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Banh Xeo Recipe – Authentic Vietnamese Crepe Pancake

If you haven’t had the opportunity to try the Vietnamese delight that is Banh Xeo, you are in for a treat. This is a guide on what Banh Xeo is and how you can make it right at home with an easy to follow recipe!

Banh Xeo is often referred to as the Vietnamese omelette because it looks like an omlette. In fact, it is not made of egg at all.

It melds together a delicious mixture of rice flour, turmeric, pork belly, shrimp and bean sprouts that is then drizzled with nuoc mam sauce.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe pork belly

My sister-in-law makes the BEST banh xeo and I’m going to attempt to share with you her recipe. Every time she brings over this dish, the kids go absolutely bonkers over it. It might be the crispiness of cake or how the shallots and onions are incorporated into the cake, or it may be the delicious tender pork belly that’s incorporated into the filling. Whatever it is, this dish goes over well at any family gathering.

This Vietnamese rice crepe can be made on any weeknight!

Vietnamese crepes

What is Banh Xeo?

Banh Xeo is often referred to as the crispy Vietnamese sizzling cake, pancake or crepe. It has a beautiful, golden yellow outer layer that is often melded with shallots, onions and filled with pork belly strips, shrimp, bean sprouts and green onion.

The first bite of this dish will offer a beautiful texture of a crunchy crust, followed by a savory filling with shrimp and pork. With the nuoc mam dressing, you’ll be able to find the perfect blend of sweet and sour taste.

It is often described as being both a crepe and an omelette.

What are the typical ingredients of Banh Xeo?

Banh Xeo batter is made of rice flour, turmeric, tapioca starch and coconut milk. The filling generally has bean sprouts, cooked shrimp, cooked pork belly, and bean sprouts. The outer shell is typically cooked with shallots and onions melded into the shell. It is cooked with a frying pan with vegetable oil in it.

Once the pancake is crispy on all sides, it’s folded over with a spatula and slide onto a serving platter and served with a variety of fresh vegetables and Vietnamese herbs and a side of fish sauce dipping sauce.

Where does Banh Xeo originate from?

The popular version of Banh Xeo hails from central Vietnam. It is thought that the dish originated from France during it’s occupation of Vietnam. While Banh Xeo does originate from central Vietnam, as most dishes do, they have been modified and adapted into different variations depending on region.

If you ever visit get the opportunity to visit Saigon, you can bet that the food carts in the street corners all over the city serve up this delicious dish. Walking in the streets of Vietnam, you will get bombarded with an array of amazing smells from the abundance of street food all around you, but the one you will HEAR will be the sizzle of Banh Xeo. This Vietnamese crispy pancake crepe are SERIOUS street food that deserve a try.

What are other versions of Banh Xeo?

North Vietnam are smaller and often include ingredients like manioc in it.

Central Vietnam offers Banh Xeo crepes that are smaller without turmeric, which makes it white in appearance.

Hue Vietnam offers another version called “banh khoai” that are filled with fennel, green banana, star fruit and banana. This is the biggest deviation from the popular recipe.

What’s the meaning of Banh Xeo when translated in English?

The delectable, round yellow crepes get their name from the rice flour the sizzles super hot on the pan. The word banh xeo literally means “sizzling cake”. Banh Xeo is Vietnamese sizzling crepe, sizzlign cake, and even sizzling pancake.

The “xeo” refers to the sound of the sizzle of the pan and the batter when you cook it. When you start cooking it, you’ll know what I’m talking about! There’s this definite hissing sound that the batter and pan make together when that first drop hits!

What are some other names for Banh Xeo?

  • Banh Xeo
  • Banh Xeo Gion
  • Vietnamese Yellow omelette
  • Vietnamese Pancake
  • Vietnamese Sizzling Cake

What does Banh Xeo taste like?

The first bite of Banh Xeo will provide a crispy and chewy element that is absolutely divine. When you dress it with nuoc mam, it packs a flavorful punch of the sweet and sour sauce. Once you delve into the dish even more, you’ll find bean sprouts, pork belly, and shrimp folded into the crepe, making the hearty part of the dish just as delectable.

As you eat it, you’ll notice the yellow golden shell, trademarked from the melding of the tumeric that’s added into the batter.

vietnamese banh xeo recipe

Is making Banh Xeo hard?

Banh Xeo takes at least 30 minutes of prep time. Most of this prep time includes cutting and deveining shrimp as well as boiling and cutting the pork belly. Once you set up your Banh Xeo making stations, you’ll be able to make them pretty quickly after that. (Think about how long it takes to make an actual egg omlette!)

Is Banh Xeo made with egg?

