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How to make Vietnamese Sizzling Pancakes (Banh Xeo)

Banh Xeo stuffed with onions, pork belly, and shrimp with mint leaves and lettuce on a white plate along with vietnamese fish sauce on the side.

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Vietnamese Sizzling Pancakes / Crepes or Banh Xeo is a light crispy pancake that will make you say, “Wait, that’s good!” This can be paired with some lettuce, mint, and thai basil or rolled up in a rice paper. It is delicious and light that can have numerous toppings in it.

What is Banh Xeo?

Banh Xeo stuffed with onions, pork belly, and shrimp with mint leaves and lettuce on a white plate along with vietnamese fish sauce on the side.

Banh translates to bread or pancake. While Xeo means sizzling, so banh xeo really means sizzling pancake. However, it can also be called a sizzling crepe since it is thin and crispy.

Banh Xeo can be made in all sorts of ways. It can have bean sprouts, mung bean, garlic, shallots, and much more! I’ve seen mung bean in some to replace any meat like pork belly and shrimp. Most commonly Vietnamese Pancakes are made with onions, pork belly, and shrimp. Typically, I will eat this with lettuce and some mint then dip it in some fish sauce. I’ve also eaten with it rolled up in rice paper.

The basics of Banh Xeo is the batter, which contains all purpose flour, rice flour, water, coconut milk, green onions, and most importantly tumeric. Tumeric is what gives the pancake its yellow coloring.

Ingredients

Batter

  • Banh Xeo flour mix: I usually buy a flour mix that has a mixture of rice flour, all purpose flour, and baking soda. However, you can also just use a rice flour or a mixture of both rice and AP flour.
  • Turmeric: This is probably the most important ingredient and gives the pancake that signature yellow coloring when it is cooked. I suggest having the ratio be 1 Teaspoon to every 12oz of flour mix.
  • Salt: This is give the batter some flavor and yes you can always substitute this with MSG.
  • Coconut milk: Now I am allergic to this, so my substitution for this is Oat milk. You can use regular milk or almond milk. I chose Oat milk since I think it is the closest I’ll get to coconut milk because of its sweet flavor. I have also seen people use Coco Rico to make the batter even more crispy.
  • Green onions: Once the batter is well rested and ready to go, you’ll want thinly slice green onions because they need to be cooked at the same time the batter does. It also allows the green onions to be on the outside of the banh xeo when cooked.

Toppings

  • Pork Belly: I like having the pork belly already boiled and cooked. This reduces the amount of fat that is rendered in the pan. Making it easier for the banh xeo to stick when I am swirling the batter. However, with the added fat it can make it more crispy.
  • Headless, Tail-Off Shrimp: I like my shrimp headless, peeled and tail off. For this dish, I think it’s a welcome addition since it already has the crunchy factor with its batter and bean sprouts. However, I have seen people use shrimp with the tail on because it adds that nice crunchy texture to their bite.
  • Large Yellow Onion: Make sure that you chop the onion in half then thinly slice them into C like shapes. This adds wonderful flavors to the banh xeo and should always be used.
  • Bean Sprouts: Now you are more than welcome to leave these out if you choose to. I personally am not a fan of these, but they add a level of freshness and crunchy texture to the banh xeo. This greatly helps if you are not able to get the right crispiness.

Vegetables

  • Lettuce: I usually go for Romain lettuce leaves, since they have great structure and are perfect for protein style rolls. However, you can use really any lettuce of your choosing.
  • Mint: Add some mint on top or in a roll and this adds a sharp flavor that compliments every ingredient in this dish.
  • Perilla Mint: I personally love perilla mint since it adds such a different type of minty flavor that is much more mellow and still pairs well with regular mint
  • Thai Basil: This an honestly my favorite thing to have. It brings a very strong basil flavor that really brings this to the next level.

Other

  • Vietnamese Fish Sauce: Now dip all of this into a Vietnamese dipping sauce and it will make everything 20x better.
  • Rice Paper: Use rice paper to wrap all the contents for an easier dipping experience.
  • Vegetable Oil: When adding oil to the pan, make sure to use very little so that you can swirl the batter around without it sliding everywhere.

Directions

Prepare Batter

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and mix together. Then add coconut milk and water. Mix and add more water if necessary. Consistency should be able to thinly coat the back of a spoon.
  2. Just before cooking, add thinly sliced green onions to batter.

Prepare toppings

  1. Clean and wash pork with vinegar and salt. Rinse pork and boil for 30 minutes. Remove any fat that floats to the top. Remove pork belly and let it rest for 5 minutes. Slice pork belly into thin pieces (1/4 in).
  2. Clean and wash shrimp under cold water. Boil or steam shrimp for 3-5 minutes or until they are no longer translucent. Drain water and place shrimp on a paper towel.
  3. Peel and cut onions into thin slices.
  4. Wash and dry vegetables.

