The 9 best pans for pancakes you can buy for Pancake Day 2022

SHROVE Tuesday, best known as Pancake Day, is almost upon us and with it comes the the excuse we all needed to eat pancakes for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

In order to toss your way to the top, though, you'll need the best pan for pancakes available. It will help you crack the perfect pancake, without it sticking to the bottom of the pan or burning for no apparent reason.

This year, Pancake Day will be held on Tuesday 1st March (AKA Shrove Tuesday) and is the day before Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of Lent.

Traditionally a period of abstinence, all the good stuff from the cupboards, including eggs, milk, sugar and fat, were used up in one final hurrah on Shrove Tuesday, before a period of fasting or sacrifices were made to mark the start of the Christian season.

Now, the Christian-associated holiday is celebrated by many across Britain – and the wider world – giving us a reason to devour sweet and savoury pancakes all day long.

But whether you prefer your pancakes with pesto, meat and vegetables; salmon and spinach; chocolate and fresh fruit; or classic lemon and sugar, you're going to need one of the best pans for pancakes around.

READ MORE:

  • Why do we eat pancakes on Shrove Tuesday?
  • Just Eat is offering 20% off this Pancake Day – plus here’s how you can save £5 on your order
  • Check out our dedicated Mother's Day section for gift ideas

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We tried: Russell Hobbs Fiesta Crepe & Pancake Maker

  • Fiesta Crepe & Pancake Maker, £34.99 from Russell Hobbs – buy here

More like a traditional, market-stall crepe maker than a pan, this mains-powered device from Russell Hobbs makes making super thin crepes and pancakes simple – and fun.

For under £35, you can bring Christmas market crepes to your kitchen counter with this temperature-controlled hot-plate. A T-shaped crepe shaper and spatula is included in the box, too – as well as a good instruction leaflet, with flavour ideas and a recipe (which worked well for us with plant-based milk!).

We tried the crepe and pancake maker and found it very easy-to-use – you simply slide the temperature setting to '5', flip the red button to 'I' and wait for the green light thermostat to illuminate.

We found the 1-4 heat settings were redundant, if we're honest, and never used them because 5 was the right temperature to get our pancakes golden. The T-shaped stick helped shape our crepes (and felt great doing it!) but you need a lot of batter to coat the whole plate – so we poured a palm-sized amount, then spread it halfway around to make the right thickness for us.

There was no sticking or burning, and our crepes cooked in less than two minutes, becoming easy to flip with a spatula (they didn't quite look like the one in the picture, though!)

For best results, eat your pancakes immediately, as the crepes don't retain heat well when transferred from the device… but who on earth waits around anyway?!

We loved that you needed no oil for this whatsoever, it was fun (great for showing off to the kids and guests), mess-free and easy to clean with its wipe clean surface. Plus, the device comes with a space on its bottom to store the cord safely and securely, too.

If you're flipping out about flipping your pancakes this year, then this traditional-style hot-plate is perfect for you.

We tried: Salter Marble Frying Pan

  • Salter Marble Frying Pan, £26 (£13 for Clubcard holders) from Tesco – buy here

This Salter pan, available from Tesco this Pancake Day, is nice and light – like the pancakes it helps create!

It doesn't feel heavy in the hand, and can easily be used to nicely flip a pancake with only one hand (impressive, we know).

The pan comes in a variety of sizes, including the 30cm one we tried, and it boasts a high-end looking marble effect – making it look much more expensive than it is!

We were really impressed with this pan — it was totally non-stick and cooked pancakes evenly, and its helpful, deep curved edges helped with our pancake flip and plate transfer.

We used our usual amount of oil and it ended up being far too much. We had to drain some of it out, and ended up making a whole batch of pancakes easily with next to no oil at all.

Our only qualm would be was that the black, painted outer scratched easily, and while the non-stick coating stayed perfectly intact and was a dream to clean, we had to be extra careful with its outer when washing or storing to save from further scratches. It probably doesn't help that we're clumsy, though.

We absolutely loved using Salter's silicone and super-cute strawberry spatula (£7, Tesco), too, and even on a really high heat it kept its cool, helping to keep our pancakes in order. Its wooden handle felt sturdy and durable, and we think it's our new favourite kitchen utensil (don't judge us).

We tried: Ninja Foodi ZEROSTICK Vivid Frying Pan

  • Ninja Foodi ZEROSTICK Vivid Frying Pan, £54.99 – buy here

There's nothing like admitting you're in love with a pan to really feel like an adult, is there?

This ZEROSTICK Vivid Frying Pan from Ninja Foodi is tremendous, and worth clearing space in the kitchen cupboard for this Pancake Day.

It's 30cm wide, so it's a little big (we struggled to fit more than one pan on the hob at the same time as this one) but with this versatile pan, you won't need to use more than one.

We used it for pancakes, of course, and it was a dream to use. The curved sides made flipping and transferring onto plates easy, and it needed much less oil than usual – in fact, we tried making a pancake without oil, and it worked just as well!

The pan spread heat evenly, meaning the pancakes didn't burn on one side more than the other. We loved the deep red colour of the pan and silicone handle, meaning handling hot pans was super safe, but it did feel heavy to hold with just one hand.

We also used this pan to fry tofu, and it was big enough make a stir fry for two – and we noticed how fresh our veg looked, even after frying. It was still bright and colourful, without wilting or going that strange brown shade you get from using old, scratched pans. Our onions were perfectly caramelised and seared, and we needed to use very little oil to sear and cook tougher veg like broccoli.

It was a joy to wash, and the Ninja's ZEROSTICK plasma ceramic bonding with a unique non-stick coating was peel and flake free – it's dishwasher safe, too, if you're lucky enough to own one.

It's also suitable in the oven for your frittatas and keeping any stray pancakes warm in temperatures of up to 200 degrees Celsius – plus, it boasts a 10-year guarantee. Consider Pancake Day to be be everyday in our house, now.

Tefal Sausage Dog, Pancake, Crepe, Frying pan

  • Tefal Sausage Dog, Pancake, Crepe Frying pan, £13.34 from Amazon – buy here

Find us someone who wouldn't want to be served a pancake with a super cute sausage dog on it?!

This pancake pan from renowned non-stick pan experts Tefal is perfect for kids and adults alike, thanks to its unique sausage dog outline on the pan face.

The aluminium pan has a hard wearing enamel coating, which is non-stick and non-scratch, and comes with a squeezy bottle when bought at Amazon – this is for perfecting your sausage dog outline.

Simply follow the outline and let it cook for a few seconds and once it starts to brown, simply pour batter over the top, filling the pan. Once flipped, you'll have your perfect doggy design on top!

On sale for under £15 at Amazon, it's a bargain for a durable, trusty pan (that could be used on Pancake Day and beyond) making kids squeal with delight, and your pet extremely jealous.

Breville Traditional Crepe Maker

  • Breville Traditional Crepe Maker, £34 from AO.com – buy here

Okay, so technically this isn't a pan, but this traditional crepe maker from Breville, available at AO, takes all the hard work (and tears) out of making pancakes and crepes for you.

The electrical device is similar to what you'd find at traditional Christmas markets, except this one has been modernised with temperature control and a light to let you know when to start cooking, all in efforts to help you crack the perfect crepe.

Special tools (including a T-stick spreader) come included in the admittedly bargain price of £34, helping you spread the batter evenly for cooking.

There's also an area within the mains-operated device that store the cord, helping prevent kitchen clutter and getting all tangled up with your other pans.

And, the best of all, it saves the hassle out of washing up as the cooking plate is super easy to wipe clean.

Le Creuset Cast Iron Crepe Pan

  • Le Creuset Cast Iron Crepe Pan, £125 from Amazon – buy here

It's the French brand we all know and pine for, loved for being durable and passed down through generations of families thanks to its cast iron sturdiness.

Its addition to the world of pans for pancakes and crepes is no exception, either. It's pricey, like the rest of the Le Creuset range, but it's a real jack-of-all-trades and comes in a vivid cerise red.

Not only will it cook your crispy crepes or fluffy pancakes to perfection, thanks to its large face, smothered with non-stick enamel coating – but it's ideal for popping into the oven or grill afterwards, too. This is great for keeping foodstuffs warm, or giving an extra blast of heat if you want to melt cheese, or crisp up the top.

It's suitable for all hobs, including induction hobs, and has an ergonomic handle to help you flip your way to success.

It's the top of the range when it comes to pans for pancakes, and the top of many budgets, but this price comes with the pan, a spreader, spatula, and a care booklet. It's an investment that'll last many pancake days to come.

Tefal Simplicity Frying Pan

  • Tefal Simplicity Frying Pan, £14.99 from Robert Dyas – buy here

Tefal coating is a must-have when it comes to everyday cooking, non-stick frying, and pancake-perfecting.

