Batter Matchmaker: Finding The Right Pancake Mix For You
You’ve decided to make pancakes and are looking for the best pancake mix. So how do you decide? Before you “flip”-out from all the options available, we’ll help you examine what you need to consider so you can be sure to have a better batter.
Homemade Pancake Mix Vs. Instant Pancake Mix
When making pancakes, you first must choose between making pancake mix from scratch or using an instant mix. There are a few things you should consider. If you elect to make pancakes from scratch, you first need a recipe. And not any recipe. You want a proven pancake recipe from a reliable source that is an authority on pancakes. The last thing you want to do is spend your hard earned money for all the ingredients and make the pancakes, only to be disappointed in the taste.
You also want to consider your kitchen skills and available cookware. Do you have measuring spoons/cups and are you comfortable following simple recipes. Pancake mixs are typically one of the easiest recipes to make and often only contain a 6-8 basic ingredients (flour, sugar, oil, baking soda, salt, egg). So unless your the type of cook who might burn down the house just by cooking toast, you shouldn’t let a little thing like a simple pancake recipe scare you away from making pancakes from scratch.
Also consider the quantity of pancakes you need both now and later. Maybe you only need 1-2 pancakes and can’t find a recipe which can be reduced to less than 6-8 pancakes. And you don’t want to waste the pancake batter. Consider that you can use all the pancake batter now and save the leftover pancakes in a the freezer.
If you tend to cook or bake regularly, making your own homemade pancake mix from scratch is the way to go. It’s more economical to buy the core ingredients like sugar/flour/baking powder in larger quantities as compared to using a box mix. You will get more pancakes for the money and you get the added satisfaction of knowing your using fresh ingredients.
In addition, if you comfortable in the kitchen, you can experiment with your pancake recipes by adding spices like cinnamon and nutmeg or kicking it up a notch with brown sugar, nuts, or fruit.
If your not comfortable in the kitchen and not a routine baker, box pancake mix is for you. Buying all the ingredients to make pancake mix from scratch won’t make sense for you since the remaining ingredients are likely just to sit in your pantry unused. Also, you may be apprehensive about your culinary skills and just want great tasting pancakes the first time without the added hassle of preparation and cleanup.
Choose A Type of Pancake
After decided to use an instant mix or create your own from scatch, next choose a type of pancake. Pancakes are one of the most versatile foods around as they can be combined with fruit, nuts, sweets and more. There are many types of pancakes to choose from. In fact this may be the most difficult part in the pancake making process…choosing a style of pancake to make!
Everyone has heard of buttermilk, blueberry, and chocolate chip pancakes. But what about Apple Spice pancakes, oatmeal pancakes, or seasonal pancakes like delicious pumpkin pancakes. An when it comes to international pancakes, IHOP isn’t the only solution. There are German pancakes, Swedish pancakes, and many other worldly styles of hot-cakes!
Consider any special dietary needs like low sodium, gluten free, or vegan. There are both instant mixes and homemade recipes available that can satisfy dietary restrictions.
Eating organic foods and reducing the amount of processed food intake is also a growing importance for many health conscious eaters. The good news is that you can also easily find great organic pancake mix online.
Box Pancake Mix
Box pancake mix is often looked down upon. But the truth is, there are some great tasting instant pancake mixes available. Some of the more common store brands are Bisquick, Krusteaz, & Aunt Jemima. These pancake mixes are so simple, usually the only ingredient you have to add is water.
Bisquick features a product called Shake n Pour in which you just add water to the container and “shake” to mix. This even takes having to clean a mixing bowl out of your effort.
Krusteaz is a very highly rated brand that features 9 different pancake mixes. It has a great history as it was started by a group of women in Seattle playing bridge in 1932. And the name is a clever combination of “crust” and “ease”. See all of Krusteaz pancakes flavors here
There’s even a pancake batter in a whipped-cream like can called Batter Blaster. You can just shake the bottle and “blast” pancake batter onto your griddle.
Store Brand Frozen Pancakes
On what many would consider the lower end of the pancake quality scale, are store bought frozen pancakes. These are pancakes which are already made and just frozen. All the consumer has to do is warm up a prepared pancaked in a toaster or microwave. If you living it a college dorm, this may be the way to go. Without cooking facilities available, these flap-jacks may be your only option. Although, we hope one day soon you’ll have your own kitchen and can make your own pancake mix from scratch!
The Final Flip
When choosing the best pancake mix keep an open mind to both box pancake mixes and homemade pancake mix recipes. The most important thing, is just to enjoy your pancakes and not stress over the preparation. In the end, every pancake is a happy pancake!