Okonomiyaki is a traditional Japanese pancake that literally translates into “fried stuff you like”. It’s usually made with flour eggs, cabbage and pork or seafood, and is absolutely delicious. Okonomiyaki was a regular dish my husband and I would order at our fav Japanese restaurant Mushashi (pre kids), and it will always have a warm eggy place in my heart.

This is my version – Economyaki which literally mean “stuff languishing at bottom of fridge”. It’s cheap, healthy, super quick and uses up all the vegetables you may be inclined to bin because they’re looking a tad wilty.

So I can use…..anything?

That’s right – anything. I made mine with pumpkin, zucchini and cauliflower, but in economyaki there are no hard and fast rules.

Use what you have lying around – left over meat or steamed vegetables, whack a slice of bacon on top if you’re the carnivorous type (nitrate free of course 😉 or, if you want to go the traditional route, add some shredded cabbage. Just make sure you use about 2 cups of grated vegetables as per the recipe below.

Economiyaki sauce

Okonomiyaki is usually topped with a sweet barbecue like sauce, mayonnaise and bonito flakes. If you’re feeling a bit saucy, I found some recipes for some “traditional’ okonomiyaki sauce, see here.

Okonomiyaki mayonnaise however, is full of msg and canola oil so I would steer clear.
I would use either a good quality store bought mayo or make your own. It won’t be as sweet and runny as the store bought kind, but it will be much healthier.

I’ve included a good recipe here.

I personally like mine topped with some extra salad, herbs and fermented vegetables. It gives the pancakes an extra nutritional boost and is just plain delicious.

Now let’s get frugal!



  • 2 cups of grated vegetables (I used pumpkin, zucchini and cauliflower)
  • 1/2 onion fried in ghee
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup plain flour (I used spelt)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbs extra ghee


  1. Combine vegetables, onion and flour in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Whisk eggs and combine with vegetables. Melt extra ghee in a large frypan over medium high heat. Shape into patties and fry on both sides until golden brown.
  3. Serve how you like (I’m looking forward to my next batch with some fermented daikon from our garden).

Now… the real question is can you come up with a more witty name for this than Economyaki? I doubt it. I was pretty happy with that one.

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