Grandma-style kimchi pancake

Kimchijeon 김치전

Hi, everybody! I’m going to introduce 2 kinds of kimchi pancakes (kimchijeon) to you today: chopped kimchi pancake and my grandma’s style of whole kimchi leaf pancake.

The kimchijeon made with chopped kimchi is very easy and simple to make. You don’t need any special ingredients as long as you have some kimchi in your fridge. I make this kimchijeon at home all the time. (note: I made an updated version of this recipe here!)

My grandma’s style of kimchijeon is made with whole kimchi leaves and is what I would call upgraded kimchijeon. ; )

Have you ever seen this kind of kimchijeon? I thought it looked very special the first time I saw my late grandmother making it for us. I remember what I thought: “Hmm, grandma treats the kimchi leaf like a slice of fish? Interesting!” But I never said anything, I just watched what she was doing.

I miss my grandmother now. She would be so proud of me if she knew I was posting her recipe here! Which recipe would you like better? : )

In the video, I show you how to cut the big, round kimchijeon (it’s 12 inches wide because my frying pan is 12 inches wide : )) into bite sized pieces, but as I mentioned in the video, you could also serve it right out of the pan without cutting it. It’s usually served as family snack that way. Then you use your chopsticks to tear off a piece of the kimchijeon and eat it. It may be difficult because the pancake might slide around on the plate, and it should stay there so everyone else can eat some too! So one of your family members should grab the pancake with her or his chopsticks so you can tear off your piece more easily. Helping each other is very important when you eat kimchijeon this way!

“Let me eat some, I need someone’s help! Grab the corner of this pancake for me, plz!”

If you cut it into bite sized pieces, it’s usually served as a side dish. It’s a popular side dish for lunch box, too.

Enjo~yee the recipe! : )

Kimchijeon made with chopped kimchi

Yield: 2-4 servings


Kimchi, onion, kosher salt, sugar, flour, vegetable oil.


  1. In a bowl, place 1 cup of chopped kimchi, 3 tbs of kimchi juice, 2 tbs chopped onion, ½ ts kosher salt, ½ ts sugar, ½ cup flour (all purpose flour), and ¼ cup of water and mix it well with a spoon.
    mixing kimchi pancake
  2. Heat up a 12 inch non-stick pan over medium high heat and drizzle about 2 tbs grape seed oil.
  3. Place the mixture of kimchi pancake batter on the pan and spread it thinly and evenly with a spoon.
  4. Cook it for 1 to 1½ minutes until the bottom gets golden brown and crispy.
  5. Turn it over with a spatula or flip it.
    frying kimchi pancake
  6. Lower the heat to medium and cook for another 1½ minutes.
  7. Turn it over one more time and cook for 30 seconds before transfering it to a serving plate.
    *tip: Serve it right out of the pan or cool it down and cut it into bite size to serve.

kimchijeon kimchi pancake

Grandma’s kimchijeon made with whole kimchi leaves

Yield: 2 servings


Kimchi, ground pork, tofu, onion chives (or green onions), onion, kosher salt, black ground pepper, toasted sesame oil, egg, flour, grape seed oil.


Prepare kimchi

  1. Prepare 6 or 7 kimchi leaves (6 to 7 inches long, or 16 cm) and ½ cup flour in a plate.
  2. Coat both sides of each kimchi leaf  in the flour by hand.

Make meat mixture

  1. In a small bowl, add 2 tbs ground pork (or beef),  2 tbs tofu (after gently squeezing out excess water with a paper towel), 1 ts chopped onion chives (or green onion), 1 tbs chopped onion, a pinch of salt and black ground pepper, 1 ts of toasted sesame oil, and mix the mixture well with a spoon.
  2. Set aside.

Make the pancakes

  1. Place 1 egg in a small bowl and add a pinch of salt. Beat it with a fork.
  2. Add some of the meat-tofu mix on one side of a kimchi stem. Add some flour on top of the mixture.
  3. Put some of the meat-tofu mix on the rest of kimchi leaves.
  4. Heat up a non-stick pan and add some grape seed oil (or vegetable oil).
  5. Coat each kimchi leaf with beaten egg mix and place on the heated pan.
    *tip: the meat mixture should be bottom of the pan
  6. When the bottom of the kimchi pancake turns golden brown (1 or 1½ minutes), turn it over and cook another minute.
  7. Turn it over one more time and cook another 30 seconds before transfering it to a serving plate.
    *tip: you can serve it as it is or cut it into bite size before serving

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  1. Maangchi thank you for this kimchijeon recipe! i made one tonight & i love it!!! I think i’ll make one again tomorrow. Thanks for sharing your recipes!

  2. MandyCakes Florida joined 9/10 & has 11 comments

    I made this recipe but I had to use rice flour. I have Celiac Disease. It came together nicely but I think the rice flour drowned the kimchi taste. I will have to try this recipe again with a different flour.

  3. kyo USA joined 8/10 & has 10 comments

    for the kimchijeon,I didn’t cut up the kimchi in little tiny bite size pieces, but left them as they were in the jar. my pancake didn’t come out the way yours did.

  4. BxlSprout Brussels, Belgium joined 5/10 & has 46 comments

    Hi, I just made the typical vegetarian style kimchi jeon for me and DSS (16yrs). Wonderful! It took me back to the nights of staggering slightly at 4am in Shinchon and Itaewon… but I didn’t tell DSS about that :)

  5. Hi Maangchi! I am your fan! I live in Los Angeles and view your website a lot….I had a quick question about the kimchi pancake. The one I made tasted GOOD but it came out a bit moist and doughy in the middle, how can i make it crispy all the way? Thank you!

  6. julialow Melbourne, Australia joined 8/10 & has 4 comments

    i’ve just made these kimchijeon, but have replaced the onions with fried onions (have got these from the local asian grocery), and it was awesome! yum! tq very much

  7. tsirhcevoli USA joined 3/10 & has 24 comments

    I made this earlier today, (The chopped Kimchi Pancake) and my family said it tasted like the store bought pancake! We made two because the pan wasn’t as big as yours. :3 We made the made the dipping sause out of soy sauce and gochu garu (Hot pepper flakes)We dipped them in the sauce (and without the sauce) and it was the BEST! Simple and EASY!!! : D

  8. cookingcute Vancouver, BC joined 7/10 & has 2 comments

    Hey Maangchi! Just wondering,
    what’s a good dipping sauce to pair up with this recipe?

    Thank you!

  9. JulieVeg MA joined 5/10 & has 12 comments

    I made this for breakfast too today! And it was great! I made the cut up kimchi pancakes. The only difference was I used scallions instead of onions because I cannot digest onions. But they still came out awesome! Thanks Maangchi!

  10. floridaclyde Florida joined 3/10 & has 4 comments

    I LOVE the Squid Kimchi I learned From Maangchis Recipes !! I cant wait to make these Pancakes also ! I also really Love Mae Woon Gyeran Jjim and Ojingeochae Muchim !! I hope I spelled correctly ! Maangchi has taught Us so many recipes ! Thank You !

  11. I made this for breakfast this morning. And it was awesome. :)

  12. Donella joined 5/10 & has 9 comments

    Maangchi! Thank you so much for your kimchi pancake recipe. It was incredibly good. I wanted to put rice in it and eat it like a kimchi pancake and rice burrito.

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

      You added some rice to the pancake? It’s a terrific idea!

      • Donella joined 5/10 & has 9 comments

        I know I already commented, but I just wanted to say I have made this dish 3 times since you posted it! It is so good. My husband and I have been eating chopped kimchi pancakes, and zucchini pancakes, along with rice and other side dishes, for a few days. It is really good. I love sour kimchi. This is a little off the subject but I even started growing my own zucchini for zucchini pancakes. Thank you Maangchi!

        • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

          “I even started growing my own zucchini for zucchini pancakes” wow, the zucchini will be very precious when you harvest it. Exciting! : ) I am glad you and your husband enjoy kimchi pancakes, zucchini pancakes. yummy and healthy food.

  13. joyeous lee lee north hollywood joined 6/10 & has 9 comments

    for this Kimchijeon recipe , i thought egg is added but i see that u did not add egg, will it still taste the same without the egg

  14. amyzan joined 5/10 & has 3 comments

    How much tofu to meat in the whole leaf recipe? Can I just leave it out?

    Maangchi, I’m also wondering if it’s possible to make jeon with a gluten free flour like rice or potato, or maybe a mix of the two. Have you ever seen this done, instead of wheat flour?

  15. LuccaQ Buffalo,NY joined 6/10 & has 30 comments

    Wow I have never seen the kimchijeon with the whole leaves before. It looks so tasty! I like to fry with grapeseed oil too. It’s very healthy and good for high heat as well. My frying pan with be going “chee chee” tonight!

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