Rice and Sesame Pancakes Recipe

Really great pancakes made with lots of brown rice and sesame seeds. I throw in crumbled, toasted nori and spices to make them extra special.

Rice and Sesame Pancakes

After traveling quite a lot this spring, summer has taken on a completely different rhythm. As most of you know, because of this, I've been keeping close to home, and it's nice. Saturday mornings are my favorite, and they've developed their own little ritual. I get up early and go to the farmers' market, driving the back way, through North Beach, where it's quiet, empty, and peaceful at that hour. At the market I look at the bay and the bridge, and buy eggs, and favas, and strawberries and flowers, and sometimes get cappuccinos with friends. Wayne bakes bread while I'm gone, and when I get home we stand around slathering butter on slices while chatting. I unload my bag, and set to work trimming flowers for the house. I start a pot of brown rice, which I use throughout the week in any number of things - to stretch leftover soup, in fried rice, and in these pancakes, which became a fast favorite around here - I make them savory, and they work for just about any meal.

Rice and Sesame PancakesRice and Sesame PancakesRice and Sesame Pancakes

The inspiration came from Massa Organics. I buy their brown rice at the market, and wondered if Greg and his family had favorite ways to use their own rice. After a few moments of poking around on their site, I found an adaptation of a rice pancake recipe they love - originally from The Pancake Handbook: Specialties from Bette's Oceanview Diner. No surprise, the Massa's bumped up the amount of rice in the recipe significantly, and it's great. The brown rice adds a nutty texture, and lots of substance to the pancakes. I've been doing a version with crumbled nori, sesame, and spices, the recipe is down below.

Hope you all have a nice holiday. Here are a number of links to other recipes that might come in handy over the 4th - a really great salsa, lime & peanut coleslaw, summer corn salad, and an excellent, simple chocolate cake.

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Rice and Sesame Pancakes

I use a mix of black and white sesame seeds, and the sheets of nori I use are about 9-inches square.

1 1/2 cups / 6 3/4 oz all-purpose (or whole wheat pastry) flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
zest of one lemon
1/4 teaspoon toasted ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
1 sheet nori, toasted (carefully) over burner until crunchy

2 large eggs
2 cups / 480 ml milk
1/4 cup unsalted butter, just-melted
1/8 tsp toasted sesame oil (optional)
2 cups / 10 oz cooked brown rice, not hot

In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, brown sugar, salt, sesame seeds, lemon zest, cumin, and cayenne. Crumble the nori into tiny flecks into the bowl with your hands. Stir until the ingredients are evenly distributed.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, butter, and sesame oil. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry, and stir a few times with a fork to start bringing the ingredients together. At this point add the rice, and stir until the batter is just combined. Try to avoid over mixing.

Heat a griddle until medium-hot, and brush with a bit of butter or oil. If a drop of water dances across the surface, you're in the ballpark. Pour 1/4 to 1/3 cup at a time onto the griddle. Cook until the bottoms are deep golden and the tops have set a bit, then use a spatula to flip the pancakes. Cook the other side until golden and cooked through. Repeat with remaining batter.

Makes about 12 pancakes.

Recipe adapted by Greg Massa from The Pancake Handbook: Specialties from Bette's Oceanview Diner, then adapted another generation by me.

Prep time: 5 minutes - Cook time: 10 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Heidi...just made your version of Kale Market Salad and it was a revelation. It was the first time I've enjoyed kale or fennel! Thank you so much for such a great recipe. Also, thanks for mentioning Bette's Oceanview Diner's cookbook. We ate breakfast there on my birthday in May and it exceeded its reputation! We were very hungry when we were seated as we'd gotten lost after debarking BART and walked an extra mile or two the wrong way before being pointed in the right direction. Loved their pancakes! Can't wait to try these and order their book, too!

HS: Thanks for the nice note Susan - glad you enjoyed the salad!


lovely recipe and, i think i want to go to the farmers market with you!


these seem really interesting to make. I like savory pancakes... My question though is What do i use as a topping? Sweet just doesn't seem like it would blend well with the sesame flavor... Just butter? I saw someone said Kimchi, but I'm not a big fan of Kimchi? Would my topping go more salty or umami???? I guess I'll experiment and find out... Love the blog..Love Supernatural Cookbooks.

HS: Hi Dawn, I threaded a couple suggestions down below. I think the way to think about them would be related to a savory tart or muffin. Compound butters work great, and then some fresh veg/salad.


Whoa! Nori ?? in pancakes? What a groovy idea. Too bad I'm at work-I'd love to make these delish pancakes now... I made a batch of your roasted strawberries & they would be divine on these cakes. The weekend cooking will be so much fun!


What a great idea !


lovely! what are some of your favorite savory toppings?


I got this post in my email and had to click into your site to finish... My mouth was watering just thinking about slathering butter on home made bread Yum! as Julia Child's would say, anyway your rice cake recipe is perfect for turning left over brown rice into a special treat.


These sound delicious! Especially topped with a crunchy and spicy cabbage slaw. Wondering if they freeze well..?

HS: Not sure! I haven't frozen these fully cooked - now I'm curious! They'd make a nice, quick snack for my nephew that way.


Yum!! These look wonderful, you know my mom makes pancake mixing rice flour with the regular flour or some lentil flour. They are so crispy!! I have to try this recipe!! B/W ur saturday routine sounds so calming, I need some of the calmness and fresh warm bread in my life.. Beautiful!!

Reem | Simply Reem

Tis is great!! My boyfriend always feels like pancakes can be too sweet, so I like to put veggies in my pancakes. I have yet to put sesame seeds in. Love it.

Skylor @sproutlifestyle

I'm sure I should know this, but... Is that "1/4 cup of butter, melted " or "1/4 cup of melted butter"??? Looks wonderful--- love savo(u)ry pancakes, scones & muffins.

HS: Let me have a look KC, ok yes - take 1/4 cup butter, and barely melt it.


In the photo it looks like white rice to me.

HS: Hi Ellen - There's not a shot of the actual rice in the post, you might be confusing it with the wwp flour. Sorry for any confusion.


Heidi, these pancakes sound delicious! Your Saturday morning routine/ritual sounds lovely too! I love a little quiet time on a Saturday morning.


Heidi, do you have a gluten-free variation?


Sounds like a wonderful Saturday morning! And the food looks lovely, as usual!


I am an absolute pancake addict and constantly looking for new recipes - thank you!

Erica { EricaDHouse.com }

These look so good. I've not tried savory pancakes before so I'll have to try them out!


I love savory pancakes. I'm gluten-free so I will try it with quinoa flour (my go-to pancake flour). Maybe adding a bit of arrowroot for stability. I can image this being nice with a big bowl of Dal. Thanks!

Dawn @cuter than gluten

Fun to hear about your weekend ritual- what a great idea to make a big batch of rice for the week!

Simply Life

These are wonderfully delicious! Love this!

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

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