Monday, October 10, 2011

{31 Days} Cooking Breakfast from Scratch: Pancakes

Raise your hands if you’ve had pancakes made from a box?  Maybe one of these?

Whole Wheat Blend Pancake & Waffle Mix Complete Extra Light & Fluffy Pancake & Waffle Mix bisquick

I have. 

We grew up with pancakes & waffles made from these boxes.  Occasionally my mom would make us pancakes completely from scratch – and they were incredible!

When I moved out, and set up my kitchen, I proudly purchased my first boxed pancake mix.  Then, I read the label.

Scanning the packages above, you’ll find things like: dextrose, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, corn syrup solids {what?! – isn’t syrup liquid by definition?}, mononitrate, niacin… and the list goes on & on. 

That was it.  I was determined to cook our pancakes for breakfast from scratch.  Not only do homemade pancakes taste better, but they contain simple ingredients that I can pronounce.

Pancakes are simple to make.  If a 24-year old college grad could figure them out – you can too!

Tips for Making Homemade Pancakes

(1) You’ll want a non-stick griddle, or large frying pan.  If you decide to make pancakes often, the griddle is the way to go.  Non-stick makes for easy clean up & no need to use butter for cooking. 

(2) Double the recipe whenever you make pancakes {unless there are just two of you, then you’ll have plenty of pancakes with the recipes I have posted here!}; cook all the pancakes and then freeze them for weekday breakfasts.  Come Monday, you’ll be so glad you did.   

Either make up two batches back-to-back (I often do this so I work with less batter at a time), or mix them up at once.

(3) Use a ladle to scoop the pancake batter onto the griddle.  So easy!

(4) If you are the first one up, make the pancakes and then keep them warm until the sleepy-heads get up using this simple tip

Easy Pancake Recipes To Try

Here are our top 3 pancake recipes for starters: Real Buttermilk Pancakes {made with 100% white whole wheat}, Cinnamon Oatmeal Whole Wheat Pancakes & Fluffy Applesauce Pancakes.  Click on the photos for the recipe links. 


Pumpkin Pancakes with Apple Topping

If you’re up for a terrific fall pancake – give this recipe a try.  To put the breakfast over the top, be sure to serve the apple topping along with the pancakes.  Trust me on this one. 

Pumpkin Pancakes with Apple Topping – Adapted from The Happy Housewife


  • 1 3/4 C buttermilk*
  • 1 C + 2 T pumpkin or sweet potato puree
  • 1 egg
  • 2 C white whole wheat flour {or whole wheat flour}
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 medium apple, chopped
  • 1 T butter
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

*If you use real, cultured buttermilk {i.e., not the 1 T + 1 C milk method of making buttermilk}, you’ll need to add about 1/2 C milk to your batter to make it thinner! 


Preheat your griddle to 325. 

In a large bowl, mix together the 2 C white whole wheat flour, 1/4 C brown sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1/4 tsp. sea salt and 1 tsp. cinnamon.  Stir well. 

If you don’t want to use 100% whole wheat, try a 1:1 ratio in this recipe!

In a second bowl, mix 1 egg together with 1 C pumpkin puree and 1 3/4 buttermilk.

Stir the wet and dry ingredients together until a batter is formed – it will still have some lumps, and that is just fine.  Often, I find using a whisk works well for this step. 

At this point, the batter should be thick – slightly thicker than cake batter.  If it seems overly thick, add milk (up to about 1/2 C) to thin the batter.  I ended up adding about 1/2 C. 

Scoop your pancakes onto the hot griddle.  Cook for about 3 minutes/side, until small bubbles form (that’s the CO2 escaping from the baking powder/soda). 

Then flip!  Continue cooking for 1-2 additional minutes, until lightly browned (that’s from the baking soda!). 