There is definitely NO EGG in Banh Xeo. The yellow shell color is due to the turmeric that is added into the batter.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

What’s the difference between Banh Xeo and Banh Beo?

Banh Xeo is a Vietnamese rice flour cake that is fried in oil and filled with pork belly, shrimp and sprouts. It looks like a yellow omelette with a lot of filling. Banh Beo is a Vietnamese steamed rice cake that is a puffy white bun that is filled with pork and mung beans inside.

How many calories are in Banh Xeo?

Per serving (320 grams), there is 375 calories in Banh Xeo, which is often referred to as a Vietnamese pancake.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

What’s the secret to making Banh Xeo delicious?

Heat of the Pan

The heat of the pan needs to be set on medium high. While you may THINK the batter is burning, trust me it is not with this recipe! Once the batter hits the pan, it takes about 3-5 minutes before the batter is completely done. Let the batter SIZZLE.

Cooking on higher than normal heat makes for the best Banh Xeo. From a temperature standpoint, use the highest side of medium. This will provide the heat keep things crispy and crunchy without burning the outside shell.

Explore Various Asian Herbs

As with most Vietnamese dishes, Banh Xeo has a lot of accompaniments. In this recipe, I’ve listed the more popular and common herbs that you can eat with it. However, if you would like to explore some additional palettes, try to find these herbs at your local Asian market and eat them with Banh Xeo (as well as any other Vietnamese dish).

  • Fish mint (Rau Diep Ca)
  • Sorrel (Rau Chua)
  • Vietnamese balm (Kinh Gioi)
  • Vietnamese perilla (Tia To)
  • Pickled daikon and carrots (Do Chua)

Asian Grocery Store Visit for Ingredients

If you plan on making your batter from scratch, you’ll need:

  • Rice flour
  • Tumeric
  • Wheat Flour, all purpose

Otherwise, you can just buy this package:

While you are there, you may also want to pick up:

  • Coconut milk
  • Shrimp
  • Pork Belly

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe pork belly

Ingredients for Banh Xeo Batter

You can choose to either buy a package that already has the Banh Xeo batter or make your own. If you want to make your own, here are the ingredients you’ll need to mix up:

  • 1 cup of rice flour
  • 1/3 cup of all-purpose wheat flour
  • 3 tsp tumeric

Ingredients for Making Banh Xeo

Batter for Banh Xeo

Banh Xeo Flour (12 oz)
1 tsp of salt
3 1/2 cups of water
1 can of coconut cream (14 oz)
1 tsp salt
1/2 onion sliced
1/2 shallot sliced

3 scallions, chopped

Filling for Banh Xeo

1 lb of shrimp (size 60/70)
1 lb of pork belly, thinly sliced
1/2 lb of bean sprouts

vegetable oil

2 tablespoons of minced garlic

Accompaniments for Banh Xeo (Optional)

Nuoc Mam Cham (recipe here)
1 bunch of cilantro
1 bunch of mint
1 head of lettuce

Instructions for Banh Xeo

Step 1 – Prepare Batter

Combine all batter ingredients except scallions in a large bowl for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

The longer the batter rests, the crispier it will be when fried as flour expands. Add scallions only right before making the crêpes. 

Step 2 – Prepare Fillings

Clean the pork and shrimp by vigorously rubbing them with salt. Rinse under cold running water and drain dry.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe pork belly

Boil pork until cooked through (generally 20 minutes). 

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe pork belly

Slice pork belly into thin pieces. 

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Devein and cook the shrimp.

Wash bean sprouts and vegetable/herb accompaniments. Set aside.

Step 3 – Make the Banh Xeo

In general, each crêpe takes about 5-7 minutes. Coat a large non-stick 9-inch skillet with a thin layer of vegetable oil.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Add 1-2 teaspoons of vegetable oil and some onions. Add minced garlic, onion, shallot and saute until fragrant.

Next, add pork belly and shrimp. Saute until evenly cooked for about 2 minutes until very lightly browned.

vietnamese banh xeo recipe

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Ladle in about a cup of batter and quickly tilt & rotate the pan so the batter is evenly spread. Add more batter if it wasn’t enough to cover the pan.

vietnamese banh xeo recipe

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

vietnamese banh xeo recipe

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

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Next, add a handful of bean sprouts.

Cover with a lid for 2-3 minutes, or until bean sprouts are slightly cooked until the sprouts start to wilt. The batter should also be slightly cooked and transparent around the edges.

Remove the lid, lower heat to medium and wait for the crêpe to become crisp.

