The perfect pancake is fluffy, tender, and moist. I’ve looked for the best pancake recipe over and over pouring through cookbooks and recipe sites only to find out that none came out as delicious as I hoped. After a lot of trial and error, I have finally learned how to make pancakes from scratch with a great pancake recipe I’ve tweaked and perfected over time. You will love this recipe so much you’ll want to make it every morning.The thing about pancakes recipes, and recipes in general, is that it’s not just about the ingredients. It is important to mix quality ingredients together in just the right amount, but how you mix them together and how you cook them up are equally important.
This easy pancake recipe from scratch requires a little extra attention, but it’s still easy to follow and quick to put together. I’ve learned a lot from my pancake-making experience and I’ve put it all together for amazingly delicious and easy pancakes!
Whether you’re having trouble finding a good recipe, or you just can’t get the multitudes of recipes you’ve tried to come out right, I have come up with not only a recipe, but an ultra-detailed recipe that will walk you through each and every step with sufficient explanations.
If you follow the recipe exactly, you should end up with the best pancakes you’ve ever had. If they still don’t come out right, I’ve included a troubleshooting section to help you get answers to your pancake woes. Plus we have recipes for all sorts of different pancakes.
If you’re serious about making amazing pancakes, pick up a copy of The Pancake Handbook: Specialties from Bette’s Oceanview Diner. Bette’s Oceanview Diner is very well-known for amazing pancakes. If you’r a serious pancake addict, or even if you only love pancakes a little, you’ll find a lot of great recipes here you won’t find anywhere else.
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons melted butter or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. First, gather all your ingredients together. Get the best quality ingredients you can, and make sure they are fresh. For example, if you have baking powder that’s been sitting in your cupboard for 5 years, you should get some new baking powder. It will lose its effectiveness over time. Whenever I’m making pancakes from scratch, I always make sure I have the ingredients on hand before starting to avoid extra trips to the grocery store.
2. Get a large bowl for the dry ingredients. Use a sifter or a fine sieve to sift the flour together with the baking powder, salt, and sugar. Do not skip the sifting step or else you’ll end up with very lumpy batter and dense pancakes. You can even sift the flour twice for extra fluffy pancakes. Stir the dry ingredients together lightly with a whisk to combine.
3. If you’re using melted butter, melt it completely and set it aside to cool slightly. Don’t let it harden again. I find that leaving the melted butter to sit for about 5 minutes is good. This is usually how long it takes for me to prepare the rest of the wet ingredients. Mix it together quickly with the egg, vanilla, and 1 ¼ cups milk with a whisk.
4. The next step will require limited, gentle stirring. If you mix together the wet and dry ingredients too much, the pancakes will become tough. Excessive stirring can overdevelop the gluten from the flour which creates the tough, chewy texture that is all wrong for good pancakes. They should be light and fluffy.
5. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, stirring gently with a wooden spoon. Sifting the flour will make sure there aren’t too many lumps, but there will be some. Stir the batter just until most of the lumps are gone. If you think the batter is too thick, add the extra milk. Some people like thin pancakes and others like them thick. I like to keep out the extra quarter cup of milk, but this is mostly a personal preference. Next, put the batter in the refrigerator for at least 15 to 30 minutes. This will help to relax some of the gluten and form lots of bubbles for fluffy pancakes. Some people even like to make the batter the night before.
6. While your pancake batter is resting, prepare your griddle. You can use any pan and they will be cooked, but a good pancake griddle is best. Look here for griddle recommendations. It will cook your pancakes evenly, brown them nicely, and make it easier to flip your pancakes. There are many cast iron griddles and electric griddles on the market. Choose one with low sides and a large enough surface area to cook as many pancakes as possible. The more you can cook at once, the sooner they are done. This ensures that the first batches aren’t cold by the time your done.
7. Heat the griddle to about medium high heat. Be sure to let it heat through all the way so your pancakes are golden brown and not dry inside. Lightly grease the griddle with brushed on vegetable oil or butter. Don’t put on too much or you’ll fry the pancakes. If you want crispy edges, a little more oil or butter will work great.
8. Remove the batter from the refrigerator, but do not stir it. Stirring will break up all the bubbles. When the griddle is ready, scoop about ¼ cup of batter and pour it onto the pan spacing the pancakes about 1 to 2 inches apart for easier flipping. You can make them larger or in different shapes if you want to.
9. Let the pancakes cook on the griddle for about 1 to 3 minutes until tiny bubbles have formed all across the top of the pancake. The bottom should be a nice golden brown color. Flip them over and continue to cook on the other side for 1 to 2 minutes or until golden brown.
10. Serve the pancakes immediately with your choice of topping. Traditionally, butter and syrup is used. It is delicious, but for an extra treat, you can try sliced fruit, flavored syrups, or other toppings. Experiment with different sweet and/or savory options. My favorite includes traditional pancakes served with butter, syrup, and breakfast sausage.
Simple Pancake Recipe Problem Troubleshooting
Making pancakes from scratch for the first time may result in a problem or two. If you followed the pancakes recipe exactly, they should be great. However, if you ended up with something less desirable than warm, fluffy, delicious homemade pancakes, here are some possible fixes.
Are your pancakes flat and dense? Make sure you put in one full tablespoon (not teaspoon) of fresh baking powder and no less. Also, DO NOT skip the sifting step. You might get lucky and have easy pancakes that taste okay, but you could also end up with flat or dense pancakes.
Are your pancakes tough or chewy? This is probably due to overworking the gluten from the flour. Don’t mix the batter too much. As soon as the wet ingredients are poured into the dry ingredients, you have to mix gently. Also, don’t mix the batter again after letting it rest. This may result in tougher pancakes as well as flat pancakes.
Did your pancakes burn right away? This is likely due to raising the temperature too high. Leave the temperature on medium high heat to avoid burning. Also, if you’re using butter, use clarified butter or add it just before you add the batter to make sure it doesn’t burn.
Are your pancakes dry in the middle and very light colored on the outside? Did it seem to take forever for them to cook? You probably have the temperature too low or you didn’t let the griddle heat up completely. Give it adequate time to heat up, at least 5 minutes. The time it takes will depend on your heating source. If it’s not thoroughly heated, you may be tempted to raise the heat while your first batch is cooking only to end up burning the next batch because the temperature is too high by that time.
Are your pancakes gooey inside? Pancakes should not be gooey. Gooey pancakes are undercooked. Keep your temperature consistent, and make sure the bubbles are even throughout the pancake before you flip it. Also, if you’re cooking very large pancakes, you’ll have to play with the temperature and cook time a little to ensure that the whole pancake is cooked through and doesn’t burn.
Homemade Pancake Recipe Variations
Now that you know how to make homemade pancakes using a basic recipe for pancakes, you can make all sorts of different pancake recipe variations. At the end of this article, I have listed all my favorite different pancake recipes from chocolate chip pancakes to blueberry pancakes to peanut butter pancakes.
For easy variations, you can use the basic pancake recipe and add extra goodies right to the batter or sprinkle them on top of the pancakes. For example, add ½ cup of chopped walnuts to the batter, sprinkle them on the pancake batter as they cook, or mix them in with warm maple syrup. Try sliced fruit, crushed chocolate candy bars, or flavored syrups.
Do you want to give your favorite pancakes to your friends and family as a gift? Learn how to make pancake mix or find the best pancake mix you can buy so they can make them for themselves when you’re not around to cook.
Unique Pancake Recipes
Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Sour Cream Pancakes
Sweet Potato Pancakes
Whole Grain Pancakes
Gluten Free Pancakes
Peanut Butter Pancakes
Cottage Cheese Pancakes
Low Carb Pancakes