This easy pancake recipe is perfect for beginners in the kitchen. If you’ve had trouble making pancakes in the past, or are intimidated by the many steps and considerations required to make super fluffy pancakes, but still want to enjoy a delicious pancake breakfast, then this is the recipe for you.
What makes pancakes difficult? Expectation. For this recipe, we’re throwing expectations out the window, and just making easy homemade pancakes from scratch, and not worrying about things like:
- <insert whatever fanciness you’ve thought of recently>
Our main aim for today is…delicious homemade pancakes. Getting them to be super light and fluffy, or thicker than your granddad’s briefcase can be aims for another day. Today, it’s all about keeping things simple, and free from any stressful expectations, or complicated components.
How to make easy pancakes from scratch
This simple recipe is suitable for anyone building their confidence in the kitchen that is looking to make pancakes. It’ll walk you through the steps to easily make pancakes without having to worry about some of the nitty gritty details.
It’s really quite an easy process. You’ll start by warming your milk and butter together. Then you’ll prepare your dry ingredients. Combine them with your remaining ingredients and milk-butter mixture to form your pancake batter. And then you’ll cook ‘em. See? Not scary at all, right?
One thing I do recommend you do before we get started it read my guide on How to Read a Recipe Post. It will prepare you with all the knowledge you need to ensure that you understand how to follow this pancake recipe (or you know…any recipe).
Pancake tips for beginners
The goal here is just to get you making pancakes, but if you’d like to understand the basics of achieving a melt in your mouth, make-your-local-restaurant-jealous fluffy pancake, here are a few tips so you know what points to improve on in the future:
Sift the dry ingredients twice
You will instantly lighten the pancake by sifting the dry ingredients together. Sifting brings air into the dry ingredients that results in a fluffier pancake. I sift the flour twice…because two sifts are better than one.
Warm the milk
Using warm milk will help the pancake to puff up during the cooking process, whereas cold milk would do the opposite. By heating the butter and milk together, it makes the mixing process easier. And if the milk is too cold, your butter can solidify in it, and that means it won’t mix well.
As a little precaution: warm milk is the key here. You don’t want to use hot or boiling milk, as that might result in a scrambled egg in your batter.
Do not overmix the batter
This is probably the most important (and most difficult) step. I used to thoroughly whisk my batter to make sure that all the flour was mixed together for a super smooth consistency. But would always end up with flat and heavy pancakes as a result of overmixing.
Overmixing your batter is actually ridiculously easy to do. So, if you remember one thing from this section, let it be this: it’s okay to have a lumpy batter. In fact, you want a lumpy batter (it’s okay if there are a few small streaks of flour remaining). Use a wooden spoon and avoid using a whisk or electric mixer.
That said, this is not a recipe that’s super concerned with overmixing your batter. You don’t need worry about finding that perfect balance today. Just don’t go crazy, and your pancakes will turn out great.
You may notice that your first few pancakes are lighter and fluffier once cooked than the last half. This is because as the ladle dips in and out of the batter, it further works the gluten in the mix, resulting in a tougher pancake. (This is something I’ve never personally experienced, but a number of people have mentioned it to me, so I’m including it here just in case you notice it too.)
What kind of pan to use
Electric griddles or a non-stick skillet with sloping sides are likely to be your best options. A cast iron pan works great, but it’s not likely you have one lying around if you’re new to the kitchen.
If you’d like perfectly symmetrical pancakes, a mould is good option (though I personally don’t think you need to worry about this!).
What can I top my pancakes with
The sky is the limit when it comes to topping your pancakes! You can choose to top your pancakes with your favourite fruit or berry. For these photos, I used sliced strawberries, blueberries, and some maple syrup. If you’re feeling a little fancy, you can add grilled pineapple for some Hawaiian flare.
Of course, you can never go wrong with a pat of butter, and some maple syrup. (You can use ‘pancake syrup’ too.)
Generally speaking, you want to avoid substitutions in recipes unless you have a strong understanding of the ingredient changes you’re making. However, here are the answers to a few common substitution questions I receive.
Can I use low fat milk?
Yes, you can. But be aware that whole milk does result in fluffier pancakes.
Is this recipe gluten free? Or can it be made gluten free?
This recipe is not gluten free, and switching the flour to a gluten-free flour may not work. If you’re looking for a gluten free pancake recipe, I’d recommend checking out these healthy sweet potato pancakes.
Dutch baby pancake recipes
This is about as easy as it gets when it comes to making homemade pancakes from scratch. But if this still feels a little too involved. Here are a few (essentially, no-fail) Dutch Baby Pancake recipes to check out:
Other amazing pancakes recipes
While this pancake recipe is more geared towards beginners, here are a few other recipes to try if you’re feeling a little more confident:
- Fluffy, Fluffy Pancakes (No buttermilk)
- Fluffy Japanese Pancakes
- Strawberry Cheesecake Pancakes
- Lemon Mascarpone Pancakes
- Blackberry Pancakes with Brown Sugar Butter
- Sour Cream Pancakes
- Savory Lentil Pancakes
- Fluffy Yogurt Pancakes
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Here’s an example of a pancake mould that you can use. I don’t think they’re entirely necessary, but if that’s the look you love, then that’s the look you love.
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How are you feeling, bestie? Any questions about this easy pancake recipe? Did you try it? How’d it go? Let me know in the comments below.Print