A simple and delicious recipe for the unique, donut-style version of Chinese Green Onion Pancakes, like the ones found commonly in Edmonton. It features pan-fried flaky dough filled with chopped green onions, rolled up in an particular manner.
It's true that they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder.
I had always known that Chinese green onion pancakes come as flat round discs, with lots of flaky layers.
Similar to an Indian paratha.
Except, when I lived in Edmonton, most of the green onion pancakes I encountered had a hole in the centre (like a large donut).
I started to enjoy this style of green onion pancakes, and maybe became a bit of a "food snob..."
However, my kids love the flat version. Possibly because it's easy to eat!
Anyhow, they do make for the best Green Onion Pancake Beef Rolls.
Only in Edmonton
When I was talking with my mom about green onion pancakes, she mentioned that she was curious about the ones she had tried in Edmonton, which she had never seen elsewhere.
I only realized that this donut-style version is particular to Edmonton after I moved to Vancouver.
So when I visited Edmonton on our summer trip last year, it was my mission to figure out how to make these in this unique style.
Did you know?
Edmonton lays claim to green onion pancakes as its "unofficial dish?"
Ingredients you'll need
These are really easy to make and consist of a few basic ingredients:
- all-purpose flour: regular all-purpose flour will work fine for these pancakes
- salt: I like using a sea salt, but you can use any salt that you like
- baking powder: adds a little lightness to the pancakes
- hot water: helps tighten the gluten strands and yields a more pliable dough
- sesame oil: adds flavour and aroma to the green onion pancakes
- chopped green onions: the star ingredient!
How to make them
Combine the flour, salt, baking powder and hot water in a bowl. Mix together.
After kneading, leave the dough to rest for a short period of time.
Divide the dough into portions.
Roll out the dough and brush on a little sesame oil.
Add the green onions and fold the dough over.
Roll the dough out and fold it again, before sealing it.
What makes these different?
For this donut-style version, rather than rolling out the dough into a circle, and coiling it up, the dough is:
- rolled out into a long rectangle
- sesame oil and green onions added on top
- folded over lengthwise
- rolled out and folded again
- sealed together to create an "O" (donut)
Watch how to make them
How to cook
Pan-fry them over a hot griddle or pan with a little oil.
You could choose to fry them, but I personally like them pan-fried.
Alternatively, you can use an air fryer to cook them as well.
How to serve
Serve the pancakes immediately (while hot and fresh).
I like to sprinkle some flaked sea salt over the top once they come off the griddle and cut them into pieces with a pair of scissors.
Serve them with a sweet chili sauce or chili oil and you've got an easy and delicious appetizer.
Can you freeze them?
Absolutely. You can freeze green onion pancakes (prior to cooking).
If you don't plan on consuming them at once, you can layer the pancakes in between parchment paper and place them into a freezer bag or container.
No need to defrost the pancakes before cooking them.
Just place the frozen pancakes onto a preheated pan and cook as per usual.
Other recipes you may like
Be sure to check out these recipes:
A dim sum favourite, these Green Onion Pancakes are a great way to use up those extra green onions you might have hanging out in the fridge.
My kids get super excited when they see me make this quintessential Chinese appetizer.
Let me know if you try out this recipe -- and if you've had those green onion pancakes in Edmonton! Tag me on Instagram @siftandsimmer or leave me a comment below.
Green Onion Pancakes (Edmonton-Style)
For accuracy and precision in baking recipes, use weight (metric) measurements when available.
- 1 ½ C all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon sea salt + extra for garnish
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ C hot boiling water
- ⅓ C room-temperature water (you may not need all of the water)
- 2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 C green onions (appx 8 stalks, or 1 bunch) chopped
- 3-4 tablespoon avocado oil (or any high-smoke point oil) for pan-frying
- chili garlic sauce
- Combine the flour, salt, baking powder and hot water together in a large bowl. Mix with a pair of wooden chopsticks.
- Gradually add in the room temperature water until a dough is formed. (You may or may not need all of the water).
- Knead the dough for a few minutes until it becomes slightly smooth. Cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and leave for 15 minutes.
- Divide the rested dough into 3 or 4 equal pieces (depending on how large you want them). Roll each portion into a long rectangle about 2" in width and 8" in length.
- Brush on ¼ tablespoon of sesame oil on the dough and sprinkle the green onions on. (Sprinkle with additional flaked sea salt if you wish).
- Fold the dough in half lengthwise to close.
- Roll out the dough width-wise until it's about 2" again. Brush with sesame oil.
- Fold the dough over in half lengthwise to close and tuck in the 2 ends together to seal.
- Heat a griddle or pan over medium-high heat. Add about 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan.
- Place the green onion pancake onto the griddle/pan and cook until crisp, about 2-3 minutes per side.
- Sprinkle on additional flaked sea salt, cut into quarters and serve immediately.
- Serve with chili garlic sauce or chili oil.
The nutritional information provided should be considered as approximate and is not guaranteed. Please use your best judgment to ensure food is safely prepared and/or a good fit for your diet.