apple-pancakes Recipes

apple pancakes

Am I glad I spilled out my frying pan angst to you all yesterday or what? This morning (and by “morning” I think we all understand that it was 1 p.m., right?), when faced with the task of an apple pancake recipe I’ve been wanting to make for eons, the thought using that stainless steel pan was enough to make me skip it.

three sad applesshredded appleshappy cast ironmaking peace with my cast-iron

But since two hundred and thirty two of you (approximating, you see) suggested I get back in with cast iron, I decided to give it another shot. I’ve had a big (and omg, so heavy!) 12-inch cast iron pan for years. It was a whopping $18 and I hear, supposed to be the best investment I’ve ever made. But despite my repeated no-soap, re-reseasoning and tomato-avoiding efforts, the seasoning had never gotten to that “nonstick-like” place. Or so I thought! This morning, I heaved that thing up onto the stove for the pancakes, warned Alex that this might be “bagel run” kind of morning in the end, after all, and got to frying those babies up.

apple latkes/pancakes

And it worked like a charm. It was great! They were great! Nothing stuck, not even a little. Frankly, the only issue is that the pan is way too big for my tiny burner and the pancakes cooked unevenly but like I care. After this morning, I can finally be one of those cast-iron zealots I was so secretly envious of, never understanding why their cast-iron experiences were so much more enlightened than mine.

apple pancakes

Alas, I’ll get more into this in the weeks and months that follow, as I reestablish relations with my cast-iron and test it out with various dishes. In the meanwhile–oh right!–the pancakes… Joan Nathan calls these Apple Latkes, which is really what got my attention in the first place. I am going to have to beg to differ on that, as they have way too much liquid and flour to really be a “latke”, or fritter. They are pancakes with shredded apples, and while the recipe itself is quite easy I think it will need some flavor tweaking to get it to a more interesting place. Nevertheless, I think it would be worth it and have made some suggestions in the head notes.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go apologize to my cast-iron pan for neglecting it for all of these years. We have so much to catch up on!

apple pancakes

One year ago: Chicken with Chanterelles and Pearl Onions
Two years ago: Way Better Than Campbell’s Cream of Tomato Soup

Apple Pancakes
Adapted from Joan Nathan, and a bunch of other sources laying claim to the same recipe

As I mentioned above, these are going to need a little more oomph than the original recipe entails. I’d vote for some orange or lemon zest, perhaps some cinnamon or vanilla extract or … well, what do you think? I am eager to see what you all do to step it up a bit.

(New to pancakes? Check out these tips.)

2 eggs, well beaten
1 1/2 cups of milk or yogurt (I used milk and am only assuming that the yogurt will work as well)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sugar
3 medium apples, peeled and coarsely grated (I used yellow delicious, but will use a more tart variety next time)
Extra flavorings (see recipe notes)
Vegetable oil, for frying
Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting

1. Mix the eggs with the milk or yogurt in a large bowl.

2. In a smaller bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar together.

3. Combine the wet and the dry ingredients and stir in the apples and whatever other flavorings you see fit.

4. Heat a thin layer of oil in a skillet over low to medium heat. Drop large spoonful of batter into the pan and flatten it out a little (otherwise, you might have trouble getting them to cook in the center) and cook until golden brown underneath. Flip the pancakes and cook them for an additional two or three minutes.

5. Either dust with powdered sugar and serve immediately, or keep on a tray in a warmed oven until you are ready to serve them.

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257 comments on apple pancakes

  1. Victoria

    Hurray! The first time I cooked a pancake in a non-stick, I was sorely disappointed. A shiny crust that just never gets that proper golden tinge? What nonsense. Nothing beats a good, heavy cast iron pan for evenly cooked pancakes.

  2. Those look delicious! I haven’t had the nerve to use my cast iron for much, but I’m obsessive regarding cleaning and care. Stupid thing still keeps rusting, though, can’t figure that out. Maybe if I used it more – I should start with your pancakes!

    1. Kathleen Brownback

      I have two cast iron pans, and they never rust: I don’t ever use soap, scrub them clean with a very stiff brush and HOT water, and after that dab dry with a paper towel and rub a thin layer of olive oil or coconut oil all over the pan and handle(s) (even the outside). I rub it with a clean, dry paper towel after that, and voila. Hope this helps if having rust problems.

  3. A couple of months ago, my grandmother gave me her old cast iron skillet… that belonged to her grandmother. Oh. My. Goodness. I have a fifth generation pan. Are you kidding me? I cook in it just because of that. BUT the heat rentention is indeed fabulous, and you can’t get that crust any other way. I’m not sure how you’ve seasoned yours (and I feel extremely insecure and pretentious acting like I’m giving you advice because as I’ve established once before, you’re my favorite and my authority on all things food), BUT if you coat it like crazy with shortening and put it in the oven, it gets nice and slick. I actually had to go through the process three times before it was nonstick enough. And I’m really hoping you throw a little cornbread action my way during an installment of Cast Iron Revisited.

  4. DeerDominique

    Oh Lawd! Big Ups to you! I have a shit load (a real measurement folks) of apples that I need to be creative with, like on a twice daily basis, so thanks for your apple intuition. These will be happening tomorrow!

    Also, congratulations on mending your cast iron relationship, she’s heavy and unwieldy, but SO worth it.

  5. I agree, cast iron makes the best everything! My dad’s secret pancake ingredient was anise extract (or anise water or aniseed). Something about it nudges the common pancake over the top. I’m not sure if it would mesh well with apple, however, and if you’re not an anise fan, I recommend a splash of Frangelico! Yum, we might just have to have these for breakfast…

  6. Yum….Sounds terrific, but also an excellent candidate for some cinnamon and vanilla, plus a pinch of nutmeg. And while you are right that “yogurt will work as well”, I’d suggest that you’ll find it will work even better, particularly with a nice liquid-y homemade or raw yogurt. Yogurt adds quite a tang to my favorite cakes….in fact I even passed over making them this morning because I had run out of Yogurt.

    And one (OK…more than one) more note to the cast-iron: temperature matters. The only time I have sticking problems is when I am impatient and don’t let the pan get up to temp (a drop of water must sizzle in the butter). And if I the skillets are too hot, the cakes puff up to much with air and don’t have quite the right texture. Size also matters — my 6″ skillet requires a much lower heat setting to get to temp than my 12″. Since they retain so much heat, I also remove the pans from the heat and turn the heat down a half-notch between batches.

    OK….if it isn’t clear yet, I am a bit obsessive about my pancakes!

  7. My mom gave me a set of three cast-iron pans, in graduated sizes. A true Southern cook should always have one, she said. I only ever use the medium-sized one for … what else? Cornbread. But I’m about to take the plunge into nice, new pots and pans that aren’t nonstick. Ack. Thanks for showing us it can be done!

  8. These look great, but I think even more exciting is the “Two Years Ago” link to tomato soup. I’ve been craving it for weeks, but was waiting for it to get cold enough that I could justify making it…I think we’re there.

  9. Hey, I am in dire need of a cast iron pan — any recommendations? Oh and do you think buttermilk might work? I’ve a carton of it sitting and would hate to waste it… these look so awesome – i love apple anything.

  10. Aphie

    I’d add some spices and vanilla and use buttermilk. I would also try it with whole wheat flour (or half whole wheat) – I find pancakes taste more interesting. What about a tablespoon or two of melted butter in the batter?

  11. I made apple latkes last week with a similar result… the recipe was definitely missing something! I like your suggestion of orange zest – maybe that and some cinnamon/nutmeg spice and possibly adding a splash of orange juice to the batter. Thanks!

  12. Ok, just made these for a nice pre-bedtime snack. I used half whole wheat flour and added a smidge of both cinnamon and cardamom, as well as a splash of vanilla. Loved. Them. And you’re right about needing to flatten them out a bit so they cook all the way through — but to tell the truth, I found the slightly custardy ones quite pleasant. It reminded me of something, but I don’t know what.

  13. These look tasty! I’ve tried something similar with Cinnamon and CHUNKY AppleSauce…very tasty…I think I’ll make them tomorrow morning with the homefries…yum!

  14. I kept waiting to read what you did differently. Why do you think it was successful this time and not other times? Thanks for the advice regarding pots/pans. I think I’m going to go with a braiser – All-Clad MC2.

  15. Jessica

    So glad you posted the two year liink to the tomato soup – I lost my written copy of the recipe that I posted in the comments and I always have to refer back to the comments of that post! Just a correction to that recipe too… where it calls for 1 c. sliced onions, make that onions to taste (the recipe calls for 1 T. sliced onion, but with that much tomato, I think that little amount of onion gets lost. 1 cup however, is nuts).

  16. I LOVE my cast iron skillet! I’ve had mine for years and it really is non-stick. My only complaint is the weight. If I ever have to pour something out, or tip something onto a plate, or whatever, I have to get my husband to help. I just can’t lift with one arm and manipulate with the other!

    Those pancakes look really good and we have a couple of apples that need using up . . . hmmm!


  17. Everything I know, or need to know, about the care and feeding of my 4 beloved cast-iron pans, I learned from Janel.

    Two of my pans came from a garage sale at which I had to pass a quiz to be allowed to buy them! I was the 4th person to try, and the first to give the correct answers, thanks to Janel.

  18. Jen

    Cast iron pans are the absolute best. And there are some great hints on the web about upkeep. But not washing it out with soap? Yuck. And yes I do it all the time, all that built up grease is just too gummy.

    I am so looking forward to making these apple pancakes, in my cast iron pan. Yours is simple one of the best food blogs I have ever come across.

  19. ung

    radish: amazon. walmart. target. 8 inches is plenty big, and my mom uses a 12-inch to fry chicken for the whole family. you shouldn’t spend more than 20 bucks.

  20. Lisa-Marie

    My automatic thought was ‘hmmm cinnamon please’ i think a little orange zest and cinnamon would fix it up nicely. maybe with a little caramel sauce to top it? toffee apple-tastic if you ask me…

    I am using my breakfast time to check my mails, so no breakfast for me! My belly is annoyed at me for not making these! i might have to for pudding tonight!

  21. Stephanie

    I swear by cast iron! I have a griddle for pancakes, and a 12″ pan that was my great-grandmother’s! It is extremely well seasoned and very heavy. But it’s worth it! Cooking home fried potatoes works great for building up the seasoning. But I always wash it with soap, and then I dry it immediately with a paper towel. Works great!
    I love your site! I tried the Silky Cauliflower Soup last night. It was a great hit. Thanks!

  22. Susan

    MAPLE SYRUP. Replace the sugar with Maple Syrup (pancake syrup will do in a pinch, but maple is the best) and reduce the liquid by 2-3 Tbsp. if you like the cakes thick and puffy. The maple flavor is wonderful in any pancake, but especially with apple pancakes.

    My favorite roasting pan is my cast iron skillet. I roast all meats in them because it’s easier to make sauce from the rendered juices and it gets all the stuck on bits off the bottom making it easier to clean. It keeps seasoning the pan every time you roast in it. Corn bread and the big German Puff Pancake are perfection baked in a C I skillet.

  23. Dara

    In the future, to get your cast iron up to heat, throw it in the oven at 350 degrees first. It shouldn’t be a problem for your little burner to keep it hot after that.

  24. Yum! They look good. Is that golden syrup you’re serving them with?

    I used to make pancakes in a stainless steel pan, the trick I think is just to ruin the first one. Put in loads of butter, cook the first pancake, it comes out all soggy and horrible but that seems to season the pan for the rest – provided you keep it at the same temperature, quite medium-high. That always worked for me. I just use nonstick now though! Never liked cast iron much, it’s just so heavy and a pain to clean!

  25. Oh and my favourite pancake recipe is oaty pancakes – 3/4 cup rolled oats, 1 egg, 3/4 cup milk, 1/2 cup self raising flour, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, and a couple of tablespoons of melted butter. They taste sooo good. I tried with whole oats yesterday and the texture wasn’t great though, so definitely rolled oats (oh I think in American that’s “oatmeal”) is the way to go.

  26. Well, the first time I looked at the pictures, I thought that was shredded cheddar cheese next to the apples. Then I read the recipe and realized I was an idiot. BUT… What if you added a bit of sharp cheddar to the original recipe? It would be a throw back to cheese and apple pie, and would add an interesting flavor.

  27. I like the idea of grating the apples. I would usually just chop up the apples in small pieces, but my pancakes never seemed to cook correctly. Thanks for the tip!

  28. joy

    These looks great! You asked for improvements – where I’m from (southern Maryland/Delaware) we traditionally include a small amount of yellow cornmeal in pancake recipes (maybe 1/3 c. to 2 c. flour) and I find this is essential to keep any pancake recipe interesting – provides a wonderful toastiness and texture. I think it would be great in this recipe. Thanks for your wonderful site!

  29. These look great, I noticed your pan. I always thought everything tasted better from those pans. Pictures are great, especially those of the syrup…can’t wait to try these out after I finish my banana pancakes :)

  30. Rose

    Wow! I’m so excited about trying these. I don’t have a cast-iron pan, but my parent’s do, so maybe I’ll head on over to their place and try it out. Thanks!

  31. Julie

    Dovetailing with your efficient kitchen post: I have a cast-iron stovetop griddle, which is really just a long flat hunk of iron that spans two burners, that I’ve come to love. It doubles as a flat surface / countertop extension most of the time, and a heat-resistant place to put hot pots & pans & stuff out of the oven (my rental kitchen is not granite, go figure). It also works really well for pancakes! and all other things griddle.

  32. I don’t normally care for apple pancakes, but those look really good. Possibly because the apples aren’t chopped and in huge soggy pieces that ruin the texture of the pancake!

    Cast Iron pans are good for all kinds of yummy things, like deep dish pizza or dutch baby pancakes . . .

    Yogurt just makes the pancake a little thicker than a plain milk pancake, that’s about the only difference. :-) I’ll have to try out this recipe now that we have a food processor, and see if I’m right that they are much better tasting!

  33. Definitely cinnamon, and since I am adding it to EVERYTHING lately, how about a little candied ginger? That definitely adds “oomph”! I’d also switch up the white sugar for brown- I’ve been doing this in my pancakes lately and it just gives this nice extra caramely-delicious flavor that really makes them special. Okay, and to make the recipe totally different, I’d also probably do half white and half wheat flour and use vanilla yogurt for at least part of the milk. Which makes it almost exactly like my favorite yummy whole wheat apple pancake recipe.

  34. Congrats! Now stick to it (or don’t let anything stick to it) by using the pan with lots of oil for awhile…fry up some eggs, potatoes, I even do chicken in there and stick under the broiler…

  35. I use case iron for everything. I have one skillet and I bake my muffins in one big batch in it (like cornbread), use it for pancakes, eggs. One great trick is to save a little bacon grease in the fridge. It works fantastically for seasoning when cooking eggs, best no-stick eggs ever.

    I’ll be making these pancakes for Mr Chiot’s this week (he’s an apple fanatic).

  36. Mary

    @Vicki (#3) after you rinse out your pan (never, ever soap it), put it in a low oven for a while, or as I do, put it in the oven and heat it to about 350. As soon as it reaches temp turn it off and leave the pan to dry. Your pan will never rust if it is well seasoned and dry. To make sure it is well seasoned, do your first cooking in it with fat – fry some things, get it good and greasy. This is in addition to the manufacturer’s instructions. You can buy pre-seasoned cast iron pans, but I haaven’t tried them and can’t comment on how well they perform.

  37. Mary

    Oh, and re: soap – rinse your pan well with very hot water. That should remove most of the excess frease, and if there is still some, pour a little salt in the pan and rub it around. You shouldn’t need soap.

  38. Jenn

    I will be maknig these tonight! I inhereted a very old cast iron pan that my step dad reseasoned for me and I can’t wait to use it! I have one of my own which I season with virgin coconut oil. It won’t go rancid like bacon grease or some oils and it smells divine! I suggest that to anyone looking for a saturated fat free way to season =) Also if you want more info cast iron cooking for dummies is actually a really good book!

  39. Kay

    I’m glad you’ve taken the plunge!!

    I can’t imagine cooking without my cast iron!!

    I was raised on the stuff. My father bought it for various hunting excursions when I was small and eventually it made it’s way into the house.

    And oh the many times i’ve burned my stomach/back/palms/arms bumping into the handle like an idiot, but it’s all worth it. (Especially when I invested in one of those cute little silicone handles. It cost more than the pan but it’s definitely saved on burn cream.)

  40. By the looks of it, you’ve shamed yourself by using Log Cabin or Aunt Jemima syrup (or some other similar nastiness). I hope my eyes have deceived me, and that in reality it’s just cold, real maple syrup.

  41. jm

    yay! you’re part of the cast iron lovers club now. welcome! you will be delighted to know that the best way to season your cast iron (aside from the initial phase, which you’ve clearly accomplished) is to cook yummy things in it, like bacon (i make turkey bacon, with just a touch of olive oil) – just be sure not to let it scorch as that will burn off all that good stuff. CORN BREAD is also a fantastic way to get that sucker all glossy and pretty. roasting a chicken (or if you’re a red meat kind of person, a slab of whatever, or hamburger) is also good and tasty.

    to clean mine, i run super hot water in it, and use a little plastic scraper to get any stuck on bits, but usually there are few to none. if it’s really gunky, i will very briefly use the scrubby side of a sponge with perhaps a hit of soap in it. then it gets wiped down, then on the stovetop to dry out – a minute or so on high is fine.

  42. maxie

    I love vanilla and cinnamon with apple pancakes, but definitely add nutmeg and/or cinnamon to them.

    As for non-sticking your cast iron pans, my all-time favorite way is to coat them, inside and out, with [gasp!] crisco and let them set upside down (on newspapers or something) for an hour or two. Heat your outside gas grill to 450-500°, put the skillet upside down on the grill, cover and cook for an hour. Turn off grill and let set until cool. On new pans, you may want to do this a second time. Works like magic for me. Plus, after I’ve washed them (and I do use soap), I leave them on a low burner until hot and rub with a tiny bit of food grade mineral oil.

  43. These pancakes look delicious. I regret that I already made pancakes for dinner last night to soothe an insatiable craving for anything remotely sweet (no chocolate in the house!). Maybe I’ll make these this weekend when I actually have someone to share them with….

    As for the frying pan: congratulations! I love cast-iron pans, but the seasoning takes AGES. My parents recently got non-stick pans (and by recently, I mean 4 years ago), for which they spent way too much money, and which have turned them into “eating-out” addicts. Cast-iron seems a nice compromise and serve as a good self-defense method for ladies living alone in the city.

    Good luck with nablopomo!

    p.s. I love your apple-cake. I’ve made it twice now.

  44. lacrema

    Ok, a request, Deb? Or readers of SK? I really need a banana pancake recipe. I have been lusting after the ones from the Original Pancake House, but there is no such restaurant here in the wilderness of Idaho. It would be a perfect next use for your cast iron!

  45. Bocagegirl

    I actually had to have my dad clean (yep one of mine was rusted) and season my cast iron pans. Oh the shame of it. But now they cook like a dream:-) To the reader looking for pans, try the ones made by Lodge.

  46. I have two good cast iron pans – a griddle pan from my grandmother and a 12 inch skillet from my mom. They both work great for grilling sandwiches and burgers and pancakes, and for frying anything, but potatoes and meats always seem to stick (when not frying in a sea of oil). Every time I try to cook up some corned beef hash in my cast iron (would love a homemade recipe, I love the canned stuff but would like to make some homemade), the cleanup is a nightmare. I wind up using my metal spatula to scrape the stuck hash, scrubbing with steel wool, and reseasoning.

    I always oil it up with Canola oil and heat it up before putting it away in the oven. Anytime I’m using the oven for something else, I make sure to put some oil it in and leave it in the oven. Commenters with cast iron success: What am I doing wrong?

  47. Ada

    Huh… these look suspiciously like my apple pancakes! I add cinnamon and use Granny Smith apples though… and no sugar since it turns out very sweet anyway.

  48. Kim

    I made these this morning and they were much, MUCH too dough-y for my taste. I should have known – I like very thin pancakes (crepes) much better.
    I thinned out the recipe by adding more milk in the rest of the batter, but they were still very thick and chewy.
    I added orange zest and vanilla which helped with the flavour somewhat. Luckily maple syrup makes everything taste much better. Mmm.

  49. OK, I’ve read EVERY COMMENT on here. I own a cast iron skillet, and am confused about how to season it and clean it and maintain it. I’m not interested in using crisco. DEB – CAN YOU PLEASE HELP US NEW CONVERTS TO CAST IRON??? THERE MUST BE SOME GREAT-GRANDMA AUTHORITY ON THIS OUT THERE SOMEWHERE. I needs to know! :)

  50. Mine did NOT come out :( However, I totally diverged from the recipe – I am a celiac, so I subbed a gluten-free pancake mix for the batter. I don’t know if it was the mix or if it was the apples, but my cakes never cooked in the middle, even when the outsides were more than done. They even sat in a warm oven (which usually finishes off any unfinished batter) but were still sort of mushy and custardy (but in a bad way) in the middle. Maybe it would be better if the apples were squeezed out before cooking? Or maybe less apples? Did anyone else have this problem?

  51. Anna!

    Crisco works great, but if you’re not into it you can also use vegetable oil. To season a cast iron pan, you should rub in generously all over with vegetable oil or crisco, and then put it in a hot oven (350 – 400 degrees) by itself for 1-3 hours. At first the oil may smoke, and it will definitely smell weird, but in the end it bakes a slick enamel layer onto your pan. Repeat the process as many times as it takes to get a smooth black enamel coating the pan (once for a pan in good shape, maybe two or three times for a pan that is dried out).

    To care for the pan, all you need to do is avoid doing things to it that will strip the enamel – so don’t use it to cook things that have a lot of water or acid, like soups or hollindaise sauce. When it’s time to wash the pan, wash it in warm water – it’s ok to use dish soap, just don’t let it soak. Don’t put it in the dishwasher – dishwasher detergent is too harsh. Dry it thoroughly as soon as it’s done washing – don’t let it sit around wet. Finally, whenever I am done using the pan, I always dab a little vegetable oil on a paper towel and rub it all over before putting it away. The pan drinks it up, and it always stays in good shape.

    Lastly, if you mess up and accidentally strip the oil from your pan, it’s not the end of the world :) If it’s only a little dry and I don’t want to bother seasoning it in the oven, I will rub a little vegetable oil on the inside and leave it on the stove over low heat until the oil sets into an enamel.

    Hope that helps!

  52. melissomatic

    You know, I don’t follow any of those cast iron rules and I still love my pans. I refuse (REFUSE!) to not wash them with liquid soap and water, or coat them in oil before storing, or any of that gross crap. I think that if you’re worrying about that, you’re making things way too complex. Just heat the pan with a little oil or butter (I use one or two tbsp) before cooking. If you wash like I do, the pan will be “thirsty” and soak up the oil. Then you’re ready to roll, and I swear it is still practically non-stick and you aren’t frying in excessive oil or anything because it’s worked its way into the pan. And if things stick a little, then you get to scrape out those delicious crispies without guilt, because cast iron is tuff enuff to take it!!

    ps preheated cast iron is the secret to the best biscuits ever, where you get that awesome crusty crunch bottom and pillowy top.

  53. I never grate apples for my apple pancakes (oladushki in Russian). I always peel, core and chop the apples in small squares, like for apple cake. The apples become soft and delicious and their flavor comes out more strongly than I think grated would. Also, it’s a nice textural contrast with the pancake batter. Definitely best to use apples that are more tart. My mom also puts some lemon zest in hers. Oooh yum. Just reminded me of Sunday mornings in my childhood.

  54. I must confess, I make my pancakes on a griddle…I have an electric stove and can’t get a decent pancake to turn out on those things, regardless of what pan I use. The heat is even on the griddle and I store it in the front closet because my kitchen is too small. I do want to be a cast iron pan owner, but I’m not there yet….

    Anyway, the apple pancakes look delicious and I will definitely have to try them. Your pictures and descriptions always make me SOOOO hungry!!!!

  55. E.J.

    Annette, you don’t have to oil and reason the pan every time you use it unless you’re “washing up” with soap and water. Once your pan is well-seasoned, you just use it as you would any other “non-stick” pan. Heat it up, add a bit of whatever lubricant you’re using and cook away. IF it’s well seasoned, and you’ve let it get good and hot before you begin (you can always trim the flame later), you ought not to be having a problem. The trick, when you’re done, is to remove everything from the skillet and wipe it clean while it’s still hot/warm. And leaving it in the oven when you bake other things? Sounds wonky to me, and think of all the heat it’s absorbing away from whatever you’re cooking.

  56. Tina

    Ohh those look so tasty! And I’m ever so hungry!! I’m glad cast iron and you are forming a beautiful new relationship. :) Question: have you ever thought about trying pizza on a cast iron pan? I’m really curious about the results…i hear you can make them on the stove that way. Or maybe one could bake one into a deep dish or make a covered one a la pie style…hm.

  57. YEAH! Let’s hear it for cast iron!

    I keep one skillet for tomato stuff (and anything else that might unseason it), and one for non-stick purposes. (Actually, the tomato one was put in the dishwasher by a well-meaning friend, and has never been the same since… so it’s pretty much not going to be non-stick again for a very long time. Rawr.) That way I get the best of both worlds. Also, I’ve heard (but don’t quote me on this, I don’t know the exact science behind the claim) that tomatoes cooked in cast iron actually leach out some of the iron into the food, so, hooray for free dietary supplementation. :-)

    Ok I’m out of parentheses. :-P

  58. Margo

    I’ve always had cast iron, and I follow both camps. I baby it for the first few months, until it’s well and truly seasoned. And then…. it’s tomatoes, vinegar, soap, whatever!

    But I think I season differently from everyone else. Really, really differently! I heat the pan over medium heat, and then pour in some coarse salt. Then I scrub the pan with the oily-salt mixture, toss it all out, and then cook away. I do the salt-oil scrub about once or twice a year thereafter – whenever the pan seems to be looking particularly “dry”.

    Perhaps a scientist out there can explain, why the salt?

  59. Dawn in CA

    @lacrema: I’ve never been to the Original Pancake House, but I’m certain you can make better pancakes than they do. Take your favorite buckwheat pancake recipe (or – gasp! – use the mix from Krusteaz brand), and make the batter as usual. Mash or process a VERY ripe banana until mostly smooth (I throw my overripe bananas in the freezer, peels and all, then microwave a couple whenever I want to make pancakes or banana bread). Dump the puree into your batter and stir. Voila! Seriously, so easy and so good. Add some chopped walnuts on top before you flip, and they’re even better.

  60. Evelyn

    I scrub my cast iron with salt and hot water after using it. I remember my mom, who is the best cook I know, wiping her pans and nearly never washing them so the idea doesn’t seem gross to me. The salt gets them pretty clean but they retain their “nonstick” coating.

    Oh, and before I put it away, I “dry” it over a low burner so all the water evaporates and at that time I put another light coating of oil on the pan. No rust! Sounds like more trouble than it is, I promise ….

  61. Carol from Bama

    My absolute favorite hands down wedding gift some 26 years ago was a set of seasoned cast iron skillets. I’ve been cooking with them ever sense – all four sizes. I let mine dry in the oven if it is still warm after cooking. You can cook nearly anything in a well seasoned cast iron skillet.

    I think I would add some freshly grated nutmeg to the apple pancake mix to give it some zest; and also use the yogurt. One of our favorite things to have for supper is breakfast food and this would be just the thing!

  62. Cindy

    Three words for flavor adjustment: applewood smoked bacon. We add little chunks of it to our apple pancakes and it is so very tasty.

  63. Nic M

    I love my cast iron pan so much I lug it along when we go camping. It works great over a campfire. You can even flip it and cook on the backside.

  64. I made apple pancakes not too long ago…couldn’t really taste the apple though…maybe I didn’t add enough?

    We only ever use our cast iron skillet when we go camping…maybe I’ll start breaking it out in the kitchen now! The pancakes look delicious.

  65. Chav

    I have followed your blog for awhile, and I have to say that it’s a pleasure to read. I am a culinary enthusiast and I’m always on the lookout for good recipes. Your recipes are not only a must-taste for anyone with a hankering for good food, but the posts are imbued with a refreshing sense of humor as well.

    Best of luck to you!

  66. I love my cast iron pans! Your apple pancakes look great and I nearly fell over laughing at your Cook’s Illustrated pumpkin pie. I read that article and recipe and thought it was WAY too much work. Now you’re making me want to put forth the effort.

  67. I cooked these for our dinner tonight in my cast iron griddle. I didn’t have any plain yogurt on hand, so I replaced half the milk with buttermilk. I also added 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of pure vanilla extract, and some freshly grated nutmeg to the recipe. Yum!

  68. Melody C.

    Like so many others here, I love my cast iron! I have a 10″ skillet that was my grandmothers. After scraping years of accumulated gunk off it, it’s been my steady partner in the kitchen – over 20 years now! I never use soap on it, just sea salt and a plastic scrubby. I think heating it for most uses kills germs. Baking at 400 certainly must! I miss the 12″ extra deep skillet that I used to make fried chicken with. But the past is the past!

    Another piece I have is a flat 10″ round griddle. This is my pancake dream come true! And it works wonders on tortillas!

    Cast iron pans are great things to look for if you are FORCED to accompany your mother-in-law to flea markets!

  69. I make apple pancakes regularly each Fall with our orchard apples. Lemon zest is wonderful, as is cinnamon and a little allspice. I have drizzled a bit of molasses in them too with reasonable results. And yes, tart is best when it comes to apple selection.

    Congrats too on appreciating your cast iron again! I think I might be someone who considers grabbing her $7 cast iron pan in a fire.

  70. Jess

    Hah! The other day I told my husband I was going to make apple pankcake by which I made a german apple pancake where I made a pancake batter, sauted apples in some cinamon and butter in my cast iron panand poured the batter over it and baked in the oven. My husband kept expecting me to have to flip the darn thing. I guess he was imagining something more like this.

  71. Cast iron gets better with age and use. I use my cast iron pan for meatloaf, chicken and lots more. It’s used in the oven as much as on the burner. I also wash it with a nylon scrubber and soap and dry it on top of the stove, on medium flame.

  72. LOVE them! I like a nice fat little pancake, so these look right up my alley. Especially since in Seattle I’m lucky enough to have so many awesome apples to test out!!

  73. Mariana

    i made these pancakes this morning–a lovely start to a veteran’s day off. thanks for the recipe

    for seasoning my cast iron skillet, i found that a good thing to do was to make pies in it. something about the baking and buttery crust turned my skillet into something very excellent, and also gave a good excuse to make a bigger-than-normal pie. and you can pile so much filling into it! pies in skillets!

  74. Stacey

    I *love* my cast iron, (6″, 8″, 10″ and 12″ skillets and a 6 quart dutch oven) and rarely cook in anything else. I wash with HOT water, let it run a couple minutes, and I have a scrub brush with pretty stff bristles that is used for NOTHING but cleaning the cast iron. No soap! It will strip all the seasoning and the non-stick properties of the pan, and since it is porous, the taste of the soap may come through in your food. Scrub it clean under the hot water, let dry on it’s own, and use a bit of oil on a paper towel to wipe the inside down, and let it be. You can cook tomato and acidic-based food in the cast iron, AFTER it is properly seasoned, and be sure to coat with a bit of oil afterwards. NEVER leave a cast iron pan to saok more than a few minutes, they will rust very quickly! Use some steel wool to rid the rust, then re-season. HTH!

  75. Could hardly wait for my day off to try these. They’re wonderful! I took note of your notes, used granny smith apples, added some cinnamon, vanilla, and a touch of almond extract. The pancakes turned out Amazing. Thanks Deb for all your great ideas, and best wishes with the cast iron pan. Looking forward to seeing what else comes of the cast iron reacquaintance.

  76. Mariana’s idea (#115) is brilliant! I have been avoiding the purchase of a pie pan due to limited shelf space but I do have a cast iron skillet that is the perfect size! I love multi-use items. Thank you!

  77. I’m not a huge pancake person but I like the look of these! I have problems with the cast iron skillet too. But mostly I use it to cook fish and chicken so I need a different pan for sweets.

  78. Dear Deb,
    PLEASE don’t forget to put this one in the apple topical index section! Otherwise I’ll forget all about it!! You’re the best – these are on my menu for next week!

  79. David

    What about adding a splash of Calvados? That might add a little depth to the apple flavor. A friend of mine beat a little into whipped cream to serve with Tarte Tatin the other night to good effect. Of course, some might think that adding liqueur takes it out of the realm of the breakfasty, but that’s less a problem when you’re breakfasting after 1pm.

  80. Liz

    There a hit! The no. one requested dinner for the past week. (November is my turn at request a dinner month). Four days, four pancake dinners.

  81. Heather

    I made these tonight for dinner with a splash of vanilla and some cinnamon, we all loved them. I was inspired to use my cast iron and was proud that it worked, can’t wait to use it again! I also made the apple cake earlier this week with the help of my nine year old and we all loved it. Your recipes are easy enough for my kids to be able to help but creative enough for everyone to be excited to try something new! I love this site!

  82. Jantien

    These just looked so yum, I had to try them. Made them the other day, but with one cup of oatmeal instead of all-purpose flour. And I added quite some Chinese five spice powder to it: that sharpens it up nicely! I had them with some sugar, but tried hot peppersauce too – also nice if you like a more hearty snack.

  83. Manda

    I made these for dinner the other night, and though the flavour was exceptional (I used Mackintosh apples and vanilla and cinnamon) I didn’t really like the texture. They were very heavy and sticky and not fluffy and light like I prefer. Maybe I did something wrong.

  84. Donna from Stuff Cooks Want

    Made these last night with gluten-free baking flour and Granny Smiths plus cinnamon, meyer lemon zest and a dash of nutmeg and my two boys and I ate the ENTIRE batch….mostly them. Wrestled the kids for a few of them. Cooked some in the cast iron, but also some on the griddle b/c my cast iron wasn’t spitting them out fast enough and I was afraid the natives were gonna eat my arm off…plus the fighting over who got the next pancake was getting out of hand with the fork stabbing and such. Did flatten the batter around and did add extra tsp of baking powder (often have trouble with gluten-free flour rising nicely). Dab of butter and sprinkle of powdered sugar. Perfect. I mean, so damn good all three of us were “mmmmmm”ing with each bite. Also got a few “Oh my God…these are sooo good”s from the kids. I call that success.

  85. Edd

    When i saw these when you posted them earlier in the week i knew i had to make them and so i did for breakfast today i also tried something

    I just wanted to say i love your site its beautiful and such an inspiration. I know this is a recipe site but i wondered if you would ever consider doing a New York to do post, im coming over next year and am always looking for suggestions foody or otherwise.

  86. Aislinn

    Just made these (and the Chocolate Toffee Cookies) this weekend with a friend. i think we both thought we died and went to heaven these pancakes were amazing and so easy to make! I think even my fickle boyfriend who “doesn’t like cooked fruit” would eat these! I love your recipes, I aspire to be like you one day and cook all the time.

  87. Jessi

    I did these with 1c milk, 1/2c Greek yogurt; zest of 1 orange, and a generous sprinkling of cinnamon into the batter and they turned out ROCKIN’.

  88. Katy

    I just tried these, using yogurt, plus a dash of milk to loosen the batter up a bit at the end. I also added a dash of vanilla to the eggs and a rounded teaspoon of mixed spice to the dry ingredients. The pancakes were absolutely lovely: probably the best I’ve ever made. And the batter just never ends. I’ve made 14 pancakes and there’s still half a bowl left. I should have halved it, but American measurements confuse me.

  89. I would die for my cast iron skillet. Okay, that’s a tad dramatic but it is my very favorite kitchen tool. As for the apple pancakes, they look delicious. I think a little cinnamon or lemon zest would be a fantastic addition. Happy New Year!

  90. Deb, You should pick up a cast iron griddle/grill. I have one made by Lodge that I love for pancakes. One side is a grill that I can never use as it instantly sets off smoke alarms but the griddle side is a dream – easier to lift up the pancakes than a skillet (no sides) and it fits over two burners. I think it was relatively cheap like all cast iron pans but I bought it ages ago.

  91. ELBSeattle

    Cast iron is great for pancakes. Just got to make sure it’s hot enough, it’s seasoned, and there is enough oil in the pan. I have been using coconut oil lately for cooking. Pure, virgin (non-hydrogenated) coconut oil is not only not bad for you, it’s actually very healthy. I bet the added coconut flavor will complement the apple perfectly.

    What I will do when I make these pancakes (tomorrow, actually):
    1) Do the maple syrup substitution one reader recommended
    2) Add about 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
    3) Add cinnamon and nutmeg
    4) Use Granny Smith apples (golden delicious are anything but)
    5) Rather than use maple syrup on them, I will dust them with powdered sugar (as you did) and squeeze a lemon on them. I’ve done this with regular pancakes, and it’s really delicious. Maple syrup is often too sweet for me; powdered sugar and fresh lemon will balance the apple flavor perfectly. Can’t wait!

    oh — I bet apple butter will go well with these too. Not the kind that has a lot of sugar added (or that evil high-fructose corn syrup) Or pumpkin butter. Yum. I have both in the fridge; I think I’ll do a trio of pancake toppings with these. Thanks!

  92. I halved the recipe, mixed yogurt and milk, added lemon zest and only used 1tbsp of sugar as my apples weren’t the tartest. I served them with powdered sugar and a sprinkle of lemon juice. Holy cow, they were delicious!! Thank you!

  93. sandra

    Oh my goodness! If I keep looking at this site, I’ll be the size of a house!
    This is torture for a baker like me! Virtually everyone I know is on a diet too, which is no help. As it is I have to volunteer to make the pudding for dinner parties just to try out new recipes. Why isn’t salad so interesting?
    Actually, one salad is rather tasty, orange and red onion. Thinly sliced skinned oranges with half the amount of sliced onion, drizzled with olive oil, salt, pepper and dried mint. Leave for 30 min. Nice with crusty home made bread……

  94. lindsay

    I made these, and they were mm! I didn’t use any tart apples, but I added a lot of cinnamon (and a tiny bit of cayenne, though that really didn’t come through). I used some really juicy and somewhat bruised apples that’ve been in my fridge for awhile, and added some extra brown sugar to the entire mix. They came out really well! A lot of them had half-custardy/half-fluffy-drop-dead-delicious centers. I didn’t grate the apples, but just chopped it up into more or less matchsticks. When cooked, they came out soft, juicy, and flavor-infused. Thanks for the recipe, SK!

    (Oh, yes, I read all the cast-iron pan notes–the irony is that I had one next to me while using the nonstick griddle and I never thought to try the pancakes in the cast iron! ^^;)

  95. Just discovered your site, love it! These are definately being made this week.

    As for the cast irom, they are great. One of the things we love to do in ours in pineapple upside down cake.

  96. Granny Jan

    I just found your site, and like the way you write. I still have my old set of cast iron, but they’re too heavy to use daily (not as strong as I once was).
    How I care for my cast iron, I hand wash, wipe it down lightly with oil and turn it upside down in warm, but off, oven, until morning. Never had sticking problem.
    I did spring for a non-stick Pampered Chef square griddle few years ago that is perfect for “Papaw size” pancakes. Hubby and I have pancakes for early supper ever so often.

  97. Leslie

    100% yum. My brothers loved this as well, wait… they love any food product. But they did go out of their way to compliment me and suggest I make these as much as possible! I did add one grated pear. I don’t know why, just wanted to, and it was a fun mix!

  98. Abby

    It’s years after you posted this, but I keep going back to this recipe. It’s unbelievably good. My additions: orange zest and 1/4 t almond extract. Divine!

  99. Arunah

    Oh my God ! These pancakes look almost as gorgeous as my grandmother’s !
    I am ashamed to mention – as it’s probably not politically correct – that she would use a piece of raw ham fat to grease her cast-iron pan…
    …and add rum- or brandy-soaked sultanas to the batter…

  100. Tori

    I just made these and man are they delicious! I used granny smith apples that i did not peel, added a little extra sugar, and used generous amounts of cinnamon, cardamon, nutmeg, vanilla extract and orange peel. They are fine with maple syrup but would be more tasty with something else- butterscotch, maybe?
    … And I baked them on an electric griddle.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  101. Mama Rose

    Winter break ended today, and our three kids glumly hauled their bums outta bed, forced to face a cold, misty morning back at school. I fixed these for breakfast as a nice incentive to facing reality, and they were wonderful! I did use the yogurt, which ends ups giving them a nice, sour-doughy flavor. I also added a couple of teaspoons of cinnamon and a splash of vanilla, for the missing flavor, and replaced half the A.P. with whole wheat flour, out of guilt. After all, these were for the kids. The flavorings and flours worked very well and the house smelled lovely. Prepping most of the ingredients last night proved to be a great help in offsetting my usual morning grogginess. I was worried about the apples being a brown color after a night in the fridge, but they turned right back to normal after I folded them in. Thanks for yet another great recipe!

  102. Okay. I just had my math midterm. Today. And I’m feeling really beaten-up. I was planning to make cookies today, but maybe I’ll make these for dinner? Raisins, cinnamon, nutmeg….maybe a little lemon zest. When I make apple pie*, I love to saute the apples in butter, spices, brown sugar (and honey and maple syrup) and diced crystallized ginger. I’m gong to try that on these. Apples are the best! Thank you so much, Deb. You are my spiritual leader in the kitchen (!) and my favorite site to surf.
    *talking of pie, I just want to tell the world and can’t think how else to: Today is the State Blueberry Pie contest. I won first prize at the local fair last summer, so now my pie’s at the state agricultural fair! Wish me luck, internet!

  103. Right. Made them! And, you’re right, they were bland. But I doctored them up with (ready for it?) raisins and crystallized ginger soaked in rum, ground ginger, fresh nutmeg, lemon zest…..oh, cinnamon! They were really good. We ate them spread with maple syrup or lemon curd.

  104. Gaggle of Goggles

    Hi all. I am new here (actually, I think this is the first time I post some thing online). I once had an apple pie with gruyere cheese baked into the crust and it was crazy good. It might be the thing to perk up these pancakes (I am into apples and gruyere combos). Great site btw!

  105. Jessie

    Hi Deb, I can’t leave a comment and not let you know how much I LOVE your site. I am fairly new to the food blogging world and seem to find a new one to love daily, but yours has remained a constant. So onto the pancakes, I added a tablespoon of apple brandy into the grated apples. I also added a healthy teaspoon of both vanilla and cinnamon, they were amazing!!

  106. Kim

    I made this as breakfast for dinner. I had a really hard time getting them to cook in the center, despite using small amounts of batter and spreading it out into a thin, even layer and trying various cooking temps. I cooked them on an electric griddle, since I don’t own a cast iron. I used vanilla yogurt and milk and wonder if the yogurt made them too gooey which added to my problem. I added cinnamon and thought the cooked parts were tasty. I would like to try them again if I could get them fully cooked in the center.

  107. Jessica

    Thank you so much for this recipe! This post and the comments inspired me to get my very first cast iron skillet, which I adore, and I have made this recipe three times over the past two weeks or so. Because I am lazy, I didn’t peel the apples before grating them. I’ve been using two Granny Smith to one Braeburn apple, and so there are bits of red and green in the finished result. I didn’t add any extra flavourings the first time I cooked these as nothing seemed quite suitable, but they turned out so tasty I’ve just left the recipe as is. Perfect with maple syrup and sometimes a rasher or two of bacon. Anyway, thanks again for what is now my standard pancake recipe, and for inspiring me to get a cast iron skillet!

