Vegan crepes are thin, light, and every bit as delicious as regular french crepes. Fill them with homemade Nutella for the perfect breakfast or brunch.
This vegan crepe recipe is to show you how to make the best sweet crepes with simple ingredients and no special tools. For savory crepes, check out our chickpea pancakes.
What to expect
Crepes - crêpes in French - are a very thin type of pancake that originated in France and became popular all over the world.
You can use crepes for sweet or savory dishes. Here we show you how to make sweet vegan crepes to eat for breakfast, brunch, or as a special treat.
Our vegan crepes are simply crepes without eggs and dairy, but they are still light, thin, and as delicious as regular crepes.
We don't use any egg replacements or fancy ingredients. We also don't use any special tools to cook the crepes, just a nonstick pan, a ladle, and a spatula.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Plant milk: pick your favourite, any dairy-free milk will work. We like to use almond milk, rice milk, oat milk, or soy milk for our vegan crepes.
- Flour: all-purpose works best for our recipe. If you are gluten-free I'd recommend checking out our chickpea pancake recipe made with chickpea flour.
- Oil: oil adds texture, elasticity, and richness to the crepe. You can use any neutral vegetable oil, such as sunflower seed oil, canola oil, etc. You can replace oil with vegan butter.
- Sugar: sugar is usually optional in crepes. We did however test this recipe many times, with and without sugar, and we believe that a little amount of sugar helps not only with taste but also with texture and colour.
Since vegan crepes have no eggs to give structure and taste, the sugar is a welcome addition to do just that. You just need a tablespoon.
- Vanilla extract: optional but recommended. Again, this is to give flavor to the crepes.
- Salt: a pinch of salt helps with taste.
- Turmeric powder: this is totally optional and in fact if I cook crepes for myself or for Louise, I don't actually add turmeric powder.
But when I make crepes for my more traditional Italian parents, I do. Turmeric powder adds a tiny bit of colour to the crepes, making them look just like there's egg in them. And this helps if you are serving crepes to people that are not so used to vegan food.
If like us you want to serve the crepes with a nutella-like spread, here's our recipe for a delicious hazelnut spread.
Tools for making crepes: we do not use any particular tools to cook crepes, just a non-stick pan, a ladle, and a spatula. However, you can use crepes tools if you have them at hand.
How to make vegan crepes (with tips)
Start with the batter
To a bowl, add 1½ cups or 350 grams of plant milk such as oats, almonds, soy, or any other, a tablespoon of sugar, a tablespoon of neutral vegetable oil (or melted vegan butter), 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract, and 1 pinch of salt.
Mix the ingredients with a whisk until well combined, then add 1 cup or 150 grams of all-purpose flour.
Mix well with a whisk, trying to remove all lumps which admittedly will be very hard to remove. In the end, you’ll want a smooth and liquid batter.
Tip: if you want to make the best vegan crepes we recommend blending the batter with an immersion blender or making it in a regular blender from the get-go.
Cook the crepes
Now take a nonstick pan or a nonstick skillet and warm it up. We use one that is 11 inches or 28 cm in diameter but you can use any size.
Tip: to make perfect crepes, the pan should be hot, and the flame or heat medium to low.
So let the pan warm up for a minute, then add a little vegetable oil, spread it around the pan with kitchen paper, then add ¾ of a ladle of the pancake batter.
Tilt and rotate the pan right after adding the pancake batter, until the batter fully covers the pan. Tilt slowly but decisively.
This might require some practice, so if you don’t manage on your first try don’t beat yourself up, and instead add some extra batter and spread it over the empty spots with the back of a spoon.
Cook the pancake on one side for about 2 to 3 minutes or until golden. Then turn it around gently (do not flip) with the help of a spatula and cook for another minute or two until golden but not too dry.
Transfer the pancake onto a plate and repeat the process till you run out of batter.
With a little bit of practice, you’ll be able to get about 7 to 8 thin and light pancakes.
Tips and trouble shooting
French pancakes should be thin and light, easy to roll or fold.
