Japanese Pancakes

Breakfast / Brunch

Japanese Pancakes

It’s hard to fathom how pancakes can get any better. These hot cakes are the answer. But what’s the deal behind them? They’re thick, yet fluffy, like a soufflé — custardy on the inside and crispy golden on the outside. And they tower over a traditional stack.

The batter is thick, similar to a soufflé batter. The height comes from egg whites that have been whipped to stiff peaks. Along with the egg whites, there’s another key leavener: baking powder. All that leavening power causes the cakes to rise as they cook.

But to get the best height and structure, you’ll want to use cake rings. They help the pancakes keep their shape, and aid in creating the lofty height, as they cook. You can make the pancakes without the rings, but they’re not as impressive in the end.


8 pancakes

Total Time

Print Recipe

Share Recipe




Test Kitchen Tips

We used Hulisen 3(w) × 1¾(h)-inch round cake rings. You can also use English muffin rings, but the pancakes won’t be as tall and impressive looking.

These impressive pancakes can be a little tricky to flip. We found using tongs to hold the ring while sliding a spatula underneath simplifies flipping.


Whisk together flour, 2 Tbsp. sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Whisk together milk, egg yolks, and almond extract in a bowl, then whisk in flour mixture until incorporated. Chill batter, uncovered, while making meringue.

Beat egg whites, remaining 3 Tbsp. sugar, and cream of tartar with a mixer on medium speed until sugar dissolves. Increase speed to medium-high and continue beating egg whites until stiff peaks form.

Fold one-third of meringue into batter with a whisk until incorporated. Continue folding meringue, until all meringue is incorporated.

Lightly coat the inside of four 3 × 1¾-inch cake rings with nonstick spray.

Lightly coat a nonstick skillet with vegetable oil; heat over medium-low. Place prepared rings in skillet and fill each with ½ cup batter (each ring should be about halfway full). Add 2 tsp. water to skillet, cover with lid. (Chill batter, uncovered, while pancakes cook.)

Cook pancakes until batter rises to tops of rings and bottoms are golden, about 5 minutes. Grab one ring with tongs and slide a thin spatula under ring to release pancake and carefully flip; repeat with remaining rings and pancakes. Add another 2 tsp. water to skillet, cover, and cook pancakes until bottoms are golden, about 5 minutes more. Transfer pancakes to a plate and remove rings; repeat procedure with remaining batter.

Serve pancakes with butter and syrup.

Nutritional Facts

Nutritional Facts

Per pancake

Calories: 100

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 2g 3%

Saturated Fat 1g 5%

Cholesterol 71mg 23%

Sodium 233mg 9%

Carbs 16g 5%

Protein 5g

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Reviews ()

Add Review



  • Average: 5.00
  • Standardized Average: 5.00
    This is the average rating for this recipe, relative to the average rating of all of the recipes on this site. The average rating of all the recipes on this site is 68.76. If we pin the population average to 3 (define 3 as the new 68.76) and adjust this particular recipe's average accordingly, we see that, relative to a population average of 3, this recipe's adjusted standardized average is 5.00. This number is useful in that it accounts for how different people have different interpretations of the rating system.
  • Median: 5
    This is the rating that is in the middle of the ratings distribution. It is generally more indicative of how much you will actually like this recipe than the average because the average is subject to being skewed by outliers.
  • Mode: 5
    This is the most common rating that people have given this recipe.
  • Standard Deviation: None
    This is a measure of how polarizing the recipe is; how much people disagree about it.
    0 is the least polarizing; everyone agrees on the rating.
    2.5 is the most polarizing.
    Recipes with lower standard deviations in the ratings are better for people who don't want surprises. Higher standard deviations are good for adventurous cooks. There is no standard deviation for this recipe because it has fewer than 2 ratings so far.
These are great! My spouse stated that he could eat these every day. They remind me of Angelfood Cake in texture and flavor (I used vanilla rather than almond flavor). They were tricky to flip - after the first batch, wash your tongs. Otherwise the filled rings will slip out of the tongs' grip.
Tracy L
Aug. 20, 2023, 11:05 a.m. Edited Edit Delete

Edit Review

Delete Review

Show Fewer ▲
Latest Cuisine Issue Cover

Subscribe Today and Get 4 Free Digital Books!