How To Make Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes

4.76 from 206 votes
Light, fluffy, and golden brown crisp edges, my best Buttermilk Pancakes are so amazing you might not even need syrup!
Make breakfast a winner with these Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes

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Hi Bold Bakers!

Time and time again I get asked this very important question: How do I make the perfect buttermilk pancakes?

Well bakers, my Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes recipe here to answer all of your questions, troubleshoot all of your pitfalls, and ensure that every time you have that pancake craving — you can deliver with Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes. Light, fluffy, and golden brown crisp edges, My Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes are so amazing you might not even need syrup!

I have tried every recipe under the sun for American-style pancakes and hands down this is the best recipe I have. To say that it’s tried and tested is an understatement. I used to have a breakfast catering business in San Francisco where I would create elaborate, over-the-top breakfasts (sound familiar?).

A stack of buttermilk pancakes with syrup being poured on them.

The Road To The Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes From Scratch

I had never made buttermilk pancakes before, but I was determined to master the Perfect Buttermilk Pancake Recipe because I wanted to make those thick stacks of fluffy, light pancakes that you got in diners. I was convinced that everyone was using a boxed pancake mix and that’s how they got perfect pancakes every time. I am actually pretty sure most diners do use a box mix, however — that’s not for me.

God bless the poor guinea pigs I catered for because regardless of the result they ate them. But without my hungry audience and the demand for “bigger and bolder” breakfasts, I never would have created Red Velvet Pancakes with Cream Cheese Frosting, Churro Waffles, and Cinnamon Roll Pancakes.

Where it all started, though, was this basic, humble recipe for fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes. 

Why You Need Buttermilk To Make Pancakes

The tangy flavor of buttermilk is not the only reason it’s important in creating the perfect buttermilk pancake. Buttermilk actually helps to activate the baking soda or raising agent in the pancake batter. This means before the pancake even hits the heat, it’s being made light and fluffy and bubbly from within the batter.

Buttermilk also acts as an acid, eating away at the flour or gluten in the pancakes. This is what makes these homemade pancakes so tender and soft.

How To Make Buttermilk Pancakes

Making good pancakes is an art, despite the simple ingredients. When making your batter, lumps are your friends. And when cooking your pancake, bubbles are your pals.

You don’t need a store-bought mix to make this best buttermilk pancake recipe. So get out your measuring cups, it’s time to start baking (and don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, down below):

  1. First, melt the butter and set it aside to cool.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Basically, you’re adding all of your dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, before combining them together.
  3. Whisk together buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla extract in a jug.
  4. Slowly add the liquid to the dry mix. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry, but don’t overmix. While mixing the batter, spell out the word “pancake” in your head and then stop mixing. That should be enough time for mixing.
  5. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and stir another. three times. Remember that lumps are your friends.
  6. Put in the fridge for 10 minutes. The cooling process allows the butter to chill and bubbles to form in your batter.
  7. Put a griddle on medium-low heat.
  8. Spoon a big spoonful of batter for each pancake onto the griddle.
  9. Cook for four minutes on one side. When you start to see bubbles forming on the top of the pancake, flip it.
  10. After you’ve flipped the pancake, cook for a bit longer than four minutes, until you’ve got yourself a golden pancake with hints of brown.
  11. Enjoy with butter. After taking your first bite, you will have loved this recipe.

How To Mix The Perfect Pancake Batter?

There is a skill to making the Perfect Buttermilk Pancake Recipe. After making thousands of them, I have mastered it. It comes down to 2 very simple things: mixing the pancakes and mixing in your melted butter.

A forkful of buttermilk pancakes.

Tips And Tricks For Making Homemade Buttermilk Pancakes

  • Don’t overmix your pancakes. The less you mix, the thicker and fluffier they will be. All of those lumps that you are worried about will disappear when the pancakes rest.
  • Let the dough rest in the fridge for 20 minutes before you use it. This allows the butter to set, so when they hit the hot griddle the butter will create steam, and steam evaporates and creates bubbles! Boom! Science lesson.

FAQs About Buttermilk Pancakes

  • Why does my pancake batter look lumpy, did I do something wrong? Nope! If your batter is a little lumpy, then your pancake will come out nice and fluffy.
  • How can I make my batter not be runny? I’d recommend slowly pouring in the liquids instead of adding more flour.
  • Can I substitute the flour? Yes!  You can substitute the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour and just adjust the amount of liquid that goes into it.
  • How many calories in a pancake? In this recipe, there are 143 calories per pancake.

