These sourdough german pancakes are a favorite, easy breakfast that taste just as amazing as the original, but with the added health benefits from the sourdough discard!
Sourdough german pancakes or dutch baby pancakes are a go-to breakfast recipe in my house! They are quick, easy and use simple ingredients you probably already have on hand. Throw the ingredients into a blender, pour into a hot cast iron skillet or 9X13 pan and you have yourself a nourishing breakfast without having to flip pancakes or slave over the stove.
I used the german pancake recipe from Creme De La Crumb and decided to try adding in unfed sourdough discard and the results turned out amazing! It really didn’t change the taste, in fact everyone in my family said they couldn’t even tell there was sourdough in it! Although they turned out nice and tender and they are a great way to use up extra starter you have lying around! I also modified the recipe by reducing the amount of butter. We found it’s just as tasty when you cut back on the butter a tad.
What is sourdough?
I get asked often, “What is sourdough starter? And what is discard?”. Simply put, sourdough starter is fermented flour and water which can be used as yeast or a leavening agent to help sourdough bread rise. The starter is full of nutrients, vitamins, prebiotics and other health benefits that make gluten easier to digest and better for your gut.
“Discard” or unfed sourdough starter is the state of the starter after it’s not been fed. It isn’t strong enough to help bread rise and so it can either be fed to become active, or used in recipes that don’t require a rise. Since these sourdough german pancakes use the eggs to help it rise, it doesn’t need to have active sourdough starter. This recipe is a great way to use that extra starter, while also getting some of those added health benefits.
I go into more detail about all things sourdough and have recipes that use active sourdough starter and unfed sourdough starter in my classic sourdough cookbook.
Are german pancakes and dutch babies the same thing?
Yes! German pancakes are the same thing as dutch baby pancakes. They are called many names.
Can I make this ahead?
Yes! You can make the batter the day before and let it sit in the fridge overnight. This makes it such easy prep to have a quick breakfast in the morning!
What’s the difference between a regular pancake and a german pancake?
There are a lot more eggs in a german pancake and so they resemble more of a thick crepe. They have a crispy edge with a soft, tender inside.
Why add sourdough starter?
Why not!? It is a great way to use up your extra sourdough discard, without changing the flavor! You can still have your delicious german pancakes but make it healthier by adding wonderful prebiotics from the starter.
Can I make this without unfed sourdough starter?
Absolutely! Just skip the unfed sourdough starter and follow all other ingredients and instructions as normal.
Tips and tricks for the best sourdough german pancakes
To achieve best results, I have a few tips and tricks that will help ensure that you get delicious and puffy sourdough german pancakes. First, make sure you get your pan nice and warm in the oven while it’s preheating. You want the batter to start cooking before the flour cooks and sets. You can use either a 9X13 or a 12-inch cast iron skillet as your pan. My personal preference is the 12-inch skillet because it gives it a better crust. Although either pan will still give you those nice crispy brown edges.
Another tip is to make sure you don’t open the oven while the german pancakes are cooking. This could cause the steam to escape and the pancakes to fall and not puff up.
Lastly, have fun using a variety of toppings! My personal favorite are butter, syrup, fruit and powdered sugar but you could try so many different variations. Some ideas are peaches and whipped cream, apples and cinnamon, lemon juice and syrup, etc. These are simple enough for every day breakfast, yet fancy enough for Christmas breakfast just by adding some powdered sugar on top!
As always, happy baking!
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Sourdough German Pancakes
- 4 tbsp salted butter
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup (125 grams) all purpose flour
- 100 grams (~½ cup) unfed sourdough starter
- 6 large eggs
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Add 4 tablespoons of butter in a 9X13 pan or 12-inch cast iron skillet and place in the oven while it is preheating to melt the butter.
- Meanwhile, in a blender combine the eggs, milk, flour, unfed sourdough starter, salt, sugar and vanilla. Blend to combine.
- Once the butter is melted, remove the pan from the oven and pour in the batter.
- Place the pan back in the oven and cook at 425°F for 20-25 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and it is puffy.
- Serve immediately with butter, syrup, fruit, powdered sugar, or your choice of toppings.