Banh Xeo - savoury pancakes

This crunchy, crispy pancake is a crowd-pleaser that deserves to share the Vietnamese food spotlight with pho. This authentic recipe is enjoyed all over the country, but is thought to have originated in Central Vietnam. Let everyone garnish their own freshly cooked pancake to suit their tastes.

Preparation time

30 minutes

Cooking time

20 minutes

Number of serves


Skill level

Medium - High                             

Banh xeo:

  • 1 ¼ cups rice flour
  • 2 tbs cornflour, optional
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • Pinch salt
  • 3 spring onions, chopped
  • 400ml coconut cream
  • ¼ cup water or beer to thin
  • 6-8 slices fatty pork belly, thinly sliced
  • 16 cooked prawns, peeled
  • 2 cups bean sprouts
  • ½ cup pea tendrils
  • 3 carrots, peeled and julienned
  • 1 bunch Vietnamese mint and 1 bunch coriander
  • 1 lime
  • 1-2 green leaf lettuce


Combine rice flour, cornflour, turmeric, salt, green onions, coconut milk and 1 cup water in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth. Set aside for 30 minutes.

Heat a 20cm non-stick frypan over med – high heat.

Add 3 prawns and 4 strips of pork. Cook for 3 minutes.

Add 1 tbs sunflower oil and add a ladle of batter to the pan, swirling to coat base and slightly up sides of pan.

Cook with lid on for 5 minutes or until crispy and golden on the base. Scatter with bean sprouts, carrot, pea tendrils and herbs.

Fold to enclose. Repeat with extra batter and ingredients.

Nuoc nam sauce:

  • ½ cup warm water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup fish sauce
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 2 tsp garlic chopped
  • 2 red chilli, chopped

Combine all ingredients for nuoc nam in a bowl, stirring well.

Serve the banh xeo with nuoc nam, chilli sauce (optional) and a squeeze of lime.

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