Let’s talk about these pancakes right here. Omg THESE pancakes. They’re fluffy and perfectly sweet with golden edges and warm molasses and caramel flavors infused into every bite.
These brown butter pancakes are my love language, okay? And you might find them so amazing that they might just CHANGE YO LIFE
My brown butter chocolate chip cookies are famous for good reason, so over the years I’ve been sneaking brown butter into more delicious baked goods and even brunch treats like my pear baked oatmeal. It gives everything that extra warm delicious flavor you never thought it could have.
Trust me when I say you neeeeed these brown butter pancakes in your life. If not you, then your mom deserves them for her Mother’s Day brunch. Make a fluffy stack for your next breakfast or weekend brunch and get ready to fall in love!
The magic of brown butter
So, what is brown butter exactly? It’s simply the result of cooking down regular or salted butter on a stovetop until it turns a deep caramel-y brown color and gives off a rich, nutty aroma. The color, scent and flavor come from essentially toasting the milk solids found in butter. Brown butter adds a richer flavor to baked goods and recipes like these pancakes — making them irresistible and delicious.
How to brown butter
It may seem intimidating, but it’s actually super easy to brown butter!
- Heat it up. Add butter to a small saucepan and place over medium heat. The butter will begin to melt, crackle, and then eventually foam.
- Keep whisking. While the butter is essentially “cooking” in your saucepan, make sure you whisk constantly.
- Watch the color. After a couple of minutes, the butter will begin to brown and turn a nice golden amber color on the bottom of the saucepan, this usually happens once it foams. Continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to brown and give off a nutty aroma.
- Let it cool. Immediately transfer the butter to a bowl to prevent burning, making sure you scrape all the butter from the pan. Set it aside to let it cool before using it in your recipe.
Everything you’ll need to make brown butter pancakes
These easy brown butter pancakes use just 5 core ingredients plus a couple of baking staples. They’re the perfect base for your favorite mix-ins and toppings! Here’s what you’ll need:
- Butter: I love using salted butter to make the brown butter for these pancakes, but you can also use regular butter.
- Egg: you’ll just need one egg in this pancake recipe.
- Brown sugar: we’re sweetening these brown butter pancakes with a little brown sugar for that rich, molasses flavor. You can also use coconut sugar.
- Milk: feel free to use any milk you’d like. We like to use unsweetened almond milk.
- Flour: I made these pancakes with regular, all purpose flour for the ultimate fluff factor.
- Baking staples: you’ll also need some vanilla extract and a pinch of salt to pull the flavors together, and baking powder to help the pancakes rise.
Can I use a different flour?
I highly recommend sticking to the recipe and using all purpose flour for the perfect, fluffy texture, but if you’re looking to swap flours here’s what I can suggest trying:
- Whole wheat: if you do want to use a whole wheat flour, I suggest using whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour for a fluffier texture. Note that you’ll likely need a tablespoon or two more milk depending on how thick you like your pancakes.
- Gluten free flour: if you’d like to make these brown butter pancakes gluten free I’d suggest trying a 1:1 all purpose gluten free flour. Please note that I haven’t tested this swap so I’m not 100% sure how they’ll turn out.
Have fun with mix-ins and toppings
These brown butter pancakes are the perfect base for all of your fav pancake mix-ins. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Blueberries: add 3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries for a summery twist! Be sure to toss any frozen berries with 1 tablespoon of flour so that they don’t make the pancakes soggy or turn them blue.
- Chocolate: everyone loves chocolate chip pancakes, right? Feel free to add 1/3 cup of mini chocolate chips to the batter.
- Nuts: I think chopped walnuts or pecans would also be delicious in or on top of these pancakes.
- Banana: brown butter + banana = match made in heaven. Feel free to add chopped banana into the batter or slice some on top!
- Maple syrup: you can’t beat a drizzle of good old maple syrup on top.
- Brown butter & sea salt: that’s right, this amazing stack is made extra delicious with a little extra drizzle of brown butter and a sprinkle of sea salt!
Tips for the best brown butter pancakes
If you haven’t yet, be sure to check out my best tips & tricks for making pancakes. I have a few must-know tips for you to make the best brown butter pancakes:
- Use room temp ingredients. When you’re mixing the wet ingredient together, be sure your egg and the brown butter are at room temp so that they do not coagulate together and get clumpy. Run the egg under warm water to bring it to room temp, and let the brown butter cool for about 10 minutes before mixing it in.
- Add the milk slowly. To further prevent clumping, whisk in the mix slowly to the wet ingredients.
