Vegan Okonomiyaki – Japanese Cabbage Pancakes

Vegan Okonomiyaki

This Vegan Okonomiyaki – Japanese savory pancakes recipe uses cabbages, mushroom and smoked tofu. Comforting, hearty and easy to make!

What is Okonomiyaki?

Okonomiyaki is a popular Japanese street food option from Osaka. It is a savory pancake dish containing cabbage, meat, seafood and some other condiments. Okonomiyaki in Japanese is translated to “grilled as you like it”, so it’s super versatile and can be made in various ways as you like.

This vegan version of Okonomiyaki

The traditional version makes Okonomiyaki with bacon, which is substituted by smoked tofu in this vegan recipe, but you can also use vegan bacon.

Eggs are also commonly used to make the batter stick together better, in this recipe they are substituted by chia seeds. Using accessible ingredients, this recipe is also much quicker and easier to make – in only about 30 minutes. It’s perfect for a quick weeknight dinner option that is nutritious, fiber-rich yet so filling and yummy.

Tips to make this recipe

First, combine the flour, chia seeds and water and mix in a bowl. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes, as the chia seeds will help the mixture thickened over time.

Then chop the vegetables: 1/4 a green cabbage, 200g mushrooms, 1/2 cup green onions. Make sure to chop the vegetables as thin as possible – this will help the batter stick together and more delicious to enjoy!

After that, add the cabbage, mushroom and green onion pieces into the bowl and mix well to combine. The mixture makes about 2 Okonomiyaki.

Pour the batter into a non-stick pan, and spread evenly to make sure that there are no holes in the pancake. Add the smoked tofu or vegan bacon slices on top, then cover with a lid and let this fry for 5 minutes or until the other side is crispy and golden brown.

Vegan Okonomiyaki

Flip the pancakes and fry for 3-5 minutes, before transferring to a plate and adding the remaining toppings: Okonomiyaki sauce, vegan mayonnaise, green onions, shredded nori seaweed and sesame seeds.

Variations of the recipe

There are many variations that can be used in this recipe:

  • Cabbage: you can use Napa cabbage, green or white cabbage.
  • Shiitake Mushroom: you can opt for other types of mushroom.
  • Smoked tofu: I like to get my smoked tofu at my local supermarket, but you can also use vegan bacon substitutes or mushrooms instead.
  • Okonomiyaki sauce: I bought mine from my local Asian supermarket, but you can also make it yourself using ketchup, soy sauce, and maple syrup.
  • Vegan Japanese (Kewpie) mayonnaise: I made by own vegan Japanese kewpie mayo using this recipe by Okonomikitchen, but you can also buy it in some Asian- stores or on Amazon. Alternatively, you can use other vegan mayonnaise!

Why will you love this Vegan Okonomiyaki recipe?

This recipe is:

  • Easy to make
  • Versatile: you can swap the ingredients with what you have on hand.
  • One of the best recipes to clean out the fridge with, as you can use what you have left in the fridge to make it.

If you have tried my recipe, please let me know what you think by leaving me a review on this page or tagging me on Instagram @veggieanh. I would love to see your creations!

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Vegan Okonomiyaki

Vegan Okonomiyaki

  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 2 people 1x


Vegan Okonomiyaki is Japanese savory pancakes using plant-based ingredients. Super easy to make but result in a hearty, comforting dish that will hit the spot, every time!


Units Scale
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1.5 cup water
  • 1/4 a cabbage
  • 100 g shiitake mushroom
  • 4 tbsp oil for frying
  • 200 g smoked tofu (or vegan bacon)


  • Okonomiyaki sauce
  • Vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 nori sheet
  • 1 stalk green onions
  • Sesame seeds


Make the Okonomiyaki batter

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the flour, chia seeds, and water. Mix until combined, then set aside. The chia seeds will help thicken the mixture.
  2. Meanwhile, chop the cabbage, mushroom and green onions into smaller pieces. Make sure to chop them as thinly as possible, this will make a more delicious Okonomiyaki and easier to flip.
  3. Add the chopped cabbage, green onions and mushroom to the mixing bowl. Mix well.
  4. Cut the smoked tofu into thin slices.

Fry the Okonomiyaki

  1. On a pan on medium heat, add 2 tbsp oil, then half of the Okonomiyaki mixture.
  2. Add the smoked tofu slices on top and cover with a lid.
  3. Fry for about 5 minutes until the bottom is golden brown, then flip and fry for another 5 mins. Remove from the pan when done.
  4. Repeat this step for the remaining batter to make the second Okonomiyaki.
  5. Transfer the Okonomiyaki to a plate, drizzle on top the Okonomiyaki sauce, vegan mayonnaise, chopped green onions and sesame seeds. Shred the nori sheet with your hands or scissors and add on top.


Feel free to make the batter ahead and fry later when you have time.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Main Course, Snack
  • Cuisine: Japanese

Keywords: 20-minute snack, college recipes, Japanese pancakes, Japanese recipe, Okonomiyaki, street food, vegan

If you enjoyed this recipe, also check out some of my other Japanese recipes:

Recommended Articles


  1. I absolutely love this recipe! It’s so simple and yummy, I can’t stop making it. I got your ebook, can’t wait to try some more recipes!

    1. Thank you so much for the review! I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe, I can’t stop making it either 😀 Hope you’ll enjoy the recipes from the ebook!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating