Whether you’re avoiding a key pancake ingredient or Shrove Tuesday has simply crêped up on you, here’s how to substitute and still end up with a sumptuous stack.
If eggs, flour or milk are missing from your menu, try one of these fabulous free-from pancake recipes and say 'Yay!' to Shrove Tuesday. Our best ever pancake day recipes include everything from sweet stacks of fluffy American pancakes to delicate savoury crêpes.
How to make pancakes without flour
Although you will need some sort of flour to bulk out your batter, there are plenty of alternatives to using a pure wheat blend. Try using a mixture of self-raising and buckwheat flours in our sweet cinnamon pancakes, or go savoury with a smoked salmon & beetroot blini topping.
Mashed potato is another great way to bulk out pancakes if you’re low on flour. Try serving with bacon and eggs for a breakfast treat or add grated potato for extra texture and serve with gravadlax for a Scandinavian-style supper. Alternatively, if you’ve got some gram flour in the cupboard, these sweet potato masala dosa make for a delicious Indian-inspired dish.
If you’re after an entirely flour-free recipe, give these spiced oatmeal fritters with coconut caramel pears a go. Although denser than a traditional pancake, they make for an extra-special alternative – and they’re dairy-free, too. Our banana oat pancakes are also flour-free and have a subtle sweetness, they're delicious served with fresh fruit.
If you’re concerned with cutting out gluten or catering for a coeliac, try our gluten-free pancakes.
How to make pancakes without eggs
Eggs add richness and texture to pancakes. Keeping a carton of egg replacer in the cupboard is the easiest way to cater for someone with an egg allergy – if you have some in stock, try our egg-free pancakes. If not, these vegan tomato & mushroom pancakes are sure to hit the spot. Mashed bananas also make a handy egg replacement for sweet pancakes, try our quick three-minute banana pancakes.
If you've run out of eggs halfway through preparing your batter, try using a tablespoon of mayonnaise for each egg required in the recipe. It shouldn't affect the taste – we tried this trick to make our plate-sized pancakes, with excellent results. Peruse our vegan pancake collection for even more egg-less inspiration.
How to make pancakes without milk
Most pancake recipes call for cow’s milk, which is an obvious issue for those suffering from dairy allergies. Some sort of liquid is necessary to add moisture and thin out the batter, so try experimenting with a few dairy-free milks to find out which one you like best. We’ve used hemp milk in our triple-tested dairy-free pancake recipe – its subtle flavour lends itself to sweet pancake fillings. You could also use almond or soy milk instead, as used in the aforementioned oatmeal fritters and vegan pancakes. You can even use creamy coconut milk for a luxurious twist, as in our dairy-free coconut & banana pancakes. Why not try making your own dairy-free milk at home?
If you don't have a dairy allergy but have run out of milk, assistant food editor Miriam suggests using a generous dollop of plain yogurt tipped into a measuring jug and diluted with enough water to make a milk-like consistency. This will give the pancakes a slightly sharper flavour, but this can easily be balanced out with a sweet topping.
Without eggs, milk or wheat flour
If you’ve got a packet of firm silken tofu lurking in your larder, put it to good use making a tower of thick American-style treats that are free from gluten, eggs and dairy in our tofu brekkie pancake recipe.
If you’re after a thinner crêpe to flip and fill, try our egg, dairy and gluten-free pancakes.
So now that you've got your alternative ingredients sorted, it's time to hone your technique. Watch our videos to find out how to flip a pancake flawlessly and how to make American pancakes to perfection, or read our ultimate guide to pancakes for top tips. When it comes to flavourings, our top 10 pancake fillings are sure to satisfy whether you fall on the sweet or savoury side of the filling fence, or go global with our pancake recipes from around the world. Make sure you're plate is picture-perfect with our guide on how to make pancake art, from fluffy llamas to personalised initial pancakes.
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Do you have any top tips or secret ingredient swaps to replace flour, eggs or milk in pancake batter? We'd love to hear them - let us know in the comments below...