Gluten-free, Savory Mung Bean Pancakes

December 30, 2017
3 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Prep time 4 hours
  • Cook time 20 minutes
  • Makes 5-6 pancakes
Author Notes

These pancakes are savory, healthy, vegan, gluten-free and easy to make. Eat them for breakfast or make them a part of a light lunch by adding a green salad.

Featured In: Swap Any Grain With This Bean And/Or Turn It Into a PancakeAnnada Rathi

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup unhulled, whole mung beans
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 thai chile (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  1. Soak mung beans in 2.5 cups water overnight or for at least 4-5 hours.
  2. In the morning after draining water, pour soaked beans onto a plate and look through them. Some beans do not soften. Discard them.
  3. Add soaked beans to a blender. Follow with rest of the ingredients except oil and blend to a fine paste. Add 1.5 cups water to facilitate blending. Actually start by adding 1 cup of water and check the consistency. Just keep in mind that ultimately the consistency of the batter should be similar to pancake batter.
  4. Heat a non-stick pan at medium heat. Make sure the pan is hot enough by pouring a drop of water. If water hits the pan with a sizzle and the drop starts jumping, the pan is ready. If not, wait and repeat in a few minutes again. Wipe the water with paper napkin. Pour 1/2 tsp of oil.
  5. Pour about a half cup of mung bean batter into the pan and swirl it around lightly to make a small pancake that's 3-4 inches in diameter. The thickness of the pancake should be between that of a crepe and a flour pancake.
  6. Once the edges become brown, flip and let cook on the other side.
  7. Serve hot. Fold the pancake into half and place a dollop of sour cream and salsa in the middle of the folded pancake. Or eat this pancake with cilantro chutney.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Anastasia Stepanova
    Anastasia Stepanova
  • Annada Rathi
    Annada Rathi
  • aubreymarie
  • nina
To some people's frustration, I like to talk about food before cooking, while cooking, while eating and of course after eating.

7 Reviews

aubreymarie October 6, 2020
Hello Annada,

I can't figure out why this recipe isn't working for me. The first try I did the recipe as written and the pancake was super thin & watery and disappeared when cooked in the pan, just full on evaporated. This time, I didn't measure anything, made the batter thicker with more mung beans, but it didn't cook at all, just started smoking in the pan with a very thin layer totally burned to the pan. What am I doing wrong?? I want to try this recipe so badly!
Annada R. October 7, 2020
Hello, thank you for trying this recipe. So sorry you had trouble with it. Please feel free to reduce the amount of water you add to the mung bean batter after blending. Ultimately the batter should have the consistency of a pancake batter. Secondly as soon as you start heating the pan, keep an eye on it. Try the water drop test mentioned in the recipe several times so that you will know when the pan is ready. As soon as the water droplet sizzles, the pan is ready. Also maintain the heat at medium all through. Please let me know how things went, the next time you try it.
nina April 8, 2020
These pancakes are very, very good - a revelation, as I had no idea what to do with mung beans! The only flaw is how long it took me to pick all the tiny unsoftened mung beans out (there were quite a few) - ten minutes or so?
I used frozen spinach cuz it's what I had, and added fresh cilantro and scallion tops along with toasted cumin seeds and fenugreek. The way I made them, as a thin batter, the pancakes wanted a rather hot pan (hotter than yr standard wheat pancakes, say), plenty of oil, and definitely no attempting to flip before they were quite brown on one side.
Annada R. April 8, 2020
Thank you Nina! You summed up the instructions so well. I’ll contact you next time I’m writing a recipe :)! Yes, the unsoftened mung beans are a pain! What helps a bit is soaking the beans in a flat surface container where the beans are not piled up on top of each other in water but soaking in a single layer. I don’t know why that happens.

Thank you for trying the recipe.
Anastasia S. September 4, 2019
Thank you for the recipe! I tried it today. The first part of my pancakes was a bit dry, because I didn’t add any water, but then I figured it out. I served the pancakes with a sauce of yogurt, lemon juice and garlic.
Annada R. September 4, 2019
That's a great idea, Anastasia! Thank you for letting me know about it. Feel free to add fresh or dried herbs like mint, cilantro to the yogurt sauce too.
Anastasia S. September 4, 2019
Thank you for the recope! I tried it today. The first part of pancakes was a bit dry, because I didn’t add water, then I figured it out. I ate the pancakes with a sauce of yogurt, lemon juice and garlic.