These light and fluffy Scotch Pancakes are great for breakfast, a snack or for popping in the lunchbox. This recipe contains no added sugar making them perfect for baby-led weaning.
What Are Scotch Pancakes?
Scotch Pancakes are mini pancakes, also known as drop scones, and are typically enjoyed with butter and jam. In Scotland, they are hugely popular and you can find them packaged in most supermarkets.
Both my boys roll their eyes at me when I say I am making Scotch Pancakes. They obviously consider themselves more Australian now than Scottish and refer to them as Pikelets. Despite the boys’ attempt to “correct” me, I will always refer to them as Scotch Pancakes!
Most recipes for Scotch Pancakes contain 1tbsp – 1/4 cup of sugar. In this recipe, I haven’t added any sugar, to make them suitable for babies and toddlers.
Cooking Tips and Tricks
Pancakes are easy to make but are also so easy to get wrong. These are my tips to ensure you get light, fluffy and evenly cooked pancakes every time.
- Don’t Over Mix the Batter – There is a fine line between mixing just enough and too much. The ingredients should be thoroughly combined but the mixture does not have to be lump-free. Too much mixing will overdevelop the gluten in the flour which will result in your pancakes becoming tougher.
- Use Fresh Baking Powder – Baking powder has a shelf life and once expired it won’t give your pancakes the desired volume. You can test its freshness by dropping a little bit of the baking powder into hot water and look for a bubbling reaction — if there’s fizzing or bubbling, it’s still good to use.
- Don’t Make the Batter in Advance – To make mornings easier you may be tempted to make the batter the night before. I don’t recommend doing this as the baking powder will start doing its job as soon as it comes into contact with the wet ingredients. Frying your mixture right away results in much lighter, fluffier pancakes.
- Batter Consistency – The batter should be thick enough that it drips rather than runs off the spoon, don’t be tempted to add more milk. It is supposed to be a thick batter.
- Pan Temperature – Too hot and your pancakes will be scorched, too cold and they can become flat and tough. Aim for medium heat and be prepared to adjust up or down over the course of frying.
- Oiling the Pan – Brush a thin layer of oil (or butter) with a pastry brush or wipe with a folded paper towel. This ensures that there is an even coating of oil on the pan and that no pooling forms. If using a non-stick pan you should only need to oil once, at the start, for the whole batch.
- Cooking Times – Cook until bubbles appear on the surface and are starting to burst, then flip and cook the other side until golden (usually around 1 – 2 minutes).
Scotch Pancakes Topping / Add-in Ideas
Although traditionally enjoyed with butter and jam, it can be fun to play with flavour and switch things up a bit. This can be done with add-ins or toppings.
Add-Ins – Be careful that you don’t add too many additions as it can weigh down the batter. Some suggestions include:-
- Lemon/orange/lime zest
- Desiccated Coconut
- Raisins (soak raisins before adding to batter)
- Grated Cheese
- Grated carrot/zucchini (squeeze the liquid out before adding)
Toppings – Sweet and savoury toppings work great with these Scotch Pancakes, why not try:-
- Chia Jam
- Fruit Compote
- Peanut Butter and Banana Slices
- Mashed Banana and Desiccated Coconut
- Cream Cheese and Salmon
- Cottage Cheese with Tomato
- Hummus and Grated Carrot
Storage and Reheating Instructions
Store in a cool dry place, ideally not refrigerated, and consume within 24 hours.
Freeze in an airtight container. To ensure they do not stick together, separate with sheets of greaseproof paper. Store for up to 2 months. Defrost at room temperature and eat on the day of defrosting.
These pancakes can be enjoyed hot or cold if you wish to reheat you can do so in the microwave or under the grill (broiler). Cooking appliances differ and these instructions are given as a guide only.
- Grill – Place under a pre-heated grill (broiler) for 1-2 mins, turning once.
- Microwave – Reheat 1-5 pancakes at a time. Place on a microwavable plate, uncovered, and heat for 10 seconds. Check and, if required heat for a further 10 seconds. You will need to experiment with timing to see what works best with your microwave’s wattage. They should be warm, soft, light and fluffy when done.
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- 185g (1 1/2 cups) Plain (all-purpose) Flour
- 2 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 Egg
- 200ml (3/4 cup + 1tbsp) Milk
- 1 tsp Coconut Oil SEE NOTE 1
- Gently whisk the flour and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and break the egg into it. Pour in half the milk then whisk the ingredients together. Add the remaining milk and continue to whisk until combined. SEE NOTE 2
- Heat a large non-stick frying pan, over medium heat, and coat the pan with the oil. Use a pastry brush or wipe with a folded paper towel to ensure that there is a thin, even coating of oil on the pan with no droplets of oil visible. SEE NOTE 3
- Place a heaped tablespoon of batter into the pan. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface (see photo) then flip and cook the other side until golden (usually around 1 - 1 1/2 minutes). If you have a big pan you can do several at once. Repeat with remaining batter.
- Serve warm, or cold, plain, or with a sweet or savoury topping!
- You can replace coconut oil with another oil or you can use butter.
- There is a fine line between mixing just enough and too much. The ingredients should be thoroughly combined but the mixture does not have to be lump-free. Too much mixing will overdevelop the gluten in the flour which will result in your pancakes becoming tougher. The batter should be thick enough that it drips rather than runs off the spoon, don't be tempted to add more milk. It is supposed to be a thick batter.
- Pan Temperature - Too hot and your pancakes will be scorched, too cold and they can become flat and tough. Aim for medium heat and be prepared to adjust up or down over the course of frying.