Desserts, Middle Eastern Recipes

Qatayef Asafiri (Middle Eastern Cream-Filled Pancakes)

A brass plate is placed on a table. The plate contains Qatayef Asafiri filled with qishta and dipped in ground pistachios. They surround a saucer of sugar syrup.

Don’t you love those nostalgic moments of Ramadan after Iftar? Do you miss those warm family gatherings after a long day of fasting? Well, it is this splendid recipe that can evoke all of these unforgettable moments. Qatayef Asafiri, or Middle Eastern Cream-Filled Mini Pancakes, is a delectable dessert that you can never have enough of.

With Ramadan right around the corner, you’ll want to save this recipe 😉!

Part of brass dish appears with some cream-filled mini pancakes or Atayif Asafiri. These Qatayef are lined up with pistachios on top of them.
Nothing shouts tastier then these Qatayef Asafiri.

Qatayef vs. Pancakes

Ingredients Required for the Middle Eastern Pancakes

For the Dough

For the Qishta Filling

A Heavenly Ramadan Dessert

Inside and outside a metal plate lay some stuffed Qatayef Asafiri or mini pancakes. They are a filled with heavy cream called qishta and topped with pistachios.
Rise and shine; it’s Qatayef time.

Steps to Prep

Qatayef Asafiri Dough

Qishta Filling

Qatayef Asafiri Variations

Top Tips for Making the Best Qatayef Asafiri

Storage Tips

Qatayef Asafiri: The Sponsor of Good Mood

A blue and white porcelain bowl contains Qishta which is heavy cream fragranced with orange blossom and mastic. It has some green pistachios on top.
We go together like Qatayef and Qishta.

Frequently Asked Questions

Don’t the Qatayef remain raw since I don’t flip them over to the other side when making them?

You don’t have to worry about that. Once you notice that the top bubbles are dry, you can safely remove the qatayef from the skillet or pan. This means they are ready to be eaten.

Can I fry the qatayef asafiri as with the regular Qatayef?

Well, the traditional Qaateyf Asafiri recipe involves filling the qatayef with cream, closing them halfway, and dipping them in pistachios. Frying them that way would alter the recipe.

How do I prevent my qatayef dough from sticking to the pan?

It is important to grease your pan if you are not using a non-stick pan or griddle before cooking or adding the batter.

The Qatayef Asafiri Bliss

A sweet sugar syrup drizzles from a saucer. It rests over some small Qtayif Asafiri that are stuffed with Qahsta , closed half way, and topped with ground pistachios.
What a bliss it is to have qatayef after Iftar.

Must-Try Recipes:

Authentic Palestinian Knafeh

Layali Lubnan (Lebanese Nights Dessert)

Ka’ak Al Quds (Sesame Bread)

Knafeh Cheesecake

Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups

Aish El Saraya Dessert

Halawat el Jibn (Sweet Cheese Rolls)

Date-Filled Brioche Buns

Sahlab Dessert Recipe

Cranberry Orange Bundt Cake

Baklava Cheesecake Bars

A white porcelain saucer stands out in the middle of a metal dish. The saucer contains a sugar syrup and around it there are mini pancakes or Qatayif Asafiri stuffed with Qashta and pistachios.

Qatayef Asafiri (Middle Eastern Cream-Filled Pancakes)

These Qatayef Asafiri are a unique twist on mini-pancakes. They are dairy and egg-free, filled with fragrant qishta or cream, and served with pistachio and sugar syrup. A simple and easy dessert like no other!
5 from 13 votes
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Cuisine Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
Servings 6
Calories 376 kcal


For the Qatayef Dough

  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup fine semolina
  • tablespoons baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon yeast
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom water or rose water
  • 3 cups lukewarm water

For the Qishta

  • 4 cups half-and-half (or 2 cups heavy cream and 2 cups whole milk)
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom
  • 1 teaspoon rose water
  • ¼ teaspoon mastic crushed with ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Pistachios for topping


