Celebrate Pancake Day with these traditional Shrove Tuesday Pancakes. These pancakes are easy to make and taste delicious! All you have to do is decide your filling!
I have very happy memories of Shrove Tuesday pancakes from when I was a kid, watching my mum precariously flipping pancakes was great fun! I can see that same sense of apprehension in my daughter's eyes when I flip the first pancake every pancake night, will I make the flip, will the pancake hit the ceiling or worse the floor!
Pancakes only happened on Shrove Tuesday when I was a kid, the only day of the whole year when we had pancakes so I guess that's what made it so special. Not like today when pancakes happen every weekend at my house!
Why Are Pancakes Eaten on Shrove Tuesday?
All over the UK and Ireland (and other countries), people will eat pancakes to mark to the beginning of Lent, which starts on Ash Wednesday. Lent is a time of fasting and abstinence for Christians.
So, many years ago, before Lent started housewives would use up any eggs, milk and butter before lent started. They used these to make pancakes. Lent is still practised today in Ireland and the UK, to a lesser degree, people now might give up chocolate, sugar or alcohol.
What do I need?
- Flour - You will need plain or all-purpose flour to make these pancakes.
- Milk - I use semi-skimmed milk for this recipe, you can use full fat if you wish.
- Egg - You only need one large egg, free-range or pasture-fed is best.
- Butter - I use full-fat salted Irish butter. Always!
- Vanilla Extract - This is optional but it's something I've been adding to my pancakes for ages and we love it.
How To Make Shrove Tuesday Pancakes
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the middle then add the egg.
- Start adding the milk. I add a little at a time and start whisking it in.
- Once all the milk is added pour in the melted butter and vanilla and whisk briefly. Pop the batter in the fridge for at least 30 minutes if you have time.
- Heat a little butter in a pan then pour in about ¼ cup or half a ladle of the batter into the pan. Leave it for a few minutes then turn over the pancake and cook the other side for a minute or two.
Tips For Making The Best Pancakes
- Leave the batter to sit and chill for at least 30 minutes. This will give the gluten time to relax and the starch grains to swell. This will give you a lighter pancake. Make sure to give the batter a quick whisk before you start cooking them!
- I always sift the flour to add more air to the batter.
- Make sure your pan is hot! Test the heat of the pan before you add your first pancake. Drop a little splash of water in the pan and if it sizzles you're good to go!
- Use butter to cook the pancakes! Butter has more flavour, if you've used the pan to melt the butter for the batter then you're good to go. If not then add a little butter to the pan, give the melted butter a swirl so it covers the base of the pan.
- Once you add the batter to the pan make sure and tip the pan around so that the batter fills the base of the pan.
- Serve them straight away! Pancakes are best eaten hot straight from the pan. I know it's a pain but they are best fresh. If you do want to keep them warm, preheat the oven to 120°C/ 250°F. Place the pancakes on a baking tray with a little baking paper between each pancake. Bear in mind that the pancakes may get a little crispy around the edges.
How to Serve Shrove Tuesday Pancakes
There were only two ways to have your pancakes when I was a kid, lemon and sugar or jam, and oh they were divine. These days my house is divided when it comes to pancake night, my girl loves a certain hazelnut spread and banana, my husband loves berries, greek yoghurt, and maple syrup and I stick to my roots, lemon and sugar all the way! Whichever way you go I hope you have fun on pancake night.
Have you made this Shrove Tuesday Pancakes Recipe? Rate it and leave me a comment below to let me know what you think!
Shrove Tuesday Pancakes
- 110 g plain flour/ all-purpose flour (1 cup)
- 1 large egg
- 280 ml semi-skimmed milk (1 ¼ cups)
- 30 g butter (2 ¼ tbsp) melted, plus more for frying
- ¼ tsp of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl, add the salt.Make a well in the centre of the flour, add the egg and some of the milk and whisk into a batter.
- Add the rest of the milk gradually, whisking into a thin batter, whisk in the melted butter and the vanilla extract.
- Heat a teaspoon of butter in a medium frying pan, add ¼ cup of batter to the pan, swirl it around the pan to fill the pan.
- Cook until the bottom of the pancake starts to brown and then flip, repeat for the other side of the pancake.
- Serve immediately with chosen toppings.
- Flour - I always sift the flour to aerate it.
- Batter - If you have time, I recommend leaving the batter to rest for about 30 minutes, I also pop mine in the fridge to chill.
- Butter - I use full-fat salted butter to make the batter and for cooking the pancakes. Butter will give your pancakes more flavour when you cook them.
- Pan - For best results use a good non-stick pan. My pan measured in at 20cm/8". The size of your pan will determine how many pancakes the batter will yield. The smaller the pan the more pancakes you will get!
- Storing/reheating/freezing - These pancakes really are best served hot straight from the pan, however, if you want to keep them warm pop them in a preheated oven at 120°C/ 250°F. Place the pancakes on a baking tray with a little baking paper between each pancake. Bear in mind that the pancakes may get a little crispy around the edges. I don't recommend reheating these from cold or freezing these pancakes.
- Nutritional Information - is approximate and is calculated using an online nutrition tool. It is based on one serving and does not include fillings.
- Measurements - I weigh all my ingredients using an electric scale, all measurements are metric. Cup measurements are approximate.
*This recipe was first published on February 9, 2016. It has now been updated with new photos, expert tips and nutritional information.