I don’t like pancakes. I repeat: I don’t like pancakes! They are my least preferred breakfast option, but regardless of that preference, I decided to make these Zephyr Pancakes for my kids one night for dinner when my husband was gone all evening. And I could not stop eating them. Really. I ate at least 5 (ok, 7). True to their description (from the King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion), they are “incredibly light and tender and literally melt in your mouth.” They are so, so delicious. Granted, they aren’t the healthiest pancake around, but I gladly ignored that while I gorged myself. Maybe next time I’ll add whole wheat flour to make myself feel better. Additionally, these pancakes puff up abnormally high. While they were cooking on the griddle, my 3-year old exclaimed, “Look mom! That pancake is growing up!”

Zephyr Pancakes

Zephyr Pancakes


  • 2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons (1 3/4 ounces) sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) heavy cream
  • 1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)


  1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, cream, buttermilk, melted butter, and vanilla. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry, just until combined - it's okay if there are a few lumps.
  2. Preheat and lightly grease (I didn't grease my griddle and they didn't stick) a heavy skillet or griddle. Scoop the batter onto the griddle with a 1/4 cup measure or a large spoon. Make sure the heat is slightly less than medium. The pancakes will puff up very high. When the first side is golden brown and the edges start to look dry, turn the pancakes over to finish cooking the second side. Remove the pancakes from the griddle and keep them in a warm serving dish until you have enough to feed everyone.

Recipe Source: from the King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion

51 Responses to Zephyr Pancakes

  1. Marcie says:

    After trying your sour cream pancakes (which are good!), I realized I never commented on your zephyr pancakes. We have been making and loving your zephyr pancakes for years and the only change I made is using 2% milk instead of buttermilk. Your zephyr pancakes are the best! Thanks!

  2. Ketz says:

    Could I make the batter in the afternoon, keep it in the fridge overnight and cook the pancakes in the morning ?

  3. Tina says:

    Mine barely puffed up 🙁 I used almost half WW flour, do you think that is the reason? I tried not to over mix but maybe that was it also….

  4. Wow! I also dislike pancakes, but of course my children very much adore them. I usually buy the frozen pancakes to appease them quickly.. Today is my son’s birthday though so I decided to make these pancakes and WOW! I didn’t even put syrup on them they tasted like little cakes! I added mini chocolate chips to a few of them – and that was even better (and even more fattening I’m sure!).

    Thanks for the great recipe

  5. Viktoriya says:

    Is heavy cream the same as heavy whipping cream in this recipe? Would it make a difference or would the results end up the same??

  6. […] She? Churro Pancakes by Sweet Treats and More Memorial Day Breakfast Pancakes by I am Mommy Zephyr Pancakes By Mel’s Kitchen Cafe Oatmeal Pancake Mix by Mel’s Kitchen Cafe Honey Wheat and […]

  7. Carols_got_cakes says:

    DELICIOUS! I don’t like box mix and the homemade, go to recipe I had before this one was more work using fluffy egg white this one is much easier and tastier thank you!!!

  8. Mark Chatterley says:


    I am a total pancake snob, and these are truly amazing. I was a skeptic making these the other day and I should know by now “in Mel I trust”. The batter comes out thicker than most batters, but you end up with an extremely light, fluffy, and delicious pancake. Thanks for another amazing recipe!


  9. mrs farrah says:

    try eating pancakes with sweetened condense milk instead of maple syrup…yummy!!!

  10. Mysty says:

    You never fail Mel! I had some heavy cream, milk and eggs to use up, and we LOVE pancakes! I normally make your oatmeal pancakes, but these were a nice treat. Rich, creamy, light, melt in your mouth.

  11. Charity says:

    YUMMY! Very tender, melt in your mouth goodness. Thanks for the recipe. I love your recipes. You are usually my first site I go to when I need a yummy recipe especially desserts. If only I could learn how to make bread like you do. I guess i need a lot more bread making practice.

  12. Rachel Russell says:

    Magical! Subbed white wheat flour and chucked in a few bananas and mini chocolate chips-and topped with the buttermilk syrup posted above- FAB! Kids in heaven on cold night after dance carpool!

  13. Cammee says:

    I have spent years searching for the perfect pancake recipe. I do not enjoy flat pancakes at all, they have to be puffy and tender. TADA! Mel has the perfect recipe right on her site, I should have known. These are soooo tender and perfectly puffy. Definitely decadent, especially with buttermilk syrup :).

  14. Deb says:

    These were amazing! My kids literally inhaled them, I have no idea where they went. Made two small tweaks – used white whole wheat for half the flour called for and added 2 tbsp of ground flaxseed. They were incredibly light especially when you consider the ingredients! This will go into our regular rotation. Thanks!

  15. Bobbi M. says:

    I usually prefer french toast to pancakes but these pancakes were delicious! Made them this morning and my son and husband loved them! I have tried a few different homemade pancake recipes in addition to pancake mixes from Williams-Sonoma and Stonewall Kitchen but these tasted the best! Thanks!

  16. tanya says:

    We made these for dinner tonight… with choc chips and whipped cream. OMG!!! These are absolutely the best pancakes I have ever eaten!!! So so so good!!! My husband said he didn’t think pancakes could ever taste so good. None of us are huge pancake fans but these are amazing!!!!

    • Mel says:

      tanya – it sounds like you took these pancakes to a whole new level with the chocolate and the whipped cream. Delicious!

