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. Neny Lily Lao Philippines joined 5/11 & has 12 comments

    WOW! What an amazing experience we had last Sunday. I was able to make the above recipes, and we did enjoyed it very much. Instead of pork/beef,(which I also make from the original recipe) I also make it with small(very tiny) shrimps. Both were just a success. Sometimes, I like making experiments with food., and the original recipe is always a great help.

  2. GiveMeKimchi Philadelphia joined 3/11 & has 8 comments

    I finally got to try this recipe. I’ve been looking at your site for the past week and went and bought a few things to stock at home so I can make the recipes haha. Still missing a lot of things though so I have never been able to try much.

    The pancake didn’t come out as perfect as I would hope, but it was still good. I misread the recipe and added a cup of flour instead! So I added another 1/4 cup of water, but then it was too much batter for my large pan so the pancake came out thick. I will try again another time, and I’ll try not to make the same mistake twice haha

  3. JamieF New Zealand joined 1/11 & has 120 comments

    Hi Maangchi – can the whole leaf kimchi pancake be served cold as finger food? I am having a small party tomorrow and want to make all the food Korean.

  4. Ikkin-bot edmonton joined 9/10 & has 27 comments

    I made this last night and got over my kimchi fears! You can read about it on my blog! Thanks for the recipe that inspired me to try it Maangchi!

  5. I like your blog. It is very informative and involves a lot hard work to capture all this pictures. This is the first time, I cooked Kim Chi pancake, and it turned out very well. My version is slightly different from yours, I put in more onion and kimchi into the better. It worth the efforts, the pancake turns out to be very tasty.

    I take the chances to try out the new purchased spatula , it works really well for pan cake.

  6. Hello maangchi!

    I was wondering if I can use this pancake recipe to make the seafood pancakes (haemul pajun)? or does that require totally different ingredients?

    Thank you!

  7. oksipak California joined 1/11 & has 72 comments

    Last weekend I suddenly had cravings for kimchi pancakes (ready-made food I purchased at a local Asian market long ago). I always wondered how to make it so after doing a web search, Maangchi was found.

    After reviewing the cooking videos, my mouth was salivating so I did something about it. I made my very first kimchi pancakes that Saturday morning. Oh was it great! Thanks Maangchi for the easy-to-follow instructional video.

  8. tyas jakarta, indonesia joined 1/11 & has 5 comments

    Maangchi, if I don’t have kimchi sauce, can I subtitute it with another sauce ? What sauce can u suggest me ?
    Thank you, Maangchi..

  9. jinscon2 South Korea joined 1/11 & has 3 comments

    Maangchi~ i dont have flour for kimchi pancake, is it ok to use an egg as a substitute? t.t

  10. Tatiemimosa New York joined 11/10 & has 3 comments

    Ok this is embarrasing but pancake fail # 2. It doesnt surprise me since im bad at regular pancakes aswell. Maybe i need to slice my kimchi more thinly? But my kimchi is already cut because i made mak kimchi. Maybe i should use more flour or oil? pancakes always frustrate me. Maangchi help!!

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

      ” my kimchi is already cut because i made mak kimchi” yes, chop it up into small pieces. Check the video please. Thank you for sharing your frustration with us It’s a simple solution. Chop it up chop it up and mix with batter. Let me know how your next batch of kimchi pancake turns out.

  11. It seems whenever I try to make this the flour becomes kinda translucent and orange.
    Im not sure what I’m doing wrong but it may be:
    1) the flour (can it be plain flour as in the wheat type?)
    2) the amount of oil I used because I used a little too much
    3) the thickness of the pancake as it was kind of thick

    Need help!~ :(

  12. kennethmoore Washington, DC joined 2/10 & has 8 comments

    Maangchi, I made your Mak Kimchi yesterday, and this morning, I made Kimchijeon! (Well, I tried, but my pan isn’t as nonstick as I’d like!)

    I love your recipes!

  13. Hi,

    thanks for this recipie! I made it last weekend, however it came out a little too salty. I think its because the Kimchi Juice was salty and i also added the salt listed in your recipie. I will try next time to not add the salt and see where that goes. Thanks!

  14. Thank you so much for sharing your grandmothers recipe with us! Kimchi pancakes are one of my favorite things in the world (seriously!)! I can’t wait to try the “upgraded” kimchijeon. 해ㅡㅁㅈ묘ㅐ!

  15. Oh My Gawd I love this! I was a kimchi newbie, bought the stuff in the bottle at the asian market and hated it. Never the one to give up I found a cucumber kimchi and really fell in love with it. So I decided to give cabbage kimchi a try and used your recipe (okay a pinch of this and that etc) but I Love it! Thank you so much!
    That pancake rocks! Now I’ll be looking for tons of new things to do with my kimchi!

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