Pancakes are one of the most popular breakfast meals across the world. They’re quick and easy to make, and they taste like heaven. But the issue people face all the time when making pancakes is tons of leftover batter.
Throwing away food should always be your last resort, so what should you do with it? If you’re thinking of freezing, then you’re on a good track. Pancake batter can easily be frozen and defrosted, without losing flavor.
With that being said, pancakes made with defrosted batter are thinner and less puffy than usual. To find out more about freezing pancake batter (see also Can You Freeze Cake Batter?), keep on reading.
Can Pancake Batter Be Frozen?
The ingredient that’s preventing pancakes from being fluffy as usual after you defrost the batter is the baking powder (see also Can You Freeze Fresh Yeast). This is a baking ingredient that helps with rising, and it’s activated with liquids.
What this means is that you’ve activated it the first time you mixed in the batter. So when you defrost it, you can’t expect it to rise again. Does this mean you absolutely can’t use it again? No, the batter will still work, but don’t expect your pancakes to be thick and fluffy like they are regularly.
Now let’s see what you need to do, step by step, to freeze it.
How Can I Freeze Pancake Batter?
Freezing pancake batter (see also Can You Freeze Batter) is not rocket science. Ideally, you want to use a shallow container that has an airtight lid. Aside from not wanting the air in, we don’t want it to spill in the freezer either.
Grab the container and pour in the pancake batter. Make sure you don’t fill it more than two inches below the brim. If that’s not possible, switch the container to a larger one. The reason we leave the free space is for the ice that will form while the batter is inside the freezer. After all, it’s full of liquid, which goes solid after hitting under 32 degrees.
Once you have the batter properly stored inside a container with an airtight lid, go ahead and write the storage date on it. Writing what’s inside can’t hurt either. When frozen, pancake batter looks like tons of different things, including ice cream. However, it doesn’t taste any good, so it’s not something you would want to take a bite of by accident.
In case you don’t have a suitable container available for freezing pancake batter, a zip storage bag will do. Storing is just as simple. Pour the pancake batter into the zip bag, leaving some space for it to expand as it freezes. A few inches will be enough.
If you’re freezing a small amount of pancake batter, chances are more than half of your zip bag will be empty. In this case, what you want to do is make the bag flat so that it takes very little space in the freezer.
To achieve this, pour the pancake batter into the bag and push all the air out before sealing it. When you place it horizontally into the freezer, it will form a flat shape before it freezes. Once again, you should write down both the storage date and the name of the bag content, to prevent any confusion.
Shelf Life And Tips On Defrosting Pancake Batter
The reason why you want to write the storage date is that the shelf life of pancake batter is not long. Once frozen, it can stay in your freezer for up to three months before it goes bad. This is due to two ingredients the mixture is made of: milk and eggs. Still, three months is plenty of time to crave pancakes again and put the frozen batter for use.
The best way to defrost pancake batter is to leave it in the fridge to thaw overnight. But as it often goes, you might be pressed for time. In that case, a quicker way would be to leave it on the kitchen counter for a few hours. Just be wary of one thing: since pancake batter is of a thicker consistency than water, defrosting might cause liquids to start separating during defrosting. But that’s easily fixed. Before you start making pancakes, just swirl the mixture a few times, and you’ll have a homogenous concoction again.
Since it’s already in the bag, you can use pancake batter in a different way. Grab your scissors and snip one corner of the bag. This way, you can squeeze the bag and pour the mixture directly into the frying pan. This method saves you from unnecessarily dirty dishes.
While pancake batter takes little time and effort to make, you shouldn’t throw away the leftovers. You can easily freeze it and reuse it when you need it. Just keep in mind that pancakes made with such batter will be slightly thicker, but nonetheless yummy.