Sundried Tomato Pesto and Chard Pancakes

by Jen on April 13, 2013

My kids love these savoury pancakes, and they can eat a whole batch of these, still warm from the pan!

Leave it to Yotam Ottolenghi (Plenty Cookbook,Chronicle Books, 2011) to make eating veggies far from being boring! I once made his Green Pancakes with Lime-Cilantro Butter and it was such a hit at home! So, I had this wild idea to further adapt the recipe to include sundried tomato pesto with some Swiss chard.

Technically, you can replace the sundried tomato pesto component for anything you’d like – it’s that versatile! You can substitute with any kind of pesto: roasted red pepper (tried this before, yum!); basil; arugula; artichoke; cilantro, chili, and ginger pesto – anything!

These little savoury pancakes are perfect for school snacks or lunch. It’s hearty enough to be eaten for breakfast, but not too heavy for supper. It can be made in advance for a party or picnic. It’s a breeze to prepare, with little mess to think of later on. When you want something versatile, you have the right recipe here.

5.0 from 9 reviews
Sundried Tomato Pesto and Chard Pancakes
Recipe Type: Vegetarian, Side, Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24 three-inch pancakes
  • 60 grams (1/2 cup) sundried tomatoes, preferably packed in oil and drained
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil + more for frying
  • a splash of red wine vinegar (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 300 grams Swiss chard leaves, tough stalks removed
  • 100 grams (3/4 cup) cake flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 large egg (about 50 grams)
  • 60 grams (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika or piment d'Espelette powder
  • 160 ml (2/3 cup) milk
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 2 stalks green onions, finely sliced
  • 1 egg white
  1. First, make the pesto by combining drained sundried tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil, and red wine vinegar (optional) in the bowl of a food processor. Blend until the tomatoes are finely chopped. Stir in the cheese.
  2. Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to boil. Blanch the Swiss chard leaves until soft, about 2 to 3 minutes. Drain in a sieve and set aside. When cool enough to handle, squeeze out excess water. This will yield about half the weight (150 grams) of cooked chard. Roughly chop and put aside.
  3. Mix the flour, baking powder, whole egg, melted butter, salt, paprika, milk, and yogurt in a large bowl and whisk until smooth.
  4. Add the green onions, chard, and sundried tomato pesto and mix until evenly incorporated.
  5. Whisk the egg white with an electric beater or mixer fitted with with a whisk attachment until soft peaks form. Gently fold in egg white to the pancake batter.
  6. Pour a small amount of olive oil into a heavy pan and place on medium heat. For each pancake, ladle 2- or 3-tablespoonfuls of batter. This yields about 3-inch pancakes. Cook one side for 2 minutes or until the top just starts to set but is still wet. Flip pancake and cook the other side for another 1 to 2 minutes. Lower heat to medium-low if pancakes brown too quickly.
  7. Transfer to paper towels and keep warm. Continue until all the batter is used.


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{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Valerie April 13, 2013 at 10:31 am

I can see why your children snatch up these pancakes so quickly! (My hand wanted to reach through the screen to grab a few.) :D I’ll be dreaming about this, and your suggested ginger pesto!


Laura (Tutti Dolci) April 13, 2013 at 10:43 am

Love these savory pancakes, I can never resist anything with sundried tomatoes :).


Erin @ Texanerin Baking April 13, 2013 at 10:43 am

Savory pancakes are a thing?! I had no idea. I mean, I know of potato pancakes but something like this is totally new to me. Sounds good! Love the pictures. :)


MizzJ April 13, 2013 at 11:46 am

What a neat twist on the traditional pancake! Your kids are so lucky to have such a foodie mom!


Suzanne April 13, 2013 at 11:46 am

I love the idea of eating your veggies in a savoury pancake! I have chard growing but I haven’t used it yet so I should whip some these beauties up, thanks Jen. Lovely photos as usual :)


Katie April 13, 2013 at 12:53 pm

What a fantastic idea! I’m actually going to be running to the cupboard the minute I finish writing this to check if we have the ingredients for these right this minute. I’ve made savoury filled pancakes before but never thought to put the vegetables IN the batter. Genius! x


Mikaela Cowles April 13, 2013 at 1:14 pm

These are stunningly inspiring. To think I have never thought of changing up the pancake. What a crazy idea. I can’t wait to give it a try.


The Café Sucré Farine April 13, 2013 at 2:50 pm

I LOVE almost everything by Ottolenghi! Whenever we go to London to visit my daughter, a stop at Ottolenghi is a MUST! There’s always something new, fresh and totally unique. I’ve have eyed these pancakes in the book, so glad you made them and then adapted them, love your version!


Patty April 13, 2013 at 7:47 pm

A perfect after school treat for your sweet kiddies!!! I love chard and am always looking for ways to get some into my diet-love the earthy flavor and the pretty greens. A very creative delicious looking meal Jen ;-)


ashley - baker by nature April 13, 2013 at 11:34 pm

I love-love-love savory pancakes! And the flavors in these are just shouting out my name!


