Crispy left-overs pancake rolls (gluten- & dairy-free)

homemade, Chinese, Thai, springroll, eggrolls, spring roll, fry, pancake, pancake roll, bakingfanatic, philipfriend, philip friend, homecook, cooking, recipe, tasty, flavour, besthomecook, best home book, britain's best home cook

Crispy, with a hint of spices and bursting with flavour, these pancake rolls/spring rolls are easy to make.

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This is very much a left-overs and store-cupboard dish that I made when a couple of friends dropped by on the off-chance we were at home. Not that we’ve been to many places of late!

One of them is coeliac who also cannot have anything with lactose – but how could I not give them both something to eat?! Even while social-distancing.

These rolls only took only 30 minutes to make and serve up. They might not be truly authentic – and there are certainly many online videos that show how to shape them better than I did! – but they hit the spot.

Gluten-free and dairy-free

I used a couple of the staple ingredients I rely on when I cook gluten-free and/or dairy-free dishes for others or for us: chickpea flour and soya milk. There is no danger of them falling apart: they hold their shape beautifully and crisp up nicely in the fryer.

Crucially with these, there is none of that disappointment that I have experienced a few times when trying some free-from dishes in which every bite has told me viciously what I am missing!

And as one of my guests said: “have you got any more please?”


I had some cooked rice noodles left over from the night before so I simply stirred these with a few things I had to hand and used this as my filling: roast chicken,  spring onion and green beans. I mixed these with a little red curry paste (which had no gluten or lactose: it’s always crucial to check) and the filling was ready to go!

Recipe: crispy left-overs pancake rolls –  makes 8-10

  • 150g chickpea flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon 5-spice powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seed oil
  • soya milk to mix
  • a little oil for pan-frying
  • oil for deep-frying
  • cooked rice or noodles
  • 1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste
  • a handful of roast chicken, torn into strips
  • a few spring onions, finely chopped
  • a few green beans, finely chopped

(1) For the pancakes, put the dry ingredients into a bowl and crack the egg into it. Add the sesame seed oil and enough soya milk and whisk with a balloon whisk to give a fairly runny batter: about the consistency of double cream (ironically).

(2) Brush a little oil in a small frying pan and heat gently. Add a couple of tablespoons of the pancake batter and swish around to cover the base. Cook for about a minute before turning over and cooking for a further half a minute or so – exactly as with traditional pancakes. Continue until all but about a tablespoon or so of the batter is used up, stacking the pancakes on a plate as you go.

NB: the rest of the batter will be used as a glue to ensure the pancakes do not let in any oil when they fry.

(3) Mix the filling ingredients together – feel free to use whatever you have. Beansprouts, prawns, frozen sweetcorn, pieces of chopped ham and the like would also work wonderfully.

(4) Take a pancake and put a little filling near the bottom half to form a sausage-shape, with the length of the sausage facing you. He said, trying not to sound like a Carry On film! Not too much filling though: about a tablespoon for a 7″ pancake. Dab some of the remaining filling around the edge of the pancake (this will act as a glue to hold everything in place).

(5) Fold up the pancake on the left and the right of the sausage and pat it gently on top. Roll up away from you to totally encase the filling, giving it a gentle squeeze to keep it nice and tight. Use the remains of the batter to help the pancake stick together. If you see any holes or any of the filling, smear over a bit of the batter: it will set to give a good seal when it fries.

(6) Deep-fry at 180C for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. Drain and pat dry on kitchen paper, before serving. If you don’t want to deep-fry, brush with oil and bake at 180C (fan) for about 10-15 minutes: they won’t have quite the same texture, but they will still taste great.

Author: Philip

Finalist on Britain’s Best Home Cook (BBC Television 2018). Published recipe writer with a love of growing fruit & veg, cooking, teaching and eating good food.

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