My Canadian Dad has been making these homemade Canadian pancakes for more than 60 years! The secret to his pancake recipe is the bubbles we will create in the mixture. Everyone he has made these super fluffy pancakes for has always come back for more… and more.
You will master these pancakes after you have made them a few times. Your frying pan will conduct heat a little differently to mine, your stove top temperature will be a little different to mine, so there is a bit of art in this science of making easy pancakes!
In our house we have made this pancake recipe so many times everybody knows the little subtle differences that come from pan temperature, cooking time etc.. Without a doubt, the most important step is to fold and beat the pancake mixture extremely hard so that you get a steady stream of bubbles coming up in the mixture.
Ingredients for Canadian pancakes
The key ingredients in Canadian pancakes are milk, eggs, and flour. Then of course you must have high quality Canadian maple syrup for the topping.
Pancakes are fairly simple to make, but if you want to make them really, really well there are some subtle differences to be aware of.
I prefer full cream milk for the flavor. Other kinds of milk will work fine, use what you have available, but if you have a choice go for the full cream milk.
People often ask me what is the best flour for pancakes. This recipe calls for a mixture of whole wheat flour and all purpose flour. The whole wheat flour brings extra extra flavor and texture. However it would be too heavy to use entirely whole wheat flour, so the ratio I use here is 2 to 1 (plain to whole wheat).
Sometimes I increase the amount of whole wheat to boost the flavor, up to a 1 to 1 ratio works for me, do some experimenting and find out what works best for your taste buds.
If you only have plain flour available that will still work. Substitute plain for wholewhat so the total quantity of flour is still the same or the pancake batter will be too runny.
Self rising (raising) flour
I’ve had several questions about how to make self rising (raising) flour pancakes. All you need to do is omit the baking powder and baking soda shown in the ingredients. If mixing two flours together, just make sure they are both self raising flours.
I like to use brown sugar, again for the flavor. If you only have white sugar available then use that, but I like to go for ingredients that have as much flavor as possible.
This recipe calls for melted butter and although sometimes I think we can substitute butter for margarine or even olive oil, in this instance, butter is best. One-third of a cup of melted butter works out to be 2.8oz (or 75g) which is a little over half a stick.
Good quality maple syrup is what makes or breaks these Canadian pancakes. Some of the best maple syrup comes from the Canadian Province of Quebec. In fact, maple syrup from Quebec is so good and so sought after that thieves steal it by the truck load!
Homemade Pancake Options
My Dad always serves his famous homemade Canadian pancakes with bacon and maple syrup, but here are some suggestions that might be better suited to your tastes…
- lemon juice, cream, and sugar
- berry jam/ jelly and ice cream
- lashings of butter and honey
- a dusting of sugar and a sprinkling of mixed berries (raspberries, blueberries, strawberries)
- maple syrup and pecans
- sliced banana and honey
- butter and marmalade
- jam and cream
- Other amazing recipes to try:
- I am always asked to make my amazing apple cinnamon pancakes because the whole family loves them
- No bake cheesecake – seriously, you don’t have to bake this one.
- Banana bread with self rising flour – don’t want to put bananas on your pancakes? Use them in this great banana bread instead.
- Learn how to make pikelets with this great recipe
Firstly, chances are that there won’t be any leftovers!
However, if there are, you can cover and refrigerate these homemade pancakes for use later in the day. Try spreading a cold pancake with peanut butter then rolling it up to eat on the go. My kids love that as a mid-afternoon snack – that boost of protein keeps them going until dinner.
Finally, if you’d prefer to reheat the leftover pancakes, you can cover them with aluminum foil and pop them into a preheated oven for 7 – 8 minutes. Alternatively, you can stack them on a plate, cover with cling film, and put them in the microwave for awhile.
You can also try out these delicious mini pancakes that I found, they are great.
Pancake Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Yes, you certainly can freeze pancake batter. It is a great way to save time the next time you make pancakes. Use a freezer safe container, or even a resealable bag, label it and make sure you put a date on it.
It will store for about a month in the freezer and retain all of its delicious flavor and texture. Much longer than a month and it will start to lose some of the flavor, so be sure to use it up.
Yes, you can definitely freeze pancakes after you cook them. I do it all the time.
The main ‘trick’ is to freeze them separately for about 30 minutes on a baking tray or something similar where they are not touching each other. If you live in a cold climate, pop them outside for half an hour!
Yes, pancake mix can be used to make waffles. The mixture is very similar, there are some minor differences but it will work. Waffle fanatics say there are more egg whites in waffles, which technically there are, but it works just fine. Give it a try and see if you like it.
Yes, you can keep pancake batter in the fridge overnight, or for two or three days. Make sure it is covered, or preferable in an air tight container. Don’t leave it there too long though it contains milk and eggs which are will go off.
Absolutely yes! I do it all the time as it is quite convenient. Simply replace the plain flour called for in this recipe with self raising flour and omit the baking soda and baking power. The self raising flour already contains baking soda and baking powder in the correct quantities.
Until next time!
Love & Canadian homemade pancakes, Bx
Canadian Pancake Recipe
- large frypan
- 2 cups full cream milk
- 3 eggs
- 2 cups all purpose (or self raising) flour
- 1 cup wholewheat flour
- ⅓ cup butter* melted (see recipe notes below for quantity conversions)
- ⅓ cup sugar brown sugar is best if you have it
- 3 teaspoons baking powder (leave out if using self rising flour)
- 1½ teaspoons baking soda (leave out if using self rising flour)
- ¾ teaspoon salt
In Large Bowl
- Combine both flours, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt.
- Mix the dry ingredients well.
In Medium Bowl
- Combine milk, eggs, melted butter.
- Mix the wet ingredients.
- Get the pan warming up so it is the right temperature when you are ready for it.
- Pour wet mixture into dry mixture so you are now working in the large bowl.
- Try to keep ingredients separate until last minute – if batter sits too long, your pancakes will be flat, not deliciously light and fluffy the way my Dad makes them.
- Beat the combined mixture really well. Try to 'fold' the mixture so that air gets into it. Beat it some more. This step is so important. You want to see lots of bubbles coming up in the mixture. You will need these bubbles once it gets to the pan.
- Put a dollop of butter on the hot pan so the batter does not stick.
- Place a single ladle of mixture onto your already hot pan. You will start to see bubbles coming up, slowly at first, then rapidly. When new bubbles stop forming, that is the time to flip the pancake. Depending on your pan, this is about 2 minutes, but it is the bubbles that tell you when it is time to flip.
- Once you have flipped the pancake, you will not get bubbles on the other side. When to stop cooking this side usually comes down to experience with your pan and it's temperature. About 2 minutes, but until golden brown.
- Serve immediately to your hungry family the Canadian way – with bacon & maple syrup!