I never shop at Trader Joe’s but every once in a while they create a product that I’m very curious about. Most recently, they started selling an ube mochi pancake and waffle mix that I very much wanted to try. However, given the quarantine, I wasn’t going to line up just for one item. And so, here we are, slaving away in the kitchen, trying to recreate my own version. I can’t say how closely my ube mochi pancakes resemble Trader Joe’s since I never tried their product but these are still delicious pancakes! Top them with candied macadamia nuts and coconut whipped cream to take them to the next level.

ube mochi pancakes

ube mochi pancakes


Serves 4


Ube Mochi Pancakes

1 hrTotal Time

Yields 8 pancakes

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    Ube mochi pancakes
  • 3-4 medium purple sweet potatoes
  • 1 1/4 cup milk, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Candied macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup macadamia nuts
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • Coconut whipped cream
  • 1 14-ounce can coconut cream, chilled overnight
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Roast the purple sweet potatoes for 40-45 minutes or until a fork can easily pierce the potato.
  2. Meanwhile, make the candied macadamia nuts. Combine 1/2 cup nuts with 1/4 cup sugar in a small saute pan. Slowly melt the sugar over medium-low heat until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Toss the nuts in the sugar to coat in the sugar. Remove from heat and immediately spread the nuts on parchment paper. Cool completely.
  3. Make the coconut whipped cream. Scrape out the top thick cream from the can and beat for 30 seconds until creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Chill in the fridge until ready to use.
  4. Peel the skin from the potato and lightly mash the flesh. Measure 1 cup sweet potato and blend together with 1 cup milk until smooth. Whisk together the sweet potato puree with the remaining 1/4 cup milk, 1 egg, and 3 tbsp melted butter.
  5. Combine 1 tbsp sugar with 1/4 tsp salt, 2 tbsp cornstarch, 1/2 cup sweet rice flour, and 1/2 cup all-purpose flour. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, whisking just until combined.
  6. Heat a griddle over medium-low heat. Scoop about 1/3 cup batter per pancake and cook until golden brown. Flip and cook on the other side until browned.
  7. Serve pancakes with coconut whipped cream and candied macadamia nuts.


**Helpful tips and common mistakes

Here’s the thing about making mochi pancakes: all you have to do is add one ingredient to a basic pancake ingredient and you’re set. What’s that secret ingredient? Sweet rice flour! Just by adding sweet rice flour, you turn basic ordinary pancakes into tender pancakes with just a slight chew. If you don’t want the ube version, I highly recommend plain mochi pancakes and seeing the difference. However, being a huge fan of ube, I had to make this specific version.

Okay, let’s step back a minute. What exactly is ube? It’s a purple sweet potato that’s not as sweet as your typical sweet potato. I obsess over these potatoes when they are in season because they are so, so delicious. Just roast the potatoes in the oven, peel back the layer and take a bite out of that sweet purple flesh. I’m drooling just thinking about it.

roasted purple sweet potato

To make these ube mochi pancakes, first, we have to prepare the potato. Roast the sweet potatoes until a fork can easily pierce through. Let them cool slightly so that it’s easier to handle, and remove the peel. Mash the potato and blend it with milk to make a puree. Mix this puree with the wet ingredients for the pancakes including milk, egg, and butter. Stir in the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. The batter will look a bit gray but the color will change when the pancakes are cooked.

You may have noticed that this pancake recipe does not call for baking soda or baking powder. That’s because these leavening agents will react with the potato and turn the batter blue. Yup, I learned this the hard way. After making my first trial batch, I turned away for a second only to come back to a turquoise colored batter!

pancake batter

Cook the pancakes on a griddle as you would normal pancakes. They won’t rise as high because there is no leavening agent but don’t fret. It’ll still taste good.

Stack the ube mochi pancakes onto a plate and top with a dollop of coconut whipped cream and candied macadamia nuts. The toppings aren’t necessary but they make the pancakes ten times better. I did notice that Trader Joe’s version is gluten-free and I used all-purpose flour in my recipe; however, I am very satisfied with this version. My ube cravings are satisfied!

ube mochi pancakes


Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.



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