Lemon Pancakes (Lemon and sugar pancakes) bring a zesty freshness to our breakfast table. With a simple pancake batter using everyday ingredients, fresh lemon juice and sugar, these pancakes are a fresh delight. This lemon pancake recipe makes pancakes that smell, taste and are amazing yet effortlessly easy!
My Halloween Pancakes are a fun themed treat that you can let your creative side burst right out with!
🤍 Recipe Highlights
Everything that you will come to know and love about this recipe is summarised in the points below:
- The aroma: there is a lot to be said about the smell of a home cooked breakfast wafting through the house. These pancakes will call your name from their smell alone!
- Easy pancakes recipe: these pancakes are super easy to make and enjoy. Get the kids to help and let them sift the flour mixture!
- Everyday ingredients: we only need flour, milk, eggs and salt for the pancakes with lemon and sugar for the topping. These are pantry staples and easy to get your hands on at any local grocery store.
- Option to make them gluten free. Simply switch out the self-raising flour and in with gluten free self-raising flour to tick this box.
- Add additional pancake toppings: you might want to add fresh cream, strawberries, blueberries or bananas. Go right ahead and top the pancakes as you wish.
- Versatile and can be made in advance: you might want to make these pancakes the day before a big get together and then simply reheat and serve on the day. That works for the recipe, you have plenty of options and each will make you return to the recipe over and over again.
The photo below is to show you everything you need to make the recipe. Please refer to the printable recipe card for exact measurements.
As you can see, the recipe calls for:
- Salt: we need a small amount of this as our 4th and final ingredient for the recipe. You can measure it exactly, or sometimes, I simply add 'a pinch'.
- Eggs: fresh free range eggs are the best. You can crack them into a small bowl, then transfer them into the mixing bowl if you are wary of them cracking and leaving little bits of shell in the mix.
- Butter: the butter is used not in the batter but as a technique in the cooking process. This ensures pancakes with crispy edges. It won't make a great difference if you use salted or unsalted butter.
- Milk: use can use fresh, long life, whole milk, skim or your preference be it almond, soy or oat milk to the equivalent amount.
- Self-raising flour: this is the basis for our pancake recipe and helps to ensure fluffy pancakes that rise.
- Pancake toppings: I have included the pancake toppings that I have used in the instructions photos below, it is a simple (yet insanely delicious) combination of fresh lemon and white sugar.
Tasty Tip: if you have a lemon tree and are scratching your head about what to do with all of your lemons, this is a great way to use them up. The lemons used in the photos throughout this post are from my lemon tree.
Here are the step by step instructions to make the lemon pancakes recipe. We start by making the pancake batter, you will need a medium sized mixing bowl. You can use a wooden spoon to keep it simple or an electric mixer, whichever takes your fancy.
- Add pancake ingredients to mixing bowl (Photo 1)
- Stir to combine (Photo 2)
- Portion, place on skillet add butter and cook, then flip (Photo 3)
- Add toppings such as lemon juice and sugar (Photo 4)
Using fresh citrus will bring a delicious lemon flavor to the pancakes, so use if you can!
👩🍳 How to Make Lemon Pancakes
To make the pancakes, start with the dry ingredients by adding the flour and salt to a large bowl. Next add the wet ingredients which is the milk and eggs. Then use a wooden spoon to stir vigorously to combine.
Once the batter is made, lightly oil a crepe pan (or large non-stick frying pan) with cooking spray. Then turn the stove on to a medium-high heat and spoon the batter onto the pan.
You might find it easiest to use a measuring cup and use that to pour the pancake mixture onto the pan as it will also allow for uniform sized pancakes across the batch. This helps if you plan to stack them as the stack will be solid and not toppled over!
Cook the pancakes on the 1st side for 2 to 3 mins. They will be ready to flip when you see the bubbles in the centre of the pancake. Then flip and cook the other side for 1 to 2 mins. The total cook time per pancake is 3-4 minutes.
Once cooked, the pancakes can be stacked and pancake toppings added for serving.
The melted butter that you see in the photo above helps to get crispy edges making for the best pancakes in town 😉👌.
🍽 Serving Suggestions
Cooked fresh, served hot with freshly squeezed lemon juice and white sugar over the top of each pancake is my preference for these! There is something about the combination that works so well together, yet it really very simple!
If you don't have lemons, you can use bottled lemon juice, don't loose sleep over this switch in as sometimes bottled anything is more convenient.
Tea, coffee, orange juice, all work well with the pancakes. Fresh fruit on top or the side. Be they for breakfast or brunch, they are a delightfully easy way to start the day with the fluffiest pancakes and absolutely perfect for weekends at home!
👍 How to Guide
How to Store
Store the pancakes in a sealed airtight container in the fridge.
They will keep for 2 days and can be reheated prior to serving.
How to Freeze
Allow cooked pancakes to cool before stacking and wrapping tightly in cling film.
Pancakes can be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.
How to Reheat
Reheat leftover pancakes on the stove in a fry pan or alternatively use a baking dish in the oven and cover with tin foil.
If using frozen pancakes, ensure they have thawed fully before reheating and test in the centre to ensure they are heated through.
😉 Substitutions and Variations
As always, here are the sub ins and outs that I like to provide with my recipes so that you can make sure they fit with your personal preferences:
- Substitute gluten free self-raising flour for gluten free lemon pancakes.
- Zest the lemon before using and then use the zest as an additional topping alongside the sugar and fresh lemon juice.
- Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the pancake batter if you wish to.
- Add some whipped cream and additional fruits like fresh blueberries, strawberries, other fresh berries or sliced banana!
- If you want to use frozen blueberries you can. Simply stir them into the pancake batter and gently combine. (Blueberry lemon pancakes have a nice ring about them, don't you think 😉).
