Crispy fluffy tangy pancakes and waffles

· 8-10 medium pancakes (4 inches)

To my taste, the perfect pancake should be slightly crispy on the outside, very fluffy on the inside, and have a satisfying creamy tang that cuts through the sweetness of maple syrup.

I love the taste of buttermilk pancakes, but I don’t usually keep buttermilk on hand. I do usually have Greek yogurt or cottage cheese in the fridge, so I developed this recipe to satisfy my craving whenever it comes up. Another benefit of this recipe is that it has more protein than regular pancakes. I wouldn’t call them “healthy”, but I feel good eating them.

This has become my favorite pancake recipe, and adapts easily for waffles too. I find it reliably delicious, hard to mess up. Because of the high egg and dairy content, the inside retains moisture and is harder to undercook or overcook.

One last note: I highly recommend keeping ghee on hand at all times. Ghee is one of my favorite fats to cook with, because it has the beautiful complex flavor of butter but with a higher smoke point. Because ghee contains less water than butter, it is better for anything you want to make crispy. The purpose of using ghee in this recipe is not just to prevent sticking, we want to get these pancakes crispy, so think of this almost like a shallow fry.


For the batter

  • 1 ½ cups Greek yogurt and/or cottage cheese (my favorite is a 50-50 mix) — choose options with lower fat and lower salt content
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt

For frying

  • 4-6 tbsp ghee

For serving

Serve with any of your favorite accoutrements: maple syrup (warmed), whipped butter, berries, bananas, etc.


In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients in order, one at a time, mixing with egg beaters (or pulse in a blender) after each addition.

  1. Greek yogurt or cottage cheese — when using cottage cheese make sure to beat until the curd is smoothed out otherwise your batter will have lumps
  2. Eggs
  3. Vanilla extract and maple syrup
  4. Baking powder
  5. Flour and salt

When adding the flour, mix until just barely incorporated. It’s okay to still have lumps of uncooked flour. These will hydrate over time. You don’t want too much gluten to develop.

Preheat a skillet with ghee oil on a medium-high heat, I like to use a cast iron skillet. Use more ghee than you think.

Add ⅓ cup of batter per pancake to the skillet. Fry the cottage cheese pancakes on each side until golden brown.


  • If you want blueberries or chocolate chips add them right after you pour the batter into the pan
  • For a delicious banana-flavored batter, add one very ripe banana at the start, mashing thoroughly before you add the dairy. I like to also add 2 tsp of spices (usually a blend of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and nutmeg).

Waffle variation

To turn this into a waffle recipe, melt the ghee in the microwave and add it directly to the batter. Mix it in after the eggs.

When making waffles I like to set the oven to 240F on convection and place the waffles in the oven for 5 minutes to keep them warm and make the outside extra crispy.