  108. We’re Ukrainian in my house and we make these all the time! Slightly differently though. We take the apple and core it, then slice it kind of thinly so you end up with lots of circular apple discs. Then we take the discs, coat them in pancake batter and then fry them up! No syrup, just a little sugar on top.

  109. Sanya

    So I have tried to make these wonderful pancakes….and on the contrary, mine are nowhere NEAR what they’re supposed to be OR look like. They are taking forever to cook all the way through and they were very doughy it seemed. The inside seemed uncooked but the outside was totally ready. I played with different heat temperatures and I couldn’t find the right one. Low-med meant that the pancakes needed nearly 25 min to be cooked all the way through (even then it didn’t come out right i.e. doughy). Medium heat worked much better but the inside seemed somewhat uncooked.

    The recipe is clear, however I am confused on the amount of apples and the type of consistency one should expect when incorporating apples into a pancake batter. How did your pancakes come out so thick and fluffy? I want to try and make them again but I have a feeling that I’m going to fail again :( Please help!

  110. CindyLou

    I followed your tips to boost the flavor – added nutmeg, cinnamon, lemon rind & juice and they still were doughy lumps. I also tried thinning the batter. For me, this was not a successful recipe. :-(

  111. Ashley SP

    These turned out great for us! I did make some additions and substitutions which I think are important to the flavor.

    I added half of a teaspoon of cinnamon and a smidge of ginger and nutmeg. I also used brown sugar instead of boring plain old sugar and we used half whole wheat pastry flour. Also, for the liquid, I used 1 cup of yogurt mixed with apple cider–so these were like apple cider doughnut-latke-cakes. Very, very delicious, especially with a big spoonful of creme fraiche and a drizzle of maple syrup. Yum!

  112. I recently moved to the South and have been craving a bit of the tradition fall September that I’m used to so I made your apple pancakes. I added a little bit of vanilla (because you can never go wrong with vanilla!) and they were divine. I also used the yogurt instead of milk and they were perfectly fluffy (my pancakes usually end of being thin and floppy). Thank you for the fabulous recipe!

  113. I also like very thin, crepe like pancaakes. I have found that by adding (depending on amt. of pancake batter) 1/2 can of room temperature beer (lighter ale, NOT stout) gives the pancakes the crepe like texture I like and adds abit of “intrique” to the flavor. Ive always had compliments when preparing them in this manner; and yes, I usually add appropriate flavorings ( cinnamon, lemon zest, ginger, etc.) depending on the fruit or vegetable added to the batter. Emjoy!

  114. I was craving breakfast for dinner this week but I wanted something a little different than the plain jane waffles or pancakes. I took a quick peak at your recipes and my eyes immediately fell in love with the pictures and my stomach fell in love with these apple pancakes!! The last ones are cooking up as we speak and I’ve already sneaked a taste and they are DELICIOUS! I added a teaspoon of cinnamon and used half buttermilk half regular milk and so far so good!!! Thanks for giving my breakfast for dinner night the flare I was looking for!!

  115. andrew

    We went apple picking recently and ended up with a bushel of apples. This looked like a great recipe so i made it for my kids this morning. I added nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla extract. The flavor is quite good, particularly as the apples shine. It was a dense final product, although not what I’d call “doughy” or a “lumpy mess.” Just a relatively heavy pancake. A lighter pancake would be more my preference, but these are still good. Also, this recipe makes a LOT of pancakes. I usually make silver dollar (or slightly bigger – avg 2″ in diameter) for my girls, and I made a couple dozen with about a third of the batter still left.

  116. waffles, pancakesare some of the favourites around or house and we are always thinking up new ways to spoil the kids and adults too. apples galore at the moment so these recipies will make for some more experimentation in our house tonight. thnks for this

  117. leanne

    I’ve made these pancakes a few times now — adding some vanilla and some cinnamon — because I adore both. And the result has been fantastic. My family and I thank you!

  118. John Jorsett

    Regarding seasoning: Blogger Sheryl Canter has developed a phenomenal new process for seasoning cast iron to a teflon-like slickness and, more significantly, seemingly near imperviousness to degradation even in the face of industrial washing with degreasing agents (Cook’s Illustrated tested this aspect of her technique). I’ve tried it and can attest to the slickness. I haven’t used my pans long enough yet to verify the claims about durability, but I’ve scrubbed the pans multiple times with soapy water and they’re still fine.

    Basically, the technique is to season the pan with multiple very thin layers of Flax Seed Oil, baking the pan in the oven at 500 degrees F for an hour for each application.Because of its properties, using Flax Seed Oil is a vital aspect, and a minimum of 6 applications is required. Google on “Chemistry of Cast Iron Seasoning” to find the article.

  119. Ice Cream You Scream

    For evenly browned pancakes, I find that spraying or wiping the pan with a little oil works best. Too much shortening creates a deep-frying effect, with some parts too crispy and other parts too light due to not really touching the bottom of the pan. Minimal shortening does sometimes require re-spraying in between flips, but it’s worth it to get that smoothe, golden brown finish on both sides.

  120. Jamie Hein

    Do you think the batter would be okay the next morning? These were really good but made too much for just my roommate and I.

  121. VeggieLove

    Hi Deb!

    I have been religously viewing your website for a couple of years now. I love your blogs, pictures, recipes (obviously), but what I love most of all is when I get unexpectedly re-routed to your site in search of a specific recipe. That is what happened when I searched for “apple pancakes”. It is a sort of
    “duh, why didn’t i consult Smitten Kitchen before Google?” moment.
    Just a note to let you know that I appreciate your delectable taste (mostly because it is very similar to mine :) ) and your delightful charm. Best to you, your husband and your adorable son.

  122. Ana

    I tried it! I made it for my brother and sister as an after school snack and they lover it! and after seeing the pictures of the recipe, I didn’t mind so much that they weren’t perfect like the ihop ones. Thanks for another wonderful recipe.

  123. Joanne

    I tried these and unfortunately fall into the category of those who did not have any success with these at all, even with additional flavourings they were bland, doughy, and generally yucky. I didn’t have a cast iron pan & given my results, wouldn’t suggest you cook these without one (Though I actually thought while I was cooking them if you don’t have a cast iron pan a BBQ might be a better option?) I also substituted buttermilk for milk but I don’t think that was the cause but you never know.

  124. Emily

    hi! i just looked up apple pancakes on google, and your’s were one of the first listings. my roomate told me about your blog a few months ago and i’ve made a few of your other recipes. i made these pancakes and they came out YUMMY!
    i substituted light brown sugar instead of regular sugar…and i did 1 cup of whole wheat flour and 1 cup of regular.
    i also added about a teaspoon of cinnamon and a tablespoon of real vanilla extract.
    although i don’t have a cast iron skillet, they came out great and my husband loved them too.

  125. Allie

    I was wondering what do do with an excess of apple slices and this seemed like the perfect use. I pulsed them in a food processor until they were finely chopped. I substituted 1/4 c cornmeal for some of the flour to give a little crunch. I also used brown sugar instead of white and added cinnamon and vanilla extract. Loved them! So much more appley than other apple pancake recipies I’ve tried. Thanks!

  126. Trimbie

    Had these for breakfast this morning – yummy. Added some vanilla extract and served them with fresh strawberries (just in season here in the UK) and golden syrup. Will definitely be making them again, maybe next time with pineapple. Love the blog – your recipes are fantastic. Thanks!

  127. Gabby

    for some odd reason i have 17 APPLES in my house at the moment… and there are only two of us to eat them… so i am planing on making two apple pies and maybe like 4 batches of these? They look delicious!!

  128. Michael

    I used vanilla yogurt, added about 2 teaspoons of vietnamese cinnamon (amazing if you can find it), 1 pink lady apple grated and 1 almost over ripe peach diced. I ended up adding a little bit of milk because I thought the batter was a bit too thick. It really wasn’t necessary. I did take your advice and added some orange zest, it gave a tang that added another layer of flavor. I also used a second peach which I diced and macerated with maple syrup and orange zest as an additional topping along with the sugar. They were delicious.

  129. Oma

    Great recipe! My mother taught me the secret intracacies of working with a cast iron pan and it really is the best for cooking almost everything. I didn’t read ALL of the comments but I did notice that there weren’t any suggestions for the simple topping of powdered sugar and lemon juice. This was our favorite way of devouring this pancake. It is light and brite and brings out the apple flavor! Fresh lemon is the best, slice it in half, squeeze lightly while moving your hand in a spiral motion over the pancake, then sprinkle powdered sugar over it. DELISH

  130. Em

    OH MY! Just made these pancakes for the first time! I used vanilla yogurt and added cinnamon and vanilla extract, I also whipped my egg whites which made beautifully fluffy golden pancakes! Thank you for the inspiration! Delicious!

