These Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are light and fluffy delights with a delicious mix of sweet and tangy flavours. They’re the perfect elevated pancake recipe. And we’re making them just a little more special by using lemon curd and blueberry compote as toppings.
I’ve always loved lemon ricotta pancakes. The first time I tried them was at a restaurant in Toronto. They weren’t being advertised as pancakes made with ricotta cheese, but instead were simply called “lemon pancakes”. I immediately asked the server what was different about them, and he explained that the chef used creamy ricotta cheese in the pancakes, and it really did make all the difference.
Let’s talk: Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
This is a quick and forgiving pancake batter that results in some soft, tender pancakes thanks to a base made from buttermilk and ricotta cheese. Eggs in the recipe create that eggy richness that we love in a pancake recipe while the buttermilk and ricotta add a warmth and creaminess to the pancakes.
What does the ricotta do? The ricotta cheese improves the pancake texture by adding moisture and a richness of flavor. A con of using ricotta in your pancakes for some is that it’s more difficult to achieve super fluffy pancakes.
If you enjoy the sound of this recipe, then you’re sure to love these Lemon Mascarpone Pancakes.
For the lemon ricotta pancakes
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup granulated white sugar
- 1 lemon
- 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- ¾ cup ricotta (whole milk)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (plus additional butter for cooking with)
- Lemon curd, for topping
For the blueberry compote
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
How to make Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
Prepare the dry ingredients
In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, salt together. Set aside.
Prepare the wet ingredients
In a separate large mixing bowl, add the sugar, and grate the zest of the lemon into it. Mix gently. Add the pure vanilla extract and then whisk together. Add the eggs and whisk until they’re broken down and foamy.
Follow by adding the buttermilk, ricotta, and melted butter. Stir together until mixed completely.
Add the dry ingredients bowl into the large bowl with the wet ingredients – mix gently, being careful to not overmix your batter. Set your pancake batter aside (you can refrigerate) while preparing your blueberry compote.
Prepare the blueberry compote
In small pot, over medium heat, simmer one cup of the fresh blueberries with the maple syrup, water, fresh lemon juice, and balsamic vinegar. Stir occasionally and cook for about ten minutes.
Add the remaining blueberries and mix into the already warm compote. Cook for five to seven minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat (the compote will continue to thicken as it cools) and prepare to cook your pancakes.
Cook the pancakes
Heat a griddle or non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add some butter (be generous! Butter is your friend. Not only does it further grease the pan, it also adds to the flavour of your buttermilk pancakes!). Using a measuring cup scoop (I recommend the ¼ cup scoop), add a dollop of the pancake batter. Cook until the bottom becomes a golden-brown colour, and air bubbles reach the top, about two to three minutes. Gently flip the pancake, and cook until the other side is also golden brown, about one or two minutes more.
Repeat this process with the remaining pancake batter (remember to add more butter to your pan as needed!), set aside your cooked pancakes on a warm plate.
Your lemon ricotta pancakes should be served warm, with a slather of lemon curd, and the blueberry compote on top. Enjoy!
If you’ve ready any of my other pancake recipes, you’ll know I stress that making amazing pancakes is just as much about getting the technique right as it is having the perfect ratio of ingredients.
Don’t overmix your batter
The most common killer of fluffy pancakes is an overmixed pancake batter. Your batter really does not require a lot of mixing, use a spatula to fold the mixture just enough to barely incorporate the ingredients (it’s okay if you can still see a few streaks of flour).
While this recipe is less “fluffy” than some other buttermilk pancake recipes (due to the addition of ricotta cheese into the batter), do your best to not go crazy in the mixing step. Just a few solids stirs will do the trick!
Sometimes we try to make something a little healthier or lower calorie by switching the dairy ingredients with skimmed versions. This isn’t a great time to do that. For best results, make sure to use whole milk ricotta cheese and buttermilk for this recipe.
Let your batter rest
Skipping the “let your pancake batter rest” step results in a much denser pancake. The rest time is there to allow the starch granules in the flour to expand and create air.
A gentle flip
For best results, make sure to turn your pancakes gently (you know, in the cooking part when one side is done). I know it’s fun to toss them into the air, or to violently flip so that you hear a splat in your pan…but it will result in messier pancakes that have had the airiness squashed out of them.
Like with all pancake recipes, the simplest and easiest way to create a variation is by changing the toppings. However, in this case, there is one method change that can make a big difference – though it does involve a bit more work:
For much airier pancakes, split the egg whites and the egg yolks. Add the yolks to your wet ingredients as before, but beat the whites until you achieve stiff peaks (like in a meringue). Carefully mix the beaten whites into the wet ingredients in stages. This is essentially what you would be doing to make Japanese-style pancakes.
Okay, now here are some easy topping ideas:
- Skipping the blueberry compote and instead using fresh berries (whatever you like – raspberries, blackberries, all great options) is a delicious way to save a little time.
- For an extra lemon-y finish, grate lemon zest on to the finished pancakes.
- Whipped cream is always excellent on pancakes. If you want a slightly less lemony pancake, skip the lemon curd and opt for a whipped cream topping instead.
- If you enjoy the lemony flavours but find the combination ever so slightly too tart, you can try sprinkling some icing sugar on top.
Can you freeze lemon ricotta pancakes
Technically, yes. Slide your pancakes into freezer-friendly ziplock bags (no toppings, just the lemon pancakes), and you freeze for up to one month. You can thaw the pancakes in the oven or over a warm skillet before serving.
Personally, I think it’s best to eat the pancakes fresh. I feel like the texture is ruined a little when freezing.
More pancake recipes
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Luckily, it doesn’t take much equipment to make perfect pancakes. It is however a lovely feeling to have all the right equipment. Here are a few little things that might make your pancake-making experience just that much sweeter.
- Silver Dollar Pancake Pan – if you want your pancakes to all look exactly the same.
- Zwilling J.A. Henckels Marquina Non-Stick Frying Pan – a good pan is crucial to properly cooking pancakes, and this one is sure to please.
And that’s it. What did you think? Have you tried lemon ricotta pancakes before? Let me know in the comments below.Print