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IHOP Pancake Recipe

This copycat IHOP pancake recipe is the perfect addition to your Saturday morning.

Drizzle them with some maple pecan syrup and you’ve got a perfect day in the making.

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There’s something about the smell of pancakes that always puts a smile on my face. A stack of sweet, light, and fluffy pancakes is arguably the best breakfast food there is.

And when it comes to pancakes, IHOP knows their stuff.

Thankfully, it’s easy to replicate their recipe! No need to change from your PJs to have a bite of their delicious buttermilk pancakes.

Bring the taste of IHOP right into your kitchen with this IHOP pancake recipe.

IHOP Pancake Recipe

IHOP Buttermilk Pancakes Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Buttermilk. You absolutely cannot have buttermilk pancakes without the buttermilk. Use full-fat buttermilk for the best texture and flavor.
  • Vegetable oil. Vegetable oil will help hold the batter together. It’ll also prevent your pancakes from sticking to the skillet.
  • Vanilla extract. For that bit of extra flavor.
  • White sugar. For sweetness.
  • Flour. Stick to good, old-fashioned all-purpose flour for this recipe.
  • Baking powder and baking soda. These will help the pancakes rise and get fluffy.
  • Salt. A flavor enhancer.
  • Egg. You can’t make the lightest, fluffiest pancakes imaginable without eggs.
  • Lemon juice. It may seem odd, but lemon juice is sort of the secret ingredient in these pancakes. Its acidity does good things to the batter and gives the pancakes their soft, airy texture.
  • Butter. For greasing the pan. (And that rich, buttery taste.)

How to Make IHOP Pancakes

This copycat IHOP pancake tastes so yummy you’ll feel like an expert after you make it. Here’s how:

1. Combine the wet ingredients. In a bowl, mix the buttermilk, vegetable oil, and vanilla.

2. Add the solid ingredients. Mix the sugar, baking powder, flour, baking soda, and salt into the buttermilk mixture.

3. Stir. Stir the batter gently. Don’t get rid of the lumps!

4. Add the lemon juice and egg. In another bowl, combine the lemon juice and egg. Then, add it to the batter. 

5. Chill. Refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes to an hour.

6. Cook. Place a skillet over medium heat, and smear it with butter. Then, pour 1/3 cup of batter into the skillet.

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Let it cook for 2 minutes or until you see bubbles forming on the surface. Then, flip the pancake over with a spatula.

Let the other side cook for 1 to 2 minutes.

7. Repeat. Cook the remaining batter until you’ve made all the pancakes.

8. Top and serve. Top the pancakes with butter, and drizzle some maple syrup over them. Enjoy! 

Tips & Tricks for Making the Best Pancakes

You might think pancakes are so basic, everyone can easily perfect them. But that’s not always true.

There are a good number of techniques you can do to further improve your cooking. For the fluffiest, lightest, and tastiest pancakes, try the following hacks:

  • Use fresh ingredients. The baking powder, more so than any other ingredient, has to be fresh. Baking powder gives your pancakes that fluffiness factor, so if it’s expired, you’ll end up with flat pancakes. Before you add it to the batter, check the label for its expiry date first.
  • Don’t over-mix the batter. Even if it means leaving a few lumps in there! That’s okay! It’s better than having smooth but tough and rubbery pancakes. If you hate seeing those lumps in your batter, whisk your dry ingredients first before you add the wet. This helps the ingredients fuse with fewer lumps.
  • Form a well in the dry ingredients. Another good technique is to form a well with the dry ingredients and then pour the wet ingredients into the well. This prevents you from over-mixing the batter. 
  • Don’t forget to chill! Let your batter rest for 30 minutes to an hour. This gives it enough time to get rid of the small, stubborn lumps. 
  • Butter is best. Although you can cook your pancakes with butter or oil, I prefer butter. It provides a better flavor.
  • Use the butter correctly. There are, however, tricks to using butter. First, wipe the skillet with a paper towel every time you cook a new batch of pancakes. Secondly, don’t forget to add more butter before you add the batter!
  • Separate the egg whites and yolks. Doing so will add more fluffiness to your pancakes. Beat them until they form peaks and fold them gently into the batter right before you cook them.
  • Don’t double-flip the pancakes! Patience is key when cooking pancakes. Wait until you see bubbles forming before you flip it over. And then wait another minute or two before you take it out of the skillet. Don’t be tempted to double-flip or press the batter with your spatula in the middle of cooking.
  • Use a large skillet or griddle. These pans allow you to flip the pancakes effortlessly.
  • Use a cold stick of butter. Cold butter works best when greasing the skillet. It gives your pancakes a thin and even layer of fat to cook in. 
  • Use a cookie scoop or pancake dispenser. These tools will give you even, round, and perfectly proportioned pancakes.
  • Use room temperature ingredients. Specifically, the eggs and buttermilk. This gives your pancakes a lighter and airier consistency.