  17. Melanie says:

    Colleen – how fun! I’m glad that you like these pancakes and that they’ve changed your “pancake ways!”

  18. Colleen says:

    We love pancakes but I have never in my almost 50 years of life ever made them from scratch. I have made these for the past two Sundays and my family LOVES them. I will never make them from a box again. These are just perfect pancakes. Light & fluffy. Thanks!

  19. alexandra says:

    Can I substitute the milk-yogurt for the buttermilk?

    Thanks so much!

  20. Melanie says:

    alexandra – I’m sure you could substitute a milk-yogurt combination for the buttermilk. I’ve seen that in recipes sometimes as a substitute. I’ve never used it before so I can’t vouch for the results.

  21. Melanie says:

    alexandra – thanks for letting me know the milk-yogurt substitution worked out ok. Thank you for the comment!

  22. alexandra says:

    I did use the milk-yogurt substitution and the pancakes turned out wonderfully. These were the best I have ever had! I am systematically going through your recipes for all our meals.

  23. Melanie says:

    So glad you liked them, Leigh Anne! Thanks for posting back with the results.

  24. Melanie says:

    Jenn – glad you liked them. Out of curiosity what did you use in place of the cream?

  25. Katie says:

    These look so fabulous! I’m glad you liked them to much. We’ll have to try these at our house!

  26. Leigh Anne Wilkes says:

    Tried this recipe the other night for dinner and everyone loved them – they literally melt in your mouth. Yum. Thanks for sharing. Leigh Anne@http://www.yourhomebasedmom.com

  27. Jenn says:

    I’m just perusing your blog for some ideas (we’re probably going to have a snow day tomorrow and I need something to do). Have you ever had buttermilk syrup? I really don’t like maple syrup or the fake stuff, but I love this. It goes on anything breakfast (or husbands if you are feeling a little randy!!)http://momisinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2008/02/dutch-baby-and-buttermilk-syrup.html

  28. Joy the Baker says:

    That look like the perfect stack of pancakes. I could eat pancakes for every meal of every day and be satisfied. I’m glad you found some that you can gorge on! Just beautiful!

  29. Allison says:

    I made these tonight, adding in some blueberries, and they were sooooo good! By far the best pancakes I’ve ever tasted!! My husband said they would put the local amazing breakfast restaurant out of business. 🙂 Thanks!

  30. Erin says:

    We had these for breakfast, and you are right – the texture is so light and airy. I’ve never had pancakes with a texture quite like that. I cooked the three leftover egg whites and gave them to Benjamin and he enjoyed eating those while Jed and I ate the fattening pancakes! Hhhhmmmm, maybe I should be the one eating the egg whites instead!!

  31. Melanie says:

    Brynnly – your comment made my day. Thank you! I love the 24 Hour Menu site, too, so the feeling is mutual. I’m glad you liked these pancakes – they are a family favorite.

  32. Steph says:

    Well, unlike you, I LOVE pancakes. I could eat them for every meal, and these look scrumptious!!!!!

  33. Melanie says:

    Hey Jenn – thanks for the results! I liked knowing how regular milk worked and it sounds like they are still delicious with milk instead of cream – but if you want to splurge, cream is the way to go! Glad to know there is another mom making it with four boys!

  34. Melanie says:

    Jenn – I love buttermilk syrup and have a very similar recipe. Thanks for sharing this!

  35. grace says:

    i’d say that i love pancakes, but i think the truth is that i love maple syrup. so i guess any food that gives me an excuse to lick maple syrup off my plate is wonderful in my book. 🙂

  36. Jenn says:

    I’ve made these twice since Christmas. The first time with cream (since it was Christmas) and today with just regular milk instead of cream. Thought I’d report my findings.The ones with the cream are melt in your mouth soft. Great for a special breakfast. The regular milk, a little different, but they are still really good. They would be great on a regular day when you don’t want to splurge the calories and fat. And good luck with four boys–that’s what I’ve got. Although I wouldn’t change it for the world, they are full of energy and nothing stays nice or in one piece forever. They are great and they love their mom, but I’d also like a peaceful, non-wrestling day every once and awhile.Best wishes!!

  37. Melanie says:

    Allison – that’s high praise from your husband! Thanks for letting me know you liked these – I bet they were awesome with the blueberries!

  38. LyB says:

    I love when pancakes puff up like that, they look delicious!

  39. Brynnly and Alan says:

    I love your blog! I made these yesterday for my whole family and everyone loved them. They really do melt in your mouth. I doubled the recipe and actually ran out of pancakes!Thank you thank you for sharing such amazing recipes!

  40. Deborah says:

    Seriously – you don’t like pancakes? I thought everyone loved pancakes!! I’ll have to give these a try, as my last pancake attempt was less than perfect.

  41. Jenn says:

    Okay, made these today. They were great (even if I didn’t have the cream to make them). I think this will be crowned my go to pancake recipe! Thanks again.

  42. Jenn says:

    I had a cup of half and half left over and I used milk for the last 1/2 cup. They didn’t puff up much like you had warned, so I guess that might have been the trade off? I’m going to make them the right way once family comes for Christmas. I’ll let you know if I had different results.Off to finish your Italian Bread bowls……

  43. Matt from Portland says:

    I have to confess I don’t like pancakes either. I am going to be serving these though to friends soon and I am excited to try them myself. Thanks for posting the recipe!

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