Mom-Friday April 14, 2013 at 3:49 am

All your pancakes look so delicious! I haven’t tried savory pancakes yet. Will have to try one of your recipes, esp. the gluten-free ones. Have not tried chard either. :(


Andi April 14, 2013 at 8:24 am

Oh those look SO delicious!!!!


Tessa April 14, 2013 at 8:47 am

These look fantastic! I’ve never gone down the path of preparing savory pancakes… I’m going there! Have a great rest of your weekend!


Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet April 14, 2013 at 10:35 am

This sounds like something my kids would love! Gorgeous dish, Jen!


Michelle Ritchie | Delicious Karma April 14, 2013 at 12:19 pm

OMG….these sound amazing and are absolutely stunning!!! And I love all the variations on can make with these. How far in advance do you think one can make these? I immediately thought great it’d be to whip up a batch on Sunday and have them to nibble on for the rest of the week.


Choc Chip Uru April 14, 2013 at 2:29 pm

What utterly delicious savoury pancakes my friend I could go for a bite… Or 5… ;)

Choc Chip Uru


Sandra's Easy Cooking April 14, 2013 at 3:56 pm

I would selfishly eat half of them before kids come back from school or wake up on weekends haha…what a great recipe and your pictures are enchanting. Fantastic combination, and yes perfect even for school lunches, after school snack, side dish for brunch…really anything! I’m trying this soon!


Suzanne Perazzini April 14, 2013 at 8:26 pm

These would be great for my lunch at the office. Substitute gluten-free flour and they would be perfect – such lovely flavours and they hold together well.


Eha April 14, 2013 at 9:27 pm

Oh sugar, trust you to convert me! Balancing being an ardent foodie with being a nutritionist does lead to problems at times! I love these :) ! They look fabulous and bet taste the same! And there is nothing too sinful in them either :D ! I bet I’ll burn my fingers ’cause I’ll eat them right off the pan!!!!


Kiran @ April 14, 2013 at 11:07 pm

Your pancake recipes are always so delish and healthy! And I love the “spring” inspired styling!!


Tina Ong April 15, 2013 at 9:42 am

This is a great way to let the kids eat more veggies. I love how you can prepare them in advance. This is a must-try for me this summer when the kids are mostly home – and always hungry.


Jean | Lemons & Anchovies April 15, 2013 at 9:45 am

I’ve been wanting to make savory pancakes for a couple of weeks and when the idea first came to mind I thought of you and the other versions you’ve shared here. This recipe looks like another winner–can’t wait to try. :)


Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen April 15, 2013 at 10:53 am

Your savoury pancakes sound delicious and your photos are stunning!


Lisa {AuthenticSuburbanGourmet} April 15, 2013 at 10:24 pm

I love, love these pancakes! Never thought about making a savory version – that is brilliant! This recipe is a keeper! I might have to make little tiny ones of these with a topping for my Friday night bite series. :-)


Lora @cakeduchess April 16, 2013 at 9:34 am

His books are incredible. I want to try every single recipe! I will definitely make these this weekend. A super fun and easy dinner that everyone will love:)


Heather April 16, 2013 at 12:31 pm

These are just too adorable- I have never had a savory pancake, these look so amazing! I bet they would be fun to serve at a party with a few fresh toppings!


Amy (Savory Moments) April 16, 2013 at 6:23 pm

These savory pancakes look and sound pretty fantastic! The color is lovely, too!


Karen (Back Road Journal) April 17, 2013 at 10:16 am

Your savory pancakes are wonderful. I can see serving a couple dolloped with a little sour cream and caviar as a first course at a dinner party.


Jen @ Savory Simple April 18, 2013 at 7:47 am

What a unique treat!


Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts April 18, 2013 at 9:54 pm

What a great idea – I have some arugula pesto in the fridge that would be delicious in these!


Diana @GourmetDrizzles April 19, 2013 at 6:36 am

What a great recipe! And I love, love, love your photographs. Just lovely!


Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious April 20, 2013 at 3:04 am

Oooh love all the flavors in this! And I’m sure I could “snack” on these all day!


Poonam Chopra April 20, 2013 at 5:50 am

I follow your blog quite regularly & have tried out many recipes are rally so good.


Nami | Just One Cookbook April 23, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Gorgeous dish. I love sun-dried tomatoes and I want to make these savory pancakes for my kids too! Pancakes didn’t come to my mind when I think for school lunch menu, but you just did it! Savory pancakes… this makes sense and my kids can eat with hands (eat faster than chopsticks? you know my bento… lol). :)


Sherri @The Well Floured Kitchen April 28, 2013 at 7:27 am

These look incredible! My kids protest swiss chard (for some reason, they like other greens), but I think this recipe may win them over.


Laura July 21, 2013 at 6:33 pm

Yum I love the sun dried tomatoes in this. Pinning!


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