Scotch Pancakes Vs American Pancakes

Scotch Pancakes Vs American Pancakes! Secret Reveal

Despite sharing a common pancake base, Scotch pancakes, and American pancakes showcase distinctive characteristics. 

Scotch pancakes, hailing from the United Kingdom, are slightly thicker, with a texture that leans towards fluffiness. Typically enjoyed with butter and jam, they strike a balance between sweetness and versatility, often becoming a delightful breakfast or snack option. 

On the other side of the Atlantic, American pancakes boast a lighter, fluffier consistency. Their inherent sweetness makes them a perfect canvas for a variety of toppings, from the classic maple syrup to an array of fruits or even savory options like bacon. 

While both versions share a love for pancakes, the nuances in texture and preferred pairings contribute to their uniqueness.

What Is The Difference Between Scotch Pancakes Vs American Pancakes?

What Is The Difference Between Scotch Pancakes Vs American Pancakes
AspectScotch PancakesAmerican Pancakes
IngredientsSelf-rising flour, salt, caster sugar, eggsFlour, baking powder, sea salt, milk, egg, oil
Additional Ingredients (variations)Plain flour, ground cinnamon, baking powder, milk, white wine vinegar, baking sodaCornmeal (in some recipes)
TasteCaramelized (due to caster sugar)Generally sweet
TextureSimple, slightly denserFluffy
Eating StyleEnjoyed like toast with butter and jamOften topped with butter and maple syrup
ToppingsButter, jam, fruit, yogurtButter, maple syrup, various sweet and savory toppings
Commonly Served withPowdered sugar, cream, fruits, or jamButter, maple syrup, various sweet and savory toppings
VariationsDifferent versions with variations in ingredientsCornmeal variation (johnnycakes) in historical context
Cooking MethodCooked on a griddle or pan with hot oil or melted butterCooked on a griddle or pan with hot oil or melted butter
History/OriginEnjoyed in the United Kingdom, also known as Drop SconesA long history in the United States, including variations like johnnycakes

Comparison Between Pancakes And American Pancakes

  • Ingredients:
    • Scotch Pancakes: Scotch pancakes, also known as drop scones, are typically made with a combination of flour, sugar, baking powder, eggs, and milk. They are smaller and thicker than American pancakes.
    • American Pancakes: Typically include flour, baking powder, eggs, milk, and a small amount of melted butter. They are generally larger and fluffier than Scotch pancakes.
  • Leavening Agent:
    • Scotch Pancakes: Baking powder is the primary leavening agent used in them 
    • American Pancakes: Baking powder is also used in them contributing to their light and fluffy texture.
  • Texture and Size:
    • Scotch Pancakes:  smaller and thicker, with a denser texture compared to American pancakes. Also, often about the size of a crumpet or a small disk.
    • American Pancakes: They are larger and fluffier, because of leavening agents. Typically served in a stack and are softer in texture.
  • Serving Style:
    • Scotch Pancakes: Moreover, they are often served with various toppings such as butter, jam, syrup, or cream.
    • American Pancakes: Commonly served in stacks, and toppings may include maple syrup, butter, fruit, whipped cream, or other sweet accompaniments.
  • Appearance:
    • Scotch Pancakes: Round, small, and often have a slightly uneven surface.
    • American Pancakes: Larger, round, and generally have a smoother surface.

Cultural Significance of Pancakes and American Pancakes

Both Scotch pancakes and American pancakes hold cultural significance in their respective regions and contribute to the culinary traditions of these cultures.

Scotch Pancakes (Drop Scones):

  • They are part of the culinary heritage of the United Kingdom. They are enjoyed for breakfast and as a snack, reflecting the British tradition of afternoon tea or snack time.
  • Moreover, they are commonly eaten with butter, jam, fruits, or yogurt. They are often served stacked and enjoyed more like toast, adding a comforting and versatile element to British meals.
  • Lastly, may be associated with various occasions, including family gatherings, celebrations, and everyday meals.

American Pancakes:

  • They have deep roots in the culinary history of the United States. They are a staple of American breakfast and brunch culture, symbolizing comfort and indulgence.
  • American pancakes are typically associated with breakfast but are also popular for brunch or “breakfast-for-dinner” nights. The tradition of serving them stacked with various toppings showcases the creativity of American cuisine.
  • Often a part of weekend family breakfasts, holiday mornings, and special occasions. They are a symbol of American comfort food.

General Tips for Allergen-Friendly Pancakes

Gluten-Free Flour: Use gluten-free flour blends or alternative flours like almond flour or coconut flour for a gluten-free option.

Dairy-Free Milk: Substitute dairy milk with non-dairy alternatives such as almond milk, soy milk, or oat milk.

Egg Replacements: Experiment with egg replacements like flaxseed or chia seed “eggs” for a vegan or egg-free version.

Sugar Alternatives: Consider using natural sweeteners like maple syrup, honey, or agave nectar instead of refined sugars.