Once crispy, fold your crepe in half, slide the Banh Xeo onto a serving dish and dish up with accompaniments.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Repeat with remaining batter and ingredients.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

How do you eat Banh Xeo?

The experience of eating Banh Xeo is an artistry. First, break off a piece of your steaming hot crispy crepe and wrap some fresh greens around it, then dip the entire concoction into the sweet, sour and zesty nuoc cham sauce.

Bánh xèo is food meant to be eaten with your hands. A big plate of greens with a mix of herbs always accompanies this dish. You can substitute green leaf lettuce for the mustard greens in a pinch, and mint is the only must-have herb here with cilantro and Vietnamese perilla being the other commonly used ones. However you can really throw in whatever you like.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Eating It with Rice Paper

Rice paper can be used to eat Banh Xeo as well. While rice paper is most commonly known for making delicious Vietnamese Goi Cuon, it is also a great way to eat Banh Xeo.

First, cut your folded banh xeo pancake into manageable sized pieces and lay it flat on a moistened piece of rice paper. Select leaves and herbs (like basil, mint, sprouts, and lettuce) and lay these on top. Roll the pancake into a tight wrap, dip into the nuoc mam sauce and eat.

Summary of Banh Xeo

The lasting bite of Banh Xeo is just one of those things that quite literally has all the flavor and most of the textures.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Banh Xeo has a verdant and crisp brightness from the greens meets a savory and chewy crunch from the shrimp and pork belly. The sweet heat meeting a sweet and sour nuoc cham makes it absolutely delicious.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

If you are wanting to make the most magical Vietnamese condiment of all, nuoc mam, my recipe has the perfect levels of sour, sweet, salty, savory and spicy to accompany this delicious banh xeo dish.

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

banh xeo recipe - vietnamese pancake crepe

Banh Xeo - Authentic Vietnamese Crepe Recipe

Yield: 6 crepes
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Banh Xeo is a delicious Vietnamese cuisine that melds together the flavor of a Vietnamese rice pancake crepe with shrimp, pork belly, bean sprouts, herbs and the ever popular nuoc mam. This sizzling cake is absolute perfection!

Ingredients

For the Banh Xeo Batter

  • Banh Xeo Flour (12 oz)
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 3 1/2 cups of water
  • 1 can of coconut cream (14 oz)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 onion sliced
  • 1/2 shallot sliced
  • 3 scallions, chopped

Filling for Banh Xeo

  • 1 lb of shrimp (size 60/70)
  • 1 lb of pork belly, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 lb of bean sprouts
  • vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons of minced garlic

Accompaniments for Banh Xeo

  • Nuoc Mam Cham (recipe here)
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 bunch of mint
  • 1 head of lettuce

Instructions

Step 1 - Prepare Batter

Combine all batter ingredients except scallions in a large bowl for at least 3 hours, or overnight. The longer the batter rests, the crispier it will be when fried as flour expands. Add scallions only right before making the crêpes. 

Step 2 - Prepare Fillings

Clean the pork and shrimp by vigorously rubbing them with salt. Rinse under cold running water and drain dry.

Boil pork until cooked through (generally 20 minutes). 

Slice pork belly into thin pieces. 

Devein and cook the shrimp.

Wash bean sprouts and vegetable/herb accompaniments. Set aside.

Step 3 - Make the Banh Xeo

In general, each crêpe takes about 5-7 minutes. Coat a large non-stick 9-inch skillet with a thin layer of vegetable oil.

Add 1-2 teaspoons of vegetable oil and some onions. Add minced garlic, onion, shallot and saute until fragrant.

Next, add pork belly and shrimp. Saute until evenly cooked for about 2 minutes until very lightly browned.

Ladle in about a cup of batter and quickly tilt & rotate the pan so the batter is evenly spread. Add more batter if it wasn't enough to cover the pan.

Next, add a handful of bean sprouts.

Cover with a lid for 2-3 minutes, or until bean sprouts are slightly cooked until the sprouts start to wilt. The batter should also be slightly cooked and transparent around the edges.

Remove the lid, lower heat to medium and wait for the crêpe to become crisp.

Once crispy, fold your crepe in half, slide the Banh Xeo onto a serving dish and dish up with accompaniments.

Repeat with remaining batter and ingredients.

Nutrition Information:
Serving Size: 317 g
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 361Total Fat: 10.1gSaturated Fat: 1.9gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 973mgCarbohydrates: 48gNet Carbohydrates: 48.1gFiber: 1.7gSugar: 3.5gSugar Alcohols: 3.5gProtein: 20.6g

More Easy Vietnamese Recipes You’ll Love

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Vietnamese pancake

how to make banh xeo recipe

 

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