You can’t go wrong with this homemade buttermilk pancakes recipe from scratch! These pancakes are light, fluffy, and have a delicious buttery flavor that goes perfectly with fresh fruit, syrup, and cream for a delicious family breakfast!

Maple syrup drizzled overtop of homemade buttermilk pancakes.

Breakfast is a highly celebrated meal around here, and it shows! I have a huge array of breakfast recipes on my site. Making buttermilk pancakes from scratch is one of my go-to breakfasts.

I’ve found that separating the eggs and beating the egg whites into stiff peaks — in addition to the rising agents in the batter — give pancakes an additional light and airy texture. You want to be able to look at the pancakes from the side and see some of those air bubbles.

I have fond memories of pancakes growing up. Whenever we’d visit my grandpa (who lived out of state), he’d always make pancakes for us in the morning. He was a tall, Dutch man who would always say, “Eet smakelijk!” (which means “enjoy your meal” in Dutch) before a meal. 

There is something so nostalgic, heartwarming and welcoming about a plate of fluffy pancakes right off the griddle! 

I hope this recipe will bring your family together to create those delicious breakfast memories, too!

A fork holding a bite of pancake, with a stack of pancakes in the background.

Ingredients

  • Salt — Just enough salt to bring out the flavor in the pancakes, without overdoing it!
  • Baking powder — Our rising agents in this pancake recipe are baking powder, baking soda and whipped egg whites. This will give us a perfectly fluffy pancake. Baking powder is double acting, meaning it will react first when it gets wet and second when it gets heated.
  • Baking soda — Yes, we use both baking soda and powder. They are different and are used for different purposes. Baking soda will react when combined with an acid (in our case, buttermilk) to give rise to a batter or dough.
  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar — Just enough to give us a sweetened flavor.
  • Eggs, separated — We’ll beat the egg whites to fold into the batter.
  • Buttermilk — You’ll get better results and flavor when using real buttermilk instead of a buttermilk substitute. 
  • Vanilla extract — I love the flavor combination of vanilla and butter!
  • Unsalted butter, melted — The melted butter will mix beautifully into the batter, creating some buttery flavor pockets in these pancakes.
Bowl of egg whites whipped to soft peaks.

How to Make Buttermilk Pancakes from Scratch

  1. Mix dry ingredients. In a large bowl, whisk the salt, baking powder, baking soda, flour, and sugar. Set aside.
  2. Mix wet ingredients. In a medium size bowl, add the egg yolks, buttermilk, vanilla extract, and melted butter. Mix to combine. I keep it simple and just use a fork and mix until the yolk is nice and broken up and combined with the other ingredients.
  3. Beat egg whites. In a small bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
  4. Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients. Mix for a few seconds (again, I just use a fork). When the flour and wet ingredients are partially combined, fold in the fluffy egg whites. Don’t over mix! It’s fine to have small pieces of flour here and there. 
  5. Let batter rest. Let the pancake batter sit at room temperature for 10 minutes or so to rest. This will give time for the baking soda to activate. In the meantime, preheat a griddle or pan to cook the pancakes on.
  6. Cook. Using a 1/3 measuring cup, scoop the batter onto a buttered 300°F griddle. Cook on each side for approximately 2-3 minutes. Serve warm with butter and syrup drizzled over the top. 
Buttermilk being poured into a glass bowl.

Tools Used for This Recipe

Mixing bowls – You’ll need several bowl for this recipe and I love that this set provides the perfect sizes (large, medium, and small).

Hand beaters – I use these ones and love them. They don’t go too fast on the lowest speed, yet they go super fast on the highest! (Which I love).

Pancake griddle – I have an older version of this griddle. I love that the legs fold underneath itself, makes storing it a breeze.

Pancake spatula – perfect for turning pancakes, omelets, and eggs.

A stack of fluffy homemade pancakes.

Recipe Tips

Buttermilk

  • Use real buttermilk! 
  • Homemade buttermilk: If by chance you are desperate and insist on making your own buttermilk you can make your own with whole or 2% milk and lemon juice. For every 1 cup of milk add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Stir. The acid will curdle the milk slightly. It’s now ready to use!
  • Room temperature buttermilk will help the wet ingredients mix together more smoothly. If the buttermilk is cold and the unsalted butter is freshly melted and still very warm, the cold buttermilk will make the melted butter slowly get hard and develop chunks. If this happens though, don’t stress! It won’t affect the flavor or cook of the pancakes. It’s just a good rule of thumb to cook using room temperature wet ingredients in cakes and cookies.

Cooking times will vary depending on the griddle or pan you use.

