English pancakes are a traditional British breakfast usually eaten on Shrove Tuesday — or Pancake Day — and are a thin crepe-like pancake filled with sprinkles of lemon juice and sugar. English pancakes are slightly thicker than a traditional crepe. While you can fill them with sweet or savory fillings, the traditional English toppings are sugar and lemon juice.

My family loves pancakes for breakfast, so we love having plenty of pancake options. You can’t go wrong with my buttermilk pancakes — the classic, fluffy pancake recipe we all love! German pancakes, cinnamon chip pancakes, and pumpkin pancakes are also family go-tos.

English Pancakes on a white plate with a spoon of sugar next to the rolled crepes.

Why This Recipe Works

  • This recipe is so easy to make — all you need are your ingredients and a blender.
  • This is a great breakfast recipe since it requires only 3 ingredients that you always have on hand and
  • Forget about messy breakfasts. Thanks to the blender, this recipe makes hardly any dishes.
  • While lemon juice and sugar are the traditional toppings for English pancakes, feel free to customize these to your family’s liking. See my recipe tips section for filling/topping ideas.

Ingredients

Ingredients used to make English Pancakes in a blender.
  • Eggs: The egg to milk/flour ratio is important because it’s what makes English pancakes different than crepes.
  • Flour: I use regular all-purpose flour.
  • Milk: I use normal cow’s milk. I haven’t made this with almond milk, but it shouldn’t be too different if you are looking for a dairy-free option. The taste may be different due to the almond aspect of the milk.
  • Melted Butter: I like to brush a bit of melted butter onto the pancakes before the lemon and sugar.
  • Lemon Juice: You can leave a little bowl of lemon juice on the table for people to add more on top of the rolled English pancakes if they’d like.
  • Granulated Sugar: I take a normal spoon and sprinkle the sugar after the lemon juice — so it sticks to the pancake.

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Add the eggs, flour and milk to a blender. Blend until smooth — about 30 seconds.
  1. Warm a cast iron skillet over medium to medium-low heat. (You’ll want to finagle with your stove top settings to get a feel for what the best temperature for you will be).
  2. Butter the skillet.
  3. Holding the skillet in one hand (with a hot pad on!!) pour 1/3 cup of the batter into the skillet while rotating the skillet around in a circle so that the batter spreads across the entire pan.
  4. Place the pan on the burner and let cook for 1 minute or until lightly golden brown. Use a rubber spatula and flip the pancake over and continue to cook the other side until lightly golden.
A cast iron skillet cooking an English pancake.
  1. Transfer the cooked English pancake to a plate. Continue this process until all of the batter has been used up (buttering between every pancake).
A stack of cooked crepes on a plate on a blue background.

Recipe Tips

English pancake batter: Once the batter is made, you can place it in the fridge to sit for about 15-30 minutes. I’ve always heard that allowing the batter to rest prevents the English pancakes from tearing. Is this true? It’s hard to say! I usually don’t have a lot of tearing issues, whether I let the batter sit or not.

Making English pancakes: I like to use a fresh cube of butter and fold down the top of the butter wrapper. I then grab the wrapped end of the cube and quickly rub the open portion of the butter stick over the skillet.

English Pancake Toppings

You can fill each pancake with the butter, lemon juice and sugar and roll them up, or you can leave them open and let people fill them with their preferred amount of lemon juice/sugar — or different toppings even.

To pre-fill English pancakes: Lay a single crepe on a large plate. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush some melted butter overtop of the crepe. Next, squeeze fresh lemon juice overtop, about 1 1/2 teaspoons worth. And lastly, sprinkle a nice dosage of granulated sugar over the lemon juice. Starting on one end, roll the crepe up until it sort of resembles a log.

Leave some lemons/lemon juice and a bowl of sugar on the table so people can top with additional lemon juice and sugar if they want.

You can forgo the lemon juice and sugar and dollop some Greek yogurt whipped cream with a drizzle of raspberry sauce. I also like filling one or two with fresh fruit and some vanilla ice cream.

FAQs

What’s the difference between English pancakes and crepes?

English pancakes are typically thicker than crepes, due to the different amounts of flour, eggs and milk.

What’s the difference between American pancakes and English pancakes?