- Do not overmix. When adding the dry ingredients to the wet, be sure you do not overmix the batter. It’s okay if there are a few lumps! Overmixed batter creates dense, gummy pancakes.
- Choose the right temp. I like to start cooking my pancakes on medium heat, then decrease the heat to medium low to prevent burning. If you’re finding that your pancakes are browning too quickly, be sure to lower the temp.
Use brown butter in these amazing recipes
Looking for more ways to use brown butter? Here are some of my fav ways to use it:
- The Best Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies You’ll Ever Eat
- Vanilla Brown Butter Pear Baked Oatmeal
- Brown Butter Snickerdoodle Cookies
- Brown Butter Pistachio Pesto Pasta with Chickpeas
- The Best Bakery Style Blueberry Muffins You’ll Ever Eat
Make pancakes ahead of time & keep them warm
You can also make these brown butter pancakes ahead of time and keep them warm in the oven. Simply place oven at 200 degrees F, then add pancakes to a baking sheet or oven-safe plate and place in the oven until ready to serve.
How to freeze pancakes
If you want to make your brown butter pancakes ahead of time and serve them at a later date, you can place the pancakes on a baking sheet so they aren’t touching and place in the freezer for 30 minutes, then place them in freezer safe containers or bags and freeze for up to 3 months. Once ready to reheat, simply add pancakes to a plate and microwave for 30-60 seconds or until warm.
Our favorite pancake tools
See all of our kitchen essentials here.
More pancake recipes you’ll love
- Carrot Cake Pancakes (gluten free + dairy free!)
- Outrageously Fluffy Vegan Pancakes
- Fluffy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Pancakes
- Healthy Banana Oatmeal Pancakes (made right in the blender!)
- Fluffy Yogurt Pancakes (high protein, gluten free)
Get all of our delicious pancake recipes here!
I hope you love these wonderful brown butter pancakes! If you make them be sure to leave a comment & a rating so I know how you liked them. Enjoy, xo!
Salted Brown Butter Pancakes
Delicious, fluffy salted brown butter pancakes with hints of warm, caramel-like flavor in every bite. These luxurious brown butter pancakes feel fancy but are incredibly easy to make. Add your favorite mix-ins and toppings for a wonderful breakfast or brunch!
- For the wet ingredients:
- 3 tablespoons salted butter*
- 1 egg, at room temperature (very important)
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar (or sub coconut sugar)
- ½ tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup milk of choice (we like unsweetened almond milk)
- For the dry ingredients:
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Optional mix-ins:
- ¾ cup fresh or frozen blueberries (if using frozen, toss berries with 1 tablespoon flour first)
- ⅓ cup mini chocolate chips, dairy free if desired
- For greasing the skillet:
- Salted butter
- For serving:
- Extra brown butter (if you’re feeling fancy!)
- Pure maple syrup
- Sprinkle of sea salt
- First, brown your butter: add butter to a small saucepan and place over medium heat. The butter will begin to melt, crackle, and then eventually foam. Make sure you whisk constantly during this process. After a couple of minutes, the butter will begin to brown and turn a nice golden amber color on the bottom of the saucepan, this usually happens once it foams. Continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to brown and give off a nutty aroma. Immediately transfer the butter to a medium bowl to prevent burning, making sure you scrape all the butter from the pan. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk together the cooled brown butter, room temperature egg, brown sugar and vanilla until it comes together, then slowly whisk in the milk.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until a batter forms (DO NOT OVERMIX or pancakes will be gummy); please note the pancake batter doesn’t need to be perfectly smooth. Gently stir in any mix-ins you are using, such as chocolate chips or blueberries. Do not overmix.
- Lightly coat a griddle with butter and place over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup of the batter to the griddle for each pancake and cook for 3-4 minutes until pancakes puff up and you see bubbles along the edges. Flip cakes and cook until golden brown on underside. If you find that pancakes are browning too quickly then you need to lower the heat a bit. I normally start on medium heat, then decrease to medium low later so that my pancakes don't burn.
- Wipe skillet clean and repeat with more oil and remaining batter. Makes 6 large pancakes total. I love serving my pancakes with more brown butter on top, a sprinkle of sea salt and a drizzle of pure maple syrup.
Feel free to use whole wheat flour, though I do recommend whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour for the best texture. You may need to add a tablespoon or two more milk to your batter, depending on how thick you like your pancakes. Whole grain flours tend to be more absorbent.
To make gluten free: I think a 1:1 all purpose gluten free flour could work here, but I haven’t tried it so can’t be certain.
Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats