Everything you need to know about how to make pancakes from scratch
If you’re looking for a treasure trove of pancake recipes, ingredient inspiration, cooking tips, or even pointers for successfully flipping a pancake, you’ve come to the right place.
We’ve compiled the ultimate pancake ‘how to’ guide for everybody’s favourite flat cakes so that when Shrove Tuesday arrives, you’ll be perfectly prepared to cook up a storm!
How to make pancakes without eggs
In pancakes, the role of the eggs is essentially to bind the ingredients and provide the structure that’s needed for the pancakes to rise properly and be fluffy and flavoursome.
But what if you don’t eat eggs because of your dietary preferences or due to an egg allergy? Or what if you’ve run out of eggs and the shops are shut? Will you simply have to go without pancakes? Of course not!
Egg-free pancakes are a thing. You just need to find a suitable substitute for the eggs. Some of the more popular egg substitutes include:
- Pureed or mashed banana: ¼ to ½ cup = 1 large egg
- Chia or flax seeds mixed with water: 1 tablespoon of ground seeds + 3 tablespoons of water = 1 large egg
- Yoghurt: ¼ cup = 1 large egg
- Mayonnaise: 3 tablespoons = 1 large egg
- Applesauce (unsweetened): ¼ cup = 1 large egg
Although you will have subbed out the eggs, be sure to follow the rest of your chosen pancakes recipe exactly.
How to make vegan pancakes
Traditionally containing dairy and eggs, pancakes as many of us know them don’t generally tend to be vegan-friendly.
However, there are loads of brilliant vegan-friendly pancakes out there that call for alternative, plant-based ingredients, so there’s no need for vegans to miss out on the joy of pancakes.
How to make American pancakes
There are quite a few differences between American pancakes and English pancakes, although both are undoubtedly delicious.
Where traditional English pancakes are more like crêpes (i.e., light and thin with a wrinkled surface), American pancakes tend to be fluffier, thicker, lighter, and much more stackable! American Pancakes are usually made with buttermilk instead of milk (buttermilk is thicker) and they also often include a raising agent – typically baking powder.
If you’re a fan of American-style stacks over classic English crêpes, check out our Apple Cinnamon Stateside Pancakes recipe.
How to flip a pancake
Watch the video follow the pointers below to master the art of flipping a pancake!
- Tip the pancake close to the edge of the pan before you flip
- Commit to the flip – confidence is key
- Remember, it’s all in the wrist!
What to put on your pancake: best toppings and flavours
Next you need to decide what to put on your pancakes or what to serve them with. Here are some popular options.
Lemon and Lyle's Golden Syrup®
A classic British recipe, crêpe-style pancakes with lemon and Lyle’s Golden Syrup is one of the nation’s favourite ways to enjoy pancakes! Check out our Classic Crêpe Pancakes recipe for pancakes with a side of nostalgia. Why not sprinkle on some sugar for a little extra something sweet?
Chocolate chip pancakes
You know what’s better than pancakes? Pancakes with chocolate in them, of course! If you’ve not yet tasted the blissful union of pancakes and chocolate, it’s time to rectify that. Once you’ve made your preferred style of pancakes, simply grab a handful of chocolate chips and scatter over your pancakes. Or, you can choose to bake the chocolate chips in to the batter.
Fruit is a popular addition to pancakes. If you’re partial to a blueberry or two, our easy Blueberry and Buttermilk Pancakes recipe calls for just 5 ingredients and take no time at all to make – perfect if you’re looking for a no fuss, no muss recipe.
Kick things up a notch with bananas caramelised in butter and Lyle’s golden syrup for pancakes with an extra gooey sweetness. Plus, with a handful of crushed hazelnuts stirred in with the bananas you get an extra little crunch to each bite.
Pancake making FAQs
Discover the answers to commonly asked, pancake-related questions.
Can you make pancakes without eggs?
Yes, you can make pancakes without eggs if you use a suitable egg substitute. Some popular egg substitutes for pancakes include: pureed or mashed banana (¼ to ½ cup = 1 large egg), chia or flax seeds mixed with water (1 tablespoon of ground seeds + 3 tablespoons of water = 1 large egg), yoghurt (¼ cup = 1 large egg), mayonnaise (3 tablespoons = 1 large egg), and unsweetened applesauce (¼ cup = 1 large egg).
How long does pancake batter last?
When stored in the fridge, your pancake batter should last for somewhere between 2 and 4 days, depending on the expiry dates of the ingredients you used to make the batter (such as the milk and the eggs).
Can you freeze pancakes?
Yes, you can freeze pancakes. Once cooked, make sure your pancakes have cooled down completely before you put them in the freezer. Your pancakes should last for up to 2 months when frozen.
You could choose to freeze the pancake batter instead of the pancakes themselves. In which case, we recommend making sure the mixture is suitably sealed and used within 1 month of freezing.
What is the most popular pancake topping?
According to a 2021 nationwide survey conducted by Park Dean Resorts and TLF research, the UK’s favourite pancake topping is lemon and sugar – settling the age-old Shrove Tuesday sweet vs savoury debate once and for all!
Can you use self-raising flour for pancakes?
Yes, you can use self-raising flour for pancakes. Self-raising flour consists of flour, baking powder and salt. If your pancake recipe calls for plain flour and baking powder (or any other leavening agents), then self-raising flour can be used instead – just make sure you leave out the leavening agent.
How to prevent lumps in your batter mix
Lumps form in your batter mix when the mixture hasn’t been stirred enough to get rid of them. The best way to get lumps out of your batter is to keep stirring the mixture until the lumps are gone.
We would suggest using a whisk instead of a spoon, any utensil which will break up the bits of flour or has multiple strands which cuts through the dry materials to allow for better mixing. You can also try a flour which has lower gluten, like cake flour or pastry flour as less gluten make it less likely for lumps to form.
And for those lumps that don’t seem to co-operate we’d recommend leaving your batter to rest for 15-20 minutes which allows for the batter to settle and lumps dissolve.
Don’t panic if you still have small lumps in your batter, as these will likely break down in the cooking process.
How to know when your pancake is ready to flip and fully cooked
You can quickly test whether your pancake is ready to flip by giving the pan a shake, if the pancake is moving then this is usually a good sign that the pancake is ready to flip.
Gently lift the side of your pancake with your spatula before you try.
Take a deep breath, and confidently flick the pancake upwards and catch it again on the other side.
(Don’t worry if you don’t get it straight away, flipping pancakes take some practice, which is why having a spatula nearby to help is always a good thing.
Try our super-easy pancake recipes
Our array of simple, straightforward pancake recipes feature everything from the classically traditional to the more adventurous, unusual (even whimsical) concoctions.
Discover all the easy pancake recipes you’ll need to wow your friends and family this Pancake Day.
- Lyle’s Classic Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Vegan Crêpes Recipe
- Lyle's Blueberry and Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Orange and Ricotta Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Banana and Hazelnut Sharing Pancake Recipe
- Lyle's Lemon Drizzle and Poppy Seed Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Japanese Souffle Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Pear and Chocolate Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Pineapple and Coconut Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Peanut Butter Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle's Apple Cinnamon Stateside Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle’s Pancake Roses Recipe
- Lyle’s Spider Web Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle’s Dreamy Choco-Nut Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle’s Cereal Pancakes Recipe
- Lyle’s Golden Bacon Pancakes Recipe
Don’t forget the Lyle’s!
Top off your perfect pancakes with our classic Lyle’s Golden Syrup® and explore other delicious dessert toppings in our range.