Sizzle sizzle

  1. In a large skillet, heat ½ teaspoon of vegetable oil on medium-high. Add your onions and hear it sizzle. Then add your pork belly and shrimp. Cook for 3-5 minutes.
  2. Ladle in about 1 cup of your batter and quickly pick up the pan and swirl the batter around to cover the whole pan. Add a little more at a time to fill in any holes.
  3. Now add any additional toppings here. Such as bean sprouts, onions, pork belly, or shrimp.
  4. Lightly drizzle the rest of your oil around the edges of your crepe. Cover the skillet with a lid and cook for 3-5 minutes. Leave the lid slightly ajar.
  5. Remove the lid and try not to reintroduce the condensation. Use a spatula to carefully fold the crepe in half. Slide the crepe on a plate and serve with vegetables and rice paper.

Tips and Tricks

  • Make sure you let the batter rest for at least 30 minutes before adding the green onions and cooking.
  • Be patient when cooking this. It is okay to let it cook for longer than you expect in order to get it crispy!
  • Feel free to add more water if the batter is bring it to the consistency of your liking.
  • If you choose not to boil the meat, then cook each ingredient step by step for at least 2-3 minutes. Toppings should follow as so; aromatics, pork, shrimp, batter, and then veggies.

Storage

  • Refrigerator: The best way to refrigerate this is to store every ingredient individually. For the batter, you can mix the everything until you add the green onions. I would not recommend storing cooked banh xeo. These should be made to order.
  • Freezer: If you would like to freeze it, you can freeze each ingredient in a vacuum sealed bag.

Reheating Instructions

  • If you have stored a cooked banh xeo, then the best thing you can do is reheat it in a non-stick pan with a little bit of oil.
Banh Xeo stuffed with onions, pork belly, and shrimp with mint leaves and lettuce on a white plate along with vietnamese fish sauce on the side.

Vietnamese Sizzling Pancakes / Crepes (Banh Xeo)

5 from 2 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Keyword: Banh Xeo, Vietnamese, Vietnamese Crepes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Resting Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 645kcal
Author: Kevin Bui
Vietnamese Sizzling Pancakes / Crepes or Banh Xeo is a light crispy pancake that will make you say, "Wait, that's good!" This can be paired with some lettuce, mint, and thai basil or rolled up in a rice paper. It is delicious and light that can have numerous toppings in it.
Print Recipe Pin Recipe

Ingredients 

Batter

Toppings

Vegetables

Other

Instructions

Prepare Batter

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and mix together. Then add coconut milk and water. Mix and add more water if necessary. Consistency should be able to thinly coat the back of a spoon. Let it rest for at least 30 minutes.
  • Just before cooking, add thinly sliced green onions to batter.

Prepare toppings

  • Clean and wash pork with vinegar and salt. Rinse pork and boil for 30 minutes. Remove any fat that floats to the top. Remove pork belly and let it rest for 5 minutes. Slice pork belly into thin pieces (1/4 in).
  • Clean and wash shrimp under cold water. Boil or steam shrimp for 3-5 minutes or until they are no longer translucent. Drain water and place shrimp on a paper towel.
  • Peel and cut onions into thin slices.
  • Wash and dry vegetables.

Sizzle sizzle

  • In a large skillet, heat ½ teaspoon of vegetable oil on medium-high. Add your onions and hear it sizzle. Then add your pork belly and shrimp. Cook for 3-5 minutes.
  • Ladle in about 1 cup of your batter and quickly pick up the pan and swirl the batter around to cover the whole pan. Add a little more at a time to fill in any holes.
  • Now add any additional toppings here. Such as bean sprouts, onions, pork belly, or shrimp.
  • Lightly drizzle the rest of your oil around the edges of your crepe. Cover the skillet with a lid and cook for 3-5 minutes. Leave the lid slightly ajar.
  • Remove the lid and try not to reintroduce the condensation. Use a spatula to carefully fold the crepe in half. Slide the crepe on a plate and serve with vegetables and rice paper.

Video

Nutrition Facts
Vietnamese Sizzling Pancakes / Crepes (Banh Xeo)
Serving Size
 
1 Pancake
Amount per Serving
Calories
645
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
52.4
g
81
%
Saturated Fat
 
22.4
g
140
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
5.1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
21.5
g
Cholesterol
 
152.6
mg
51
%
Sodium
 
396.5
mg
17
%
Carbohydrates
 
21.3
g
7
%
Fiber
 
1.7
g
7
%
Sugar
 
2.7
g
3
%
Protein
 
22.7
g
45
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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