Pancakes are the highlight of weekend mornings and something of a treat when I make them for dinner in the middle of the week. Whether you're a traditionalist who loves fluffy buttermilk pancakes, prefer a recipe that gives you a head start or one that incorporates a twist, or want to keep them vegan, there's a recipe here for you, along with all of our best tricks to help you cook up the best pancakes possible every time.
Our Smartest Pancake Tips + Tricks
Having a great pancake recipe is just part of the equation. These are our best tips and tricks for cooking up a great stack of pancakes every single time.
1. A wire cooling rack and warm oven is the best way to keep pancakes warm.
To keep pancakes in pristine condition before the whole lot of them are ready to head to the table, you'll need a baking sheet, a cooling rack, and a warm oven. And just say no to stacking the pancakes before it's time to eat.
2. It's crucial to wipe the skillet (or griddle) between batches.
Even when cooked over low heat, the milk solids in butter start to caramelize the longer the pan is on the heat, and eventually burn. Wiping out the pan removes the deeply browned or burnt milk solids, and makes for better-looking and better-tasting pancakes every time.
3. Yes, you can freeze cooked pancakes.
Once pancakes are cooked and cooled, freeze them in a single layer on a baking sheet to prevent them from sticking together. They can be reheated in the microwave, stovetop, or toaster — your choice.
Here's how: The Best Way to Freeze and Reheat Pancakes
4. Some lumps in the batter are totally okay.
Above all else, resist overmixing your pancake batter. If the batter is combined but still lumpy, that is perfectly fine. It's better to have a few small lumps than a stiff, sticky batter that will be rubbery after frying.
Before mixing your pancake batter, check the expiration date on the baking powder. If your baking powder is old or expired, you'll end up with flat pancakes, not light and fluffy ones.
Test for freshness: How To Test If Baking Soda or Baking Powder Is Expired
Our Best Pancake Recipes
This is the pancake recipe I use more than any other because it cooks up the most reliably light, fluffy, and tender pancakes. The recipe also calls for regular milk, although it's flexible enough to use all buttermilk, which I recommend doing.
These are my favorite pancakes to make when I'm in the mood for something a little different but doesn't stray too far off the path from classic pancakes. And if you like cornbread, you will absolutely love this stack.
These lacy pancakes cook up with golden-brown edges and the most wonderful tang. The recipe calls for just a tiny bit of flour — you can use all-purpose, almond, or coconut flours.
Eggs and ripe bananas are all you need to bring these simple, delicate pancakes to life. Greek yogurt makes an especially nice topping with this breakfast stack.
Count these pancakes as one more delicious reason to keep a container of ricotta in the fridge. They're extra fluffy with custard-like centers that make them feel like a special treat.
Get a head start on these spiced pancakes by baking a couple sweet potatoes during Sunday meal prep.
Because sometimes a whole batch of batter is too much. This is the recipe I always turn to when I want just a single pancake or two.
With the puffed edges and eggy texture, Dutch baby pancakes are wildly impressive yet surprisingly easy to pull off. Whip up the batter in the blender, but be sure to let it rest for a little while for the best results.
The addition of yeast gives these easy pancakes some pretty remarkable lift. Mix together the batter at night, then all that's left to do in the morning is fold in the egg and heat up the griddle.
Whether you follow a vegan diet, or you're simply out of eggs and butter, a few pantry staples are your ticket to a stack of light, fluffy pancakes.