New recipes and updates

Get new recipes
in your inbox

Cuisine Fiend

Find a recipe by ingredient

Spinach and blue cheese pancakes

Updated: Thu, 16 February, 2023

Proper pancakes as we like them in Europe, also known as crêpes, are thin and flat - as a pancake. Not just with lemon and sugar: try this wonderful savoury spinach and blue cheese filling!

spinach and blue cheese pancakes

Pancakes for Shrove Tuesday

Lent in the Christian calendar starts on Ash Wednesday when the faithful are supposed to sprinkle ash onto their heads in solemn repentance of their sins. I promise I’m not making it up, after all I was brought up as a good (well, the family did their best but there’s only so much they could do) Catholic girl.

Prior to the religious austerity commencing, ye faithful frantically stuff themselves with perishable goodies in anticipation of the fasting that should follow. Hence the confusing number of feast days, called differently in different countries and annoyingly not falling on the same date: Mardi Gras, Fat Thursday, Shrove Tuesday, Fastnacht or Pancake Day.

Glorious modern habits have chosen to ignore the forthcoming fast and only go for the stuff-your-face bit, naturally. Pancakes it is then, or drop scones, crêpes or galettes.

The confusion is brought in by the Americans. Their pancakes are blini style, thick fritters, served all year round for breakfast instead of once a year, on Shrove Tuesday (and then they’re surprised obesity is an issue). In Europe, pancakes, crêpes or Pfannkuchen are large and thin, and much more illustrative of their name: flat.

savoury crepes

How to make perfect pancake batter?

The batter is a doddle to make and it annoys me hugely seeing the dry mix sold in supermarkets. Mix eggs with flour and milk – a toddler can do it, right?

Indeed, the batter takes no effort or skill to make.

If you don’t own kitchen scales (go and buy them asap, in the meantime) crack two eggs into a cup or a tumbler, then measure out the same volume of flour in another cup. The liquid amount, mostly milk with about a third of water, will be twice as much plus more to make quite runny batter, the consistency of single cream.

If you have kitchen scales it’s a no-brainer. Whisk the eggs with the flour and add milk-water mixture a little at a time until the batter is smooth. It benefits from standing around a while, in that any lumps will dissolve. The addition of melted butter is optional but it makes frying easier and the pancakes tastier.

savoury pancakes with spinach and cheese

How to fry pancakes?

The art of frying a pancake is tricky, but the difficulty lies in tools rather than ingredients. Unless you have a good non-stick pan, or a flat griddle, they might stick, burn, tear and leave you hungry and cross.

But still, even a dodgy frying pan might succeed if you heat it up to screaming hot. Add about a teaspoon of vegetable oil in and spread it over the pan with a scrunched-up paper towel and a lot of care.

The oiling needs to be repeated for every third pancake, on average. With a non-stick pan you might even fry the whole batch on one oiling, if also you like them quite dry and crisp.

spinach and cheese crepes

Flipping? Naah, use a palette knife

I personally believe flipping pancakes is a completely redundant practice. Even if you manage to get it to land in the pan, it will likely fold or tear. Sensible people don’t throw their food around, is what I say.

A palette knife will serve you well to peek underneath the crêpe, to see if it’s set underneath and help dislodge it gently if it stuck a little around the edges.
Then slide the knife underneath the middle and turn it over gently but decisively. Job done.

frying pancakes

Savoury filling for pancakes

You might not be aware of it if you’ve been raised exclusively on sugar and lemon pancakes, but fillings can be a flight of fancy, which My Old Dutch have been doing for years and years.

I do recommend this spinach and blue cheese filling, in my view the most gorgeous pancake filling, also – dinner which can’t apply to lemon-sugar combo.

It also makes you feel a bit more better about noshing four or five of those – after all, you’re eating one of your five-a-day in each pancake.

You can use either fresh or frozen spinach. Cook it with butter, salt and pepper, a little garlic and a little nutmeg, long enough for all the liquid to evaporate. Stir some blue cheese through it and the filling is ready to spread on the pancakes.

filling pancakes with spinach

If you like them at room temperature, they will be ready to eat. But the nicest way to serve spinach pancakes is to fold them into quarters and brown gently in the same frying pan you made them in, with a little extra butter.

Alternatively slide them under a grill if you’re partial to more crispy edges.

how to serve spinach pancakes

More pancake recipes

American style buttermilk pancakes, with optional blueberries, served with bacon and maple syrup. It’s an easy recipe for an indulgent weekend breakfast.

Galettes au sarrasin, buckwheat crêpes, with a classic topping of ham, cheese and an egg. The type of pancakes best suited to savoury toppings, galettes from Brittany are healthy and easy to make.

Buckwheat banana fritters for delicious and gluten free breakfast. Smashed bananas in buckwheat pancake batter, and a drizzle of honey is a must!


Spinach and blue cheese pancakes

Servings: makes 6 large pancakesTime: 1 hour 20 minutes


  • 200ml (1 cup minus 2 tbsp) whole milk
  • 75ml (13 cup) water
  • 110g (scant cup) plain flour
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • oil for frying
  • For the filling:
  • 500g (just over 1 pound) fresh spinach
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper
  • 12 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • a large chunk of blue cheese, Dolcelatte, Gorgonzola or Danish Blue


1. Mix the milk and water in a jug. Place the flour, salt and the eggs in a bowl. Start whisking, adding a little liquid at first to get thick batter and get rid of the lumps, then gradually add the rest of the milk/water mix, whisking all the time. You should reach the consistency of single cream. Add the melted butter and whisk it in.

2. Heat up a large non-stick pan or a flat griddle until very hot. Pour in a little oil and spread it all over the bottom of the pan with a paper towel. Pour or ladle in about a cupful of the batter, depending on the size of the pan, and tilt the pan sideways so that it spreads evenly.

3. Leave it to cook for a minute, insert a metal spatula or a palette knife carefully underneath to see if the pancake bottom is dry. If it is, slide the spatula under the middle of the pancake and flip decisively. Cook for another minute on the other side, then slide off onto a plate. You probably won’t need to oil the pan more often than for every third pancake.

4. To make the filling, wash the spinach and chop it up roughly. Melt a knob of butter in a skillet, add the spinach and the pressed garlic, season with the nutmeg, salt and pepper and turn up the heat. Cook, stirring, for about 5-10 minutes until almost all the liquid evaporates. Check for seasoning and stir in the blue cheese.

5. To assemble, spread some spinach thinly over a pancake, then fold in quarters.

6. Place the pancakes under a hot grill or fry them in a hot pan with a little butter to crispen on both sides. Serve immediately.

Originally published: Tue, 9 February, 2016

NEW recipe finder

Ingredients lying around and no idea what to cook with them? Then use my NEW Recipe Finder for inspiration!

Recipe Finder

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published

Characters left 800
Recipe rating
Email address*
Web site name
Be notified by email when a comment is posted

* required

Cuisine Fiend's

most recent

About me

Hello! I'm Anna Gaze, the Cuisine Fiend. Welcome to my recipe collection.

I have lots of recipes for you to choose from: healthy or indulgent, easy or more challenging, quick or involved - but always tasty.


Sign up to receive the weekly recipes updates

Follow Fiend