Pancake Dreams and Waffle Heaven

I've stocked three different kinds of buttermilk. I've made the batter the night before. I've used all manner of odd flours and fancy sugars. And yet, I have found myself still yearning for a tried and true, easy to assemble pancake and waffle recipe. And then, by putting together what might be one of the simplest mixes I've tossed into a bowl for these breakfast treats, I got a plate piled high with these:

Light? Check. Fluffy? Check. Crisp? Check. My wish has come true and it's thanks to a bit of white vinegar; an ingredient I use more often for cleaning than I do cooking. The vinegar and the baking powder and soda work together to transform what begins as a very thick batter into one bursting with bubbles before it hits the heat. Because they are so reliable, you can take a little time and attention and put together great toppings for these gems, like the mixed berry maple syrup here:

Oh, did I mention that this batter is equally at home in a waffle iron? No more holding onto two separate recipes for pancakes and waffles. No wondering if I have what I need on hand to put together these amazing treats. Everything in the recipe has a regular home in my kitchen and when you see waffles like this waiting on your plate, you'll be grinning wide:

So feel free to work these into your regular weekend routine or make them a special treat for today. They've definitely become our breakfast standard. Happy Memorial Day!

Perfect Pancake/Waffle Batter

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Cooking spray for the griddle or waffle iron

In a large bowl, beat the eggs with a whisk until well blended. Add the milk, vinegar, oil, and sugar to the eggs and whisk until incorporated. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and whisk together until only small lumps remain. The batter will be very thick.

For pancakes: preheat a large non-stick skillet or cast iron over medium heat. Spray with cooking spray and then add ¼ cup of the batter to the pan for each pancake. Cook until bubble appear on the top of the pancake, about 3 minutes, then continue cooking until golden brown on both sides. Carefully remove to a warming plate and repeat with remaining batter.

For waffles: preheat a waffle iron. Spray liberally with cooking spray and then add enough batter to barely coat the bottom of the iron (the batter will rise during cooking). Lower the lid of the waffle iron and cook for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown on both sides. Carefully remove to a warming plate and repeat with remaining batter.

  • Yields: 4-6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes