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I Tested Famous Pancake Recipes And Found The Very Best One

The winner was clear.

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Getting a perfect stack of pancakes that are fluffy, tender, and golden brown is harder than it looks.


Sometimes they're flat, sometimes they burn — pancakes are one of those deceptively simple things where technique really does matter.

To try to find the absolute best breakfast stack, I decided to test four of the most popular pancake recipes. A ~pancake showdown~ if you will.

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This was my lineup:

1. Ina Garten: Because I knew that Ina would take her pancakes to a whole new level and add some fancy ingredient like lemon zest or good vanilla (which, spoiler, she adds both).

2. Gordon Ramsay: Because I figured a world-class chef would have some crazy hack for making perfect pancakes (just like he has a crazy hack for making his famous scrambled eggs).

3. Chrissy Teigen: Because I wanted to try something a bit more out of the box, and her Dutch baby pancake seemed like just the thing to spice things up. (And people really do swear by her cookbook — she even has a second one in the works.)

4. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson: Because I stumbled across a recipe for his ~world-famous~ pancakes on Instagram, and it low-key looked delicious.


Up first was Ina Garten (aka the Barefoot Contessa). She starts by sifting all of her dry ingredients into a bowl.

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This includes the usuals — baking powder, salt, sugar, and flour.

Then she combines ~good~ vanilla, sour cream, milk, and lemon zest in a separate bowl.

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Then add the wet ingredients into the dry, and get some butter melting in a skillet.

Batter goes into the skillet and gets topped with diced bananas. Then just flip, stack, and serve.

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So, did I like these pancakes as much as Jeffrey does?

Yes! The pancakes were super fluffy, buttery, and perfectly golden brown. Almost immediately after the batter hit the pan, these babies puffed up beautifully and became light as a cloud. The tiny pieces of banana not only added flavor, but a nice texture. This was definitely a solid stack of pancakes, and the lemon zest and vanilla gave them a hint of flavor that made them interesting — but not in a weird way. How easy was that?

Rating: 🥞🥞🥞🥞

Get Ina Garten's recipe here.

Gordon Ramsay was next. He gets all chefy and starts by separating his egg yolks from the whites.

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He says to whisk the whites "until foamy" — so I hit them with a hand mixer to speed things along.


Then he combines an ENTIRE LITER of milk along with a bunch of other ingredients — and folds those whipped egg whites back in.

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Gordon must be cooking for a crowd, because this seriously made enough batter to feed an army.

Cook the batter in a buttered skillet, then serve 'em up.

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He definitely won for quantity of pancake batter, but how was the quality?

TBH, these were pretty underwhelming. The pancakes were super eggy — like the outside of French toast when you soak it in the egg mixture for too long. (You know what I'm talking about, right?) The pancakes were also oddly flat, which was surprising, considering I whipped the egg whites and added a ton (eight teaspoons!) of baking powder. This made them dense and soggy. They weren't necessarily idiot sandwich status, but for such a labor-intensive recipe, I expected them to be better.

Rating: 🥞🥞

Get Gordon Ramsay's recipe here.

Then came Chrissy Teigen's Dutch baby pancake to stir things up. She keeps it simple and dumps all of her ingredients straight into a blender.

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This includes flour, eggs, milk, butter, and salt.

After blending, pour it into a preheated skillet, toss it in the oven, and bake until golden brown and puffy.

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This recipe is especially useful because it basically cooks itself — no waiting to around to flip, and the oven does the heavy lifting.


Slather with butter, pour Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup over top (important!), and dust with powdered sugar.

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It looked pretty weird, but did it taste any good?

It did! However, it's pretty different compared to a traditional pancake, so it's hard to judge it the same way. The outside was crisped and golden, and the inside was soft and tender. The texture was almost like a flan and a pancake morphed into one beautifully wonky breakfast item — in a good way! This was a super-solid recipe, but depending on what you're looking for, it might not fulfill the same ~cravings~ as good ol' flapjacks.

Rating: 🥞🥞🥞

Get Chrissy Teigen's recipe here.

And last but not least was Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. His ~world-famous~ pancakes start with good ol' Aunt Jemima pancake mix.

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Just add water and whisk. Pretty impossible to screw up.

Then add milk chocolate chips, not semisweet ones. (The Rock's nickname in college was Sweet Chocolate, so this is V important.)

For the finishing touch, top with maple syrup and whipped cream.

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So, were these pancakes worthy of a cheat day?

Pretty much? Lol. The pancakes were good — but they were literally just boxed pancake mix combined with chocolate what's not to like? I don't think I would want these every morning — they were pretty sweet and it was more like dessert than breakfast. But if you have an intense sweet tooth, these are the stack for you.

Rating: 🥞🥞🥞

Get The Rock's recipe here.



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THE WINNER: Ina Garten

These pancakes were light, fluffy, and I could literally taste the good vanilla in them. They puffed up beautifully and were buttery, golden, and had a delicious banana flavor. These were some seriously classy pancakes. Get the recipe here.

SECOND PLACE: Dwayne ~The Rock~ Johnson

Today I learned that adding chocolate chips is all you need to make a killer flapjack (not really, but also...really). If you want something truly decadent, go with these. They were filled with melted bits of chocolate and covered in whipped cream — what's not to like? Get the recipe here.

THIRD PLACE: Chrissy Teigen

This Dutch baby was good — but it's hard to compare these against the other recipes. It was crispy on the outside, soft and flanlike in the middle, and deliciously buttery. If you want something a bit untraditional (and not at all like a standard pancake), go with this beauty. Get the recipe here.

LAST PLACE: Gordon Ramsay

These were a lot of work to make, and not at all worth the effort. They came out flat, eggy, dense, and were totally underwhelming. Save yourself some money (and time) and skip this recipe. Get the recipe here.

TL;DR: If you want a solid stack of pancakes that are super fluffy, classic, and a bit ~fancy~, go with Ina's banana pancakes. If you're more of a dessert-for-breakfast kind of person, The Rock's pancakes are a solid (and insanely easy to make) choice.

What ultimate recipes should we test next? Let us know in the comments below!