Pancake Fridays: Classic Buttermilk Pancakes + Cakey Cinnamon Pancakes

On Saturday night, my long-lost friend S was craving pancakes. She whipped up a batch of incredibly cakey gingerbread pancakes speckled spices, reminding me that I had been meaning to develop a gingerbread pancake recipe for all you pancake lovers. But guys. I’m all spiced out. Are you?


I hope so, because then we’ll be on the same page. And you’ll be like, classic buttermilk pancakes YES! Just what I need Christmas morning! Because that’s what I was thinking. (Also, I am totally all over the place which is why Pancake Friday is coming to you on a Monday.)


Maybe the last thing you feel like doing is flipping pancakes on Christmas morning. Or maybe it’s a great way to relax. Maybe it’s worth the happiness of watching your family munch on some really great pancakes.

I don’t know. The last thing I want to cause you is more stress around the end of this holiday season (how is it almost here already??), but I do want to share these classically fluffy, picture-perfect pancakes with you.


Actually, there’s two pancakes. I did a pancake throw-down, of sorts. Two that I thought would be perfect for a Christmas brunch: a classic, buttery buttermilk pancake vs. a cakey, cinnamon-showered pancake. The uber-cakey cinnamon pancake made it’s debut with the pie pancakes.



cinnamon vs. buttermilk

I liked the buttermilk one better after making them, but the cinnamon one is just a breeze to throw together, perfect for a nearly effortless breakfast. And if you’re in a cakey mood (which I usually am), the cinnamon ones would be a definite winner. I couldn’t decide which was the actual winner, so I’m listing both. I like to have options, don’t you?

Happy holidays! I hope you’re having awesome, family, food and fun-filled times and I can’t wait to hear all about them!

P.S: The powdered sugar designs were courtesy of my brother. He cut out a star from a piece of scrap paper and sifted powdered sugar over the pancakes.



Changes: I’ve made these pancakes with all white whole wheat flour, all all-purpose flour, and half whole wheat, half AP. I like them all; I actually like all AP flour the least since it has the least wheat-y heft, but it yields the best golden appearance. The first batch of these came out beautifully, ringed and golden-brown. I’ve also used both cow’s and almond milk without noticing a large difference. If you use actual buttermilk in these, you’d probably get a richer result, but I find that the vinegar + milk combination does the trick.

These are rife with buttery flavor, and I’ve cut down on the butter without noticing a change in taste. Lastly, I lowered the amount of liquid in these a tad to make them a bit thicker.

Tips: If you think of it, set out ingredients ahead of time. It’s best to make pancakes with room temperature ingredients. That means you, eggs, milk, and melted butter.

When greasing the pan, I like to dump a little oil on the pan and use a paper towel to smear the oil around. The paper towel will absorb a lot of the oil, giving you a very minimalist sheen of oil on your pan.

I almost liked these pancakes better reheated (cold pancakes after photographing is only fun so many times)–stick them in the toaster or reheat in a pan over medium heat for five minutes, and they’ll crisp up even more, giving a great delicate crackle of a bite that ends in soft buttery innards.

Classic Buttermilk Pancakes
Tweaked from Bake. Eat. Repeat.

Yield: 12 pancakes


1 cup milk + 1 tablespoon vinegar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
scant 1 teaspoon baking powder (use aluminum-free if possible)
1 egg, separated and at room temperature
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons milk

Oil, for greasing


Preheat a pan over medium-low heat. Combine 1 cup of milk with vinegar (this will act as your buttermilk) and let sit for five minutes.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder. In another bowl, whisk together the egg yolk, “buttermilk,” and milk. Add yolk mixture to dry ingredients and stir gently until barely combined.

Add egg white to the mixture and stir until a thick, lumpy bumpy batter forms. Stop before the batter smooths out–-the egg white may not even be all the way incorporated. This is good. Uneven batter = fluffy pancake heaven. Stir in the melted butter, keeping small lumps in the batter if possible.

Lightly grease the pan with oil and raise the temperature to medium. Use a quarter cup to measure the batter onto the preheated pan. Cook until bubbles start to appear on the exposed surface of the pancake, about 2-3 minutes. Flip pancake and cook for an additional 2 minutes or until browned on the underside.



These pancakes don’t require lumps in the batter for a thick, puffy finished product because the batter itself is so thick and stiff. It barely moves in the pan except to allow sluggish bubbles to pop slowly through the surface of the pancakes. Stir these to your heart’s content. You can use any kind of milk or flour in these, just make sure to let it sit for five minutes before cooking so that the liquid has a chance to absorb into the flour and become nice and thick.

These pancakes are also great reheated, if a little dry. Sometimes I like to treat them like toast, and smear just a sliver of butter on them until the top is just moistened.

Cakey Cinnamon Pancakes
Base based on S’s friend’s recipe

Yield: 8-10 pancakes

1 cup flour (all purpose, white whole wheat, or half whole wheat and half AP will all work)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2/3 cup milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Use a fork to stir until well combined (lumps are not necessary; batter should be thick and smooth).

Let batter sit for five minutes. In the meantime, heat a pan over medium-low heat. Lightly grease the pan and increase heat to medium. Pour batter into pan 1/4 cup or less at a time. Batter should be extremely thick and  hard to pour; they should cook about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Serve right away or place finished pancakes in a 200 F oven to keep warm.