If you're on a budget, but want to ensure the best pancakes, then look no futher than this £14.99 offering from Robert Dyas.

Simplicity is in the name, and in its characteristics, as it makes making pancakes or frying up breakfast goods effortless – pancake-wise, this 25cm pan boasts a diffusion base which can help with even distribution of heat, and features an ergonomic handle that helps with flipping.

Plus, the best thing about Tefal pans is that the spot in the centre turns red, meaning it's the ideal temperature to whip up a pancake without burning it, or it getting too floppy and undercooked.

It's large, and compatible for all stove tops – except induction – and its non-stick coating is completely safe, meaning it has no lead or toxins in. It's easy to wipe clean and it's dishwasher-safe. Pancake Day: sorted.

Smeg Frying Pan

  • Smeg Frying Pan, £130 from Fenwick – buy here

We're pretty sure you've heard of Italian-born kitchenware brand Smeg by now, famed for its eye-catching coloured fridges.

This 28cm, low-sided frying pan adheres to the same mantra, and hits the colourful trend by being available in vivid red, black or gorgeous cream.

It may look like your average frying pan, but it's perfect for pancakes, too, thanks to its non-stick primer coating that requires less oil to cook, and ideal for cracking an impressive pancake flip.

Coupled with the pan's low sides, it means that it's easy to slide food off, directly onto the plate – so no more worrying about tearing your precious pancake with a spatula or knife!

It's crafted from cold-forged aluminium and has a thick bottom with a stainless-steel plate that distributes heat evenly, totalling to a whopping six layers of uniform, pancake-cooking goodness.

Lakeland Forged Aluminium Crêpe Pan

  • Lakeland Forged Aluminium Crepe Pan, £19.99 from Lakeland – buy here

This marble-effect pan from Lakeland is a little different to other pans you often come across online, in that its lips are a lot shallower – making it ideal for super thin, traditional crepes.

The lightweight forged aluminium pan is 25cm wide, with a double layer of non-stick coating making all types of sweet or savoury delights easy and fun this Pancake Day. And for less than £34 in price, it's a bargain.

We can't imagine flipping a crepe in this with its shallow edges, or transferring it to a plate, so perhaps a good wide spatula or fish slice is in order here… unless you fancy the challenge?

What is the difference between pancakes and crepes?

Pancakes and crepes are very similar, except the former are thought to be American while crepes are from France.

American pancakes, and pancakes as a whole, are often thicker and served in stacks, and crepes are paper-thin, lightly covering the whole face of the pan.

The biggest difference is often size: pancakes are ultimately smaller and thicker, yet crepes are large and wafer-thin.

Both pancakes and crepes are often filled with either sweet or savoury fillings, and can be rolled up or folded into triangles to serve this Pancake Day.

Ingredients-wise, crepes and pancakes are often make the same way (with plain flour, eggs and milk) but if you want thicker, fluffier, American-style pancakes, it's best to add a raising agent like baking powder or self-raising flour, and sugar (like granulated or caster).

How to make crepes

Crepes (and flatter, thinner pancakes) are super easy with pretty simple ingredients:

Add 100g of plain flour, two eggs, 250ml of milk (any will do – including plant-based milk) and a pinch of salt to a jug. Add a little oil, dash of milk, or melted butter if it's really sticky.

Whisk it to a creamy, thick batter, making sure to beat out any lumps, and leave it to rest for an hour or so if you have time.

Pop a drizzle of oil to a pan for pancakes and heat on a medium setting. Then, pour out your desired amount (smaller circles for thicker pancakes, or cover the whole pan for larger) and cook for a minute on both sides – flipping, if you dare.

How to make American pancakes

For fluffier, thicker American pancakes, mix 200g self-raising flour, a tablespoon of baking powder, the same amount of caster sugar, and a pinch of salt into a large jug or bowl.

After creating a well in the centre, add three eggs, 25g melted butter and 200ml of milk. Whisk and then rest, if you can.

Add oil or butter to a pan on medium heat then pour small circles, around 8-10cm in diameter, and 1-2cm in width. Cook for one to two minutes on each side, flipping if you're confident enough…

How many calories are there in a crepe?

A plain crepe or pancake (up to 20cm in diameter) averages at about 100 calories, while thicker pancakes are usually a little more, and are around 110-120 calories per pancake. That's not including your chosen filling, of course.

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