Light and fluffy whole wheat pancakes packed with nutritious ingredients to fuel your day, and sweet maple flavor everyone will love. These are worth getting out of bed for!
These aren’t your typical Saturday morning pancakes. Sure, they are delicious, fluffy, and taste incredible topped with maple syrup, but these breakfast delights also boast hearty whole grain, protein from Greek yogurt, and no refined sugar. Which makes them the perfect everyday pancakes you can feel good about serving. Make a big batch ahead of time, freeze, and reheat for a quick and easy breakfast that satisfies. (Or have pancakes for dinner! The BEST!)
What You’ll Love About These Fluffy Whole Wheat Pancakes
- Made with healthful whole wheat flour, but still light and fluffy
- Packed with protein thanks to eggs, Greek yogurt, and milk
- No refined sugars—we’re using pure maple syrup, yum!
- Quick and easy to make
- Delicious with a variety of add-ins and toppings
These are 100% whole wheat pancakes. Making the swap from all-purpose flour to whole wheat flour sounds pretty easy, doesn’t it? Just a simple, 1-to-1 replacement. Well, it’s not always that simple. More often than not, your whole wheat baked goods will taste overly heavy, dense, or tough. Not at all the fluffy, rich, soft recipe you were expecting. I wouldn’t use it to make cinnamon rolls, for example.
Because whole wheat flour is capable of making pancakes taste like dry hockey pucks, let’s avoid that nonsense by loading the batter with just enough moisture.
Grab These Ingredients:
- Whole Wheat Flour: I’m a total fangirl for King Arthur Whole Wheat Flour. Not a celebrity, just a fangirl for… a flour company. You can also use white whole wheat flour.
- Baking Powder + Baking Soda: Both give the pancakes some serious lift. Since whole wheat flour tends to weigh things down, we need to add just enough leavener to aerate the cooking batter without leaving any chemical aftertaste.
- Salt + Cinnamon: For flavor.
- Yogurt: I typically use plain Greek yogurt, but you can use any kind: dairy or nondairy; full-fat, low-fat, or nonfat; plain, vanilla, or honey flavored. You could even use sour cream.
- Milk: These whole wheat pancakes are great with any type of milk, dairy or nondairy.
- Maple Syrup: Not just for topping! We’re sweetening the batter with it. Make sure you use the pure stuff, not the one labeled “pancake syrup.”
- Eggs: To bind the ingredients together.
- Vanilla Extract: A kiss of vanilla is the perfect flavor enhancer for these pancakes. Have you tried homemade vanilla extract before?
- Coconut Oil: The recipe calls for melted coconut oil, but you could substitute vegetable oil or melted butter if you prefer.
Preparing the batter takes just a couple minutes. Whisk the dry ingredients in 1 bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients in another, then pour wet into dry and whisk together to combine. Easy-peasy. Let the batter rest for a few minutes while you preheat your griddle/pan.
I like to use a large mixing bowl with a pour spout. Makes pouring the batter onto the pan/griddle much easier.
How Do I Know if My Pan Is Ready to Cook Pancakes?
The best temperature for cooking pancakes is 375ºF (190ºC). If you’re cooking on an electric griddle, you can simply set it to heat to that temperature. If you’re cooking in a griddle pan or large skillet on the stove, allow the pan to preheat for several minutes over medium heat. Don’t be tempted to crank the heat up to high; that will lead to unevenly cooked, burnt pancakes.
To test if the pan is ready, flick a few drops of water from your fingers onto the pan. If they sizzle in place and disappear, it’s not quite hot enough yet. If they “dance” around on the surface before sizzling out, your pan is good to go! (Feel free to dance around a bit yourself, too!)
5 Success Tips for Making the Best Whole Wheat Pancakes
- Don’t Over-Mix: A few lumps are OK! If you mix too much, the gluten from the flour will start to develop, resulting in chewy, rather than tender, pancakes. Mix until just combined.
- Fresh Is Best: (Part 1) Baking powder and baking soda are key ingredients in pancakes, because their job is to lift up the batter while cooking, resulting in fluffy (not flat) pancakes. These leaveners lose their magical properties over time. If yours are older than 6 months, you might need to replace them. (Part 2) Don’t make the batter in advance. While we all love a good prep-the-night-before breakfast recipe, like this breakfast casserole, the baking powder activates as soon as it’s wet, and its effectiveness lessens over time. Fortunately, whisking up pancake batter is quick and easy, so you don’t have to set your alarm for o’dark-thirty! Or feel free to mix wet and dry ingredients together, but keep them separate until the morning.
- Give It a Rest: The batter should sit for a few minutes. While your pan or griddle is heating, let the batter sit, which will allow it to thicken up, making for thicker, fluffier pancakes.
- Use the Proper Pan: A griddle pan is best for cooking pancakes, but if you don’t have one, use your widest, shallowest skillet/pan. You want a thick-bottomed pan to prevent burning.
