Kitchen Smarts: How to Make the Best Pancakes from Scratch
Just say no to boxed mix.
America's Test Kitchen

Think of the very best pancakes you’ve ever had. Chances are they weren’t from a boxed mix but from a diner or a brunch restaurant. Well, what if we could show you how to make an even better version of them at home? In this video, part of the “Kitchen Smarts” series on America’s Test Kitchen’s YouTube channel, America’s Test Kitchen books team test cook Dan Cellucci demonstrates how to make the tallest, fluffiest pancakes from scratch. Here are some of our findings:

Don’t skimp on the leaveners: Four teaspoons of baking powder provide the pancakes with lift, and ½ teaspoon of baking soda helps with browning and tang.

Leave the batter lumpy: A lumpy batter holds on to air bubbles formed during cooking, producing taller, more leavened pancakes. You can read more about it in this behind-the-scenes article about our pancake recipe development.

Watch the Video

Featured Equipment


The Best All-Purpose Whisk OXO Good Grips 11" Balloon Whisk

With an ergonomic Santoprene rubber handle and a balanced, lightweight feel, this whisk was like an extension of a hand.

The Best Nonstick Spatula OXO Good Grips Non-Stick 12-inch Open Frypan

This pan came slick and stayed that way. It cooked and released food perfectly, thanks to its darker finish and excellent nonstick coating.

The Best Plastic Spatula Di Oro Living Seamless Silicone Spatula—Large

This model is firm enough for scraping and scooping but also fit neatly into tight corners. Its straight sides and wide, flat blade ensured that no food was left unmixed. The all-silicone design eliminates any crannies that could trap food. It felt exceptionally comfortable.

The Best Mixing Bowls Anchor Hocking 6-Piece Nesting Prep Bowl Set

Coming in a variety of useful sizes that nest for compact storage, our winning set performed ably on almost every test. Its wide, shallow bowls were easy to hold, fill, empty, and clean.

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How do you like your pancakes? Let us know in the comments!