  131. james

    i made these today i added cinnamon and vanilla they were so dilish i ate most of them myself! Lovely way to start the day!

  132. Faith

    made these for dinner tonight for me and the toddler and they were a huge hit! added cinnamon and a little ginger just for a kicks and wow. So good.

  133. may

    I added chopped walnuts to mine, along with cinnamon, cardamom and lemon zest, and they turned out really nice. I’ve also taken to cooking my pancakes with coconut oil in the pan instead of butter or vegetable oil and i think it gives them a really nice soft vanilla-y flavor

  134. Jennifer

    Great recipe! I added cinnamon and nutmeg and sprinkled hem with cinnamon sugar. I used a tart apple we picked that weekend at the orchard. So tasty! I never thought to grate the apple before, I always used slices. This is way better. Thanks!

  135. These were delicious! I added 1/2 t vanilla, 1 T Penzey’s Baking Spice with which I am currently obsessed and 1/2 t cinnamon near the end after deciding they needed a bit more oomph. I really liked these and we have leftovers to freeze! Thanks for the idea! Now if only I could get my pictures to look so delicious…

  136. I added a generous pour of pure almond extract (really gave this a depth of flavor) and zest of a half a lemon. Topped them with apple butter and a little bit of maple syrup. My bf and I renamed them “Apple Pancake Fritters” since the frying gives them a fritter-like crispness. Scrumptious – thanks for the recipe, Deb!

  137. Nicole

    Delicious! I used half yogurt and half cottage cheese and some cinnamon and nutmeg. They were so moist and flavorful! I will definitely be making these again. Thanks!

  138. Dennis

    Hello from England!
    I tried these for breakfast this morning after some googling and they were great. Instead of all-purpose flour and the baking powder I used some wholemeal self-raising stuff, a mix of half natural yoghurt and half milk, and Bramley cooking apples. Sadly I forgot to add some spices, but they were amazing anyway! I would probably have put in some cinamon, but I like the earlier idea of nutmeg too.
    We don’t have much maple syrup over here, but we do like our golden syrup! A bit more natural yoghurt on the side really made it.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  139. Oh so good! I am sick and needed something like this with my ginger tea. It was a success! I added a bit of ricotta because I think ricotta just makes about anything better. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe.

  140. These were really tasty and went down very well with my hungry mob at teatime today. I used windfalls given by my lovely neighbour and added a sprinkling of cinnamon with the grated apple. Also I didn’t bother peeling the apples – far too fiddly and time-consuming. When you grate the apple the skin tends to just drop off anyway if you quarter and core the apple and then grate from the centre outwards. Thank you for posting, Deb!

  141. Denver Cook

    Just made this morning out of desperation with apples about to turn. Kids are eating them up! I add vanilla and cinnamon and told them they were breakfast apple pies. Thank you!!!

  142. Jordan Riley

    Made these for dinner for myself and a few friends in the dorm common kitchen. Everyone agreed that they were absolutely delicious. (I added a splash of vanilla and some cinnamon–a bit much of both, but that was not intentional.) They were a little wet in the middle despite being fairly dark on the outside, but that may be more due to my pancake-cooking skills than anything else.

  143. Otto

    I added vanilla extract, cinnamon, and used brown sugar plus red delicious apples… they were good, but I agree, they turned out a bit bland tasting.

  144. Jessica

    I loved these! I didn’t think they were bland at all. I added vanilla extract and cinnamon. Great texture, great thickness, beautifully absorbed the powdered sugar and maple syrup.

  145. Christina

    victory for breakfast! the second installment of a breakfast club w friends was a success due to these beauties, even w massive improv to include: coconut milk instead of dairy, only 2 apples [1 each braeburn/honeycrisp], soda since I was out of powder, and no cast-iron skilleting this time.
    still golden/tender/adorable…w butter, powdered sugar and toasted pecans on top, these were just THE best start to a day.
    I’m thinking ginger-honey on the leftovers in the morning.
    never a dull moment in the smitten kitchen!

  146. Trish

    Was on a search for Apple Pancake recipes and chose this because of the three apples instead of one that most recipes called for. An excellent find… Husband even said they were good (and he doesn’t say much!). Used 1 cup milk and a 6oz. container of plain Greek yogurt. Added 2 tsp vanilla powder to the dry mixture. Tossed the shredded apples with a sugar/cinnamon/cardamom spice blend before adding them to the batter. Delicious! Definitely a keeper!
    Oh, just made them on an oiled electric griddle set at 400 and they were perfect.

  147. Anna

    Love, love, love…. Just like the Placki my mom use to make. No need for syrup. I used almond milk instead of regular and coconut oil for frying. Sooooo yummy… Thank you. This is the second recipe I have tried. Also made your oatmeal cookies – UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!

  148. Edie

    Folks, I have the solution to the seasoning thing. You don’t buy a new skillet (dutch oven etc.). You go to one of those antique places (malls???) and buy old ones (cheaper) and already seasoned. Deed done, all ready to use. Wash gently, if you do at all (wipe out grease with paper towel allowing it to season more), place in low temp oven for an hour and voila! You’re good to go. Relax, enjoy!

  149. Kathleen

    I tried this recipe this morning and I did not like it. It is way too doughy and chewy. I tried it with vanilla yogurt and have to add more milk to thin it out. Even so, the texture was still way too chewy for pancakes.

  150. Azar

    I tried this recipe right now and made a few changes to pump up the flavor as Deb suggested. I added a little more than 1/4 C of maple syrup to the wet ingredients and some powdered cinnamon to the dry ingredients. I think I also added a little more milk along the way. I liked the texture and flavor (a bit like french toast) but as some of my kids won’t touch pancakes if they don’t look “plain” I dumped it into my Vitamix- viola plain pancakes that two of them won’t eat because they don’t taste like my usual pancakes.

  151. Brooke

    I just polished off four of these, and took the advice of others: added cardamom, cinnamon, orange zest, and tiny splash of vanilla. I fried half in vegetable oil, and the second half in butter. I think the butter is the missing note. It added depth of flavor and crispiness! Yum!

  152. Michelle J.

    I’m not sure if anyone will even see this on an old post but I just have to put in a word on my experience with cast iron pans, I have several and some are old antiques and some are new, the old ones are the best! They have a much smoother, more machined surface and they even heat up faster and I think more evenly than the new ones. (Just double check before you buy that they are flat on the bottom) I love love love my old pans! Thanks for all the great recipes, this is my favorite food blog! Even over PW!

  153. Ria

    Made this today with a bunch of cinnamon dumped in, and substituted vanilla sugar for about half the sugar– then I fried them in butter because I’m reckless like that. It was so good!

  154. MrsJourns

    I made these and they went down very well. I added some cinnamon and used Granny Smith apples. The texture was a little chewier than my normal pancakes but still very enjoyable. Will be making these again.

  155. Otherwise Useless

    I discovered this recipe a couple of months ago and it’s become a family favorite. I even google-translated it so my extended, spanish speaking family could try it. And I must say, absolutely everybody has loved these damn pancakes the minute they tried them. Muchas gracias!

  156. symphonic chef

    These are soo good! I added a tiny bit of cinnamon, vanilla, and orange zest, and the orange zest made them surprisingly awesome. I also added my favorite pancake ingredient, chopped walnuts. I like how this recipe does not have any oil or melted butter in the batter. Healthy, right? ;)

  157. Chip

    Had pancakes to make and apples to use up last Saturday morning, and SK is one my very few “use THAT recipe” sites when I go Googling for recipes. I substituted yogurt for half the milk, which enabled me to also substitute baking soda for baking powder, and added a teaspoon of cinnamon, an eighth teaspoon of allspice and a reasonable-looking quantity of nutmeg. Kids loved them so much they insisted on them for Sunday breakfast too, and this time I tried white whole wheat flour instead of APF and that was even more excellent. They barely even need maple syrup.

  158. Made these and they were fantastic! I added vanilla, cinnamon, and crumbled bacon into the batter. Soooo good with peanut butter and high-quality maple syrup. Cheers!

  159. Action Ash

    Hi! I made these this morning, halved the amounts (except the baking powder) and added cinnamon. The kids said they tasted like the Applekaka thing they sell at Ikea. (This is excellent as the 13yo usually doesn’t like pancakes and she loved these!).
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  160. Aleksandra

    Hey! Thank you for the reciepe, it is really awesome! I just made em on the non-stick pan with no fat added. I had some additional cinnamon flavouring and it went soo delicious. Even my Mom said that its perfect! These buddies really work!

  161. Joan

    SOOOO many apples from our CSA. Made this this am – with greek yogurt, cinnamon, vanilla. Served w/a side of sweetened ricotta cheese & syrup — delicious!! Maybe will put out preserves to go the Swedish/Ikea way! Thank you!!

