Squash pancakes

Hobakjeon 호박전

I’m going to introduce these 2 kinds of Korean style squash pancakes to you today:
zucchini pancake and butternut squash pancake.

Unlike zucchini, butternut squash is an unusual ingredient in Korean cuisine. When I saw butternut squash for the first time in my life in USA, I asked my friend Jenny to give me her butternut squash recipe.

She told me that she usually cooked it in the microwave or in the oven with some brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon on top. I baked my butternut squash as she told me to, and it was very delicious! I found the texture, sweetness, and even the orange color to be almost the same as the squash that I used to make my hobakjuk in Korea!

Ever since then, buying some good quality of butternut squash in the fall is a regular seasonal activity for me. I stack them in the corner of my kitchen or living room. They are not only edible but also decorative!

My favorite squashes are: acorn squash, goblin squash, zucchini, and butternut squash.


Make your doenjangjjigae with acorn squash! It’s unbelievably delicious. : ) And bake a goblin squash in the oven with some honey, butter, and cinnamon. I love it!

Ok let’s start cooking!

Butternut squash pancake

2 medium sized pancakes.


Butternut squash, kosher salt, flour, vegetable oil.

This is very unique style of pancake because you don’t use water!


  1. Cut a butternut squash in half and remove the seeds with a spoon.splithobak
  2. Peel the skin with a potato peeler.
  3. Julienne the butternut squash.butternutstripsoncuttingboard
  4. Place 2 cups of butternut squash strips into a bowl.
  5. Mix it with ¼ ts kosher salt by hand, and set it aside.
  6. In abut 20 minutes the butternut strips will be a little wet due to the process of osmosis.
  7. Add 3-4 tbs flour and mix it slightly by hand or with a spoon.butternutwithflour
  8. Heat up a pan with 1 tbs olive oil.
  9. Spoon half the butternut squash mixture on to the hot panpressbutternut
  10. Spread the batter thinly, smooth it out with your spoon, and cook for a few minutes over medium heat.
  11. When the bottom of the pancake is lightly golden brown, flip it over.
  12. Keep pressing the pancake gently and add more vegetable oil to make it crispier.
  13. Serve it hot.butternutjeon1

Zucchini pancake

1 large pancake, for sharing.


Zucchini, kosher salt, water, flour, toasted sesame oil, vegetable oil.

I learned this recipe from my friend Heykyung’s mom, when I was in high school. I went to her house one day and her mother made this pancake for us. The taste was much better than any zucchini pancake that I had ever eaten. I found out the trick was just a little bit of toasted sesame oil, in the right spot, at the right time! Actually her recipe used more flour and water, and a little bit of sugar in the batter. I modified her recipe to my taste by cutting down the flour and cutting out the sugar.


  1. Julienne a small zucchini. Put 1½ cups of zucchini strips into a bowl.zuccinistripcutting
  2. Add ½ cup flour, ½ ts kosher salt, ½ cup water and mix it well with a spoon.zucchinimix
  3. On a heated pan, place about 2 tbs vegetable oil and put the batter on to the pan.
  4. Spread the batter evenly and thinly to make a large circular pancake.zucchinionthepan
  5. About 1 minute later, when the bottom part sets firm, add 1 tbs toasted sesame oil on the pan, along the edge of the pancake.
  6. Tilt and shake the pan so that sesame oil spreads underneath the pancake.
  7. Cook another minute until the bottom turns light golden brown and crispy.
    *tip: keep pressing it down with a spoon or spatula while cooking
  8. Turn over the pancake with a spatula, or flip it if you can.
  9. Add more vegetable oil if you want to make it more crispy. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
  10. Transfer the pancake to a large serving plate and serve with dipping sauce.

Dipping sauce:


  1. In a small glass bowl add 2 tbs soy sauce, 1 tbs vinegar, 1 tbs chopped onion, 1 clove of minced garlic, and 1 sliced green chili pepper.
  2. Mix it up with a spoon.

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  1. shiera han philippines joined 8/11 & has 1 comment

    maangchi eonni annyeong haseyo…thank u so much for sharing your recipes,,i tried zucchini pancakes and it turned out great! my husband is korean and he loved it so much….kamsahamnida eonni…

  2. Abijay United States joined 7/11 & has 3 comments

    Maangchi i tried this twice but they didn’t turn out like yours mine is mushy and i couldn’t flip it coz it stick to the bottom it didn’t stick together it end up scramble ,why is that ?i followed the recipe. i used the zucchini.:-(.

