Perfect little pancakes or blinis, which are the Russian equivalent of your average pancake. They use yeast as a rising agent, making them delicious and fluffy. Blinis with smoked salmon.

blinis with smoked salmon

Blinis with smoked salmon

Making these blinis was a challenge I had with a couple of other bloggers where we made pancakes from our part of the world. We already made Dutch poffertjes and Aebleskiver (from Denmark) and this time it was the turn of the Russian. In order to make these super easy little blinis you need just a few ingredients:

  • all purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 150 ml luke warm milk
  • instant yeast (about 1/2 a package of 7 gr)
  • pinch of salt

And of course in addition to that you also need the smoked salmon and the sour cream to serve. Instead of the sour cream you can go for crème fraîche too.

You can change the all purpose flour into buckwheat flour if you prefer and want to make this a gluten free delicacy. Originally these Russian pancakes are made with buckwheat flour but you can definitely make them with plain flour. So mine are not traditional blini but they are perfect as salmon canapés.

Making the blinis is pretty straight forward. You take a large bowl and you add the flour, yeast, milk and the eggs. Mix it with a whisk and set it aside in a warm place to rise for about an hour or so. 

For the topping you can go sweet or savory. In this case I opted for making savory blinis and used smoked salmon and some sour cream which got seasoned with salt, pepper and fresh dill. The blinis are small. Something between a poffertje and an american pancake. The quantities in this recipe make enough as a small starter for 4 people. 

Apparently there is a special blini pan but you can use any regular large non-stick fry pan to make them. Just place the pan on medium-low heat. Since the quantity you use of the batter is small it might be easier to use a piping bag to ensure you have similar shaped blinis, but it homemade, so a little difference in size is not the worst thing that can happen. About a tablespoon of batter should be enough per blini.

You add a bit of butter to the pan and bake until the are golden brown. Repeat this for the remaining batter until all is done and baked. Let them rest on a wire rack.

Blinis with apple and blue cheese |
Blinis with blue cheese and apple slices


In a separate bowl you make the topping for the blinis with smoked salmon. You add the sour cream (or creme fraiche) and some cut fresh dill. Season with salt and pepper and – optionally with a little bit of lemon zest or lemon juice. Now transfer the blinis to plates to finish them of or use a large plate to add them all. The salmon blini recipe obviously needs salmon first, so you place a small bit of salmon on top of each blini. Once that is done you top the salmon with a spoonful of the cream and add a tiny bit of fresh dill at the end. Serve right away.

The salmon blinis are perfect to serve as finger food for any special occasion or for Christmas. You can add some variations to the topping if you like. I like to add a bit of horseradish cream to the cream as that ads a bit of punch to the blinis. You can also split egg yolk from egg whites and first whip the egg whites to stiff peaks in a clean bowl and incorporate them later. That way they will be even more fluffy and delicious.

These blinis are – as mentioned – the savory variety but you can easily make them into a dessert by making them sweet. Top with strawberries and fresh cream for instance and serve with some icing sugar instead. They’re delicious mini pancakes so sweet or savory is equally delicious!

blinis with icing sugar and raspberries
Blinis with icing sugar and fresh raspberries

Also check out this recipe for basic blinis.

Blinis with smoked salmon |
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4 from 2 votes

Blinis with smoked salmon

Delicious and perfect as a small starter for any festive occasion
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Resting time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people


  • 150 g all purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 150 ml lukewarm milk
  • 3,5 g dry yeast
  • pinch of salt


  • 100 g smoked salmon
  • 125 g sour cream
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill


  • For the sourcream; combine sourcream with some chopped dill and add salt and pepper to taste
  • Add flour, yeast, milk and the eggs together in a bowl and mix with a handmixer until smooth. Leave to rest and rise for about an hour at normal roomtemperature. To make the blinis heat a non-stick frying pan on medium heat and drop a tablespoon of batter in a pan. You can bake about four in one go as they are small.
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Russian
Keyword: smoked salmon

Nutrition Information

Calories: 194kcal, Carbohydrates: 31g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 86mg, Sodium: 47mg, Potassium: 137mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 181IU, Vitamin C: 0.003mg, Calcium: 66mg, Iron: 2mg


The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.

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