Okonomiyaki Recipe: Japanese

Are you craving a delicious and satisfying meal that is both easy to make and bursting with flavor? Look no further than okonomiyaki, the savory Japanese pancake that is sure to become your new family favorite. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of creating the ultimate okonomiyaki recipe right in your own kitchen.


What is Okonomiyaki?

Okonomiyaki, often referred to as a Japanese savory pancake or Japanese pizza, is a versatile and customizable dish that is enjoyed throughout Japan. It is made with a simple batter consisting of flour, eggs, and dashi stock, and is filled with a variety of ingredients such as cabbage, pork, shrimp, or corn. The name “okonomiyaki” translates to “grilled as you like it,” reflecting the endless possibilities for fillings and toppings.

The Key Ingredients for Authentic Okonomiyaki

For the Batter:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup dashi stock (Japanese fish and kelp broth) or water
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the Filling and Toppings (You can adjust these to your preference):

  • 1 cup finely shredded cabbage
  • 1/4 cup grated carrot
  • 2 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup cooked and diced protein (such as shrimp, squid, pork, or chicken)
  • 1/4 cup tenkasu (tempura scraps) or substitute with tempura batter bits or crushed crackers
  • Optional: sliced mushrooms, sliced pork belly, cheese, kimchi, etc.

For Garnish and Flavor:

  • Okonomiyaki sauce (store-bought or homemade)
  • Japanese mayonnaise
  • Aonori (dried seaweed flakes)
  • Katsuobushi (bonito flakes)
  • Pickled ginger, for serving

Okonomiyaki Recipe

Step 1: Prepare the Batter

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, dashi stock or water, eggs, soy sauce, and salt until you have a smooth batter. The consistency should be similar to pancake batter.

Step 2: Mix the Filling

Add the shredded cabbage, grated carrot, chopped green onions, diced protein, and tenkasu to the batter. Mix well to combine. Feel free to add any other optional ingredients you prefer.

Step 3: Cook the Okonomiyaki

Preheat a large non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat. Grease it lightly with oil.

Pour a ladleful of the batter onto the skillet and use a spatula to shape it into a round pancake, about 6-8 inches in diameter and about 1/2 inch thick.

Step 4: Add Toppings

If using additional toppings like sliced pork belly or cheese, arrange them on top of the pancake.

Step 5: Cook Both Sides

Cook the okonomiyaki for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until both sides are golden brown and the cabbage is tender. You can cover the skillet with a lid to help steam the inside while cooking.

Step 6: Serve

Transfer the cooked okonomiyaki to a serving plate.

Drizzle okonomiyaki sauce and Japanese mayonnaise over the top in a zigzag pattern.

Sprinkle aonori and katsuobushi over the sauce.

Optionally, add some pickled ginger on the side for extra flavor.

Variations and Substitutions


While the traditional okonomiyaki recipe is delicious on its own, you can also get creative and customize it to suit your taste preferences. Here are a few variations and substitutions you can try:

  • Protein: Instead of pork or bacon, you can use thinly sliced chicken, beef, shrimp, calamari, or even vegetarian options like tofu or tempeh.
  • Vegetables: Feel free to add other vegetables such as sliced mushrooms, bean sprouts, grated carrots, or blanched potatoes to the batter for added texture and flavor.
  • Cheese: For a gooey and indulgent twist, sprinkle grated cheese on top of the pancake before flipping it.

Serving Suggestions and Tips

Okonomiyaki is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed on its own or paired with other Japanese favorites. Here are some serving suggestions and tips to enhance your okonomiyaki experience:

  • Miso Soup: Serve okonomiyaki with a bowl of miso soup for a complete and satisfying meal.
  • Yakisoba Noodles: Enjoy okonomiyaki alongside a serving of yakisoba noodles, another popular Japanese street food dish.
  • Festivals and Street Food: Okonomiyaki is often enjoyed at festivals and street food stalls in Japan. Recreate the experience at home by setting up a DIY okonomiyaki station where everyone can customize their own pancakes.
  • Experiment with Toppings: Get creative with toppings and try different combinations of okonomiyaki sauce, mayonnaise, aonori, katsuobushi, pickled ginger, and Japanese 7 spice. Mix and match to find your favorite flavor profile.