Need More Breakfast?

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking cookbook for more recipes!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

Watch The Recipe Video!

Make Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe

4.76 from 206 votes
Light, fluffy, and golden brown crisp edges, my best Buttermilk Pancakes are so amazing you might not even need syrup!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 8
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
resting time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Light, fluffy, and golden brown crisp edges, my best Buttermilk Pancakes are so amazing you might not even need syrup!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 8


  • 4 tablespoons (2oz/57g) butter, melted
  • 2 cups (10oz/280g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (16 fl oz/ 1/2 litre/480ml) Buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • First, melt the butter and set it aside to cool.
  • Mix together the flour, baking powder, soda, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.
  • In a jug, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  • Add the liquid to the dry mix and starting lightly mixing together. The secret to thick, fluffy pancakes is not to over mix. My trick is to stir it enough times to spell P.A.N.C.A.K.E, and then stop.
  • Slowly drizzle in the cooled butter and stir another 3 times. Lumps are ok, resist the urge to mix more
  • Put in the fridge for 10 minutes. This helps the butter to chill and bubbles to form in your batter.
  • Put a heavy bottom frying pan or griddle on medium-low heat.
  • Spoon one big spoon of the batter per pancake.
  • Cook for roughly 4 minutes on one side. It is time to turn them over when you see bubbles forming on the top of the pancake and the edges turn color (forming bubbles on top is really important because they hold your pancake up and keep it thick, I call them pancake pillars :))
  • Flip and cook for another on the other side a little longer, until brown. Enjoy with butter and maple syrup.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition Facts
Make Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe
Amount Per Serving (1 pancake)
Calories 143 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 49mg16%
Sodium 494mg21%
Potassium 17mg0%
Carbohydrates 18g6%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 200IU4%
Calcium 30mg3%
Iron 0.9mg5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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Gregory Isaacs
4 years ago


So you got your wet ingredients. You’ve got your dry ingredients. You put them together. You stir them seven times, add the butter, stir another three. You’re looking at your lumpy mess thinking, “I have gone wrong somewhere… This is going to go terribly wrong…”

You’re on the right track my friend!

Not only will your pancakes turn out amazing… They will be super fluffy!

So do not over mix. Love the lumps!

4 years ago

Hi Gemma, planning to make for big group. Can I make them the night before and warm it in the morning? Thanks

3 years ago

Can I use this recipe for waffles?

4 years ago

My first time to make everything from scratch including your buttermilk recipe !
These pancakes are amazing !
Thank you so much for this recipe !

Kristina P.
Kristina P.
4 years ago

Gemma, I just made these DELICIOUS pancakes for dinner! I had a long work day and I always keep buttermilk in the house! These just aren’t for Sunday breakfast lol! Love this recipe!!

Spring air
Spring air
4 years ago

Our family just tried it this morning! It’s amazing! We had to substitute buttermilk for homemade almond milk. We also had to use whole wheat flour in the place of all-purpose. The way they cooked was just right. The flavor is the best we have had at home! It is definitely a keeper. Also adding blueberries makes them even better.

4 years ago

Hi Gemma! I tried this recipe yesterday but the batter was very runny – i think it’s because I used lactose-free milk which is very “watery”. Should I add more flour next time? Won’t adding more flour make me over-mix the batter? Thank you 😊

Joshua Terri
Joshua Terri
4 years ago

What do you mean by spelling pancake??? Pls reply as I want to make these for breakfast.

3 years ago

I hate making pancakes because they never turn out…UNTIL TODAY. I made this recipe, followed it exactly, and they turned out perfectly. Husband and two kids loved them! Throwing out every other pancake recipe and using this one every time now.

Cloighi Doyle
Cloighi Doyle
27 days ago

These pancakes are the best! I was looking for a new recipe and came across this one. Thank you for making me look like a chef.

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Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, a cookbook author, and the creator of Bigger Bolder Baking. I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere with my trusted and tested recipes and baking tips. You may have seen one of my 500+ videos on YouTube & TikTok or as a guest judge on Nailed It! on Netflix or the Best Baker in America on Food Network. No matter your skills, my Bold Baking Team & I want to be your #1 go-to baking authority.


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