If your batter is too thick, it will be hard to spread over the pan and make a thin pancake. In this case, add some extra milk to thin it up, then whisk it and try again.
If your batter is too thin, then it won't hold together on the pan. You can tell that the batter is too thin if it makes small holes in the pancake when you pour the batter into the hot pan.
Also, if you want to add a little color to the batter, to make it look more like french crepes with eggs, you can add a pinch of turmeric powder.
This definitely helps me when I want to feed pancakes to my traditional parents.
How to fill crepes
Our favorite way to serve french crepes is to fill them up with our hazelnut spread - aka vegan Nutella. I’m not sure this is traditionally French, but we do this all the time in Italy.
To make Nutella at home is super simple, you just need a high-speed blender, hazelnuts, sugar, and cacao powder. Here's the full recipe for vegan Nutella.
Spread a couple of tablespoons of Nutella on one half of the pancake, then fold in half, then in half again to make a triangle and arrange it onto a plate.
We prefer folding to rolling, the crepes get less chewy this way. You can of course roll them if you like.
Serve 2 to 3 pancakes per person. Dust the crepes with powdered sugar, then you can drizzle with some more hazelnut spread, add some crushed hazelnuts or any nuts, and some fresh berries.
To make it even more interesting you could add some banana slices on top of the Nutella. Fold the pancake in half, then in half again, and arrange on the plate.
Other good fillings for crepes are jams of all kinds, nut butters such as peanut butter or almond butter, and vegan cream cheese.
Good toppings are vegan whipped cream or coconut milk, whipped up to make vegan cream, and of course 100% pure maple syrup.
Use chickpea flour or buckwheat flour to make gluten-free crepes. Have a look at our recipe for savory chickpea crepes to learn how to make a gluten-free crepe batter.
No. Traditional French crepes are not vegan. However, it's easy to make crepes vegan with a few simple ingredients such as flour, plant milk, sugar, and vanilla extract. See our recipe.
I tried both methods, several times, and I prefer a batter that hasn't rested.
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If you are making this recipe for a crowd, for instance for brunch or for a Sunday family breakfast, then you just have to stack the crepes on top of a plate as you make them, and keep them in a slightly warm oven at 200F or 90C while each crepe cooks.
You can also make them ahead of time, the night before, and store them in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic wrap. Reheat in the oven, microwave, or on a lightly greased skillet.
Store vegan crepes in the fridge, on a plate, wrapped in plastic wrap for up to 3 days. Warm up the crepes in the microwave for a few seconds, or on a nonstick skillet for a minute.
You can freeze unfilled crepes for up to 3 months. Stack them on top of each other, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and freeze.
Thaw in the fridge overnight, or in the microwave with the appropriate thawing program before you separate them from each other. Handle with care, frozen crepes have a weaker consistency and might break easily.
- nonstick pan we use one that is 11 inches or 28 cm in diameter but you can use any size.
- 1½ cups plant milk oats, almonds, soy, cashew, etc
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 pinch curcuma optional, to add yellow colour
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegan nutella or any hazelnut spread
- 1 handful mixed berries
- To a bowl, add plant milk, sugar, oil, vanilla extract and salt. Mix well with a whisk.
- Add in the flour and mix well till the batter is lump free. Tip: you can use an immersion blender to make a lump-free batter.
- Warm up and lightly grease a nonstick pan. When the pan is hot, add ¾ of a ladle of batter. Rotate and tilt the pan to spread the batter evenly across it. Tip: If you don't manage on your first try, you can add some extra batter and spread it with the back of a spoon.
- Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on the one side, then turn it with a spatula and finish cooking for another minute, or until golden.
- Transfer onto a plate and repeat till you run out of batter.
- Spread a couple of tablespoons of hazelnut spread (vegan nutella) on half of the crepe. Fold in half, then in half again, to form a triangle.
- Serve two to three crepes per person, dust with powdered sugar, add berries, and a drizzle of vegan nutella or maple syrup.
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