While the pancakes are cooking away, melt 1 T butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  When butter is melted, toss in the sliced apples.  Sauté the apples until they start to tenderize – about 5 minutes.  Then, reduce the heat to low, add in the brown sugar and cinnamon and let them stew in the yummy juices while you finish up the pancakes.  You’ll want to stir this occasionally! 

Serve the warm apples atop your pancakes.  Any extra apple topping can be refrigerated until later.  But, there likely won’t be any left. 

To freeze the extras, place the cooled pancakes on a cookie sheet. 
Flash freeze them by placing them into the freezer for about 20 minutes. 
Remove the partially-frozen pancakes from the cookie sheet. 
Stack them in an airtight container or a freezer bag. 
Place the pancakes into your freezer. 

When you need them for breakfast, remove what you want to eat and re-heat them.  We like microwaving them for about 1 minute and then tossing them in the toaster oven to get them crispy! 

Have you tried making homemade pancakes?  Do you have a favorite recipe?  Please share them in the comments below. 

{Also, if you try making pancakes from scratch, take a photo & share it on our facebook page!  I’d love to see what you’re trying!}

Linked to: Melt in Your Mouth Monday, Tasty Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday 2, Kitchen Tip Tuesday, Pumpkin Round-Up, Your Recipe, My Kitchen


  1. Yum I love pumpkin pancakes and have a recipe posted on my blog too. thanks

  2. I used to use Bisquick, too. And only make homemade ones when I was in a pinch-sounds backward, doesn't it? But, I love making them from scratch! It's easy, and better for you, too!

  3. I love love love pumpkin pancakes. It is our newest favorite in our home. We did a cinnamon swirl recipe a couple of weeks ago. I should make them again but put my homemade apple sauce on top! Thanks for the apple idea! Yours look so yummy.

  4. It's funny you post this now.
    Last night after church I was craving pancakes. I knew I had a box in the pantry (which I rarely have anymore) and I made pancakes using the box. I usually make your Wheat-Blueberry Pancakes as they're our favorites, and the boxed version was horrible but it was quick. I hadn't had a box mix in over 2 years probably. They were dense and tasted like they were from a box. Never again!

  5. With 3 teenagers in the house, leftovers are usually non-existent, so I haven't had any luck with freezing leftovers. What I have done to save some time is to mix up a batches of the dry part of the ingredients ahead of time and store them in mason jars with the needed wet ingredients listed on the side. It takes no time to measure an extra set of ingredients and I can toss everything together in a bowl in no time!

  6. I agree, pancakes from the box are scary. I recently wrote a post about real ways to stretch maple syrup. Since you seem to like pancakes :), I think you would enjoy the post.

  7. I LOOOOOOOVVVVEEE homemade buttermilk pancakes. I've made them so often I've memorized the recipe. It's on the smallish side, so I always double it and we freeze the extras, which my daughter later heats up for a quick breakfast!

  8. Oh, a "secret" I sometimes use in "plain" pancakes is just a pinch of them a little something.

  9. I have never tried freezing the extra pancakes, but it sounds like a great way to have a "special" breakfast in the middle of the week. I will have to keep this in mind next time we make pancakes!

  10. My go to recipe is Alton Brown's. I make a batch of it (the dry ingredients) about once a month or so. You can also use it to make biscuits. I make and freeze a batch of pancakes every weekend as my 3 year old eats them for breakfast every day. Just flash freeze, then throw them in a Ziplock. To reheat, nuke for 30-40 seconds. Tastes just as good and you feed the hungry minions quickly.

  11. What a fun post full of great pancake tips, SnoWhite! :)

    I don't see a link back to KTT... maybe I'm just missing it? :)

    Have a great week! :)


  12. What kind of griddle do you use? I have one but need a new one. Pancakes look delicious! Thanks for sharing!!

    Beth :)

    1. We have a Presto Griddle -- love it. It can be submersed in water and it's non-stick.


Thanks for stopping by! I'd love to hear from you; especially how you're finding JOY in your kitchen.

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