Every Sunday morning I make a hearty breakfast for my family.
Sometimes that means French toast, omelets, or mini quiches, but more often than not, they ask for pancakes. And who am I to say no to pancakes?
Needless to say, I’ve been tempted to use waffle mix for pancakes and pancake mix for waffles on multiple occasions in my life. However, each attempt has had varying levels of success.
Now I know why! While you can make pancakes with waffle mix, it’s going to require a bit more work than you might think.
If you’re ready to learn how, keep reading for our top tips and tricks to master your breakfast game!
Are Pancake and Waffle Mix Interchangeable?
Only if you want really runny, flat waffles! Or crispy and dense pancakes. I personally don’t, and for the sake of this article, I’m going to assume you don’t either!
Although all of the key ingredients are the same, the ratios aren’t.
Waffles require more fat and sugar than pancakes to achieve a nice crisp. The added sugar helps the tops caramelize, while the fat thickens and enriches the batter.
If you want to turn your pancake mix into waffles, you’ll need to add some ingredients.
Generally, you’ll double the amount of fat, whether that be butter or oil, and double the eggs too. Then, add over twice as much sugar (usually 2.5x)!
Since waffles are thicker and denser than pancakes, you may want to decrease the amount of liquids slightly as well.
However, that may be too much for you to calculate on your own!
No judgment if so – I’m not a morning person, so doing math when I’m exhausted and craving waffles seems next to impossible.
Luckily, there are brands that offer mixes that can be converted easily either way. If you want to try some, consider one of the following:
Of course, if you already have a favorite brand – Krusteaz, anyone? You can stick with it and simply alter as you go.
If you’re making Belgian waffles, the ratios are going to be different – again!
They require more fat and less milk than regular waffles, since they’re meant to be thicker. We owe so much to Belgium!
Can I Make Pancakes or Waffles Without Eggs?
Sure! I’ve been plant-based for years now, so I’m very familiar with egg substitutions. Of course, you don’t have to be plant-based to use egg substitutes.
You might run out of eggs, or the carton goes bad, so it’s always handy to have these quick fixes around.
- Flax Egg
- Mashed Banana
- Chia Egg
- Vegetable Oil
The job of eggs in baking is to lift, bind, and add structure to the dish. They also have some fat, so they’re bringing a bit of flavor too.
Some of these substitutions work best for lifting but not for binding, so consider looking up exact substitutes before trying them out.
To make a chia or flax egg, you’ll need a bowl and some water. Add one tablespoon of chia or flax seeds and three tablespoons of water to a bowl. Stir or shake it around until everything’s mixed together. Set it off to the side and let it congeal for 5-10 minutes. When you shake it, it should stick together almost like jelly, rather than slosh around like water. Then you’ll know it’s ready to go!
In case you’re not familiar with aquafaba, let me introduce you two.
Aquafaba is the liquid that chickpeas come soaked in when they’re canned. As you cook with chickpeas, consider reserving the aquafaba and freezing or saving it for later, as it makes for a great egg substitute.
What if I Don’t Have All the Ingredients the Mix Calls For?
Then you gotta have some fun! I love coming up with substitutions in the kitchen, but I know it’s stressful for some.
Aside from all the egg substitutes above, there are other ingredients you have some wiggle room with.
Below I’ll list some common substitutions for oil and milk, since those are usually what the mixes require.
If you don’t want to risk making substitutions, several of the mixes above only call for water!
- Non-Dairy Milk
- Diluted Sour Cream
- Milk Products: Evaporated Milk, Condensed Milk, Powdered Milk
If you’re vegan or lactose intolerant, use any milk alternatives you may have on hand, such as almond, oat, or soy milk.
Lagers, porters, and stouts also work as great substitutes. Their natural fizziness makes the pancakes extra fluffy!
To make diluted sour cream, mix five tablespoons of sour cream with one tablespoon of water. This equals one cup of milk!
As for the milk product substitutes, you’ll need to get them into liquid form before adding them to the batter. Be sure to read their instructions before tossing them in!
- Melted Butter
- Coconut Oil
- Melted Shortening
These substitutes are pretty self-explanatory. With oil, you need to replace the fat while also smoothing out the texture.
All of the above substitutes are great ways to do both!
How Do I Know When a Pancake is Ready to Flip?
Who here hasn’t burned the occasional pancake? I often burn the first one before getting into a groove.
In order to prevent such occurrences, pay attention to the following signs. If it’s bubbling on the edges and in the center, your pancake might be ready to flip!
You can double-check by shaking your pan back and forth. If the pancake is too liquidy and jiggly, it’s not ready yet. The same goes if it stays in place as you shake it.
A ready-to-flip pancake will slide around on the pan. This usually only takes around three minutes per side, but that depends on how high your heat is.
Why Does My Pancake Stick to the Pan?
There are a few reasons why your pancakes may be sticking to the pan.
Perhaps you’re not greasing it well enough, or the heat is too high. The easiest way to ensure they won’t stick is simply to add more grease.
If you have nonstick pans on hand, use those instead of normal pans. Although it will take longer, turning down the heat will ensure easy flipping and an even cook.
Still sticking after trying those out? Consider reducing the amount of sugar in your recipe. Too much sugar can make them adhere to the pan and result in broken pancakes and frustrated chefs.
And if none of these work for you, try sticking them in the oven instead. You can bake pancakes at low heat and avoid flipping them altogether!
Why Does My Waffle Stick to the Waffle Iron?
Unlike sticky pancakes, you may need to turn up the heat! Doughy waffles will split apart when the iron’s opened, so make sure the heat is high enough to cook them all the way through.
By the way, if you own a nonstick waffle iron, don’t use cooking spray on it! It’s designed for use without spray – adding any spray may actually be damaging it.
Speaking of, you may be using too much cooking spray, which only makes them stickier. If that’s the case, give that waffle iron a deep clean. Trust me, it needs it.
Your batter could also be too thin. Consider reducing the amount of liquid (milk or water) that goes into the recipe.
Also, don’t check on your waffle while it cooks. Make sure the waffle has enough time to cook and cool before you open it up. I know you’re hungry, but patience is key!
How Do You Know When a Pancake is Cooked Through?
This, in my opinion, is a lot easier to tell than with the first flip. As long as your pancake is golden-brown on both sides and flippable, it should be done.
If you’re still not sure, touch or shake the middle of the pancake. The center should be set and not jiggly.
Whether you call them flapjacks, pancakes, or hotcakes, we can all admit that pancakes are the best.
Keeping the basic ingredients in mind will help you interchange mixes and make delicious pancakes or waffles. Remember: fat is key!
And make sure to wait until those beauties are golden brown before eating them, even though your stomach may be grumbling.
And if you want to make pancakes my way, add a hefty dose of cinnamon to the batter. Cinnamon makes everything better!
I’m ready for Sunday breakfast – are you?