Learn how to make scallion pancakes – these crispy savory pancakes are a delicious appetizer.
Scallion Pancakes have a cult following. There are people, like me, who love them and search them out at restaurants, unable to resist their crisp texture on the outside, doughy middle, light savory flavor, and sweet and salty dipping sauce. Then there are those who are blissfully unaware of what they are missing. I discovered scallion pancakes when I lived in New York City, where they commonly appear on menus at Asian restaurants. They are far less popular in Chicago, and none of the restaurants in my delivery area serve them. Obviously, I had to learn how to make them at home.
My recipe for Scallion Pancakes is adapted from Bon Appetit. Their recipe is hard to follow and part of it doesn’t work. I have updated the recipe, created a new and better dipping sauce recipe, and taken photos showing the step by step process of making scallion pancakes.
The process of making scallion pancakes takes a couple of hours, mostly because the dough needs to rest for an hour. There are a bunch of steps, but each one is easy, and I think that people with pretty basic cooking skills could make this recipe with success.
I should let you know that this recipe makes a lot of scallion pancakes. This recipe makes 8 big scallion pancakes, you might want to cut this recipe in half. (I made smaller scallion pancakes which is why there are more in the photos). Cutting the recipe in half will reduce the preparation time too. As much as I love scallion pancakes, they are an appetizer and not a complete meal, so one is just enough for me!
There are two ways to roll out scallion pancakes. There is the traditional way, or you can make them extra thin and then use them as tacos. Yes, this is just as delightful as it sounds. On Friday, I will be sharing a recipe for Ginger Beef Scallion Pancakes, and I will teach you how to make the super thin scallion pancakes.
Yields 8 Scallion Pancakes or 16 Scallion Pancake Tacos
1 hr, 20 Prep Time
20 minCook Time
1 hr, 40 Total Time
- 2 ½ cups All Purpose Flour, plus more for flouring the work surface
- 1 cup Boiling Water
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 tablespoon Toasted Sesame Oil
- ¼ cup Chicken Fat, at room temperature, or vegetable oil
- 1 ½ cups Scallions, thinly sliced
- About 3 tablespoon Vegetable Oil
- For the Sauce:
- 4 tablespoons Soy Sauce
- 2 tablespoons Rice Wine Vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Granulated Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
- 2 cloves of Garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon Thinly Sliced Scallion
- Combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the toasted sesame oil and boiling water and stir thoroughly until a shaggy dough forms.
- Pour the dough out onto a floured surface and knead the dough until it forms a consistent slightly sticky texture. This will take a few minutes of kneading. Once done, form the dough into a ball, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it sit out at room temperature for an hour.
- Now you need to decide if you are making traditional scallion pancakes, or extra thin scallion pancakes to be used as tacos. If you are making traditional scallion pancakes, divide the dough into 8 pieces. If you are making thin pancakes for tacos, divide the dough into 16 pieces. The next few steps remain the same.
- Roll out the dough on a floured surface until it as thin as you can get it. Brush the top of the dough with a thin layer of chicken fat or vegetable oil. Top with scallions and sprinkle with salt. Then roll up the dough like a jellyroll.
- Then take the dough and roll it up like a cinnamon roll. Repeat using all the dough. Then let the dough rest at room temperature for 10 minutes.
- One by one, roll out the coils of dough. First, dip the dough in flour and flour the surface. Then roll the dough out. If you are making traditional scallion pancakes you want them to be about 5 inches in diameter. If you are making scallion pancake tacos roll them out as thin as you can, they will be about 6 inches in diameter.
- Pour just enough vegetable oil to coat the bottom of a pan (I recommend using a nonstick pan). Heat over medium-low heat. Once the oil is hot, add the scallion pancakes. If you made traditional scallion pancakes, you will want to cook them one at a time. If you are making thin scallion pancakes you can cook three at a time. Traditional scallion pancakes will take about 8 minutes to cook, while the thinner tacos will take about 5 minutes to cook.
- Prepare the sauce by simply whisking all the sauce ingredients together. If you want to add some spice to the dipping sauce add a touch of sriracha or red pepper flakes.