Tasty Toppings for Your Pancakes

There is a wide range of toppings you could add to your pancakes.

Pancakes are so versatile that whether you pair them with a sweet, fruity, or savory topping, they’ll still taste amazing.

Here are some of the best toppings I can think of:

  • Berries. Whether it’s blueberries, raspberries, or strawberries, their citrus taste will complement the sweetness of the pancakes nicely.
  • Nuts. Pecans or walnuts add a nutty, crunchy, and healthy twist to this filling dish.
  • Bananas. Top your sweet and soft pancakes with yet another sweet and soft ingredient to enhance its flavor.
  • Chocolate chips. Great for kids and kids-at-heart. The warm, rich, and gooey chocolate chunks create another flavorful layer to your breakfast!
  • Spices. If you want some spice with your pancakes, add a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, or allspice to the batter.  
  • Oats and flax seeds. Adding these to the mix will result in healthier pancakes.
  • Maple syrup. And last but not least, you can’t go wrong with the classic combo of pancakes and maple syrup.

Pro-tip when adding toppings: If you want an even distribution of toppings, don’t put them in the batter, as this will only cause them to sink to the bottom of the bowl. Instead, add them after you pour the batter onto the skillet. 

History of IHOP

The International House of Pancakes is an American restaurant that offers a variety of breakfast foods.

The chain, owned by Al and Jerry Lapin, first opened its doors in 1958 in Los Angeles, California.

A marketing campaign in 1973 started calling the restaurant, IHOP, which eventually became its iconic name. 

Among its most famous menu items is the Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity. This dish consists of eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, and pancakes topped with a fruit compote of your choice.

IHOP primarily serves breakfast food, but they started serving lunch and dinner items in the 1980s. This allowed them to compete with similar restaurant chains such as Denny’s and Sambo’s. 

Today, the restaurant has over 1,800 branches worldwide.

IHOP Pancake Recipe



Prep time


Cooking time






  • 1 1/4 cups 1 1/4 buttermilk

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 vegetable oil

  • 1/2 teaspoon 1/2 vanilla extract

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 white sugar

  • 1 1/4 cups 1 1/4 all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons 1 1/2 baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon 1 baking soda

  • 1 dash of salt

  • 1 egg

  • 1 teaspoon 1 lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon 1 butter (or as needed)


  • In a large bowl, combine the buttermilk, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract.
  • Add the solid ingredients (sugar, baking powder, flour, baking soda, salt) into the mix. Whisk the batter gently. Don’t get rid of the lumps!
  • In another bowl, combine the lemon juice and egg. Then add it to the batter. Refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat and smear with butter. Pour 1/3 cup of batter into the skillet.
  • Let it cook for two minutes or until you see bubbles forming on the surface. Flip the pancake over with a spatula. Let the other side cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Repeat steps 6-10 until you cook all the batter.
  • Drizzle with maple syrup and choose your favorite toppings.
  • Enjoy!

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Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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