- Don’t Flip Too Early—Watch for Holes: Many pancake recipes instruct you to flip when you see bubbles forming on the surface, but you’re actually looking for holes. Your whole wheat pancakes are ready to flip when the bubbles are popping, forming little holes in the surface. Cook until the edges look set and you notice holes in the pancake’s surface around the border, about 2 minutes.
For more pancake-perfecting tips, read this article on 10 Pancake Common Mistakes—and How to Avoid Them.
Can I Make These Whole Wheat Pancakes as Waffles?
Absolutely. Use today’s batter and follow the same cooking instructions for these buttermilk whole wheat waffles! (Or just use that recipe, which is pretty similar!)
Optional Pancake Toppings and Add-Ins
A pat of butter and drizzle of maple syrup tastes wonderful on these, of course! As does whipped cream and honey butter. You could also try topping them with some melted peanut butter or almond butter, strawberry topping, blueberry sauce, raspberry sauce, apple butter, or lemon curd.
I have separate posts for both whole wheat blueberry pancakes and whole wheat banana pancakes, but you can simply make this recipe and mix in up to 1 cup of your favorite pancake add-in, such as berries or chocolate chips.
If serving these pancakes as part of a big brunch, they plate nicely with fresh fruit, eggs, quiche, frittata or breakfast egg muffins, bagel breakfast casserole, or ham and potato casserole. And for even more inspiration, see my complete list of 30+ healthy breakfast recipes.
More Favorite Pancake Recipes:
- Birthday Cake Pancakes
- Whole Wheat Oatmeal Pancakes
- Greek Yogurt Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes
- Strawberry Buttermilk Pancakes
- Pumpkin Pancakes
- Homemade Crepes 🙂
These are 100% whole wheat pancakes made with protein-rich Greek yogurt and whole grain goodness. The batter comes together in a snap. The pancakes are tall, light, and fluffy, and you can add your favorite add-ins like berries or chocolate chips. See recipe Note.
- 2 cups (260g) whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour (spooned & leveled)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup (248g) plain Greek yogurt, at room temperature*
- 1 and 1/4 cups (300ml) milk, at room temperature*
- 1/4 cup (60ml) pure maple syrup, at room temperature*
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons (42g) coconut oil, melted (or vegetable oil, or melted butter)
- for cooking: butter or nonstick spray
- In a large bowl preferably with a pour spout, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together. Set aside.
- In another large bowl, whisk the yogurt, milk, maple syrup, eggs, and vanilla together until combined. Whisk in the oil. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently whisk to combine. Make sure there are no patches of dry flour at the bottom of the bowl. The batter is thick and a few lumps are fine.
- Let the batter sit for 5 minutes as you heat the stove in the next step. This gives the batter a chance to thicken.
- Meanwhile, heat a griddle or large skillet over medium heat. Coat generously with butter or nonstick cooking spray. Once it’s hot, drop/pour a heaping 1/4 cup of batter on the griddle. Cook until the edges look set and you notice holes in the pancake’s surface around the border, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook the other side until cooked through, about 1–2 more minutes. Coat griddle/skillet with butter or nonstick spray again, if needed, for each batch of pancakes.
- Keep pancakes warm in a preheated 200°F (93°C) oven until all pancakes are cooked. Serve pancakes immediately with toppings of choice.
- Cover and store leftover pancakes in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Pancakes freeze well up to 3 months. Reheat frozen pancakes in the microwave. Or you can reheat frozen pancakes in a 350°F (177°C) oven. Place pancakes on a lined baking sheet and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 6–8 minutes or until defrosted and warm.
- Can I make the batter the night before? No, I don’t recommend it. Baking powder is activated once wet. You can, however, mix the dry ingredients and wet ingredients together and keep them separate and covered in the refrigerator until the morning. (But do not add the melted coconut oil until ready to cook, because that will solidify in the refrigerator.)
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Mixing Bowls | Whisk | Electric Griddle, Griddle Pan, or Shallow Skillet/Pan
- Yogurt: You can use regular or Greek yogurt; plain, vanilla, and honey-flavored yogurts work well. Nonfat, low fat, full fat—it’s your choice. I usually use 0% (nonfat) plain Greek yogurt. You could also use sour cream.
- Milk: You can use any type of milk, dairy or nondairy, and any fat percentage.
- Sweetener: Honey, coconut sugar, or brown sugar may be substituted for maple syrup in the batter with no other changes.
- Can I add mix-ins like blueberries or chocolate chips? Yes, absolutely. See my whole wheat blueberry pancakes (same base recipe), and for the chocolate chips, I recommend folding 1 cup (about 180g) into the batter after combining the wet and dry ingredients in step 2.
- Serving Size: 2 pancakes
- Calories: 245
- Sugar: 7.9 g
- Sodium: 322.9 mg
- Fat: 8.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 35 g
- Fiber: 3.8 g
- Protein: 9.1 g
Keywords: whole wheat pancakes