Perfect Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Buttermilk Pancakes are incredibly soft and fluffy, with the most delicious flavor! These pancakes are quick and easy to make and perfect for a weekend breakfast!

close up of stack of pancakes with butter and syrup

There’s no mistaking the buttery, slightly tangy flavor that buttermilk brings to pancakes. It’s what makes this our favorite pancake recipe, so much so that we make these easy buttermilk pancakes just about every week. Serve up a stack of these fluffy buttermilk pancakes for breakfast, and everyone at the table will be happy!

To make this buttermilk pancake recipe, you’ll need just a few common ingredients, nothing fancy. The recipe is simple and doesn’t require you to spend all morning in the kitchen. Serve these buttermilk pancakes with fresh fruit, bacon, scrambled eggs or Instant Pot hard boiled eggs for a delicious, satisfying breakfast.

I first shared this buttermilk pancake recipe in 2012. We’ve made these pancakes so many times since then, and over the years I’ve perfected the recipe to make it the very best. Today I’m sharing my improved recipe plus tips for making the best buttermilk pancakes.

stack of pancakes with a bite on a fork

Perfect Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Buttermilk is the key to making the best thick and fluffy pancakes! Since buttermilk is acidic, it helps to activate the baking soda in your pancake batter. This creates lift when you cook the pancakes, so that they turn out extra thick and fluffy.

Buttermilk can also help to break down the gluten in flour. So adding buttermilk to your pancake batter can help to make your pancakes extra soft and tender.

As if that isn’t enough, buttermilk also adds a delicious tangy flavor to pancakes. There’s nothing better than homemade buttermilk pancakes from scratch!

Buttermilk Pancake Ingredients

ingredients for buttermilk pancakes

  • Flour: I like to use a combination of all-purpose flour and white whole wheat flour when I make these pancakes. You can make these using only all-purpose flour or only white whole wheat if you prefer. Just be sure to use 2 cups of flour total. 
  • Granulated Sugar: The sugar adds a touch of sweetness.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda: These will help your pancakes to rise as they cook so that they will turn out light and fluffy.
  • Salt: A little bit of salt is essential for flavor.
  • Eggs: You’ll use two eggs in this recipe.
  • Buttermilk: Buttermilk is a key ingredient in this fluffy pancake recipe. If you don’t have store-bought buttermilk, this is how to make buttermilk using milk.
  • Vanilla Extract: Vanilla adds flavor and a little bit of sweetness.
  • Butter: Adding melted butter to the batter adds a rich, buttery flavor to the pancakes.

How to Make Buttermilk Pancakes

Making these pancakes is really simple. Here is an overview of the recipe steps. You can find the full ingredients list and instructions in the recipe card below.

  1. Melt the butter and set it aside so that it can cool slightly. You can melt the butter in a small bowl in the microwave or in a pot on the stove.
  2. Whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. dry ingredients in a bowl with a whisk
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla. wet ingredients in a bowl
  4. Whisk the melted butter into the wet ingredients. whisking melted butter into wet ingredients
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Mix together the wet and dry ingredients until they are just combined. Do not over-mix the batter. It’s ok if there are some lumps in the batter but there shouldn’t be streaks of flour. The batter will be thick. Mixing wet ingredients into the dry. The batter is lumpy.
  6. Cook the pancakes on a preheated griddle or non-stick skillet over medium heat. See more about how to cook pancakes below.
  7. Serve hot pancakes with maple syrup.

pouring syrup onto stack of pancakes

How to Cook Pancakes

I like to cook pancakes on an electric griddle because I can cook about eight at a time and it is easy to control the temperature. You can also cook your pancakes in a cast iron skillet or other non-stick skillet. Depending on which pan you use, you may want to add some butter or cooking spray to the pan before scooping on the pancake batter.

Cook pancakes over medium heat. I set my electric griddle to 325° F and it is perfect. Be sure to preheat the pan before cooking the pancakes. You can cook one pancake as a test to see if you have the right temperature.

Cook pancakes for about 3 minutes on the first side, until bubbles form on the top and the pancake bottoms are golden. Then flip and cook on the second side until golden. I find that pancakes feel lighter when you lift them with a spatula once they are cooked through.

How to Make Pancakes Without Buttermilk

If you run out of buttermilk, you can make my homemade buttermilk substitute to use in the pancake mix. I recommend reducing the amount of buttermilk by 1/4 cup if using homemade buttermilk because it is usually thinner than the buttermilk you buy at the store. Or, try my healthy pancakes recipe, which calls for milk instead of buttermilk.

stack of pancakes served with butter, syrup and berries

Recipe Tips

  • You can make these buttermilk pancakes with whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour. I usually use a combination of white whole wheat and all-purpose. I prefer white whole wheat flour because it has a milder flavor and texture than regular whole wheat flour.
  • Mix the pancake batter just until the flour is incorporated, being careful not to over-mix. Over-mixing can lead to flat pancakes.
  • Pancake batter should be thick, because a thick batter produces tall, fluffy pancakes. If the batter is too thick, however, your pancakes won’t cook through. If the batter is too thin, the pancakes will turn out flat. I have found that different brands of buttermilk vary in thickness, so you may need to adjust the buttermilk amount slightly to get the batter just right. 
  • Pancakes freeze well. Let the pancakes cool completely and then freeze them in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw and warm before serving.

More Pancake Recipes

Perfect Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Print Pin
5 from 2 votes
These Buttermilk Pancakes are incredibly soft and fluffy, with the most delicious flavor! They're quick and easy to make and perfect for a weekend breakfast!
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Keyword buttermilk pancake recipe, buttermilk pancakes, fluffy pancakes
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time15 mins
Servings 14 pancakes
Calories 117kcal

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour*
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions 

  • Melt the butter and set it aside to cool slightly.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla extract. Whisk in the melted butter.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Whisk until just combined, being careful to not over-mix. A few lumps will remain in the batter but you shouldn't see streaks of flour. The batter will be thick.
  • Heat an electric griddle or non-stick skillet over medium heat. Grease the griddle or skillet with cooking spray.
  • Use a ¼ cup measuring cup to scoop the pancake batter onto the griddle. Let pancakes cook on the first side until bubbles form and the pancake bottoms are golden, about 3 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook them on the second side until golden, about 2 minutes. Serve pancakes with maple syrup, if desired.

Notes

  • You can also make this recipe with 2 cups of all-purpose flour or 2 cups of white whole wheat flour instead of 1 cup of each.
  • Extra pancakes freeze well, wrapped airtight, for up to 3 months. Thaw and warm before serving. You can thaw pancakes in the microwave, on the counter, or overnight in the refrigerator.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pancake | Calories: 117kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 34mg | Sodium: 168mg | Potassium: 132mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 165IU | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition information is an estimate.
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