Why Is My Pancake/Waffle Batter Thick & What To Do About It

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Here we will cover thick pancake or waffle batter and what to do about. When working with really thick pancake batter, it is usually harder to deal with when trying to make pancakes during the cooking process than it is with thin or more runny pancake batter. So, this is something that may need to be fixed before attempting to use the thick batter to make pancakes.

From our tests with thin pancake batter versus thick batter, for individuals that are just trying to make some decent edible pancakes, thin batter is better than thick batter. Even though the name “pancakes” has the word cake in it, it isn’t supposed to be a cake. Unfortunately many people due to food art and aesthetics are telling other people that a lumpy thick batter that isn’t fully mixed, is better or even necessary to make the best pancakes. This means that recipes will sometimes exclude the necessary ingredients in the pancake batter, which results in a thick, lumpy, or dry pancake batter.

Waffle batter can tolerate being thicker than pancake batter, especially when making belgian waffles in a waffle iron. These waffles are usually desired to be more firm, since they have many pockets on their surface to pour and hold syrup in.

The thing that is not being realized by the individuals giving out these recipes, is the variable of some individuals not mixing these strict ingredients thoroughly enough that the pancake or waffle batter isn’t too thick, lumpy, or dry. Also, they aren’t taking into account that the pancake batter can dry out due to evaporation, which also leads to the batter becoming naturally thicker over time.

For covered and stored pancake or waffle batter:

If your pancake or waffle batter was covered after using it, but ended up thicker after uncovering it to use it again later, then mixing the batter again before using it may solve the problem. With batter like this, the moisture will have made the batter thinner on the top, but thicker on the bottom. This means that mixing the batter again before using it may be all that is needed to balance it out and make it less thick.

Pancake or waffle batter will naturally break down and the liquids will separate from it and rest on the top, if the pancake/waffle batter rests for long enough. This can happen while the pancake batter is still fresh (hasn’t expired). Just stir the liquids back into the rest of the mix before using it.

For uncovered pancake/waffle batter that has been sitting a awhile:

For pancake or waffle batter that has been stored uncovered, or just simply left uncovered for a long time, than it may thicken and dry out if it previously wasn’t thick beforehand. This means that more liquid ingredients may have to be used in the pancake batter and mixed back into it to restore it to its previous quality. The batter should be mixed first to ensure that it is really actually thicker before doing this.

For pancake or waffle batter that has been freshly made:

For pancake batter that is freshly made, if it ends up thick or lumpy, then first ensure that the batter has been thoroughly mixed first before trying to use more liquid ingredients in the batter to make it thinner. This means that more physical strength might be required during the mixing process to ensure that the batter is thoroughly mixed. The dry ingredients could just be having a tough time separating and mixing with the more soupy parts of the pancake or waffle batter.

Sometimes if you are sure that enough liquid ingredients were already added to make the pancake batter, then more mixing power may be all that is needed. This can be the case for larger batches of pancake or waffle mix that are being made at one time. This is what had to be done at restaurants when large batches of pancake and/or waffle batter mixes were made in big containers. You want to be sure that this is done first before trying to add more liquid ingredients into the pancake or waffle mix first to thin it out. Not doing this first could end up making the pancake/waffle batter really runny after adding more liquid ingredients and mixing the batter again.

If I need to add more liquids to the batter to make it less thick (thinner), then what liquids should I add?

Adding water or more water to the pancake or waffle batter works the best. This means that water can be added to the pancake or waffle batter, even if the recipe didn’t call for it. Water is the best mixing ingredients, because it is neutral, isn’t thick in texture, and almost completely tasteless. However, milk, cooking oil, or any other usual liquid ingredients used commonly in pancake batters will work.

When adding the liquid ingredients to the thick pancake batter, only add small amounts at a time in increments. Add a small amount of the liquid ingredients at a time and then mix the batter thoroughly before adding more liquids that you think are necessary. Adding too many liquids at one time can cause a really thick batter to become a really runny batter, resulting in a back in forth of adding more liquids and more dry ingredients to balance the pancake or waffle batter out. This means that caution should be taken also on the initial adding in of the quantity of liquids. It is possible to add in too many liquids, even if you aren’t trying to.

Our advice is to keep adding small amounts of water and mixing it into the batter until the lumps disappear out of the pancake or waffle batter after thoroughly mixing it. It is okay for the pancake/waffle batter to be a little runny; unless you are going for some specific type of pancakes that you think requires lumps in the batter to make the perfect pancakes of your liking.

A thick pancake batter might be more desirable if you are trying to make a more dense pancake that has the qualities of a cake.

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