Chocolate Pancakes are sweet, chocolatey, and fluffy, and fun for a special breakfast or brunch. Top them with chocolate chips, fresh strawberries, raspberries, powdered sugar, chocolate syrup, or marshmallows to customize them to your taste.
I love weekend mornings, especially birthday weekends or holiday weekends. On those days there is nothing better than pancakes in the morning. And these Chocolate Pancakes make the mornings extra special. That is why they are perfect for a birthday breakfast, Valentine’s Day breakfast, holiday breakfast, or just because you want chocolate pancakes!
What Makes This Chocolate Pancakes Recipe Work
This Chocolate Pancakes recipe has more cocoa and more sugar than most recipes. I wanted more chocolatey flavor and didn’t want to rely on syrup for sweetness. So I put the sweetness right in the pancake. Wasn’t that sweet of me? (Pun intended.)
The success of this Chocolate Pancakes recipe is more in the execution of cooking the pancakes. Therefore, to help ensure your success in making these pancakes, I included some extensive tips and tricks for things to avoid so you can ensure perfect chocolate pancakes every time.
How To Make Chocolate Pancakes
- In a large bowl add flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Whisk together until combined.
- In a separate bowl, or large mixing cup, stir together the milk, egg, vanilla, and melted butter that has cooled some.
- Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
- Whisk the batter until just combined. It is ok if it is still a little lumpy. Don’t over mix.
- In a hot, buttered skillet, ladle 1/4 to 1/3 cup of the batter. Cook for about 2 minutes or until you see bubble form and start to pop. Then turn the pancake and cook for 1 minute on the other side.
- Remove the pancake with a spatula from the griddle or skillet and place on a serving plate or platter.
- Repeat steps 6 and 7 until all pancakes are cooked.
Toppings for Chocolate Pancakes
- Top the Chocolate Pancakes with your favorite toppings. Below are some ideas for delicious toppings.
- Powdered Sugar (Confectioner’s Sugar or Icing Sugar)
- Chocolate Syrup
- Chocolate Chips
- Rainbow Sprinkles
Tips For Perfect Chocolate Pancakes
- Use a good quality griddle or skillet. The key to perfectly cooked pancakes is to have a good quality griddle or skillet that cooks evenly. That will give you even color on the pancakes, and ensure the pancakes are cooked evenly throughout.
- Make sure the griddle or skillet is hot, but not too hot. The first thing I do when I get ready to make chocolate pancakes is to heat the griddle or skillet. I let it heat up while I am making the batter. However, you don’t want it too hot. I heat it only to medium heat. However, I wait to grease the skillet until just before I’m ready to cook the chocolate pancakes.
- Grease the griddle or skillet. Just before I ladle in the first pancake in the griddle or skillet, you need to “grease” the skillet. Commonly, butter is rubbed on the skillet. However, you can add oil or spray with cooking spray. The key is to cover the griddle or skillet evenly with the butter or oil. This prevents the pancakes from sticking as well as gets an even color across the pancake. You may have to grease the skillet between each pancake. Before ladling that next pancake into the skillet, check to make sure you still have enough butter or oil in the pan. Wipe away any excess oil.
- Use fresh baking powder and baking soda. If you want light and fluffy pancakes, you need to ensure that you have good quality, fresh baking powder and baking soda. Check those expiration dates on the boxes. If it is past those dates, throw them out and buy new baking powder and baking soda. The surest way to flat pancakes is old baking powder and baking soda.
- Let the melted butter cool before adding to the batter. This recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of melted butter to be added to the wet ingredients. However, since you are adding melted butter to a mixture that has a raw egg, it is important to let that melted butter cool some before adding it to the other ingredients. Why? If you add the melted butter to the wet ingredients while it is hot, you may end up cooking the egg in the batter and have scrambled eggs inside your pancakes! So let the melted butter cool first for a few minutes first before adding it to the wet ingredients.
- Don’t Over mix the batter. Stir the batter just enough to mix evenly. If you have small lumps it is ok. If you over mix the batter, you won’t have those fluffy pancakes. You want to keep as much air in the batter as possible to keep them fluffy. According to Cook’s Illustrated, their tests confirmed that lumpy batter produced taller, fluffier pancakes.
