How to make the fluffiest perfect pancakes

Japanese-style ultra-fluffy pancakes with whipped coconut cream


I’m always looking for something a bit different for Shrove Tuesday. So when I spotted these impossible deep, fluffy Japanese pancakes, I just had to try them out. I’ve had a go at a few different recipes and this one is the simplest – no extra-egg-white-whipping required.

The batter is easy, but they take a little while to cook. These probably aren’t one to whip up before the school run, but to keep for an evening treat on Pancake Day, or even a leisurely weekend breakfast.

They’re so rich that you’ll only want one (or two…). The secret is the buttermilk (neither butter nor milk – it’s the slightly sour liquid left behind after churning butter) which activated the flour and baking powder, creating lots of little air pockets to make the pancakes super fluffy.

There’s one extra secret ingredient, and I want you to bear with me here: a spoonful of mayonnaise. Don’t be scared – it’s mostly egg and oil after all. It just keeps them moist and delicious.

Psst! If you can’t get on board with mayo in your pancakes, here are some of my other pancake recipes…


125 self-raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
30g icing sugar
1 large egg
190ml buttermilk
¼ tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp mayonnaise
1 can coconut milk (high coconut extract – 60-80%), chilled overnight
2 tsp icing sugar
Fresh berries
A crumpet ring, egg poaching ring, large scone cutter or rosti ring


1 Sift the flour, baking powder and icing sugar into a bowl and mix
2 Mix the egg, vanilla and buttermilk in a jug
3 Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry until smooth
4 Add a tablespoon of mayonnaise and whisk again
5 Grease the inside of the crumpet ring with butter
6 Put a flat-bottomed frying pan on a very low heat and oil lightly
7 Pour the mix into the ring, leaving at least 1cm for the pancakes to rise
8 Cover with a lid and cook on the lowest heat for 12-15 minutes, checking every five minutes
9 When the top is slightly set, carefully flip the pancake and ring over
10 Replace the lid and cook for another 12-15 minutes until golden on both sides
11 While the pancake is finishing cooking, open your chilled coconut milk and remove the cream (the thicker, opaque white part)
12 Whisk the thick cream with an electric mixer for 5-10 minutes until light and fluffy. Add your icing sugar to sweeten slightly
13 This can be kept in the fridge for 2-3 days, and will set slightly further when chilled
14 Once cooked, remove the ring from your pancakes and serve with your whipped coconut cream, syrup and berries.


  • A non-stick crumpet ring will give you smooth-sided pancakes, whereas a scone cutter will create a textured edge. I used ‘poachette rings’
  • Don’t skip the lid over your pancakes – a plate or bowl will work fine, and a glass one will help you tell when they’re set

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Maddy Potts

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Maddy Potts

As Marketing Executive at Center Parcs, I’m lucky enough to hear all the amazing stories that come from our guests, our Villages and the wider travel industry. I’ll blog about the best ones, bring you some fantastic competitions and update you on all the exciting new activities and goings on at Center Parcs.