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National Pancake Day: 10 great pancakes

Today is National Pancake Day, and this is the 10th year IHOP is offering free pancakes and donating proceeds to charity. For more on that, click here.

But reading about pancakes always makes me think about my favorite pancakes. And thinking about my favorite pancakes always makes me hungry. So rather than suffer alone, I want to share with you 10 really great pancakes.

You’re welcome.

Believe me, I’ve had a lot of pancakes over the years. A lot of pancakes. So while this isn’t my definitive list, some of these really stood out. More on that in a minute.

And now, without further ado, let’s enjoy some pancakes.


Banana pancakes at Lou Mitchell’s, Chicago.
First let me point out that the pancakes don’t come like that, although that would be pretty awesome. These are buttermilk pancakes with a few banana slices on top and a whole lot more baked into the batter. The side of bacon is just the icing on the pancake, if you will.


Blueberry banana crunchcakes at Yolk, Chicago.
Multigrain pancakes with blueberries baked inside. Topped with a generous amount of bananas along with honey and granola and served with maple syrup.


Raspberry white chocolate chip pancakes at Miss Shirley’s, Baltimore.
Buttermilk pancakes with two kinds of raspberry sauce – yogurt and jelly – topped with white chocolate chips, fresh raspberries and powdered sugar. Served with maple syrup.


Blueberry pancakes at Cracker Barrel (lots of locations)
Simple, tried, true. Buttermilk pancakes with blueberries baked inside. Served with a side of blueberry syrup.


Pumpkin spice cinnamon swirl pancakes at The Bongo Room, Chicago.
Decadent pumpkin spice pancakes with cinnamon whipped cream. Served with butter and syrup if you can find room for it. Note: This is a seasonal offering.


Maple pear pancakes at The Bongo Room, Chicago.
Buttermilk pancakes with stewed pears baked inside, topped with maple whipped cream and butter. Note: This is a seasonal offering.


Cannoli pancakes at Orange, Chicago.
Now that’s Italian. Kind of. Buttermilk pancakes with sweet ricotta/marscapone filling and topped with chocolate chips.


Mandarin orange pancakes at Table Fifty-Two, Chicago.
Chef Art Smith knows his way around pancakes. Fresh citrus-y pancakes with the sweet taste of mandarin orange with an orange syrup. I’d go back just for the syrup.


Cinnamon roll pancakes at Cafe Selmarie, Chicago.
Cinnamon roll griddlecakes with caramelized brown sugar-cinnamon swirl, topped with vanilla cream cheese-butter and warm bacon bits. The bacon is optional, so no need to miss out on this one vegetarians.


Banana chocolate chip hotcakes at Pamela’s diner, Pittsburgh
I saved the best pancakes I have ever had in my life for last. And if you have heard that President and Mrs. Obama love Pamela’s, you heard right – but remember they didn’t know about this place before I did. These hotcakes are like crepes, but not quite. Filled with bananas and melted chocolate chips and topped with sweet whipped cream and butter. The edges of the hotcakes are dipped in butter so they have extra crunch. This is the kind of breakfast I would drive 500 miles for. They’re that good.

That’s my 10. I’d love to know your favorite pancakes. Leave me a comment or tweet me.

About Scott Kleinberg

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