- Timing The Turn. One of the hardest things for new cooks is knowing when to turn the pancakes. If you turn them too soon, the batter splatters and then you end up with funky shaped, unevenly cooked pancakes. If you wait too long to turn, the pancakes burn on that side. Bubbles are the key to timing the turn. Wait to turn the pancakes until AFTER bubbles have formed in the batter and start to pop. Bubbles start to form around the edges first. I wait until I have bubbles in the middle of the pancake and some bubbles start to pop, and then I turn. This usually takes about 2, maybe 3 minutes. See photo 6 above in the photo collage of step by step photos for a pancake that is almost ready to turn. I waited until I had more bubbles in the middle of the pancake and then turned. As soon as you see those bubbles in the middle of the pancake and have some start to pop, turn the pancake. Don’t wait too long, otherwise the pancake will burn.
Do you have more tips for making perfect chocolate pancakes? Help out your fellow home cooks and leave a comment at the bottom of this recipe post with your best tip for making perfect chocolate pancakes.
Variations Of Chocolate Pancakes
- Chocolate Chip Pancakes. Add 1/2 cup of chocolate chips to the batter to transform these Chocolate Pancakes into Chocolate Chip Pancakes.
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Pancakes. Add 1/2 cup of Peanut Butter Chips to make a delicious chocolate peanut butter flavor combination for the pancakes.
- Chocolate Chip Banana Pancakes. In addition to adding chocolate chips in the pancake batter, top the chocolate pancakes with sliced bananas and more chocolate chips.
- S’mores Chocolate Chip Pancakes. Top with mini marshmallows, chocolate syrup, and graham cracker crumbs or follow the link to my S’mores Chocolate Chip Pancakes.
What To Serve with Chocolate Pancakes
- Chocolate Syrup or Chocolate Ganache. Make your own Chocolate Ganache by melting 1/4 cup chocolate chips with 1/4 cup heavy cream in the microwave for 1 minute.
- Caramel Syrup or Caramel Sauce. Either buy store bought syrup or make your own Caramel Sauce.
- Peanut Butter Syrup. Once again, either store bought will work or Make Your Own Peanut Butter Syrup.
More Pancake Recipes
- Old Fashioned Fluffy Pancakes
- Strawberry Pancakes
- Oatmeal Pancakes
- Apple Maple Bacon Pancakes
- Caramel Macchiato Pancakes
- Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Pancakes
More Chocolate Recipes To Satisfy Those Chocolate Cravings
- Best Brownies
- Cherry Cheesecake Brownies
- Strawberry Chocolate Mousse Brownie
- Best Chocolate Chip Cookies
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Dry Pancake Ingredients
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
Wet Pancakes Ingredients
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla
- 2 Tablespoons melted butter (cooled)
Toppings For Chocolate Pancakes
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar (sifted)
- 1 cup sliced strawberries
- Preheat griddle or skillet to medium heat.
- In a large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and granulated sugar.)
- In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients (milk, egg, vanilla, and cooled melted butter.)
- Add the wet ingredients (milk, egg, vanilla, and cooled melted butter) to the dry ingredients (flour mixture), and stir until it is combined and the large lumps are gone.
- When the skillet is hot, either rub the griddle or skillet with butter, or add oil or spray with cooking spray.
- Ladle about 1/4 - 1/3 cup of chocolate pancake batter onto the hot griddle or skillet. Let it cook for a couple of minutes until you see bubbles and the bubbles in the middle start to pop.
- When the bubbles start to pop, use a spatula to carefully turn the pancake. Cook the pancake on the other side for about 1 - 2 more minutes.
- Use a spatula to remove the pancake and place on a plate or serving dish.
- Repeat steps 5 - 8 with the rest of the pancake batter.
- Top with powdered sugar, sliced strawberries, chocolate chips, or marshmallows.
Tips For Perfect Chocolate PancakesSee the body of the blog post for more details regarding each of these tips.
- Use a good quality griddle or skillet.
- Make sure the griddle or skillet is hot, but not too hot. I use medium heat to cook the pancakes. Preheat the griddle before cooking the pancakes.
- Grease the griddle or skillet. Rub butter or oil on the griddle or skillet before cooking the pancakes.
- Use fresh baking powder and baking soda. Check the expiration dates on each to ensure they have not expired.
- Let the melted butter cool before adding to the batter. Don't add hot butter into a bowl that has a raw egg. Let the butter cool a few minutes before adding it in.
- Don't Over mix the batter. Stir the batter just enough to mix evenly. If you have small lumps it is ok.
- Timing The Turn. Turn after you see bubbles form and start to pop.