What's the secret to making perfect pancakes?

Every time I make them I either burn them on one side or they aren’t done in the middle. Is the griddle supposed to be piping hot before you pour the batter in? How do you know when they are done and when to flip?

Flip them when you start to see holes on the upside. On the other side you just need to check occasionally.

Mrs. ShibbOleth beats her eggs before adding to the batter, and this has made very nice, fluffy consistently delicious pancakes.

Preheat the griddle. It’s hot enough when a drop of water dances for awhile before it evaporates. If it just sits there, it’s not hot enough. If it goes z-z-z-zip! and it’s gone, it’s too hot.

Stir the batter well. Spray on some pam, or use a bit of butter or olive oil. Add the batter. and watch it as it cooks. It will start bubbling and drying a bit around the edges. This is when you start watching it carefully, and lifting an edge to check the bottom. When the bubbles slow or stop, it’s high time to flip that puppy.

Watch the edges - when they start to dry, you should start checking the bottom again.

If you see bubbles after you’ve flipped it, or the smoke alarm goes off, you’ve waited too long.

The thickness of the batter itself will also affect how one needs to cook it. Thicker pancakes require a slightly lower heat setting to avoid burning, but too little heat will dry them out. Pancakes are a technique based on trial-and-error after some initial good advice.

Thanks. I will give it a go again and see how they turn out. I think maybe it was because I always make the batter too thick. It is amazing how everytime I go out for breakfast and order pancakes they are always perfect. Some kind of conspiracy :wink:

at Denny’s we had this neat dipenser thing…press the plunger on top, and a perfect size glop comes out of the end. it makes life a lot easier. I think a lot of it has to do with better consistency and griddle heat… maybe go to denny’s and ask a manager how hot the grills are and if you can see some uncooked batter.

Another clue for pancakes is that you MUST let the batter sit for at least an hour or two before cooking. This allows the cellulose to soften up and makes for a much lighter pancake.

And waiting for the ‘bubbles’ on the upside is also wise advice!

I disagree. I’m of the Good Eats school of pancake making:

  1. Combine dry ingredients.
  2. Combine wet ingredients.
  3. Preheat griddle.
  4. Grease griddle (not too much).
  5. Combine wet and dry ingredients, stir until just barely combined, and start making pancakes.

It works.

To make perfect pancakes, you must follow the correct pancake ritual. In the pancake ritual, the first pancake must be sacrificed. The first one never comes out right, so and you just have to let it go. Preheat your griddle (guess at how hot it should be, or use the dancing-drop-of-water test.) Make the first pancake small. It’ll either be too dark, or it’ll be pale and take forever. Adjust your griddle’s temperature accordingly.

To tell when it’s time to flip, look at the edge of the pancake. If it’s shiny, the pancake isn’t ready to flip yet. When the shininess goes away, flip. This is, in my experience, after many bubbles have formed.

If you’re having raw-middle issues, thin your batter down (just add a little extra milk.)

There is no need to grease a non-stick griddle or pan unless you like your pancakes crispy at the edges.

And I highly recommend buttermilk pancakes! They are so tender and delicious. Good stuff to have on hand, buttermilk . . .

Just get the Perfect Pancake! After all, if you can turn a doorknob, you can use the Perfect Pancake! AND it comes with a FREE batter dispenser! You just can’t beat that.

In all honesty, the pancakes they made in that commercial look disgusting.

I make perfect pancakes. There is no comparison between my pancakes and Denny’s or any other restaurant pancakes. And no, I will not tell you how.

<cackles maniacly>

Think or thin? I prefer thin.

I like buying pancake mix, it has directions on how to cook them on the box. Yumm.

You hath spoken the truth, oh wise one. This Ritual is not to be skipped.

I make my dry, use a wire whisk and blend vigorously. I make my wet, use a wire whisk, bend vigorously. I pour wet over dry, take A CHOPSTICK ( this is very important. Pay attention. Yes, you in the fourth row.). I mix first with a chopstick, to coarsely blend the ingredients. THEN and only THEN do I reach for aforementioned wire whisk, for it’s hat trick appearance.

I blend many many strokes, until the batter is very smooth. Almost preternaturally smooth. Then, I pour. The comments about griddle temps are on the money, IMHO. Flip when the bubbles rise. NOT the first bubble, but when a smattering of bubbles rise up on the pancakes. Yea, but not a plethora either, but a smattering.

I used to have raw-dough-in-middle syndrome. :eek: Then, I stopped adding an extra dash of flour, thinned the batter a wee tad and goshabooties, they’re fine.

FINE, I tell ya ! :stuck_out_tongue:


MY pancakes don’t require one to be sacrificed. They ALL come out right.

Yup, Podkayne is correct. The first one never turns out good and must be sacrificed. However, this pleases our feathered friends. They love pancakes.

It is best to use a rectangular, perfectly flat, non-stick griddle. Do not use a wobbly pan or it will cook unevenly.

You only need to butter before the first batch.

If you’re using an electric oven, it should be medium hot (6 on my range).

Serve immediately with butter and warm syrup. Mmmm.

LOTS of butter… oh god, I am starving reading this.

To the kitchen. Pots and pans a-bangin’. Butterin’ and syrupin’ even. Exit stage right.

Sacrificial Pancake? That’s for amateurs who don’t know how to tell temperature.

Most people have their pan too hot-- or too thin. They come out best with a thicker frying pan on a medium, or medium-high setting (6 or 7 out of ten, on my stovetop dial).

OK, I’ve been shamed into posting. I knew I should have never put my email addy in my profile.

Here 'tis. This originated in some magazine, but I don’t remember which:

1 cup flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup milk
1 large egg, separated
2 tablespoons butter

Mix together all the dry ingredients. Mix together the buttermilk, milk, and egg white. Nuke the butter until it’s melted; whisk the egg yolk in with the butter, and dump it all in with the wet ingredients (this extra step makes the yolk incorporate with the milk mixture better than if you just dump it in).

Mix wet and dry ingredients until just mixed. Don’t overmix.

I cook 'em on a nonstick stovetop griddle, but an electric frying pan would work, too. I heat it while I’m mixing the pancakes, and it’s usually got a nice medium heat going by the time I’m ready to cook. Put about 2-3 Tablespoons of batter on the grill for each pancake. When the bubbles that appear on the topside burst, flip 'em. Cook until a nice even golden brown.

This recipe makes about 6-8 pancakes.

Last weekend I diced an apple, nuked it, and added nutmeg and cinnamon and put that in the batter before cooking. Very yummy.

ARRGGHH!! I forgot an ingredient! Here’s the REAL ingredient list:

1 cup flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup milk
1 large egg, separated
2 tablespoons butter