  162. Sara

    I do not know anyone who avoids tomatoes in a cast iron skillet. It’s actually a good way to get iron if you are anemic or run that way. So, I’ve only seen recommendations to USE tomatoes in cast iron, not avoid it. Otherwise, I use cast iron all the time. Remember to put oil in the pan (I just spray with olive oil)

  163. Heidi

    These are fantastic with a couple of your suggested tweaks.

    I made half a recipe (a very ample meal for two – probably should have stored a couple instead of eating them) with Gala apples, and I replaced one quarter-cup of flour with cornmeal and added about 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (good for us cinnamon lovers!) and about the same amount of vanilla extract, which made them VERY vanilla-y.

    I do not quite have your distaste for very sweet things at breakfast, but as I’m currently watching my caloric intake, I tried not to smother them all in syrup. I had two with a little maple syrup, one with fig preserves (definitely my favorite), and one with cottage cheese and a drizzle of honey. (I’d thought sour cream originally, but I didn’t have any.)

    Great filling breakfast, and as I served it, it’s only about 550 calories. I am thrilled!

  164. Herbandolive

    I love your site, but, these pancakes were…..not great. In fact, they were pretty bad. Gummy, bland, just not good. I got up early this morning, dirtied up the million and one parts to my food processor to grate the apples, and made these on my cast iron griddle. My boys ate them like good soldiers before heading out the door to school, but there were no good comments like I usually get from my other breakfasts. I am an ace flap jack maker if I do say so myself(I’ve had LOTS of practice with my pancake loving family), so I really think it’s the recipe.

  165. Cary

    Very tasty! Added apple pie spice and vanilla, used granny smith apples. And I’m sure they will be even better when I use baking powder that is less than two years expired ;-)

  166. PHATMAN910

    If your a TRUE pancake lover might I suggest getting an electric griddle@ Wally world $20.00 also instead of using a food processor try a grater add a little orange juice and bump up the baking powderto2tsp and I use egg nog instead of milk

  167. Just made these pancakes with Greek yogurt instead of milk, and also made pancake batter more runny so that the pancakes came out less cake-like. The pancakes with the addition of Greek yogurt, plus cinnamon, vanilla were not bland at all!

  168. Noa

    After trying the Edna Mae sour cream pancakes a few days ago, I decided to give my guys a weekend treat with these. I swapped half the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour, used one cup of yogurt and half a cup of sour cream, and added some vanilla extract and orange zest. They were delicious, and the orange gave it a nice twist. The only problem, if you can call it that, is that it was much too large a batch for two adults and one almost-toddler (who gobbled them up happily). Are we doomed to have pancake lunch and pancake dinner, or is there any chance they will keep till tomorrow morning?

  169. Morgan

    I just made a half recipe of these with cinnamon and they are perfect! Definitely learned to spread them out thinner after the first batch. Delicious. =)

  170. Anastasia

    First try went well! They taste delicious with cinnamon and vanilla, as suggested in the comment above.
    Well worth the time, I’ll be making them again! :)

  171. I only scanned this article quickly — and I’m using teflon pans — but
    was trying to remember whether the apples go onto the pan first or the
    batter goes on first. What I’m seeing is that a lot of people make them
    quite differently from the way my Dad usedf to make them.
    I generally make large pancakes which fit into a pryrex pie dish and cut
    them when cook like a pie. Sometimes I also make some small ones,
    especially when the pan is first warming up. Well, your pancakes also
    look good, but not ready to give up the way I do it which also delivers
    a delicious pancake/fritter.

  172. Joanne

    My German mother always made her apple pancakes by thinly slicing apples then coating them with batter. When I make them, I make lots of extras, and we eat them for snacks for days. But I’ll try this recipe to see how the apples taste grated. Thanks.

  173. Kristin

    Well, I decided to make these with gf flour and they never dried out in the middle the way a pancake should. They were gummy in a very unpleasant way. Like a rubbery sponge. I did add vanilla and cinnamon and thought the flavor was great. Too bad the texture was so off I had to throw them out. Maybe it was the gf flour. I read a comment by someone else who had the same problem using gf pancake mix.

  174. Sheila

    Made a double batch this morning and it was a rave, even without the cast iron skillet.
    I didn’t need grate the apples, though, just chucked it in the processor and blitz it until it was small chunks (not applesauce). We still tasted the apple bits, yumm!
    And a nod to those who suggested – pinches of cinnamon and nutmeg will up the ante.
    A breakfast staple from now on :)

  175. Ms. Perfetto

    Thanks for the recipe. I use my Lodge cast iron griddle to make cornmeal pancakes every weekend. They never stick because I heat the pan on medium for 5 minutes then add the oil that is just enough to cover the bottom of the pan as if it was a coat of nail polish.

  176. Lia

    Made these delicious pancakes this mornin’
    Great way to start the day, all the college ladies in my house enjoyed them too<3
    Thanks, Smitten!

  177. Cat

    We cut the sugar back to about 1 tbsp and used dark brown sugar. I added a hefty dash of Penzy’s pumpkin pie spice, and an extra dash of their cinnamon. Also, used vanilla extract in the wet ingredients. We used buttermilk rather than the milk or yogurt, and due to the extra acidity, added 1/2 tsp baking soda. (I would do this if using yogurt also.) They came out great.

    In another run of these, I might put a splash of apple jack instead of the vanilla.

  178. It’s been decided: I am making these pancakes tomorrow morning! Today is my birthday and I took a day off from cooking. Actually, my men release me from it every year. Isn’t that nice? Thank you for the recipe. I’ll try the second batch with gluten-free flour.

  179. Hai Deb,

    I made this pancake this morning and add in cinnamon and came out delicious.
    Thanks for the recipe, it is really quick and easy recipe.
    I posted this recipe on my blog and lick back to smitten kitchen. Even though my blog written in Indonesian but I hope someday you would like to come visit.
    I have tried your apple cake too, found the recipe that is tried by another Indonesian food blogger. Because of her I know your website.

    Thanks again

  180. Heather

    Made these with a couple modifications – used buttermilk, 1 tsp cinnamon, half teaspoon nutmeg, 2 apples. Loved the texture of them. Fluffy and moist. I think the spice was too much – I didn’t really taste the apple. Next time I’ll half the spice and use the three apples.

  181. Zooie

    I had an abundance of apples that I needed to find something to do with and skipped over here, knowing I’d find something good. I added the zest of 1/2 a lemon and opted for cooking these up in some extra virgin olive oil and they were simply divine! Thanks for a great recipe!!

  182. Success!

    I love modifying recipes that I’m familiar with. My mom was a stay at home mom, Polish, and these are pretty darn close to what she would make, which is fantastic, because my mom never cooked from recipes (so she could never tell me measurements, etc.).

    I used spelt flour, and just topped off (maybe 1/4 of a cup) with regular white flour (ran out of spelt). Used brown sugar, and added chia seeds, dried cranberries (chopped smaller), some raisins (chopped up). Placki, BTW, are FANTASTIC with banan. Mixed in with the apple. Yuuuuum~~~

    The very last batch I smooshed in some raspberries, and wow. POPZiPSnAP. :D. Soooooo good with raspberries (but ya gotta be careful the cells popping in the oil when cooking.

    Thank you Deb for sharing this with us!

    (As I side note, I totally rocked the Twinkie Bunt Cake too for my husband’s birthday, :9. Everyone at his office looooooooved the cake.)


  183. Kathy

    I love your recipes but these didn’t work for me. They took forever to cook through and when they did, they were tough. I used buttermilk instead of milk but that was the only change. Not sure what happened.

  184. I was looking for a breakfast recipe to make for my autuistic son, who recently discovered that applesauce will not kill him.
    It was down to a choice between these pancakes and baked apples stuffed with oatmeal and brown sugar.
    I decided to go for the pancakes since they are something he eats without fail.

    I did alter the recipe a bit. I used half and half insteasd of milk because that was all I had in the fridge; next time though, I think I will use buttermilk instead of milk or yogurt. I think it would make the pancakes a little lighter and be a happy compromise between milk and yogurt.

    I used three small, coarsely grated Grany Smith apples. Next time, I think I will use a slightly sweeter variety :) , like Gala or a more mealy variety that will cook a little faster and mince them instead of shredding (easier texture for my son to tolerate). To flavor the batter, I used a teaspoon of cinnamon and a half teaspoon of vanilla extract. Next time, I will try using brown sugar and add about a quarter teaspoon of nutmeg.

    I added about 3 tablespoons of melted, unsalted butter to the batter
    because, well, just because. Using a one third cup measure of batter for each pancake and cooked them three minutes per side on medium (number three setting on my electric stove). Also, I was chicken and used a non-stick pan and we ate them with butter and maple syrup.

    That said: my son ate two of these pancakes without a twitch and that is high praise indeed.