Lighter Latkes (Potato Pancakes) For Hanukkah

December 20, 2011   11 Comments

THE holiday food of Hanukkah is the potato pancake (AKA latke). The traditional recipe for potato latkes can include 3-4 cups of oil.

Lighter Potato Latkes for Hanukkah

Yikes! (but that does sound delicious :)

I actually think latkes are a GREAT holiday food. Potatoes, onion, egg, and flour - there isn't anything but yumminess in the basic recipe.

And, latkes ARE nutritious when compared to Egg Nog, Christmas cookies, and candy canes. One latke has 24% of your daily value of Vitamin C - take that chocolate Santa!

Even though I have attended ONE Hanukkah celebration in my entire life, I decided to take on the lighter latke because a reader asked me to give it a shot.

First, I used my grater on my food processor. There was NO WAY I was going to grate 3 potatoes and an onion without one. This made making the latkes really fast and easy.

I squeezed out the liquid from the potato and the onion, added egg and flour, and then attempted to fry them with less oil than 3 cups. I used a cast iron pan and managed to use one tablespoon of oil for every four latkes that I cooked.

They were seriously tasty and left the plate as soon as I placed them there. If you are trying to serve people that can WAIT, put them in the oven at 200F to keep them crispy.

Other lighter latke recipes used zucchini, cauliflower, and sweet potatoes to lighten the recipe. These make a great, fast, easy and comforting last minute dinner. We served them with some chicken apple sausages. YUM!

Do you have a tip for a lighter latke? Please share.


Lighter Latke Recipe

1.6 from 24 reviews

(makes 16)
3 large Russet potatoes
1 large onion, peeled
1/4 cup flour
3 eggs, beaten
4 tablespoons vegetable oil or olive oil

Grate potatoes and onion in food processor with a coarse grater. Transfer to colander and squeeze out potato liquid. Mix eggs and flour into the potato-onion mixture. Heat a cast iron or non-stick skillet with one tablespoon oil until the oil starts to smoke.

Fill your palm with the potato mixture and pat into a 2 inch diameter circle. Put four pancakes into pan and cook until brown on both sides (about 6 minutes). After you remove the first batch, add one tablespoon oil to cook the next batch. Repeat with all of the batter.

Keep hot in a 200 F oven and serve! These taste great cold and room temperature as well (but they will lose their crispness).

For one latke = 100 calories, 4.3 g fat, 13.3 g carbohydrates, 2.5 g protein, 1.9 g fiber, 16 mg sodium, 3 Points+

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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At what temp do you heat the oil?

@Gloria - the oil starts to smoke in the pan - I don't know what temperature that is - I used olive oil and when the latke hit the pan - I got a nice sizzle. Sorry I can't be more exact.

Because I'm not an expert at frying, I'm a little clueless. To get the process started, do I turn the stove on to hi, or medium? And then wait for it to start smoking...

@Gloria - No, it is me that is clueless - because most recipes would say - turn the stove to HI and then heat the oil until smoking. I left that out! (novice recipe writer here).

Haha! Thank you!

This made me laugh because I just made latkes with chicken apple sausages on the side for dinner two nights ago! (We must be on the same wavelength). Although I left out the onions to make them more palatable for my toddlers, who scarfed them down without complaint. Don't forget to serve with sour cream and apple sauce! (yum!)

I've been to a few Hanukkah parties and we make them regularly even though we aren't Jewish. I hadn't thought to measure the oil in the pan, I do just enough to cover the bottom and often substitute onion powder for the onion. I used to grate them by hand after destroying the shredding blade on my inexpensive food processor. I ended up getting the shredder attachment for my Kitchen Aid mixer and that does the trick. My kids love them dipped in sour cream or applesauce. I can eat them plain out of the pan.

i love Hanukkah. it's probably my favorite holidays (tied with halloween, of course). and i love latkes =) a tip for making it lighter: don't forget to put the latkes on a paper towel before serving as you would with bacon, it makes it less greasy and gets rid of a few calories =)

Thanks for the recipe, it made a delicious addition to dinner.

My tip for what I call Less-Oil Latkes: fry them for just a minute on each side, then transfer to a hot oven to finish. The entire recipe uses 3 tablespoons of oil! Details are here, if you'll forgive the plug:

Lucky for me I work for a giant in the supermarket business, who shall not be named, and we sell among other things potato, garden vegetable and sweet potato latkes.

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