Fluffy buckwheat pancakes. It’s almost an oxymoron given how dense most whole grain pancakes can be. Yet these buckwheat pancakes aren’t at all dense or rubbery or frisbee-like. Quite the contrary. They’re light and fluffy and nutty and, yes, uber healthy. And no complaints here that they take mere minutes to make. –David Leite

Why should I use buckwheat?

Buckwheat flour comes from ground groats and is a whole-grain, gluten-free flour with a distinctively earthy taste. It has four more times the fibre of whole-wheat flour and is generally considered more nutritious. It’s used in a lot of baking, especially gluten, and Japanese soba noodles.

A stack of buckwheat pancakes on a white plate with maple syrup drizzled over them.

Buckwheat Pancakes

5 / 5 votes
These buckwheat pancakes cook up fluffy as can be, contrary to most whole-grain pancakes. And if the healthy angle doesn’t compel you, the spectacularly nutty taste will. The only special ingredient is buckwheat flour—everything else you probably already have in your pantry.
David Leite
CourseBreakfast
CuisineAmerican
Servings10 to 12 pancakes
Calories177 kcal
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time45 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons (2 oz) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for serving
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup, plus more for serving
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/4 cups buttermilk (either low-fat or full-fat)
  • Mild vegetable or olive oil, for the skillet

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 150°F (70°C) or adjust it to the the warm setting.
  • Whisk together the buckwheat and whole-wheat flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, maple syrup, and eggs, then add the buttermilk. Dump the dry ingredients into wet ingredients and beat until just combined. Do not overmix. The batter will be thick.
  • Heat a griddle or large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Lightly slick the surface of the griddle or skillet with butter or oil. Spoon the batter onto the hot surface in puddles of about 1/3 cup. Cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, then flip the pancakes and cook until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes more. If necessary, reduce the temperature to medium-low to prevent over-browning.
  • Using a spatula, slide the pancakes from the griddle or skillet to a baking sheet lined with a clean towel. Cover the pancakes with another clean towel or aluminum foil and place in the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining batter, slicking the cooking surface with a little more butter or oil as needed. Serve the pancakes hot with butter and maple syrup.
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Nutrition

Serving: 1 portionCalories: 177 kcalCarbohydrates: 21 gProtein: 6 gFat: 8 gSaturated Fat: 5 gMonounsaturated Fat: 2 gTrans Fat: 0.2 gCholesterol: 56 mgSodium: 245 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 4 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2015 Aimée Wimbush-Bourque. Photo © 2015 Tim and Angela Chin. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Yes to these buckwheat pancakes on a leisurely Sunday morning! I found these to be surprisingly light in texture, maybe not as light as your standard buttermilk pancake, but light for a whole-grain, healthier pancake. I also really enjoyed the earthiness that the buckwheat flour contributed. I’ll confess that I did sneak a few blueberries into the batter, as pancakes without blueberries are like pancakes without maple syrup to me!

These took me about 45 minutes from start to finish, but that’s because I make my pancakes 2 at a time for more perfect results. I found the batter to be rather thick. I measured 1/3 cup roughly, and it took 2 minutes per side to cook them over medium-low heat.

The first batch was slightly wet in the center, so for the next batch, I gently pressed down the middle of the pancakes after flipping them for more even cooking, and they came out just fine.

This recipe was a surprise. I thought buckwheat pancakes would be dense, but they actually cooked up fairly light and fluffy considering the weighty ingredients. This recipe works, although I think it needs something like maple syrup for serving.

The batter is very thick. I used a 1/3 cup measure to spoon out the batter and had to spread it a bit. The recipe uses such healthful flours and if someone wants to explore other flours, this is a good recipe to use. I’d likely make this recipe again but maybe add some toasted nuts or perhaps serve the pancakes with something other than maple syrup, such as jam.

I decided to make these buckwheat pancakes because I had some buttermilk that needed using up. These pancakes are quick to mix and yields a hearty and flavorful pancake. Like the author, I now have a bag of buckwheat in my freezer and look forward to more buckwheat pancakes.

It took about 5 minutes to mix the batter and 3 to 4 minutes to cook up a skillet of pancakes. My buttermilk was a little thin and, as a result, the pancakes looked a little thinner than those in the photo. They were still delicious.

We prefer our pancakes savory so we really enjoyed these. The combination of buckwheat and whole-wheat flours gave these pancakes real substance but without being heavy. The cinnamon flavor came through in the background and complemented the heartiness of the flours. I actually found myself adding more syrup at the table than I typically do, but I’m happy to be able to adjust for sweetness that way rather than have sweet pancakes right off the griddle.

I’ll be making these again. I tried to make 2 pancakes at a time in my 12-inch cast-iron skillet the first round, and it was too hard to flip them, so I stuck to cooking 1 pancake at a time for the remainder. To get a good color on these, I cooked them between 1 1/2 and 2 minutes on the first side and then 2 minutes on the other. The pan was getting extremely hot, so I adjusted between medium and a little lower to control the temperature. I had to add a little more oil about halfway through the process.

I keep buckwheat flour in the pantry for making blini, the small buckwheat pancakes that work so well with a number of different toppings as an elegant appetizer, so I was excited to see this recipe pair whole-wheat flour with buckwheat flour. That’s the great thing about pancakes—most of the time you already have all of the ingredients in house and the results can be really great. These buckwheat pancakes were just that.

The combination of the whole-wheat and buckwheat flours made for a very hearty pancake batter with a bit of a nutty flavor. They were a thicker pancake thanks to the mixture of these flours but fluffy on the inside. I really liked the addition of cinnamon here; it paired well with the nuttiness and gave the pancakes a nice warmth. Also, the addition of maple syrup instead of sugar was very nice here. (I bet agave nectar would work well, too.) I like that the recipe called for warming the oven slightly to keep the cooked pancakes warm before serving. I usually end up doing this when manning the pancake station, but recipes don’t usually give you the tip. It’s important to butter or oil the pan well for pancakes like these and to not get the pan too hot. You don’t want to burn these lovely treats.

Yes, over medium heat, each 1/3-cup pancake cooked well on one side for 1 1/2 minutes, then about 45 seconds to 1 minute on the other side. I didn’t serve the pancakes with extra butter, but yes to the maple syrup! I sliced some juicy navel oranges and baked some turkey bacon as our sides for breakfast, and the oranges paired well with the nutty pancakes. (I think it paired so well that next time, I might add a bit of orange zest or even a touch of orange juice or liqueur into the batter for an extra zing of flavor.)




About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.


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14 Comments

  1. The pancake tasted very bland. My 2 year old didn’t like it. Sweet potato pancakes are the best tasting in my opinion. Thanks for the recipe though:)

  2. 5 stars
    My friends and I exchange specialty foods for Christmas (we don’t really need “things” anymore . . .), and this year one friend gifted me with beautiful buckwheat flour, straight from a buckwheat farm in our region. Well, that meant pancakes for Christmas brunch! This recipe yielded a dreamy stack of fluffy, light-as-air whole grain pancakes. I didn’t have buttermilk, so I used a mixture of 1 3/4 cups of whole milk and 1/2 cup of full-fat plain yogurt and it worked beautifully. I served the pancakes with cultured butter and warmed maple syrup—a little special touch for the holiday.

    1. What a thoughtful friend, Chiyo. And what a lovely-sounding breakfast. Wishing you a joyous Christmas and a happy and healthy 2022.