Pan fried Chinese pancakes, also known as Jianbing, are a traditional street food in China that has been enjoyed for centuries.
They are made with a crepe-like batter, filled with savory ingredients like scrambled eggs, scallions, and spicy sauces, and then folded into a handheld wrap.
This dish is not only delicious, but it is also incredibly versatile and can be customized to suit your personal taste preferences.
Whether you’re looking for a quick and satisfying breakfast, a hearty lunch, or a snack on the go, pan-fried Chinese pancakes are an excellent choice.
In this pan fried Chinese pancakes recipe, I will fill them with green onions, but you can experiment with different fillings.
Let’s get started and make these delicious Chinese scallion pancakes.
For the pancake dough
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil
- 1 tsp of sea salt
- 1 cup of boiling water
For the pancake filling and frying
- 2 cups of chopped green onion (scallions)
- 1 Tbsp of Chinese five spice powder
- 5 tablespoons vegetable oil, for frying
For the dipping sauce
- 2 Tbsp of toasted sesame oil
- 1 Tbsp of soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp of chili oil
- 1/2 cup of chopped green onion and coriander
- Pinch of salt
Pan Fried Chinese Pancakes Recipe
Step 1: making the dough pieces
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, vegetable oil, and sea salt. Mix the flour oil mixture well.
Gradually add in the boiling water, using a spatula or wooden spoon to mix until a sticky dough forms.
Knead the dough for about 5 minutes until smooth.
Divide the dough into 8-10 equal portions and roll each portion into a ball. Cover and let the dough balls rest of 30 minutes at room temperature.
Step 5: Assembling the scallion pancakes
Take one small ball of the dough and roll it out into a rectangle shape, about 10cm wide and 8cm high.
Brush a small amount of oil in the center of the rectangle. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp of Chinese five spice powder evenly over the oil.
Spread a generous amount of chopped green onion over the spice powder.
Fold the rectangle into a cylinder, sealing the filling inside. Repeat this process until all four cylinders are formed.
Take one cylinder and gently lengthen it with your hands.
Roll it from one end to the other, forming a snail shape. Pinch the end of the dough to seal it. Repeat this process with the remaining cylinders. Cover the dough snails to avoid drying out while you work with the next step.
Roll out each dough snail into a large round circle, being gentle and using your hands as much as possible. If you’re a beginner, use a small pan (18-20cm in diameter) to help spread the dough evenly into a circular shape.
Step 10: Pan fry the scallion pancakes
Pour 2 tablespoons of oil into a large pan and heat it over medium heat.
Place one of the round pancakes into the pan. Pan-fry the pancake for 2-3 minutes, until the surface becomes brown.
Flip the pancake over and fry for an additional 1-2 minutes. Use a spatula to gently twirl the pancake, especially in the center, to ensure even frying.
Repeat this process with the remaining pancakes.
Step 12: Make the dipping sauce
Add the toasted sesame oil, soy sauce, chili oil, chopped green onion, coriander and the pinch of salt to a small bowl and mix them together.
Step 13: Serve the pan fried chinese pancakes
Cut the pan fried chinese pancakes in small pieces and serve with the dipping sauce.
Can I make pan-fried Chinese pancakes without scallions?
Yes, you can make these pancakes without scallions. Simply omit the scallions and add other seasonings of your choice, such as chopped garlic, ginger, or sesame seeds.
Can I freeze pan fried Chinese pancakes?
Yes, you can freeze the pancakes for up to 3 months. Simply wrap them in plastic wrap and place them in a freezer-safe bag. To reheat, simply remove from the freezer and heat in a non-stick pan over medium heat until crispy.
How can I make the texture of the pancakes softer?
If you prefer a softer texture for your Chinese pancakes, there are a few things you can try:
Use more water: Adding more water to the batter will make it softer and easier to roll out. Just make sure to add enough flour to compensate so that the dough is still workable.
Increase the resting time: Allowing the dough to rest for a longer period of time, up to 2 hours, will help to soften the texture.
Use a hot and humid environment: Covering the dough while it rests in a warm and humid environment, such as a damp towel or plastic wrap, can help to soften the texture.
Use a different flour: Substituting some or all of the all-purpose flour with a softer flour, such as cake flour or low-protein flour, will result in a softer texture.
Large mixing bowl to combine the flour oil mixture
Large pan to fry the scallion pancakes