Crispy Kimchi Pancakes Recipe

Don't be thrown off by the name — kimchi pancakes aren't the same as your typical Saturday morning pancake served up with a side of fresh fruit and drizzled with syrup. If you haven't had this Korean favorite before, you're in for a treat. "This pancake has a wonderful savory flavor that's perfectly balanced," says recipe developer Tanika Douglas. "The earthy nuttiness from the sesame crust contrasts beautifully with the spicy acidity from the kimchi. The pancake is crispy on the outside while still tender in the middle, which is truly the perfect combination." 

The savory flavor also makes it a versatile dish that's perfect to serve at any time of day. "I generally serve my kimchi pancake as an entree. It could also be a brilliant vegetarian main, served with a light salad. [It] would also work superbly for breakfast served with a hot fried egg and chili oil," Douglas suggests. And given it only takes about 15 minutes to prepare, it's ideal for whipping up whenever you're short on time, but you don't want to reach for a frozen meal. 

Gather the ingredients for kimchi pancakes

For this recipe you'll be making the pancake batter and the dipping sauce, so you'll need ingredients for each. For the pancake itself, it shouldn't come as a surprise that you'll need kimchi. You'll also need kimchi liquid, soy sauce, flour, an egg, scallions, black pepper, sesame seeds, and vegetable oil. For the sauce you'll need sugar, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, and a little more soy sauce. 

Whip up the dipping sauce first

First up, you'll need to make the dipping sauce. It really couldn't be easier — simply add all the sauce ingredients (the sugar, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, and soy sauce) in a small bowl and stir until well combined.

Make the kimchi pancake batter

To make the batter for your pancakes, grab all the remaining ingredients except for the sesame seeds and a third of the sliced scallions. Mix them all together in a large bowl and stir well. 

Add the batter to a skillet and sprinkle with sesame seeds

When the batter is ready, add the vegetable oil to a large skillet and heat it over medium high heat. Pour the batter into the pan before using a spoon to smooth it out. Unlike more American pancake batter, this batter is thick, so it's important not to skip this step if you want an evenly-cooked pancake. When the pancake is smooth, sprinkle the top evenly with the sesame seeds. 

"While this recipe generally honors the traditional kimchi pancake, the addition of sesame seeds is what makes it unique," says Douglas. "The sesame seeds are sprinkled over the kimchi pancake to create a nutty, delicious sesame crust." Additionally, Douglas likes to make single, large pancakes rather than multiple smaller ones because it helps speed up the cooking process, ensuring you'll have them ready to eat in roughly 15 minutes. 

Cook until crispy, then flip to cook the other side

Allow the pancake to cook until it turns golden brown on the underside. Then, flip the pancake and allow it to cook until the second side is also golden brown and crispy. 

Slice, garnish, and serve the pancakes

When the pancake is fully cooked, please remove it from the pan, cut, and serve. And if you're so inclined, serve it with the dipping sauce and garnish it with the reserved sliced scallions. When you're ready, go ahead and serve the pancake to your family and friends alongside the prepared dipping sauce. "It is best served crispy and hot from the pan," says Douglas. 

Remove the pancake from the pan, cut it into wedges, and place the wedges on a serving plate. Garnish the pancakes with sliced scallions, or if you don't plan on eating the slices right away, store the pancakes in an airtight container for up to three days. You can reheat the leftovers in a pan over medium heat and trust your instincts when it comes to pairings. "A lovely pairing would be the kimchi pancake with a fresh, delicious seaweed and cucumber salad. It's the ultimate flavor combination with the spicy, tangy pancake, the savory, salty seaweed, and refreshing cucumber. According to Douglas, if a salad doesn't sound great, many people enjoy their kimchi pancakes with Korean barbecue.

Crispy Kimchi Pancakes Recipe
5 from 37 ratings
Enjoy these savory and crispy kimchi pancakes with a soy dipping sauce.
Prep Time
Cook Time
crispy kimchi pancakes on plate
Total time: 15 minutes
  • For the Pancake
  • 1 cup kimchi, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons kimchi liquid
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ¾ cup plain flour
  • 1 egg
  • 3 scallions, finely sliced
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • For the Dipping Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  1. To make the dipping sauce, in a small bowl mix together the white sugar, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar and soy sauce. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the chopped kimchi, kimchi liquid, soy sauce, plain flour, egg, two thirds of the sliced scallions, and black pepper, until well combined.
  3. Place a large pan over medium-high heat and add the vegetable oil.
  4. Pour the kimchi batter into the pan, and smooth over with a spoon to create a large pancake.
  5. Sprinkle the pancake with the sesame seeds.
  6. Cook the pancake until crispy and golden brown underneath, then carefully flip using two egg-flips.
  7. Cook the other side of the pancake until crispy and golden brown once again.
  8. Remove the pancake from the pan, cut into eight wedges, and place onto a serving plate. Garnish with the leftover sliced scallions and enjoy the kimchi pancake with the soy dipping sauce.
Calories per Serving 221
Total Fat 10.7 g
Saturated Fat 1.2 g
Trans Fat 0.1 g
Cholesterol 40.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 24.7 g
Dietary Fiber 2.7 g
Total Sugars 3.1 g
Sodium 1,013.2 mg
Protein 6.4 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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