- Maple syrup and butter work well for pancakes as well. Try them in addition to the lemon juice and sugar, so you still get that fresh fruity combo!
🛎 Tasty Tips
Here are my top tricks and tricks to share so that you get the recipe right from the get go!
- For bright lemon flavour zest the lemon before you juice it and use the fresh lemon zest as garnish when serving!
- Either sift the flour or ensure that the batter is thoroughly combined to remove any lumps.
- Use a pancake pan, crepe pan or flat fry pan to cook the pancakes.
- If using a gas stove and cooking oil, ensure that you hold the pan off the stove and away from the ignited gas as you spray the oil, otherwise it tends to ignite (the spray).
🤓 Frequently Asked Questions
Are lemon pancakes healthy?
Lemon pancakes have a lemon and sugar topping combination, so they can be not as healthy as some other breakfast choices.
However, like all things in life, portion size, every now and then treats and moderation should factor into a balanced, yet also enjoyable lifestyle!
What is the secret to good pancakes?
The secret to good pancakes is to cook them so that the edges are crispy and the insides soft and fluffy.
To achieve this, add small chopped cubes of butter to the pancake pan as you are cooking the pancakes, as the butter melts it will sizzle and cling to the edges of the pancake making the batter turn crispy and crunchy on the outside.
Should you let pancake batter rest?
It is not essential to let pancake batter rest before using it to make pancakes, however if you have the time you can do this.
This allows for any bubbles to exit the batter and the batter to settle into a thicker consistently than when it is freshly combined.
For any batter that has been rested or made in advance and refrigerated, it is a good idea to give it a couple of stirs prior to using to ensure consistently mixed batter.
Is it better to cook pancakes with butter or oil?
I recommend using a combination of both butter and oil to cook pancakes.
Use spray oil on the pan to ensure that the batter doesn't stick and use small cubes of butter on the outside edges of the pancakes for crispy edges.
If you don't want to crisp up the edges, simply use cooking oil sprayed onto the pan (off the element if using gas) and omit the use of additional butter.
How long should pancakes cook on each side?
Pancakes should be cooked on the 1st side for 2 to 3 mins, then flipped and cooked for an additional minute. You will know when they need to be flipped as you will see bubbles on the surface of the wet dough. These bubbles will start on the outside and work their way into the centre. Once the bubbles are in the middle of the pancake, it is time to flip them and then cook the other side.
How many times should you flip a pancake?
You only need to flip a pancake once during the cooking process. This also ensures that the pancakes will start fluffy and full. Over flipping the pancakes results in flatter pancakes that have been squashed down.
Is it better to cook pancakes on high or low heat?
Pancakes are best cooked on medium heat.
High heat doesn't give them enough time to cook before the surface browns without the centres being cooked through. Low heat results in the pancakes not having enough of a golden brown appearance and lend themselves more to pale raw looking pancakes.
What type of flour is best for pancakes?
Self-raising flour is my preference when making pancakes. You can sift this to ensure that there is no lumps in the batter.
If you want to use plain flour, you need to add baking powder to ensure that the pancakes will rise as they cook.
😍 More Easy Breakfast Recipes
If you want to leap out of bed everyday and head to the kitchen to cook up a storm, these are some recipes to get you cooking:
- Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes
- Croissant Sandwiches
- Raspberry Pancakes
- Sprinkles Pancakes
- Blueberry Croissant Bake
- Marshmallow Pancakes
- Air Fryer Croissants
- Blueberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins
- Chocolate Chip Banana Oatmeal Muffins
- Blackberry Oatmeal Muffins
It is time to get flipping my friend. You can also find all of my breakfast recipes in the one spot.
- 1 Medium mixing bowl
- 1 Sifter optional
- 1 Wooden spoon
- 1 Crepe pan
- 1 ¾ Measuring cup
- 1 Silicon flexible turner
- 2 cups self-raising flour Note 1
- 2 cups milk
- 2 eggs free range
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 fresh lemon
- white sugar
- Make the batter: add the flour, milk, eggs and salt to a medium sized mixing bowl and stir till thoroughly combined.
- Cook the pancakes: spray a crepe pan with cooking oil, turn the stove onto medium heat, then use a measuring cup to portion the pancake mixture onto the pan. Once bubbles form in the centre of the pancake (2 to 3 minutes), use a silicon turner to flip the pancake to the other side and cook for a further 1 to 2 minutes.
- Stack the pancakes: once the pancakes have cooked on both sides, transfer to serving platter and begin to stack.
- Add pancake toppings: once all of the pancakes have cooked and being stacked, cut a lemon into wedges and squeeze over the top of the pancakes. Sprinkle white sugar onto the lemon juice and serve!
- Note 1 - Self-raising flour: use a sifter to sift the flour as you add it to the bowl if you wish. This will ensure that the batter has no lumps. You can however, skip this step, but you will need to whisk (stir/combine) your batter thoroughly to ensure that the lumps have been whisked out.
- Note 2 - Milk: the type of milk won't have too drastic an impact on the pancake batter, so you have some freedom of choice here. Ensure though, that the measurement is as per the recipe, ie 2 cups.
- Note 3 - Eggs: I recommend 2 x regular sized free range eggs. Don't worry about weighing the eggs or measuring them when cracked. I have made this recipe countless times with slightly different egg sizes without a hitch each time. So use 2 and the 2 you choose will be fine!
- Note - Portion size: you will be able to make at least 8 pancakes from the batter. I have estimated the portion size as 2 pancakes per person. So the nutritional information (provided as a guide) is for 2 x pancakes.
Recipe published August 2022, updated September 2023 with more tasty tips for you 😘.