Tips for fluffy pancakes

  • A trick I use with my banana chocolate chip muffins is to let the batter sit before baking them. This same tip applies for pancakes: Let the pancake batter sit for at least 10 minutes before cooking the pancakes. This resting time lets the baking powder work its magic.
  • Do NOT overmix the batter. The key to pancake (and waffle batter) is to mix the batter until combined but lumpy. This allows the gluten proteins in the batter to link together in a relaxed and weblike way. When cooked, large air bubbles are formed between the loosely combined gluten proteins resulting in a light and fluffy pancake.
  • Overmixed batter has overdeveloped gluten. Meaning, the gluten has linked tightly in a strong weblike manner. This strong gluten connection means there is less space for air pockets to develop between the tightly wound gluten proteins, resulting in thin and flat pancakes. 
  • Don’t press down on your pancakes with your pancake spatula you are using. I see this all the time! After pouring the batter, let it cook for 2-3 minutes on each side and then flip it. If you press down, you’re forcing the pancake to be flat.

Don’t be afraid to add mix-ins to the batter too! Toss in a handful of chocolate chips, nuts, or blueberries. 

A fork carrying a bite of homemade buttermilk pancakes.

FAQs 

What is the trick to making fluffy pancakes? 

It’s all about having the right balance between your base rising agent (baking soda, baking powder) and the acid in your batter. Baking soda is a base that will react with an acid. That’s why buttermilk pancakes are so good because buttermilk is way more acidic than normal dairy milk. The additional beaten egg whites folded into your batter will really send these pancakes to light and fluffy heights!

Can I use a substitute for buttermilk? 

Technically, yes. Common buttermilk substitutes use a ratio of milk and an acid (such as lemon juice or vinegar). If you’re in a pinch, you can use a substitute, but I highly recommend using the real deal! You won’t be sorry.

Storing leftover pancakes

Leftover pancakes can be store in an airtight container or ziplock bag in the fridge for up to 5 days. When ready to eat remove from container, place on a plate, and microwave until warm. 

Maple syrup being drizzled over a stack of pancakes.

More Breakfast Recipes


If you make this recipe and love it, I would be so grateful if you come back to leave a rating and review. Thank you! ❤️

Maple syrup being drizzled over a stack of pancakes.
Print Review
5 from 7 votes

Homemade Buttermilk Pancakes

The most delicious buttermilk pancakes made from scratch! You’ll never make pancakes from a box ever again!
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 12 pancakes

Ingredients
 

  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 2 cups buttermilk *
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl, whisk the salt, baking powder, baking soda, flour, and sugar. Set aside.
  • In a medium size bowl add the egg yolks, buttermilk, vanilla extract, and melted butter. Mix to combine. I keep it simple and just use a fork and mix until the yolk is nice and broken up and combined with the other ingredients.
  • In a small bowl beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Set aside.
  • Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients. Mix for a few seconds (again, I just use a fork). When the flour and wet ingredients are partly combined fold in the fluffy egg whites. Don't over mix. It's fine to have small pieces of flour here and there. Let the pancake batter sit at room temperature for 10 mintues or so to rest. In the meantime, preheat a griddle or pan to cook the pancakes on.
  • Using a 1/3 measuring cup, scoop the batter onto a buttered 300°F griddle. Cook on each side for approximately 2-3 minutes. Serve warm with butter and maple syrup drizzled over the top. 

Video

Notes

*use REAL buttermilk!
Homemade buttermilk: If by chance you are desperate and insist on making your own buttermilk you can make your own with whole or 2% milk and lemon juice. For every 1 cup of milk add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Stir. The acid will curdle the milk slightly. It’s now ready to use! Just note, I have not made this recipe with homemade buttermilk, I prefer the real thing far more. 
Do NOT overmix the batter. The key to pancake (and waffle batter) is to mix the batter until combined but lumpy. This allows the gluten proteins in the batter to link together in a relaxed and weblike way.
Allowing the pancake batter to rest for 10 minutes at room temperature lets the baking powder and baking soda work it’s magic!
Don’t press down on your pancakes with your pancake spatula you are using. I see this all the time! After pouring the batter, let it cook for 2-3 minutes on each side and then flip it. If you press down, you’re forcing the pancake to be flat.
Don’t be afraid to add mix-ins to the batter too! Toss in a handful of chocolate chips, nuts, or blueberries.
Storing: Leftover pancakes can be store in an airtight container or ziplock bag in the fridge for up to 5 days. When ready to eat remove from container, place on a plate, and microwave until warm. 

If you make this recipe and love it, I would be so grateful if you come back to saltandbaker.com to leave a rating and review. Thank you! ❤️

Nutrition

Calories: 136kcal (7%)Carbohydrates: 20g (7%)Protein: 4g (8%)Fat: 4g (6%)Saturated Fat: 2g (10%)Cholesterol: 36mg (12%)Sodium: 338mg (14%)Potassium: 153mg (4%)Sugar: 4g (4%)Vitamin A: 165IU (3%)Calcium: 82mg (8%)Iron: 1.2mg (7%)
author: Salt & Baker
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
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Homemade Buttermilk Pancakes that are thick and fluffy! Drizzle maple syrup over top and you have the perfect breakfast! #pancakes #buttermilkpancakes #breakfast #fluffypancakes #syrup