
- 50g desiccated coconut
- 1" piece of ginger
- 2 green chillies
- 6 curry leaves
- 6tbsp water
- 1/4 tsp salt
For the tempering:
- 1tbsp neutral flavoured oil, sunflower/rapeseed/vegetable
- 1tsp black mustard seeds
- 1/2tbsp dried urad dal
- Small handful of curry leaves
For the Masala Veggie Pancakes:
- Prepare the vegetables by chopping the carrot and courgette/zucchini into matchsticks. Slice the green pepper lengthways into long thin strips, slice the mushrooms. Slice the spring onions/scallions into long strips, finely slice the red onion, and finely slice the green chilli.
- Next prepare the batter by whisking together the plain flour/all purpose flour, rice flour, black pepper, chilli powder, turmeric, coriander powder, mango powder, garlic powder, and salt in a large bowl. Gradually pour in the ice cold water whilst whisking to form a thick, lump free batter
- Add in all the vegetables and fold till they're completely coated in the batter. It will be thick - which is exactly what we want
- Heat up a wide non-stick frying pan of choice over a medium heat with around 2tbsp of oil - I'm using a 20cm wide pan. Spoon in half of the pancake mixture if you're making 2 large pancakes, and flatten with the back of a spoon or spatula
- Allow to cook for 4-5 minutes or until the base has turned golden brown and crispy (this is also a great time to make the chutney). After the base is crispy, flip the pancake over and drizzle another 1-2tsp of oil around the outside of the pancake to help the uncooked side crisp up too. This will take another 4-5 minutes. I usually have two pans on the go to save time
For the Coriander and Coconut Chutney:
- Blend together the coriander/cilantro, coconut, ginger, green chillies, curry leaves, and water. It will be thick, and you may need to scrape down the blender jug once. Then transfer the chutney to a bowl and season with salt
- For the tempering, heat up a small pan (or a tadka pan if you have one) with the oil over a medium heat. Add in the mustard seeds and as soon as they crackle and pop, add in the dried urad dal, and curry leaves. Turn the heat down to low and mix for around a minute or until the dal is turning a deep golden brown. It can burn quite quickly so keep an eye on it
- Immediately pour the tempering over the chutney, it will sizzle. Mix together and the chutney is done. The chutney can also be made ahead of time or even the day before and kept refrigerated
Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 560Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 0mgSodium 1419mgCarbohydrates 106gFiber 9gSugar 12gProtein 14g
This is an automated calculation and may not be entirely accurate.