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

      No problem! Use a non-stick pan which is very important to make crunchy hobakjeon . And add more vegetable oil to the heated pan before placing the batter.

    • somi burnaby, Canada joined 1/12 & has 12 comments

      One suggestion is to make sure your pan is not too hot. A lot of people use high heat to get the pan hot, but usually it’s too hot. Only medium heat is necessary. If the oil is running around like fast water, probably too hot. :)
      And maangchi? This is the next dish I’m going to make for my brothers. They will go crazy over it, I know it! xD

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

        “They will go crazy over it, I know it! ” aww! It sounds like fun!”

      • somi burnaby, Canada joined 1/12 & has 12 comments

        So maangchi, i made it for my brothers. They liked it but they didn’t LOVE it. Something did go wrong. First, I think when the zucchini was cooking in the pan, I think it released a lot of its own liquid and made the pancake kind of soggy. Also for the butternut squash, I don’t think it was fully ripened. How do I know that the butternut squash is ripe? (still delicious, but could be better. I want to try again!)

  3. sonni2010 Colombia joined 2/10 & has 1 comment

    Hi, wonderful pancake recipes I’m going to make very soon! Maangchi, thank you for being so generous with your books.

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

    Zucchini pancake was delicious and great. I made it with yangnyeom tongdak for a really fun meal!


  5. xhuang TN joined 4/11 & has 1 comment

    I love it~ thank y0u ~ you are an awesome cook~ I love cooking Korean food even more than before~ love ya~

  6. Annie from Fremantle Australia joined 2/11 & has 5 comments

    got some butternut pumpkin, having this for lunch tomorrow! Yum!!! Thankyou Maangchi !

  7. lolly South Korea joined 1/11 & has 2 comments

    Maangchi, thank you so much for sharing your recipes & cooking know how! Can you tell me what kind of 호박 you used in Korea? I live in South Korea & I can’t get butternut squash. Also, can I use 부침가루 instead of flour?

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

    Hi Maangchi, I’ve just made the zucchini/courgette pancake a second time, I like it even better than battered courgette slices/hobakjeon. My husband the chef can flip it. It’s nice to have a few good pancake side dishes to have a variety of banchan. When winter squash comes in season we’ll try the first pancake. Thanks for your recipes!

  9. KaryK San Francisco joined 9/08 & has 6 comments

    :( Maangchi help .. every time i try to make these the pancakes turn out as mush! they brown on both sides but still end up mushy. I make them thin but still… whats wrong with it? Aren’t yours crispy?

  10. Hey Maangchi, I love this recipe, it’s so easy to make. But in the Zuchinni recipe, are you actually using zuchinni? Or do you mean cucumber?

  11. Really easy to make! Great quick snack… I loved it. I didn’t have any problems this time! Next time I’m going to use squash instead of zucchini. :)

    Next time I’ll use a better camera… my phone just doesn’t take great pics =/


  12. Hi Maangchi,

    Merry Christmas! (Early Greetings from Singapore)
    I plan to make Kimchi pancake this Christmas and would like to know whether the way to make it is the same as what you have taught?
    Please kindly advice.
    Love all your receipes and have been cooking them for my hubby who is a Korean.


  13. Maangchi, you have expanded my husband’s ability to cook from just regular pancakes to zucchini pancakes! He really loves this dish, and I love it too because it only needs 3 ingredients. So delicious, just like childhood, *sigh*

  14. Thank you so much for making this website! I am married to a Korean man and we have a little boy. Its so much easier to make Korean food than trying to translate from a Korean cookbook. But I would like to ask is there anything I can do to get my little boy to eat more food? I would like to make Korean food for him but he doesnt eat anything and I am alittle worried. I know Korean mothers worry so much about their children eating well and I would like my son to have a taste for Korean food. Is there any recipes that you know of that Korean children love? Please let me know!

  15. Hi Maangchi

    Thx for your recipe again. the pumkin pancakes turned out very tasty. the recipe is easy to follow. my bloggers made positive comments.

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