Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes スフレパンケーキ

FLUFFY JAPANESE SOUFFLE PANCAKES ­— These Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes are like eating cottony clouds, but even better with homemade whipped cream and fresh berries! photo by Namiko Chen

These Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes are like eating cottony clouds, but even better, with homemade whipped cream and fresh berries!

Japanese people take pancakes to new heights. Think cottony clouds of heaven that melt in your mouth! Have you seen Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes (スフレパンケーキ) on social media, or maybe even tasted them when you visited Japan?

They are fluffy, airy, delicate pancakes that probably look too fancy for a weekday breakfast, but are impossible to resist making on the weekend. These pillowy, soft pancakes are a must-try. You can’t miss the fizzy, bubbly sound from the souffle pancakes when you cut them open to enjoy!

What are Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes?
The ingredients for Souffle Pancakes are similar to regular pancakes, so what makes them different? What makes souffle pancakes so pillowy soft and delicious?

Souffle Pancakes are all about the eggs. The egg yolks and egg whites are separated, and the whites are beaten to make the meringue, just like how you would make savory and sweet souffle or chiffon cakes.

The egg whites are beaten until stiff peaks form. They are then folded gently and carefully into the rest of the batter. The souffle pancakes are extra fluffy because the air bubbles hold their shape inside the pancake batter.

As a result, the pancakes are super airy, like souffle. When you cut the pancakes, you can even hear the sound of air bubbles escaping!

Enjoy these souffle pancakes the same way you do with standard flapjacks, with fresh whipped cream, some fruit, syrup, and toppings like chocolate chips and nuts.

Recent Pancake Craze In Japan
Pancakes are comfort food; the happiest comfort food. I’m sure you have many joyful memories of waking up on a Saturday and looking at a stack of pancakes on your plate. And now as an adult, you are probably like me, always searching and trying different pancake recipes, happily eating your way on a journey to find the perfect pancake.

In Japan, even the simplest of comfort foods like pancakes are taken very seriously. In recent years, Japan’s pastry shops and cafes have been in a race to make the fluffiest, softest pancake. And by 2016, the pancake craze in Japan was in full swing, with pancake shops opening all over the country, competing for the best Souffle Pancakes. Here are some of the most famous:

Kiln-baked Souffle Pancakes (窯焼きスフレパンケーキ) at Hoshino Coffee

Miracle Pancakes (奇跡の

パンケーキ) at Flippers

Happy Pancake (幸せのパンケーキ) at A Happy Pancake

These pancake shops did not exist when I was growing up. If they did, I would have been there on every special occasion and birthday! I’m making up for the lost time by creating these souffle pancakes every weekend chance I get.

5 Important Tips To Make Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes
Here are some of my personal tips that helped me achieve the perfect souffle pancakes.

1. Beat the egg whites (meringue) correctly.

To be honest, making meringue requires a lot of practice. Some trial and error is just part of the process, but I promise it does get easier once you have more experience and understand what it takes to reach the right consistency.

We’re looking for a stiff peak, where you lift up your whisk and the egg whites go straight up firmly, but the tip of the egg whites bend over like they are taking a bow. If you overbeat egg whites, they will break into pieces. If you underbeat them, the egg whites won’t have enough air bubbles and the pancakes won’t be fluffy.

2. Preheat the pan on the lowest setting for a longer time.

Even the heating on the frying pan is crucial for the pancakes to cook through all at once. You want to preheat the pan at the lowest heat to help prevent hot spots (some parts of the pan are colder, and some are too hot). This way you have full control over the cooking time and the final result.

3. Pile up the batter vertically.

The key to making lofty pancakes is to add a new pile over the batter on the pan after it starts to form.

4. Cook them slow, covered with a lid, on low heat.

Unlike regular pancakes, you will need to cook these thick and fluffy Japanese pancakes for a much longer time. If you use higher heat, the pancakes may look done, but the insides will be too raw. Therefore, steady slow cooking over low heat is necessary. To lock in the heat and moisture inside the pan, cover with a lid.

5. Add water to create a little bit of steam.

I’ve tried this without adding water before and the difference can be subtle. But since it doesn’t take much to add water, I include this step in my recipe. Just drop one tablespoon of water on empty spaces in the frying pan to add moisture in the pan.

Why Does My Souffle Pancake Deflate? Troubleshooting

When making souffle pancakes, one of the common situations people run into is that the pancakes tend to deflate after cooking. Now, is that normal? No, a souffle, including souffle pancakes, should still stand tall after you place them on the plate.

What goes wrong? What can you do to stop your souffle from collapsing?

1. You are probably under or overbeating the egg whites. The goal is to create air bubbles in the batter that will give structure for the pancake. Without them, the pancake will deflate.

2. The stove heat was too strong. Just because the pancake is nicely brown, it doesn’t mean it’s done. The inside of the pancakes may still not be cooked through, and if you move them out of the pan earlier, the air deflates. Properly cooked souffle pancakes will have a solid structure and height. They will hold for 10-15 minutes as long as they are warm (just like hot air balloons).

How To Make More Than Three Pancakes At A Time?
To make two or more servings, you will need multiple frying pans on the stove. Alternatively, you can purchase an electric griddle with a lid.

At the souffle pancake restaurants in Japan, they use multiple electric griddles with a lid to make pancakes. The staff will usually tell you the souffle pancakes will take at least 20 minutes to make.

These souffle pancakes definitely require extra time and effort, but I promise after that first bite, you will know it was all worth it. Give this unforgettable souffle pancake recipe a try on the next special occasion!

I also have a Matcha Souffle Pancake recipe (https://www.justonecookbook.com/matcha-souffle-pancake) that I think you’re going to love! The brilliant green hue and extra flavor boost from matcha make the pancakes even more irresistible.

Fluffy Japanese Souffle Pancakes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Chilling time 15 mins
Total Time 45 mins

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: souffle pancake
Servings: 3 pancakes (1 serving)

2 large eggs (50 g each w/o shell)
1 1/2 Tbsp whole milk (22 g)
1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup cake flour (30 g; If you’re using a cup measurement, please follow this method to measure (https://www.justonecookbook.com/how-to-measure-flour). Otherwise, the amount of flour tends to be more than you need. You can make your Homemade Cake Flour: https://www.justonecookbook.com/cake-flour).
1/2 tsp baking powder (2 g)
2 Tbsp sugar (25 g)
1 Tbsp neutral-flavored oil (vegetable, canola, etc) (for greasing the pan)
2 Tbsp water (for steaming)
Fresh Whipped Cream (optional)
1/2 cup heavy (whipping) cream (120 ml)
1 1/2 Tbsp sugar (20 g)

1 Tbsp confectioners’ sugar/powder sugar
Fresh berries
maple syrup

Read the full recipe here.

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