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Hopper Recipe

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You could be a pro and making this hopper recipe in no time!

I was first introduced to this hopper recipe when I was in Sri Lanka.

That makes sense as hoppers are Sri Lankan and so good! If you’re looking for a hopper recipe, you’ve found it. This is how I was taught to make them.

Making hoppers

I learned to make hoppers over a wood fired stove using a traditional hopper pan.

About this hopper recipe…

I don’t know where to begin telling you about all of the amazing food I enjoyed last week in Sri Lanka.

I was a guest of Cinnamon Hotels and every meal was a masterpiece. You might also like to try this black pepper chicken curry or this Sri Lankan pork version!

The morning after arrival, I was introduced to hoppers and this amazing hopper recipe.

These are thin and crispy upturned pancakes that are spongy at the bottom and usually served with egg. I had one every morning. A chef cooked the hoppers fresh in front of guests and then offered a selection of chuneys and raitas that could be spooned over them.

These made such an impression on me that I couldn’t wait to get home and make them for my family.

Taking the recipe home to share…

Luckily, the chefs at each Cinnamon hotel I stayed at were more than happy to show me recipes. These hoppers took some practice but I’m happy to say that I’ve mastered them now. You can too if you follow the instructions below.

While in Sri Lanka I purchase a couple of hopper pans. These are small woks that have lids.

They are made to give the hoppers that traditional look. You could use any small wok. The chefs at Cinnamon Hotels used metal hopper pans. When you are just learning, you might like to try a non stick wok.

Note: At Cinnamon Hotels, they only use fresh coconut milk right from the coconut. I have used tinned as this is more easily available where I live.

For more information about Cinnamon Hotels in Sri Lanka, just click the photo below.

Hikka Tranz

For more information about Cinnamon Hotels, click the photo above.


Making hoppers

First mix. This should rise as it rests.


Showing the finished batter

After the rest of the coconut milk is added, you should have a thick creamy mixture like single cream.


spooning hopper batter into pan

Take a good ladle full of the creamy batter.


Preparing the hopper recipe in a hopper pan

Pour the batter into your wok and then swirl it around a few times to coat the sides.

adding egg to the cooking hopper

Add an egg or leave it out. Cover.


My first few attempts. When using a metal pan, the hoppers will often become browned. Delicious.

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Yield: 8 - 12

How To Make Hoppers - My Favourite Sri Lankan Breakfast

Finished Hopper Recipe
Prep Time 1 day
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 1 day 5 minutes


  • 1 teaspoon dry yeast
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 500g ( about 1lb.) rice flour
  • 500ml (two cups) light coconut milk
  • 250ml (1 cup) full fat coconut milk
  • Eggs
  • Vegetable oil for frying.
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Sift the flour into a large bowl.
  2. Heat about 124ml ( 1/2 cup) of the light coconut milk until hand hot and pour the yeast into it.
  3. Mix this all up until the yeast dissolves and then pour it into the flour.
  4. Add just enough of the light coconut milk to form a soft dough along with the sugar. Cover for about four hours to rise.
  5. After the dough has risen, pour in the rest of the light and thick coconut milk until you have a batter that is like single cream. Be sure to whisk out any lumps. You may need to use slightly more or less coconut milk in order to achieve the creamy consistency.
  6. Cover and let this sit overnight. 24 - 32 hours will do the job.
  7. When ready to cook, heat your wok over medium high heat and add just a drop of oil. You only need it to coat the wok.
  8. Pour in a ladle full of the batter and then swirl it around in the wok until the sides are nicely coated with a thin layer of the batter.
  9. If you like, you can break an egg into the batter at the bottom and then cover the wok.
  10. Allow to cook for about four minutes, covered. If you are not using a non stick wok, you may need to tap the sides a few times to help release the hopper. Carefully carve around the sides until it is free from the wok.
  11. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve with your favourite chutney or raita.

Did you like this recipe?

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I would like to thank my friends at Cinnamon Hotels for making my trip so enjoyable and for the recipes. I was a guest of Cinnamon Hotels and can’t wait to go back. Highly recommended! I was flown round trip from Heathrow to Colombo courtesy or SriLankan Airlines.Excellent service.

I hope you enjoy this authentic hopper recipe. If you do try it, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.


Sunday 20th of November 2016

What happened to the chicken drumsticks recipe? I clicked on that and got adverts and a hopper recipe

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 29th of November 2016

Hi Tom

Sorry about that. It was a mistake on my part. The drumstick recipe is right here.

Cheers, Dan

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