Nut-Free Options: Be cautious of nut allergies and choose recipes that are nut-free or easily adaptable.

How To Make Scotch Pancakes?

Why Make It?

  • Easier to make than crêpes.
  • Offers lots of different topping options.
  • Kid-friendly.
  • Great for feeding a crowd.
  • Freezer-friendly.


  • 175g self-raising flour
  • Baking powder for fluffiness
  • Golden caster sugar (or white caster sugar)
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 180ml whole milk
  • Zest of half a lemon (optional)
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  • Mix flour, baking powder, and sugar in a bowl, creating a well in the center. Crack in the egg.
  • Add milk and whisk gently to form a batter.
  • Stir in the lemon zest.
  • Lightly oil a frying pan and heat on high for 1 minute.
  • Reduce heat to medium, drop spoonfuls of batter onto the pan, and cook until bubbles appear.
  • Flip and cook for another minute. Repeat for the remaining batter.

Top Tips:

  • Ensure fresh baking powder for fluffy pancakes.
  • Avoid overmixing the batter.
  • Use a paper towel to oil the pan between batches.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan for even cooking.
  • Cook until bubbles appear on top before flipping.
  • Maintain moderate heat for even cooking.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Traditionally served with butter and jam or modern variations like Nutella and banana, berries and yogurt, or other creative toppings.


  • Experiment with different toppings such as fresh berries and Greek yogurt, bacon with maple syrup and blueberries, or classic butter and strawberry jam.


  • Best eaten fresh.
  • Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days and reheat in the microwave.


  • Freeze for up to 3 months, placing pancakes between layers of non-stick baking paper to prevent sticking.

Enjoy these delicious and versatile Scotch Pancakes for a delightful breakfast or brunch!

How To Make American Pancakes

How To Make American Pancakes

Why Make It?

  • A favorite breakfast treat for special occasions or lazy weekends.
  • Takes a bit longer than cereal but worth it for a treat.
  • Easy to make and versatile with various toppings.


  • Self-Raising Flour
  • Caster Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Milk (Semi-skimmed, whole milk, buttermilk, or dairy-free alternatives)


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Whisk (preferably electric)
  • Non-stick frying pan
  • Spatula


  • Sift flour into a bowl.
  • Add sugar, eggs, and milk.
  • Whisk until smooth (use an electric whisk if possible).
  • Let batter stand for 10-15 minutes.
  • Heat oil in a frying pan.
  • Ladle pancake batter into the pan and fry until bubbly.
  • Flip carefully and fry the other side.
  • Serve with desired toppings.

Top Tips:

  • Don’t overmix; a few minutes with an electric whisk is enough.
  • Let the batter rest for 10 minutes.
  • Flip only when the top is bubbly.
  • Use small pans for even cooking.
  • Adjust the temperature as the pan warms up.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve as they are or with various toppings.


  • Try chocolate chips or blueberries for added flavor.


  • Reheat in the pan, oven, microwave, or toaster.


  • Store leftovers in the fridge for 2-3 days.
  • Freeze for up to 2 months; thaw in the fridge before reheating.

Enjoy these fluffy American Pancakes for a delightful breakfast or brunch!


What is the difference between American and regular pancakes?

American pancakes include a rising agent, like baking powder, making them thicker and fluffier, resembling cakes cooked in a pan.

Why are they called Scotch pancakes?

Scotch pancakes, also known as drop scones, got their name from the practice of dropping spoonfuls of batter onto the pan. The term “Scotch” reflects their Scottish origin.

What’s the difference between American pancakes and crepes?

The main difference lies in the batter; pancakes have a raising agent, making them thick and fluffy, while crepes are thin and flat without a raising agent.

What are three types of pancakes?

French Crêpes, American-Style Pancakes, and Scotch Pancakes are three types of pancakes, among others like Indonesian Serabi, Russian Blinis, Moroccan Msemen, Danish Aebleskiver, and Irish Boxty.

What are British pancakes called?

British pancakes are simply called “pancakes,” and they differ from American ones as they are unleavened and closer to crepes in texture.

What is the most popular type of pancake?

In America, popular varieties include johnnycakes (made from fried cornmeal) and silver dollar pancakes (smaller than regular pancakes).

What’s the difference between Scottish and English pancakes?

Similar to American pancakes, Scotch pancakes are made with flour, eggs, sugar, milk, salt, and cream of tartar. They are smaller than typical English pancakes and are often served with jam or cream as a snack.

Final Words

To wrap up, the distinction between them lies in their texture, sweetness, and preferred pairings. Scotch pancakes, with their slightly denser profile, are often enjoyed with butter and jam, offering a versatile and balanced flavor. 

Meanwhile, American pancakes, known for their fluffiness, embrace a sweeter disposition, becoming a canvas for a wide range of toppings, from syrup to fruits. 

In addition, both are delightful in their own right, the choice between Scotch and American pancakes ultimately comes down to personal preference, whether craving a heartier treat with Scotch pancakes or favoring the light, sweet indulgence of their American counterparts.