15 Different Types of Pancakes from Across the Globe for Pancake Day, Shrove Tuesday, ebruary 25, 2020

There are some years that you cannot blink in February, 'cos if you do, as soon as you're done celebrating Valentine's Day it's Shrove Tuesday, the last day before Lent starts.  This is one of those years, since we'll be celebrating Shrove Tuesday on February 25th, just a week from now.

Shrove Tuesday, as we all know, is also known as Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras by the French-speaking world, or Pancake Day by their British and American counterparts, and in the past was the day we were supposed to purge our larders of such ingredients as eggs, butter and cream in preparation for the Lenten season, when a more rigorous, minimalistic approach to food was undertook.  Good for the soul, and, in these days of diets galore, we can appreciate the discipline's usefulness to the body as well.


Pancakes with clementines and pomegranates

Try something different this Shrove Tuesday with this beautifully vibrant pancake recipe. These pancakes have a delicious sweet and nutty flavour. Serve them with a cardamom, clementine syrup and fresh pomegranate seeds for a fruity Pancake Day dish. The recipe for this delightful dish can be found, along with other exciting variations on the pancake theme, on our Pancake and Waffle Recipes page.


This year, in addition to a yummy pancake recipe, I thought I'd also give you a little peek into how different cultures across the globe have come up with their own version of this most basic of foods. 

15 Different Types of Pancakes You Need To Try from Across the Globe

courtesy of spar.co.uk

Many consider themselves aficionados of the battered snack, but how well do you really know your pancakes? The simplicity of the pancake means that it has been tried, tested, and tried again a hundred times over, with each effort forming something slightly different to the last. Now, thousands of years after it first made its way into our diets, there are variations from six continents across the globe. From the well-known French crêpes and Scotch pancakes to the Dutch poffertje and Korean jeon, which will you be having this Pancake Day? If you want to go for something a little different to the standard English recipe, take your pick from around the world below.

French Crêpes 

French crêpes are well known in the UK, and are officially made in a crêpe pan to form a thin pancake. Made from flour, milk and eggs, these are close counterparts to English pancakes, and can be served sweet or savoury. The key to getting it right? Keep your crêpes super thin for a light-as-air treat.

American Buttermilk Pancakes

Another pancake that has successfully made its way over to the UK, American buttermilk pancakes differ from our thin variations. The American pancake recipe uses a rising agent like baking powder to form much thicker, fluffier pancakes. These are best served with maple syrup and bacon for breakfast, or as a dessert with fruit, cream or yoghurt.

Scotch Pancakes

Similar to American pancakes, Scotch pancakes, also known as drop scones, are made with flour, eggs, sugar, milk, salt, and cream of tartar. They are made much smaller than a typical English pancake, and are often served with jam or cream as a snack.

Indonesian Serabi

Made with rice flour and coconut milk and distinctively only cooked on one side, most Serabi are eaten sweet, but can be paired with cheese and meat for a savoury snack. Eaten throughout Southeast Asia, some recipes add pandan leaf juice to form a green hue.

Russian Blinis

Russian blinis, or buckwheat pancakes, are yeasted pancakes traditionally made from buckwheat flour and served savoury with sour cream or caviar. Mini blinis have become popular in the UK, and are often served with smoked salmon as an appetiser. Think of them as the party pancake.

Moroccan Msemen


Taking a departure from the traditional circular pancake, Moroccan Msemen pancakes are square shaped variations made from wheat flour and semolina. They are traditionally served savoury with meats and meals. A hearty alternative for your Shrove Tuesday supper.

Danish Aebleskiver

Sticking with pancakes that don’t conform to the norm, Danish Aebleskiver are served hot, fluffy and spherical! Made in a special frying pan with deep holes for each pancake, they are then consumed like doughnuts – dipped in jam and sprinkled in sugar.

Irish Boxty

Made with egg, flour, milk, butter and potato, Irish Boxtys, or potato pancakes, are a kind of pancake-hash brown hybrid. They are best served as a savoury snack or as part of a meal.

Korean Jeon

A savoury take on the pancake, the Jeon is made from eggs, wheat flour, rice and green onions. Differing from many pancakes that are then topped or used as a wrap, the Korean Jeon combines fish, meat or vegetables with the mixture so that the ingredients are cooked within, making it a meal in itself.

Italian Crespelle

The Italian take on the pancake is similar to that of the French crêpe. Made from eggs, milk and chestnut flour, it forms a thin pancake best served savoury with meat or cheese.

Australian Pikelet

Made from milk, flour, eggs and a touch of icing sugar, the Australian pikelet is a sort of blini-crumpet crossover. Pikelets are made small like a Scotch pancake and served with jam, cream or butter.

German Dutch Baby Pancake

Don’t be fooled by the name. The pinnacle of giant pancakes, the Dutch baby pancake more closely resembles a Yorkshire pudding. Made with eggs, flour, sugar, milk and seasoned with cinnamon or vanilla, they are mainly served sweet. The biggest difference to most of the other pancakes on our list – they are actually baked in a cast iron pan, which helps to form their shape.

Swedish Raggmunk

Similar to the Boxty, Swedish Raggmunks are made with milk, eggs, wheat flour and grated potato. Once fried, they are often served up savoury with meat or as part of a meal.

Dutch Poffertjes

Made with yeast and buckwheat, Dutch Poffertjes have a light, spongy texture. Served sweet with cream and a dusting of sugar, they closely resemble their Danish counterpart in that they have to be cooked in a special pan to achieve their unique shape.

Finnish Pannukakka

A sweet, baked variation made of eggs, milk, sugar, flour and vanilla, the Finnish Pannakakku forms a thick pancake that is crisp on the top and soft in the middle. It’s best served sweet with cream, jam or fruit.
Who said there was such a thing as a simple pancake recipe? Whether you’re looking for the perfect pancakes for breakfast, tea or dessert – you’ve got a world of sweet and savoury pancakes to choose from to satisfy your appetite.


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