Feel like more pancakes? Check these out:

Pancake Fridays: Basic Dutch Baby
Pancake Fridays: Cornbread Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Lemon Bar Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Peanut Butter Carrot Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Pie Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Pumpkin Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Red Velvet Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Tarte Tatin Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Tres Leches Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Whole Wheat Pear and Chocolate Pancakes
Pancake Fridays: Vegan Cookies ‘n Cream Pancakes

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31 thoughts on “Pancake Fridays: Classic Buttermilk Pancakes + Cakey Cinnamon Pancakes

  1. Pingback: Whole Wheat Aquafaba Pancakes | The Pancake Princess

  2. Sam H

    Erika! these are still my go-to weekend pancakes. I brag to folks that I know the pancake princess and that she gave me her magic recipe.

  3. Muna Kenny

    Hi Erika, love the pancakes, they look so fluffy and delicious! I am pancake crazy, I play with the recipe so much that my sister keep reminding me to stop posting pancakes on my blog, I guess she had enough :)
    I’m so happy to visit your blog, there are many goodies here!

    1. erika Post author

      Thanks Muna! These buttermilk ones are actually one of my all-time favorites :) I say you can never have too many pancakes, so please keep posting!! Your gingerbread ones looked fantastic :) Thanks so much for visiting and for the kind comment!

  4. Pingback: Pancake Fridays: Peanut Butter & Banana Dutch Baby | The Pancake Princess

  5. Alessandra

    Found your website recently and boy am I glad I did! I love pancakes too but had suffered from numerous pancake fails … just did this recipe for the classic buttermilk recipe and need to look further no more! This was perfect, fluffy, and just a great canvas for whatever top pings you want! I wanted to thank you for such a great site and leading me to discover pancake NIRVANA!!!

    1. erika Post author

      Alessandra! Thanks so much for the sweet comment! I’m SO glad you tried + liked these pancakes–I’ve been thinking about re-doing this post since the photos really don’t do the recipe justice. Much love <3

  6. Mandy @ lady and pups

    OK, I don’t know if this ever happens to anybody… but I have question regarding general pancake batters. Is it just me or the baking powder always start “acting up” before the batter even hits the pan? I mean they are just bubbling away in the batter, and before it really has a chance to puff up in the pan, the batter has lost all its leavening power…

    Just me?….

    1. erika Post author

      Huh. I can’t say that’s ever really happened to me…so you end up with flat pancakes? Do you mix the wet and dry ingredients separately and then mix them together? And then cook them right away? Normally, the maximum lag time between mixing the wet + dry and cooking is, for me, around 15 minutes and I’ve never had a problem with flat pancakes.

      Hmm…maybe this is because I think I only use double-acting baking powder. So some of the power is released when the batter is heated + cooked.

      Sorry…I’m totally befuddled by this! But also intrigued.

      1. Mandy

        I usually use aluminum-free baking powder… I mean I can see the batter getting “foamy” while I heat up the pan or during the cooking of the first batch. And at the nd of the last batch, the batter normally isn’t foamy anymore. The pancakes still has some lift but I’ve always wondered if they could be taller if the baking powder has lost some of its leavening power…. Maybe I should chill my wet ingredients first? Weird….

        1. erika Post author

          Hmm…I’m going to have to watch my batter more closely the next time I make pancakes! I’ve never noticed that and (I think) my pancakes usually come out pretty consistently throughout the batch.

          Clearly you’re going to have to visit someday so you can show me how you make pancakes!

  7. Pingback: Pancake Fridays: Pannenkoeken (Dutch pancakes) | The Pancake Princess

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  9. Heather Elicker

    I wish I would have known about your blog when I bwgan my search for the perfect pancake. I wouldn’t have wasted my time on awful recipes. Your buttermilk pancakes are a mazing. Thanks for sharing with us such a gem. :)

  10. Pingback: Pancake Fridays: Musings on Whole Wheat Pancakes (with maple yogurt!) | The Pancake Princess

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  12. Pingback: Buttermilk Hot Cakes | familyrecipebooks

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    1. erika Post author

      Wow, that sounds amazing! I’d love to try that sometime. I’m heading over to your blog to look for the recipe now! (Although if it’s not on your blog, what recipe did you use?)

  14. gottagetbaked

    Erika, I could easily devour stacks of both pancakes, no problem! A good buttermilk pancake is always a welcome classic. I hope you had a wonderful holiday season with your loved ones, filled with good food and lots of booze! I look forward to drooling over more of your fabulous recipes in 2013 :)

  15. petit4chocolatier

    The pancakes are incredible! Buttermilk pancakes sound so good right now. The cakey cinnamon sound great too! Decisions, decisions!! Your brother is pretty creative too with the confectioners’ sugar designing :) Happy Holidays!!

  16. The Healthy Flavor

    Haha Erica! I posted my Gingersnap pancakes the other day because I’m obsessed with ginger so I laughed when you said you were all gingered out! :) I can’t get enough of them. I love these cinnamon ones…my post is my old cinnamon recipe that I turned into a Gingersnap cookie pancake. I’m loving the buttermilk ones…they look so classic and so delicious as your pancakes always do!! Gorgeous and salivating!!

    1. erika Post author

      Oh my GOSH I meant to keep an eye out for your pancakes but I’ve been so busy, running around like crazy!! I know I said I’m spiced out but I bet yours are DELICIOUS…I’m sure I’ll be tempted to make them!! Gingersnap cookies actually sound super delicious right now, hoo man.

      Thanks so much! Hope you’re having a fantastic Christmas!!


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