Hortobagyi Pancake - a meat pancake

hortobagyi meat pancake

 🍴  Servings: 4

🥣 Category: Appetizer

💪 Difficulty Level: 4/5 

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Hortobagyi meat pancake is a Hungarian specialty, a pancake filled with minced meat with a sauce of stew juice and sour cream. It is usually listed as an appetizer on menus, but can also be eaten as a main course due to its filling nature.

About preparation

The two main components of the dish are pancakes and stew. The slightly thicker, lightly fried pancakes are filled with minced meat without gravy. The filling can be spiced more or less according to taste. Garlic, paprika powder, tomato paste, pepper, cumin or very little mustard can be added. Basically, you can prepare from any kind of stew, but veal stew is considered the most popular.

It's not a sweet pancake

The pancakes filled with minced meat, unlike sweet pancakes, are usually not rolled up, but folded like a bag of four, covered with a sauce of stew juice and sour cream, and then heated, preferably in the oven. Before serving, it can be decorated with some sour cream, stew juice and parsley, and grated cheese can also be sprinkled on top. One serving usually consists of two pancakes.

Story of Hortobagyi Meat Pancake

Despite its name, the dish did not originate in Hortobágy ( a picturesque place of Hungary), but was invented by a Hungarian chef for the 1958 World’s Fair in Brussels. Due to its unique taste and simple preparation, it quickly became a popular dish. A similar recipe was published as early as the 1930s.

Meat pancake from leftovers

It is often prepared from leftovers of stew, which is acceptable in itself, but if instead of stew it is prepared from various leftovers that are crushed and then seasoned, it can no longer be considered a proper gastronomic procedure. This very tasty dish had a bad reputation in Hungary for a long time. Many restaurants prepared the horrible version from leftover stews. Fortunately, we don’t see this version of the meat pancake very often these days, so feel free to try it whenever we see it on the menu. Or cook it according to the recipe and video below.



  • 500 g of chicken breast
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1 chopped tomato
  • 1 chopped yellow wax pepper
  • 150 g of fatty smoked bacon
  • 1 tbsp sweet paprika powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground caraway
  • 1 cup sour cream


  • 250 g all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • salt
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 2/3 cup of soda water

For baking:

    • 1/2 cup of sour cream
    • paprika powder


  1. Fry the bacon at medium heat until melts.
  2. Add the finely chopped onion and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Add the diced or minced chicken breast and sauté at high heat for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Reduce the heat and add spices and chopped wax pepper and tomato and a little water. Cook until the meat is tender. Remove the meat from the juice with a slotted spoon. 
  4. If have used diced chicken breast, cut the meat into fine pieces and mix with stew sauce (Put aside some sauce for serving). Stir in the sour cream. Our filling is ready!
  5. Stir the flour, eggs, salt and milk until no lumps. Pour in the soda water and mix well. Put aside for 30 minutes.
  6. Prepare thin pancakes: Pour a tablespoon of oil in a crepe pan and heat it. Cook until light brown, turn and cook the other side.
  7. Fill the pancakes with meat ragout, put on top the reserved sauce and sour cream, and sprinkle with paprika.
  8. Bake at 200°C (400°F) for 10 minutes.

Watch our video about this recipe: