I've gone through many boxes of eggs trying to cook tamagoyaki, that's Japanese rolled omelet. It uses a rectangle frying pan which is the same as an ordinary frying pan, but rectangle shaped.

In short, you put a little oil in, put a layer of egg in and roll it up. Then repeat.

I've tried low heat, high heat, medium heat, taking it off the heat, small hob, large hob, pre-heating without oil, pre-heating with oil, a small coating of oil, soaked in oil, waited for it to set solid, rolled as soon as it started setting and every recipe and every youtube video guide on tamagoyaki - everything.

The results are always the same: It sticks to the "non-stick" pan and it falls apart.

What's the secret?

Here's a basic successful tamagoyaki instructional video

Here's my result

6 Answers 6


Are you sure that the "non-stick" properties of your square pan are still OK. The pan in the picture looks pretty tired.

I also note that the pan in the "successful video" has a ridged bottom. This gives more surface area to the bottom of the pan and gets more heat up into the egg mixture to cook it.

  • You're right I think it is the pan, I've managed to find reviews of the pan and a few people are saying it's no good!
    – hwu
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 3:59
  • forgot to add, I've tried it now with a regular frying pan - which I wish I'd thought of to begin with - and it's come out OK.
    – hwu
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 4:06

Rolling when the consistency is correct is important. Looking at your example I would say that attempt needed more heat. The egg should be cooked on the bottom, while being 'jelly-like' on the top.

This makes the roll stick to itself without sticking to the pan. You also need to just wipe down the pan with more oil after each roll. When in doubt turn up the heat and control by moving the pan.

Your problem is a bit strange as you should have hit upon the combination with all the attempts you've listed :P

Good luck


Actually it's your pan, I have that same pan in the rectangular shape as yours as well as a round one. That pan actually does NOT have a non-stick surface. It has almost a painted carbon layer on it, but it is not non-stick. That pan is quite finicky with heat and you do need quite a lot of oil to make sure the eggs don't stick. And as one other person said, the pan must be hot, and move the pan closer or farther away from the heat to adjust it.

You also have to oil the pan between layers as well to keep it from sticking. The oil has to be spread with a rolled up paper towel so it is spread thinly. If you pour the oil in, it will pool up too thick and will cook unevenly which leads to sticking. This technique also works with pancakes to make a more even brown color, where a thin layer of fat is better. Hope this helps.


There's couple reason why it sticks. One of the reason is your sugar to egg ratio in your recipe. I've made tamagoyaki couple times when I was a sushi chef. The key is always less sugar to egg to keep from sticking. Also keep the pan HOT! and pour 1-2oz of egg mixture onto the pan at a time. All while you're moving the pan on and off the heat/burner constantly while you're cooking. Don't keep the pan on the heat the whole time you're cooking, it will burn the cooked part of the egg when you pour your egg mixture during the layering process. It's a lot of trial and error, but it's quite fun once you get the hang of it. It's a lot of moving on and off the burner. Also remember revisit your recipe and tweak it. Hope this helps.


I've had the same problem. Did you wash your pan with detergent? Or did you use the pan to cook other things such as bacon?

It sounds funny but when this happened to me my mom "cured" my pan and told me that I must never use that pan again for other things, only for tamagoyaki, and also that I must never wash the pan with detergent, only with very hot water.


I can’t tell from picture but if that is a non stick ceramic coated pan that you have had awhile, i’d ditch it. I have yet to have a ceramic non stick pan that lasts. When THEY start losing their non stick attributes they are really bad.


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