Get a dairy-free pancake recipe that’s great for folks on a dairy-free diet, plus it’s gluten-free with an egg-free option!
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I don’t know about you, but I love breakfast foods – and especially pancakes. Years ago, when I was just feeling out my gluten-free diet, I would order gluten-free pancakes from our favorite breakfast spot in town. I’d come home and feel sick and headachey for days, not knowing what caused it.
I felt like it didn’t make sense that I was ordering what I should have been, but still coming home feeling terrible. It wasn’t until a few months later that I discovered I needed to cut dairy out of my diet that I understood why I couldn’t eat those pancakes anymore.
These days, I know it’s practically impossible to find dairy-free (and gluten-free) pancakes locally, so I opt to make my own breakfast foods at home. Not only in the pancakes, but the butter or whipped cream that’s served alongside or on top too. It’s hard to get away from dairy ingredients when you’re eating out of the house.
At first, it felt super overwhelming to come up with a pancake recipe with no dairy, especially since I wasn’t very confident about it. With some practice and streamlining my recipe, I got faster at making these pancakes at home.
I realized that I could have a batch of dairy-free pancakes made in the same amount of time it would take for me to drive to the breakfast restaurant, order, and wait for them to come out of the kitchen.
It’s kind of a no-brainer to have a dairy-free pancake recipe on hand now for when my family is in the mood for something a little more substantial or special on the weekends. The best part for me is that the recipe suits all my dietary needs: gluten-free, egg-free, AND dairy-free.
If you have been trying to get started with a dairy-free diet or have been at it for a little while, you may be wondering how you can still enjoy this favorite breakfast food.
This post is here to help you find out what pancakes are made of and how to make a dairy-free version that works for you and your diet.
We’ll talk about what swaps you need to make to make any pancakes dairy-free, plus I’ll share my recipe for dairy-free pancakes, and give you some options and ideas for how to make them gluten-free, egg-free, and vegan.
Stock up your favorite toppings, we’re diving into the world of dairy-free pancakes!
What are pancakes made of?
A traditional pancake recipe includes flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, milk, an egg, and butter.
When mixed together and ladled onto a hot skillet or griddle, pancakes form into beautiful, light, fluffy discs. They’re full of flavor and perfect for adding your favorite toppings to.
What are dairy-free pancakes made of?
Dairy-free pancakes are made with the same dry ingredients, but in place of milk or butter, a dairy-free milk and vegan butter or butter substitute is used.
You can use any type of dairy-free milk that you wish, including almond, soy, rice, cashew, coconut, and oat milks. Any dairy-free milk you have on hand will work in a dairy-free pancake recipe.
Any vegan or dairy-free butter substitute is suitable for making dairy-free pancakes. Options like Earth Balance Buttery Spread, Forager Dairy-free Buttery Spread, and Miyoko’s Vegan Butter are all good options for a dairy-free pancake recipe.
You may also choose to use a more natural option, like coconut, olive, or avocado oil. My preference when using an oil in pancakes is to use coconut oil, because it gives a slightly sweet flavor that is so delicious in pancakes.
Some other butter substitutes you might consider are plant butter, which is simply a butter made from plants (a fancier name for margarine), shortening, fruit purees, or pumpkin purees. Note that some of the less fatty options, like fruit and pumpkin purees won’t provide the same texture and flavor as butter will in the recipe.
How do you make dairy-free pancakes from scratch?
To make dairy-free pancakes from scratch, you’ll combine a pancake mix from the store with your dairy-free substitutes and cook as normal.
You can also make your own pancake mix at home if you wish to. I make gluten-free pancakes at home and use this gluten-free pancake mix. It’s both gluten and dairy-free, so you can use it for both diets.
Gluten-free dairy-free pancake mix
- 3 cups gluten-free flour blend
- 2 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp white sugar or coconut sugar
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
- Stir all ingredients until well combined.
- Transfer mixture to a glass jar or other airtight container.
- Store in your pantry alongside other baking mixes and flours until ready to use.
To make gluten-free pancakes, add 1 ½ cups plus 2 tablespoons of pancake mix to a large bowl.
Add 1 ¼ cup milk, one egg, and 3 tablespoons melted butter. Dairy and egg substitutes may be used. Mix until well combined.
Scoop batter on to a preheated griddle using about ¼ cup of batter for each pancake. Brown on both sides, then remove from the griddle. Repeat with remaining batter until all has been used.
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Read on: Gluten-free pancakes
What is the best dairy-free pancake mix?
I’ve rounded up five of my favorite dairy-free pancake mixes (they’re all also gluten-free!) to help you narrow down some of your options.
My favorite is King Arthur Gluten-free Pancake Mix, but there are a number of others on the market that you might consider checking out too.
How to make pancakes dairy-free
You can make pancakes dairy-free by using dairy-free milk in place of normal milk in a recipe. I usually use almond milk or coconut milk, because that’s what I have on hand most often, but you can use any dairy-free milk you have on hand.
Lately, I’ve been using oat milk and that’s been working out just fine too. Whatever you have on hand will work in a dairy-free pancake recipe.
You can also swap out the butter for oil, coconut oil, or vegan butter. If you use vegan butter in the recipe, be aware if there is salt in the butter as this will affect the outcome of the flavor of the pancakes.
My family prefers the flavor of coconut oil in the pancakes, but we’ve used all three butter replacement options with success.