For the Dough

  • Sift all dry ingredients into a blender, and then add the lukewarm water.
  • Blend them all for 2 minutes, and then let the blended mixture sit for half an hour covered.
  • Once rested, blend again for 30 seconds.
  • Pre-heat your skillet or griddle on medium high and pour the qatayef into desired size, typically asafiri are small.
  • Pour some mixture, wait for the surface to dry, and then remove and place it onto a clean towel.
  •  Do not flip them to the other side as you do with pancakes.
  •  Cover them with the towel to keep them from drying out until they are ready to be filled.

For the Creamy Qishta Filling

  • Crush the mastic in a mortar and pestle with half teaspoon sugar until completely fine and powdery.
  • Add all the complete ingredients to a pot and whisk together well until the cornstarch is dissolved and incorporated.
  • Place the pot onto the stove on medium heat and continuously whisk the mixture until thickened for about 12-15 minutes.
  • Once thickened, pour it into a plate or bowl, and cover it with plastic wrap. Make sure the plastic wrap touches the surface of the qishta so that it doesn't develop a crust.
  • Refrigerate the qishta until it is cold and ready to use.
  • Stuff the qatayef half way, and seal the back end.
  • Dip in pistachios and serve with simple syrup.


  • Cover the batter and let it sit on the counter before making it. If the kitchen is cool, it might take more than an hour to rest properly.
  • Using lukewarm water is key for the success of the recipe. Cold water will prevent baking powder activation while hot water spoils it.
  • Another important factor is the skillet itself. It has to be nonstick. Otherwise, the qatayef will stick to the surface of the griddle.
  • The original Qatayef Asafiri recipe traditionally fills them with qishta. However, you can use other fillings like crushed walnuts mixed with sugar or Nutella.
  • When making qatayef, make sure not to overcook them. Once the bottom turns golden and the top starts to dry out, take them off the griddle right away.
  • The qatayef are often served with the orange blossom syrup as a sweetener. However, you can replace it with honey or maple syrup.


Calories: 376kcalCarbohydrates: 44gProtein: 8gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 466mgPotassium: 250mgFiber: 1gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 571IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 354mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Ashta, Dessert, easy, Middle Eastern, Qater, Sheera
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

13 thoughts on “Qatayef Asafiri (Middle Eastern Cream-Filled Pancakes)

  1. Taline Baljian says:

    5 stars
    Oh my goodness. This is my husbands favorite desert and I finally found the perfect combination of soft dough and delicious ashta filling for the Qatief Asifiri

  2. Sara says:

    5 stars
    So light and perfect 😋😋

  3. Diana says:

    5 stars
    I love making this dessert. The recipe is so easy to follow. I’m happy I found it.

  4. Malak says:

    5 stars
    falasteenifoodie always has the best recipes. I made her asafiri last year and everyone asked for them at every gathering.

  5. Islam says:

    5 stars
    Perfect recipe! Light and fluffy

  6. Lamees says:

    5 stars
    Love these! The batter is perfect, i also used ur old hack for the filling!

  7. Khadija says:

    5 stars
    Sometimes I feel a little shocked that someone so young can cook so well. MashaAllah. We love the qatayef recipe.

  8. Noor says:

    5 stars
    we love your recipes! The ashta is so good!

  9. Islah says:

    5 stars
    We love the qatayef recipe and have tried a few of the ashta desserts. I made this one with mascarpone like suggested and loved it, cant wait to try it with ashta

  10. Maha says:

    5 stars
    Loved this qatayef recipe

  11. Meriam A says:

    5 stars
    We were craving these so i made them. Not a single piece left!! Super delicious MashaAllah

  12. suzanne deeb says:

    erfect recipe falasteenifoodie. Thank you

  13. suzanne deeb says:

    5 stars
    Best recipe for qatayef. Thank you falasteenifoodie.

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