There’s no better way to start your day than fluffy, golden brown Buttermilk Sourdough Discard Pancakes. The combination of buttermilk and sourdough imparts a delicious tangy flavor that tastes delicious with a large pat of cultured butter and maple syrup or homemade blueberry preserves.
What makes sourdough pancakes special
Homemade pancakes are a great way to use extra sourdough starter. This recipe is quick, easy and unlike other sourdough pancake recipes doesn’t require an overnight rest. You can whip these up on a lazy Saturday morning for an extra special breakfast without advanced planning and using basic ingredients.
How to make fluffy sourdough discard pancakes
- Make sure your baking powder and baking soda are fresh, chemical leaveners have a shelf life and if they are past their prime they will no longer be able to help your batter rise.
- Use buttermilk! Because buttermilk is naturally acidic, it reacts with chemical leaveners to give your batter a big lift resulting in fluffier, tender pancakes. If you don’t have any on hand, use regular milk with a teaspoon of lemon juice.
- Dissolve the sourdough discard thoroughly in your wet ingredients. Whisk your eggs, milk and discard together until no traces remain or you may end up with gummy spots in your pancakes.
- Sift the flour into your batter, this lightens the flour, gets rid of lumps, and helps prevent overmixing.
- Don’t overmix your sourdough pancake batter, mixing will activate the gluten in your batter, be gentle and don’t overmix or your pancakes will turn out rubbery.
- For the best results let the pancake batter rest, letting the batter rest for a few minutes before cooking pancakes let’s the starch grains to swell and gluten that’s built up during mixing to relax. This helps your pancakes become lighter and fluffier.
- Don’t overcrowd your pan and only cook 2 to 3 pancakes at a time. This will make flipping your pancakes easier.
Using sourdough starter discard
You can use your sourdough starter for more than just making sourdough bread! Sourdough discard imparts a tangy flavor that tastes delicious in pancakes. Since you’re not using it as a leavener, you can use your discard straight from the refrigerator. There’s no need to feed it or activate it before mixing it into your batter. Older discard will have a tangier, more acidic flavor than a freshly-fed sourdough starter. Both will work for this recipe, you’ll just get a slightly different flavor.
What you need
All-purpose flour: All-purpose flour has a low protein content which makes for soft and tender pancakes, do not substitute whole wheat flour or your pancakes will turn out dense and dry.
Buttermilk: Reacts with chemical leaveners to give batter an extra lift! Use whole milk with a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice.
Sourdough discard: Add 28 grams of flour and 28 grams of water to your batter if you don’t have any sourdough discard. Your pancakes won’t have a tangy, sourdough flavor but will still be fluffy and delicious.
Eggs: Use large eggs for this recipe (organic free range if they are available).
Baking powder: The main leavener in this recipe, it creates carbon dioxide which allows pancakes to rise, do not leave it out of the recipe.
Baking soda: Helps with browning and flavor.
Vanilla extract: Adds flavor, substitute Bourbon or leave it out if you don’t have any in your pantry.
Salt: Use sea salt or kosher salt for the best results. Different brands and types come in varying grain sizes, keep this in mind when using volume measurements, gram measures will be the same.
Cane sugar: I prefer cane sugar because it’s produced using sustainable methods. Substitute white sugar, brown sugar or pure maple syrup.
Butter: Adds richness, flavor and tenderizes the batter, substitute coconut oil, olive oil or your favorite plant-based butter.
1. Whisk the eggs, buttermilk, sourdough discard, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl until the discard is completely dissolved
2. Sift the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda into the batter and fold it into the batter a third at a time.
3. Stir the melted butter gently into the batter.
4. Cook batter over medium-high heat until little bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake and flip
Absolutely! Arrange cooled pancakes in a single layer on a large parchment-lined baking sheet. Transfer the pancakes to the freezer, and transfer to a ziplock bag once they are completely frozen. Freeze pancakes for up to 1 month.
To reheat, just pop them in the toaster oven or bake in the oven preheated at 350 F until heated through, about 15 minutes.
Of course! You can use active sourdough starter to make your pancakes. If you don’t have a sourdough starter, simply add 28 grams of water and 28 grams of flour into your batter. You won’t have a tangy flavor, but you’ll still have delicious, fluffy pancakes.
There are a few reasons why pancakes turn out rubbery, your chemical leaveners could be past their prime or you could have overmixed your batter resulting in excessive gluten development.
Combine a pinch of baking soda or baking powder with a teaspoon of vinegar. If the mixture becomes fizzy then your chemical leaveners are still fresh and can be used in your recipe.
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Sourdough Buttermilk Pancake Recipe
- fish spatula
- 2 eggs large
- 226 grams buttermilk
- 36 grams cane sugar
- 56 grams sourdough discard
- 4 grams vanilla extract
- 180 grams all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoons baking soda
- 4 grams salt
- 28 grams butter melted plus more for cooking
- Make the batter: Whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, sourdough discard, cane sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until no traces of egg yolk remain and the discard is dissolved.2 eggs, 226 grams buttermilk, 36 grams cane sugar, 56 grams sourdough discard, 4 grams vanilla extract
- Sift the dry ingredients into the batter, only fold in the flour a third at a time to avoid over mixing. Gently fold the dry ingredients in.180 grams all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ¼ teaspoons baking soda, 4 grams salt
- Stir in the melted butter until just combined. Do your best not to overmix the batter or your pancakes will turn out tough and rubbery.28 grams butter
- Let the batter rest: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the batter rest untouched at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. This will allow the flour to hydrate and help the gluten relax.
- Cook the pancakes: Heat a skillet over medium heat with ½ tablespoon of butter.
- Pour ¼ cup (56 grams) of batter into the hot skillet. Cook the batter for 1 to 2 minutes, or until bubbles begin to form on the surface of the pancake. Flip and continue cooking until the pancakes are golden brown.
- Repeat with the remaining batter. Add more butter as needed.
- Enjoy: Serve your pancakes with your favorite toppings such as butter, maple syrup, fresh preserves, and fresh fruit.
- Store and reheat: These pancakes are best enjoyed fresh.