The secret to making fluffy banana pikelets

easy pikelets
Pikelets are one of the first things I learned how to make, besides scones and spaghetti bolognese. Over the years I’ve experimented until I came up with the fluffiest pikelets ever – because I was sick of the little dough coasters I kept churning out. I kept eating them though, having a layer of cream thicker than the pikelet itself, but I’d eat it!
The trick is self-raising flour AND baking powder, and to flip them before the bubbles that are appearing get too numerous. If you wait until bubbles appear and then burst, you’re not creating the biggest air pockets you can. So as soon as the bubbles appear and the sides look reasonably stable, flip ‘em. They rise and get fat and are a hell of a lot better than a dough coaster.
Anyhow, these banana pikelets are baby-sized because they were Abby’s breakfast, but you can make them any size you want. You can also sub bananas for apples, sultanas, chocolate chips, blueberries – anything you like! It’s a good base mixture to go crazy with.
If you’re looking for a healthier option, you can use wholemeal flour, or half-wholemeal, half-white. You can leave out the sugar entirely or use a sugar substitute.
1 banana, mashed
1 cup self-raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
a couple of drops of vanilla extract
pinch salt
1. Mix everything into a bowl. Lumps are ok. At this point you can leave it to start activating the raising agents so it gets bubbly and produces a lighter result – about half an hour or so, or if you don’t think ahead, like me, just use it straight away.
2. Melt a little butter in a pan over medium-low heat. Drop a tablespoonfull (for baby sized pikelets) in the pan without touching. For bigger sizes, use two tablespoons and spread it out a bit.
3. After two minutes or so, bubbles should appear and begin to burst, and the sides of the pikelet should be fairly sturdy. The underside should be starting to brown. Flip carefully, as the top will still be quite gooey and you can quite possibly fling it everywhere, and cook the other side for a minute or so, until underside is golden.
There you have it. Twenty-five years of trial and error knowledge. Go forth and pikelet!
Unless you have a trick that I should know? Spill!

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    These look great, good tip about baking powder, thanks! I usually leave the sugar out entirely or use only a tablespoon. I also add lemon rind and substitute yoghurt for some of the milk.

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    ooh yogurt! I never thought about that, because I don't eat a lot of it and never have, so don't think to use it. And am too lazy to grate a lemon! I bet yours taste amazing. I leave the sugar out of pancakes, but always miss it in pikelets. I need to retrain my palate!

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    Yum! Can I add my secret to fluffy pikelets/pancakes too? Use buttermilk instead of normal milk. You buy it at the store or use the buttermilk strained off from making butter. To die for. You've got to try it!

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    Oooh, great tip about flipping before all the bubbles pop, I will try that for sure.  I use buttermilk for extra fluffiness too (when I have it).  A bit of apple puree in place of some of the milk, and some cinnamon make yummy pikelets too :)

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    Mmm, yummy! My little fluffy pancake trick is baking powder AND bi-carb soda AND a tsp of vinegar! The vinegar and bi-carb make delicious little bubbles inside, yum yum! 

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    First time making pikelets, inspired as these sounded so easy and so good, and they were!  Kids loved them, so did we.  Can't wait to try the variations now xo

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    Yes of course you can! And I've definitely tried it but then it sits in my fridge mocking me for ages because I don't use it for anything else! I find it's pretty expensive. I used to do the lemon juice in milk thing to make my own, but when I switched to soy I wasn't sure if it would still work, and wasn't game to try! One day I'll make my own butter. mmmmm buttterrrrrrrrr

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    Yes I love apple and cinnamon ones! I just had some bananas that were going brown and seeing as both Abby and I don't eat them plain, this was the perfect receptacle! The buttermilk is an excellent tip, I used to make my own :)

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    Yes, first time.  My deal old Grandma made the best pikelets throughout my childhood and no one learned the knack from her before she died, and I didn't have the heart to make something in case it didn't live up to Grandma's.  Your recipe is a new fave xo

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    Amazing! Thank you for a fluffy, yummy, gorgeous pikelet recipe! Just I just made these with my little girl. They were devoured fresh out of the pan. My bananas were over ripe so even using half the amount of sugar I still found it a little too sweet but nothing I couldn’t handle ;)
    Thank you very much for sharing x

    • 24

      Excellent! Glad you liked it! Yes it definitely depends on the bananas, and as I make lots to eat cold, they can be pretty tasteless without that extra boost. I dare say it’s probably the higher end of the sugar scale, but I love that people adapt to suit :)

  24. 25

    Best pikelets I’ve ever made – sooo fluffy!!! Just like you, I used to make horrible tough coasters. I used 2 very brown bananas (doubled the recipe) and added a teaspoon of cinnamon. This recipe is a keeper! 5 stars xxx

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    I sometimes use 2 bananas instead of one for a lumpier more banana flavour. I tend to use a little less sugar and add in some cinnamon for extra flavour. These have become a huge favorite in our household so thanks!

    • 28

      Yes I’ve been ditching the sugar lately too! Sometimes adding coconut sugar, as like I said in a previous comment, we mostly eat them cold in lunchboxes and they can be a bit lacking in flavour in that case. And the two-banana lumpy thing is great! I do that when I use really bulky flour like spelt or buckwheat so the banana flavour really shines. So glad you like them! (Ps nutmeg is really good too!)

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    Yum! These were great. I used Bicarb instead of baking powder and also added extra banana. They were super fluffy. Will definitely be making these again! Thank you!

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    Iam patiently awaiting the bubbly pikelet mixture while enjoying my coffee in quiet time before the hurd of tenagers come home. Iam making a double batch and have also added a teaspoon of cinnamon. They won’t last for their lunchboxes tomorrow….lol.

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    My kids love these so much! I always make them with wholemeal sr flour, but today i put in 3/4 flour and 1/4 cup quinoa flakes and they were so good. Thanks for posting this recipe.

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    I’m finally leaving a comment to say that i love this recipe, it is such a winner with my kids. I use coconut oil in the frying pan, which makes them a little bit crunchy, and we eat them with fresh fruit, yogurt and jam. My boys (2 and 4) eat most of them and i get about six! Well done!

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    I have had pancake disaster kept sticking to the pan then smashing when I tried to flip.
    I didn’t have the best non stick Pam, and used coconut oil.
    Any tips on the perfect pan and temperature for the perfect pancake?

    • 58

      Oh no! That’s no good.

      My pancake must haves are: medium heat (keep watching it and adjust up and down as necessary), good oil/butter (not spray) and I’ve not had too much trouble over the years with all types of pans, but my favourite is cast iron. Non stick works well, but regular pans are fine if you use the right amount of oil or butter (that’s trial and error per pan I’m afraid!)

  37. 61

    Took out the sugar and put in a handful of choc chips. I’ve never made such fat pikelets. The kids will be rapt as I doubled the recipe so there are stacks and they’re lovely. Thanks….

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