Sourdough Pancakes

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These sourdough pancakes are the perfect breakfast option, combining the fluffy texture of traditional pancakes with the distinct tangy flavor of sourdough. They are a perfect quick way to use active or discard sourdough starter!

A stack of fluffy pancakes topped with butter and syrup on a white plate, with fresh strawberries in the background.
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A single pancake with melting butter and drizzled syrup, served on a white plate.

Easy Sourdough Discard Pancakes

Pancakes are one of my family’s favorite foods on Saturday mornings. Ever since my sister gave me some of her sourdough starter to cultivate, I am always looking for ideas for how to use the discard thus sourdough pancakes were born!

The addition of sourdough gives these classic pancakes a tangy zesty flavor and a super slight aerated texture. This unique mixture of flavor and texture is perfectly accompanied by a pat of butter, drizzle of maple syrup, and fresh fruit or every applesauce for a well-rounded breakfast.

Syrup pouring over a stack of fluffy pancakes garnished with sliced almonds, with strawberries and a towel in the background.

How to Make Sourdough Pancakes

First assemble the following ingredients:

  • All-purpose flour (2 cups) – All-purpose flour serves as the foundational structure for sourdough pancakes, providing the necessary gluten to keep them soft and fluffy.
  • Baking powder (2 tsp) – Baking powder is a crucial leavening agent that helps the pancakes rise, ensuring they’re light and airy.
  • Baking soda (1 tsp) – Baking soda reacts with the acidity of the sourdough discard, enhancing the rise and contributing to a golden-brown color.
  • Granulated sugar (4 tbsp) – A touch of sugar sweetens the batter slightly, balancing the sour tang of the sourdough.
  • Salt (1 tsp) – Salt sharpens all the other flavors in the batter, accentuating the subtle complexity of the sourdough.
  • Sourdough discard (1 cup) – Sourdough discard infuses the pancakes with a distinct, tangy flavor that sets them apart from more traditional recipes.
  • Milk (1 ½ cups) – Milk moistens the batter, contributing to the pancakes’ tender texture and rich flavor.
  • Egg (1) – An egg binds all the ingredients together, adding structure and richness to the pancakes.
  • Vegetable oil (2 tbsp) – Vegetable oil in the batter makes the pancakes tender and helps cook them to a perfect, crispy edge.
  • Salted butter (2 tbsp) – Salted butter is used for frying, adding a rich, savory flavor and crisp, golden exterior to each pancake.

Use this Method

Mix Dry Ingredients. In a large bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt.

Combine Wet Ingredients. In a small bowl combine the sourdough discard, milk, egg, and oil. Add to the dry ingredients and combine well. If there are a few lumps that’s ok just don’t overmix. 

Cook. Heat a pancake griddle or large pan to medium-low heat, grease well or butter. Pour ? cup of batter onto the hot griddle, cook till batter starts bubbling on top and sides are drying. Cook for an additional 2 minutes on the second side till golden brown. 

Finish and Serve. Place the cooked pancake on a plate and spread a little butter on it. Repeat till all the pancakes have been made. Serve warm with more butter, maple syrup, or applesauce!

A stack of fluffy pancakes with a pat of butter on top, served on a white plate, with utensils and a napkin in the background.

Tips and Tricks for Sourdough Discard Pancakes

Use Active Sourdough Starter: Ensure your sourdough starter is active and bubbly for the best rise and flavor. Feed it 8-12 hours before you plan to make your pancakes. You can use sourdough discard

Let the Batter Rest: After mixing your ingredients, let the batter rest for about 30 minutes. This resting period allows the gluten in the flour to relax and the sourdough starter to work its magic, improving the texture.

Adjust Consistency as Needed: Depending on the thickness of your starter, the pancake batter might need to be thinned out with a bit more milk or thickened with a little extra flour to reach the perfect pouring consistency.

Use Low Heat: Cook your pancakes on a medium-low heat. Sourdough pancakes are thicker and require a gentler heat to cook through without burning the outside.

Avoid Overmixing: Mix the batter just until the ingredients are combined. Overmixing can lead to tough pancakes because it develops the gluten too much.

Grease the Pan Appropriately: Lightly butter or oil the pan before pouring the batter. This helps in achieving an even golden crust on the pancakes.

Flip at the Right Time: Wait until you see bubbles form and pop on the surface of the pancake, and the edges begin to look set before flipping. This ensures that the pancake is ready to be turned and will hold together better.

Keep Pancakes Warm: As you cook the pancakes, keep them warm in a low oven (about 200°F) on a baking sheet or plate covered with foil. This keeps them warm and ready to serve all at once.

Experiment with Add-Ins: Feel free to add blueberries, chocolate chips, nuts, or even spices like cinnamon or nutmeg directly into the batter to customize your pancakes.

Serve Immediately: Sourdough pancakes are best enjoyed fresh off the griddle, topped with your favorite syrups, fruits, or spreads for maximum enjoyment.

FAQs

What can I do if my sourdough pancakes are too dense?

To prevent dense pancakes, ensure your sourdough starter is active and bubbly before using. Also, try not to overmix the batter; just stir until the ingredients are combined.

Can I make the pancake batter ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the batter the night before and store it in the refrigerator. This can actually enhance the flavor due to the longer fermentation time. Just give it a gentle stir before cooking.

How do I know when to flip the pancakes?

Flip the pancakes when bubbles form on the surface and the edges start to look dry and cooked. This usually takes about 2-3 minutes on the first side.

Why are my pancakes not fluffy?

If your pancakes aren’t fluffy, it could be due to an inactive starter or overmixing the batter. Make sure your starter is lively, and mix the ingredients until just combined.

Can I use discard from feeding my sourdough starter for pancakes?

Absolutely! Sourdough discard works wonderfully in pancake batter, adding a delightful tanginess and making use of the discard that would otherwise be thrown away.

What’s the best way to keep pancakes warm until serving?

Keep cooked pancakes warm in a 200°F oven on a baking sheet covered with foil. This helps maintain their temperature without drying them out.

How can I make my sourdough pancakes more flavorful?

Incorporate ingredients like vanilla extract, cinnamon, or lemon zest into the batter for extra flavor. You can also add mix-ins like berries or chocolate chips.

Can sourdough pancakes be made vegan?

Yes, you can make vegan sourdough pancakes by substituting the egg with a flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water) and using non-dairy milk and a plant-based butter or oil.

A plate with two pancakes, one topped with melting butter and syrup, with a wedge cut out, displayed on a striped napkin.

What to Enjoy with Sourdough Pancakes

Maple Syrup: The classic choice for any pancake, maple syrup brings a sweet, rich flavor that complements the tangy notes of sourdough pancakes beautifully.

Fresh Berries: Adding fresh berries like strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries provides a burst of freshness and a slight acidity that pairs well with the depth of sourdough. Also try my favorite raspberry beet smoothie!

Whipped Cream: A dollop of whipped cream adds a luxurious, creamy texture that contrasts nicely with the crisp edges of sourdough pancakes.

Nutella or Chocolate Spread: For a decadent treat, a spread of Nutella or any chocolate spread can turn sourdough pancakes into a delightful dessert or indulgent breakfast.

Bacon or Sausage: The savory flavors of bacon or sausage alongside sourdough pancakes create a satisfying balance of sweet and salty, perfect for a hearty meal.

Fried Eggs: Topping sourdough pancakes with a fried egg, with the yolk still runny, makes for a rich and savory combination that’s ideal for a brunch spread.

Lemon Juice and Sugar: A simple sprinkle of sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice can elevate the sourdough pancakes with a bright and refreshing zest, enhancing their natural flavors.

Yogurt and Honey: A healthier option, plain or flavored yogurt drizzled with honey provides a tangy and sweet topping that enhances the complex flavors of the sourdough.

Try these other breakfast recipes:

A fork holding a piece of pancake above a stack with butter and syrup, with strawberries in the background.

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Syrup pouring over a stack of fluffy pancakes garnished with sliced almonds, with strawberries and a towel in the background.

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A stack of fluffy pancakes with butter and syrup on a plate, showing a bite taken out of the top pancake.
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Sourdough Pancakes

These delicious sourdough pancakes are fluffy and lightly tangy for a delicious breakfast!
Cuisine American
Keyword breakfast, healthy pancakes, pancake recipe, sourdough, sourdough discard
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 12 pancakes
Calories 127kcal
Author Courtney O’Dell
Cost $5

Ingredients

Instructions

  • In a large bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt.
  • In a small bowl combine the sourdough discard, milk, egg, and oil. Add to the dry ingredients and combine well. If there are a few lumps that’s ok just don’t overmix.
  • Heat a pancake griddle or large pan to medium-low heat, grease well or butter.
  • Pour ? cup of batter onto the hot griddle, cook till batter starts bubbling on top and sides are drying.
  • Cook for an additional 2 minutes on the second side till golden brown.
  • Place the cooked pancake on a plate and spread a little butter on it.
  • Repeat till all the pancakes have been made. Serve warm with more butter, maple syrup, or applesauce!

Notes

Feel free to add optional add-ins like chocolate chips, fresh fruit, or cinnamon!

Nutrition

Calories: 127kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 313mg | Potassium: 136mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 108IU | Calcium: 70mg | Iron: 1mg

About Courtney

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5 from 2 votes

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2 Comments

  1. Katherine says:

    5 stars
    Yummy!

  2. Katherine says:

    5 stars
    DElicious!