Read on: Dairy-free butter substitutes
Read on: Is butter gluten-free?
Can I make dairy-free pancakes vegan?
You can easily make dairy-free pancakes egg-free and vegan by swapping out the egg in a recipe with any egg substitute you wish. Since many pancakes get their fluffiness and golden brown color from eggs, know that the final result might not look exactly as you’re used to with a traditional pancake recipe.
They’re no less delicious than regular pancakes, but they might not be golden brown. They’ll still get some lift from baking powder and be fluffy, but not the same exact texture you’d expect from a regular pancake recipe.
A few egg substitutes you might consider in your dairy-free pancake turned vegan pancake recipes are:
- Flax egg: 1 tbsp ground flax seed + 3 tbsp warm water, let sit for 5 minutes before adding to the batter
- ¼ cup mashed banana
- ¼ cup applesauce
- ¼ cup canned pumpkin
- 3 tbsp peanut butter
I’ve used all of these options with success in my dairy-free pancakes, so I know that they work in this recipe and taste good. The pancakes might take on the flavor of the ingredient you use as a substitute. Nobody minds banana pancakes in my house though!
Dairy-free pancake topping ideas
Finish your gluten-free pancakes with a flourish! Try one of these dairy-free topping ideas to give your pancakes loads of flavor and extra deliciousness.
- Vegan butter and maple syrup
- Fresh strawberries and dairy-free whipped cream
- Blueberry or raspberry syrup
- Fresh fruit
- Dairy-free chocolate chips
- Jam or jelly
- Peanut butter or other nut butter
- Chopped bacon
- Toasted nuts
How to make dairy-free pancakes
Let’s talk through how to make a batch of dairy-free pancakes that can also be gluten-free and egg-free, as well as vegan.
Preheat the griddle
Preheat the griddle or skillet to medium-high heat.
Make the dairy-free pancake batter
In a large mixing bowl, add 1 ½ cups plus 2 tablespoons of gluten-free pancake mix to a large bowl. Add the dairy-free milk, an egg or your choice of egg substitute, and your choice of butter substitute. Mix until well combined.
Make the pancakes
Spray the griddle or skillet with cooking spray, then ladle ¼ cup of pancake batter onto the griddle. Brown on both sides, about 3 to 5 minutes on each side.
Repeat for all the pancakes
Repeat this process until all the pancake batter has been used.
Enjoy with your favorite pancake toppings
Add whatever toppings you love on your pancakes to your finished dairy-free pancakes. Peanut butter and jam, maple syrup and dairy-free butter, fresh whipped coconut cream and berries, anything goes!
Can I make dairy-free pancakes ahead of time?
Absolutely! A great way to get ahead is to make these pancakes a day in advance and put them in the fridge. To reheat, just pop them in the microwave for about 30 seconds. They’ll last for up to 3 days in the fridge.
If you want to use this recipe for meal prep, feel free to double or triple the batch and freeze them. You can pull one or two out to reheat when you’re ready for them for a quick and easy breakfast option.
How do I freeze dairy-free pancakes?
There are two easy ways to freeze pancakes. Both work well, so you can choose which method works best for you.
The first way to freeze dairy-free pancakes is to place cooked and cooled pancakes on a baking sheet and pop it in the freezer for a few hours.
After they’ve frozen, you can remove them and place them in a freezer bag. Write on the bag to tell you the date you froze them, then put them in the freezer to use whenever you’re ready for them.
The second way to freeze dairy-free pancakes is to stack the cooked and cooled pancakes between layers of parchment paper, then place the stack in a freezer bag. Place this in the freezer and they’ll be ready to pull out when you’re ready to use them.
To reheat frozen pancakes, simply remove them from the freezer bag, place on a plate, then microwave for about 30 seconds. Top with your favorite toppings and enjoy!
Dairy-free Pancakes (Gluten-free with Egg-free Option)
- 1 ½ cups plus 2 tbsp gluten-free pancake mix
- 1 ¼ cup dairy-free milk
- 1 egg or egg substitute
- 3 tablespoons butter substitute
- Preheat the griddle or skillet to medium-high heat.
- In a large mixing bowl, add gluten-free pancake mix to a large bowl. Add the dairy-free milk, egg or your choice of egg substitute, and your choice of butter substitute. Mix until well combined.
- If you want to add any mix-ins to your dairy-free pancakes, this is the time to do it! Choose from the list above to get ideas on what to add to make your pancakes extra flavorful and special.
- Spray the griddle or skillet with cooking spray, then ladle ¼ cup of pancake batter onto the griddle. Brown on both sides, about 3 to 5 minutes on each side.
- Repeat this process until all the pancake batter has been used.
- Load up with your favorite toppings and enjoy!
The dairy-free milk can be any kind you have on hand. I generally use almond or coconut milk, because that's what I have on hand, but any dairy-free milk will work in this recipe.
Butter substitutes include oil, coconut oil, or vegan butter. If you use vegan butter in the recipe, be aware if there is salt in the butter as this will affect the outcome of the flavor of the pancakes.
The egg can be replaced with a flax egg, 3 tbsp peanut butter, or 1/4 cup mashed banana, applesauce, or canned pumpkin.
If you love pancakes and have been looking for a dairy-free option so you can keep enjoying this delicious breakfast food, I hope this post and recipe works well for you.
The best part of this recipe is that folks don’t even miss the dairy when these are on the table. In my house, even my family members who do eat dairy love them!