Growing up in Russia and having learned firsthand how to make Russian blini, I inherited this cherished recipe from my mother.

It’s a family secret passed down through generations, perfected by my mother over many years. I always eagerly anticipated the moments when she’d prepare these pancakes, and now, as a parent myself, I continue the tradition with my own children nearly every Saturday morning.

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You Will Love These Russian Pancakes!

This fail-proof recipe, composed of basic ingredients, has been tested countless times and is guaranteed to yield perfect results if you follow my proven tips and tricks.

With its ability to store well as leftovers, you can confidently prepare a large batch over the weekend and savor it for days to come. This will undoubtedly become your go-to recipe for delicious blini.

What is a Blini?

Blini or blinchiki are thin pan-sized Russian pancakes. They are much thinner and wider than American-style pancakes but not as thin and wide as crepes.

They are tasty and versatile.  Often served with sour cream and jam. Or stuffed with a sweet or a savory filling.

Today, I’m sharing a family-favorite sweet blini recipe. These are lightly sweetened, soft, and very delicate. We often enjoy them with maple syrup, fresh fruit, or a dollop of sour cream. 

russian blini

Blini Recipe Ingredients

Blinis are made of very basic ingredients. For this Russian blini recipe you will need the following ingredients: 

ingredients for blinis.
  • Eggs
  • Milk, whole or 2% 
  • Cane sugar, or honey
  • Kosher salt
  • Baking soda
  • Light olive oil, or refined coconut oil
  • Butter
  • All-purpose flour
  • Vanilla extract

You will also need a 10-inch non-stick skillet or a crepe pan and a flexible rubber turner. It makes flipping blini so easy!

russian crepes tools

How to Make Blinis

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and then add in the milk.
how to make russian blini
  1. Add sugar, salt, baking soda, olive oil, and butter. Whisk to combine. Gradually whisk in the flour.
blini batter in a bowl
  1. Continue to whisk until the flour is fully incorporated and no lumps are visible. Lastly, add in the vanilla extract. The batter should feel heavy and thick, similar to heavy cream.
how to make blinis
  1. Heat a 10-inch non-stick skillet or a crepe pan over medium heat. Spray the pan lightly with non-stick oil. Pour 1/4 cup of batter into the center of the pan and swirl the pan to spread evenly. 
blini batter in a pan
russian crepes batter
  1. Cook for 30 seconds or until the edges are visible golden and lacy looking. Gently flip and cook for another 20 seconds or until the batter is set. Remove to a platter and repeat.
cooked blini in a pan

Blini Toppings

Blini are normally served immediately or at room temperature.

In our household, we enjoy them like American pancakes — with maple syrup and fresh fruit. But you can also enjoy blini with a variety of toppings, such as:

  • Cottage cheese
  • Greek yogurt
  • Sour cream
  • Jam
  • Honey
  • Whipped cream
  • Drizzle of chocolate
  • Nut butter

How to Store Leftover Blinchiki

Leftover blini without any toppings will last in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Keep them covered.

Reheat the blini, covered with foil, in a 325°F oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until they are warm. Or reheat in a microwave for a few minutes until warmed through.

russian blini recipe

Russian Pancake Tips

  • Cook the blini on medium heat and adjust as needed later. If the heat is too high the blini will burn around the edges before they set on top. If the heat is too low then they are more prone to sticking.
  • When you first pour the blini batter, it will be wet in the skillet but gradually the edges will set and bubbles will be forming in the middle and the blini will start to get dry. When no liquid batter is visible – it’s time to flip. If you flip too early, the blini will break.
  • To flip the blini without breaking, loosen the edges with a rubber turner. Lift an edge with your finger as you glide the turner towards the center. Gently flip in one swift motion

Blinchiki FAQs

What’s the difference between pancakes and blinis?

Blinis are small, savory pancake that is made with batter containing yeast and wheat or buckwheat flour, usually about 2-4 inches wide. They can also be made without yeast and instead eggs and soured milk, such as buttermilk.

Meanwhile, regular pancakes are made with all-purpose flour and baking powder. As a result, blinis have a softer, more delicate texture and a slightly nuttier flavor.

What is the difference between Russian blini and crepes?

Traditional Russian blini are thin, pan-sized pancakes, made from unleavened batter, similar to crepes.

Crepes are slightly larger in size and thinner than Russian blini. Both version are very similar though.

If you try Blini Recipe, please leave a star rating and let me know how you like the recipe in the comments below.

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Blini (or Blinchiki)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 13 reviews
  • Author: Katya
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Russian

Description

Traditional Russian blini are thin, pan-sized pancakes, made from unleavened batter, similar to crepes. Crepes are slightly larger in size and thinner than Russian blini.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups whole or 2% milk, microwaved for 1 minute (you want the milk to be lukewarm)
  • 1 Tbsp. cane sugar or honey
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp. light olive oil or refined coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Non-stick cooking spray

Tools


Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk eggs and then add milk.
  2. Add sugar, salt, baking soda, oil, and butter. Whisk to combine.
  3. Gradually whisk in the flour, and then the vanilla extract. The batter should be smooth without any visible lumps. It will feel heavy and thick, close to the consistency of heavy cream.
  4. Heat a crepe pan or a 10-inch non-stick pan over medium heat. Lightly coat with a non-stick spray. Pour 1/4 cup of batter into the center of the pan and quickly swirl to spread evenly.
  5. Cook for 30 seconds or until the edges are visibly golden and lacy looking. The top will be dry without any visible liquid batter. Flip and cook for another 2o seconds or until just set. Remove to a platter. Continue making blini with the rest of the batter, adding more non-stick spray to the pan as needed to keep the blini from sticking. If the edges begin to brown too quickly, reduce the heat. Don’t worry, if the first blin is not the prettiest –it happens to all of us. You should get around 14 blinis.

Notes

  • Oil: Make sure to use a neutral-tasting oil, such as light olive oil (not extra-virgin) or refined coconut oil. Refined coconut oil has no distinct coconut taste or aroma, whereas, virgin or unrefined does.
  • Leftovers: Leftover blini without any toppings will keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Enjoy them cold, at room temperature, or lightly warmed in a microwave. You can also warm the blini in the oven at low temperature, which is a great option if you have a lot of leftovers.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2-3
  • Calories: 225
  • Sugar: 7.3 g
  • Sodium: 224.9 mg
  • Fat: 11.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 23 g
  • Protein: 7.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 82.3 mg