American pancakes contain a leavening agent — either baking powder, baking soda, or beaten egg whites.

Are crepes healthier than pancakes?

In the sense that crepes contain less ingredients than pancakes, they’ll be less caloric in value. However, if you’re eating more crepes since they aren’t as robust as pancakes — or if you’re piling on the toppings — that will affect which is healthier.

Rolled up English Pancakes on a plate with lemons in the background.

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Rolled up English Pancakes on a plate with sliced lemons overtop.
Print Review
5 from 3 votes

English Pancakes

English pancakes are essentially crepes topped with melted butter, lemon juice, and sugar. These make for a delicous breakfast, brunch, or even dessert!
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 16 English pancakes

Ingredients
 

  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter - cold

Toppings

  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • lemon juice - (use as much or as little as you'd like)
  • granulated sugar - use as much or as little as you'd like

Instructions
 

  • In a blender add the eggs, flour, and milk. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds.
  • Either set the batter in the fridge to let rest for 15-30 minutes while you prep the skillet and topping ingredients, or continue on without the "batter resting" phase.**
  • Warm a cast iron skillet over medium to medium-low heat. (You'll want to finagle with your stove top settings to get a feel for what the best temperature for you will be).
  • Butter the skillet (I like to use a fresh cube of butter and fold down the top of the butter wrapper. I then just grab the wrapped end of the cube and quickly swoosh the butter stick over the skillet.) Holding the skillet in one hand (with a hot pad on!!) pour 1/3 cup of the batter into the skillet while rotating the skillet around in a circle so that the batter dribbles across the entire pan.
  • Place the pan on the burner and let cook for 1 minute or until lightly golden brown. Use a rubber spatula and flip the pancake over and continue to cook the other side until lightly golden.
  • Transfer the cooked English pancake to a plate. Continue this process until all of the batter has been used up.

Topping the Crepes

  • Lay a single crepe on a large plate. Using a pastry brush lightly brush some melted butter overtop of the crepe.
  • Next, squeeze fresh lemon juice overtop, about 1 1/2 teaspoons worth or more to your liking.
  • And lastly, sprinkle a nice dosage of granulated sugar over the lemon juice.
  • Starting on one end, roll the crepe up until it sort of resembles a log.
    Top with additional lemon juice and sugar, if desired! Serve warm.

Notes

English pancake batter: Once the batter is made, you can place it in the fridge to sit for about 15-30 minutes. I’ve always heard that allowing the batter to rest prevents the English pancakes from tearing. Is this true? It’s hard to say! I usually don’t have a lot of tearing issues, whether I let the batter sit or not.
Making English pancakes: I like to use a fresh cube of butter and fold down the top of the butter wrapper. I then grab the wrapped end of the cube and quickly rub the open portion of the butter stick over the skillet.
English Pancake Toppings
You can fill each pancake with the butter, lemon juice and sugar and roll them up, or you can leave them open and let people fill them with their preferred amount of lemon juice/sugar — or different toppings even.
To pre-fill English pancakes: Lay a single crepe on a large plate. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush some melted butter overtop of the crepe. Next, squeeze fresh lemon juice overtop, about 1 1/2 teaspoons worth. And lastly, sprinkle a nice dosage of granulated sugar over the lemon juice. Starting on one end, roll the crepe up until it sort of resembles a log.
Leave some lemons/lemon juice and a bowl of sugar on the table so people can top with additional lemon juice and sugar if they want.
You can forgo the lemon juice and sugar and dollop some Greek yogurt whipped cream with a drizzle of raspberry sauce. I also like filling one or two with fresh fruit and some vanilla ice cream.
nutrition facts do not include lemon juice and sugar in the calculation.

Nutrition

Calories: 150kcal (8%)Carbohydrates: 8g (3%)Protein: 5g (10%)Fat: 11g (17%)Saturated Fat: 6g (30%)Cholesterol: 127mg (42%)Sodium: 116mg (5%)Potassium: 88mg (3%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 2g (2%)Vitamin A: 421IU (8%)Calcium: 54mg (5%)Iron: 1mg (6%)
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
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This recipe was originally published on Aug. 30, 2019. It was republished on July 27, 2021, to include additional information and photos.