Okonomiyaki Pancake – Healthy Japanese Home Cooking

vol.18 see all recipes

Healthy, Yet Filling! A Cut above Your Average Okonomiyaki Pancake

okonomiyakiAlong with ramen, okonomiyaki is a tasty, yet inexpensive dish that’s popular both within Japan and overseas. Packed with vegetables such as cabbage and spring onion, as well as meat, seafood, and eggs, you could say it’s the perfect healthy, nutritionally balanced meal.

However, there are so many things that can go wrong when you’re cooking it, leaving it hard and flavorless, instead of plump and succulent. There’s certainly a knack to cooking okonomiyaki.

That’s why this week, I’d like to tell you my three tips for making tasty okonomiyaki that’s a cut above the rest.

three tips(1) Dice the cabbage, rather than shredding it.
This improves the texture immeasurably, making it less stodgy. It also enables you to savor the sweetness of the cabbage.

(2) Use beef, rather than pork.
This takes the flavor to a whole new dimension. Beef imparts a sophisticated richness to the whole dish, creating a better balance of flavors.

(3) Don’t use water; mix soy milk into the okonomiyaki flour, instead.
This makes the batter plump, moist, and rich.

Ingredients (makes 4 pancakes)

・Green spring onions…2-3
・Yamaimo (Japanese yam)…20cm
・Chikuwa (tubular fish-paste cake)…2
・Thin strips of beef…200g
・Okonomiyaki flour…150g
・Soy milk…150ml
・Tenkasu (crunchy pearls of tempura batter)…8 tablespoons
・Beni-shoga (red pickled ginger)…2 tablespoons
・Oil…As needed
・Dried bonito flakes…As needed
・Aonori (powdered green seaweed)…As needed
・Okonomiyaki sauce…As needed
・Mayonnaise…As needed

* If you can’t get yamaimo, substitute 2 ordinary potatoes. If you can’t get okonomiyaki flour, ordinary flour is fine. If you can’t get soy milk, substitute cow’s milk. If you can’t get beni-shoga or tenkasu, it’s fine to leave them out.


1. Crack open the eggs and beat them lightly, then add the okonomiyaki flour and soy milk and mix well. Leave the mixture for 30 minutes to an hour at room temperature.

Method12. Dice the cabbage quite finely; peel the yamaimo and grate it; finely chop the spring onions; slice the chikuwa into half-moon shapes; and finely chop the beni-shoga.

Method23. Make the four pancakes one at a time. Place a quarter of the ingredients from steps 1. and 2. into a bowl and fold them together with a spoon, incorporating air into the batter.

Method34. Heat a frying pan, pour in the oil, then pour in the ingredients from 3. and spread the batter out to make an even circle. Place the beef and tenkasu on top and cook on a moderate heat for 3 minutes.

Method45. Once the outside is crispy, turn the pancake over, put a lid on the frying pan, and steam for 3 minutes. Then remove the lid and continue cooking for 2 minutes.

Method56. Turn it over one more time and cook for 1-2 minutes until the base is crunchy.

Method67. Transfer to a plate and top with okonomiyaki sauce, mayonnaise, dried bonito flakes, and aonori before serving.

doneBy SUGI AKATSUKI see all recipes

Graduate of the University of Tokyo. Researches culinary culture and foods that promote longevity and beauty. Studied basic medical science and life science at university. After studying organic food and Kushi macrobiotics, she began to conduct culinary research independently. Her motto is “simple ways to stay beautiful.” Her specialty is healthy dishes ideal for the busy woman of today. She also teaches yoga and has a popular blog(http://saqai.com/).

GRATIN – Healt…
Yaki Udon
Umami-rich Yaki Udon…
Healthy Japanese Hom…
top hataraiman
wife having fun with her sleepy husband