The Best Pancake Griddle Temp to Make the Perfect Pancakes
If you have ever made pancakes, you know that satisfaction of achieving that golden brown color and fluffy texture. The secret to making the best pancakes is getting your pancake griddle temp just right. If it’s thick and fluffy pancakes or thin and delicate crepes, just know the griddle temperature is the game changer.
In this blog post, we’ll talk about the different factors that affect griddle temperature and how that is going to impact your finish of your pancake. We’ll review the different temperature ranges from low to medium as well as high heat and when to use which one. By having a better understanding of griddle temperature and its impact on your pancakes, you’ll be better equipped dominate your next delicious pancake breakfast. Let’s get into it.
Factors that affect griddle temperature
1. Griddle material:
Different materials, such as cast iron, stainless steel, or non-stick surfaces, have different heat conductivity properties. That just means that some materials heat up quickly, while others take a little longer to reach the temperature you want it to. Your cast iron griddle is going to take a little bit longer to heat up.
2. Heat source:
The type of stove or heat source used to heat your griddle can impact temperature control. Gas stoves are usually a little more precise on temperature adjustments whereas electric stoves may have delayed response times.
3. Burner power:
The power or intensity of the burner on the stove can influence the griddle temperature. Higher heat settings = hotter griddle surfaces, while lower heat settings result in a low temperature. This might sound obvious, but just take a look at your burners next time you’re in the kitchen and pay attention to which one you use when you cook. Practice turning the flame up and down. That’s the only way you’re really going to get to know your heat source.
4. Stovetop settings:
If you’re using an electric stove, the settings (low, medium & high) on the control panel can affect the griddle temperature. Don’t be fooled though, those settings may not exactly correspond to a specific temperature. It’s best if you monitor the actual griddle surface temperature.
5. Preheating time:
Don’t sleep on preheat. The time that your griddle is preheated before cooking can impact its temperature. Preheating allows the griddle surface to evenly distribute heat, allowing for consistent cooking. Use this time to prep all your wet ingredients and dry ingredients.
6. Pancake batter characteristics:
The composition and consistency of the pancake batter can influence the griddle temperature. A thicker batter may require lower heat to allow for thorough cooking, while a thinner batter may benefit from higher heat for faster cooking. The more you know.
7. Environmental factors:
The temperature of the room and humidity in the kitchen or cooking area can also affect the griddle temperature. The good thing is that you can adjust your temperature. A colder kitchen may require a slightly higher temperature setting to compensate for heat loss.
Just know that these factors can vary and finding the ideal temperature for your hot griddle may take a little experimentation based on personal preference and specific pancake recipe being used.
Finding the perfect griddle temperature
A. How to preheat your griddle
- Grab your clean griddle and set it on the stove. Make sure it’s appropriately aligned with the burner.
- Turn on your heat based on the recommended temperature for your pancake recipe OR whatever heat you like to cook with.
- Allow your griddle to preheat (about 10-15 minutes based on the size and material of your griddle).
- Check the pancake griddle temp to make sure its preheated. You can use a cooking thermometer or an infrared thermometer. You can also do the water drop test. Flick a few drops of water onto the griddle surface. If the water droplets sizzle and evaporate almost immediately, the griddle is most likely preheated and ready to make a pancake. Or read on to learn about the pancake batter test.
- Monitor the temperature and adjust accordingly to keep consistency throughout your cooking.
B. Experimentation and trial-and-error approach
This way is pretty straight forward, but the chart is a good place to start with using what type of pancake you are looking to make.
C. Using an infrared thermometer or electric griddle with temperature control
If you bought an infrared thermometer and you are familiar with it, awesome. If you are new to the infrared thermometer life, get to know the one you bought by reading the owner’s manual. Point and aim towards the griddle. Again, look at the manual to see how far away you need to stand. Then activate the thermometer (some do it automatically).
You can move the thermometer to another spot on the griddle to see if you have any colder or hotter spots. Change your settings and recheck the temp. This will give you more consistent cooking. Consistent cooking means consistently great pancakes!
Aim the thermometer at the spot you want it to read. Be sure nothing is obstructing the surface of the griddle. Pull the trigger to take the reading. Once you have your reading of your pancake griddle temp, increase or decrease the heat to get your desired level.
Your temperature will vary, but a general rule of thumb is a cooking surface of 350 degrees Fahrenheit to 375 degrees F (175 degrees C to 190 degrees C) for your pancake griddle.
Testing griddle temperature with a drop of water or pancake batter
This is pretty common practice for the home cook to test the pancake griddle temp and good tip for those who don’t know.
Take a little bit of water, about the size of a quarter or less, and sprinkle it onto the heated griddle. Be careful not to use too much water, as it can cause splattering.
- If the water droplet evaporates immediately upon contact and sizzles, the griddle is usually too hot and may burn your food. Just cool it down a little before cooking.
- If the water droplet sits on the surface and does not evaporate, the griddle is not hot enough yet. Keep preheating until the water droplet sizzles and evaporates quickly.
Pancake batter test:
Another method involves using a small amount of batter to test the pancake griddle temp.
- Take a small spoonful of pancake batter and drop it onto the griddle. If the batter spreads slightly, starts bubbling, and cooks evenly within a minute or so, the griddle is at a good temperature for cooking pancakes.
- If the batter spreads too quickly, the griddle may be too hot, therefore in burnt pancakes. Reduce the temperature and let the griddle to cool slightly.
- If the batter takes a long time to cook, does not bubble, or cooks unevenly, the griddle is likely not hot enough. Increase the temperature and allow the griddle to preheat further.
Adjusting Griddle Temperature for Different Pancake Types
Thick and fluffy pancakes
If you are looking to make the fluffiest pancakes, lower your heat to allow for thorough cooking. The batter you’re using is probably thick, so it won’t work well with high heat. Going along with that, a longer cooking time with coincide for a cooked center.
Use this 3 ingredient high protein waffle mix for your next pancake breakfast. It doubles as a pancake recipe and is both delicious and nutritious.
Thin and crepe-like pancakes
Thin and crepe-like pancakes need high heat for quick cooking. This type of heat is the best way to achieve a delicate and light texture with thinner batter.
This is an easy crepe recipe if you’re interested.
Keeping an eye on pancake color and flipping at the right time
Pour your pancake and allow it to cook until bubbles form on the surface. Soon after, you’ll see the edges turn a golden brown. Lift the edge of the pancake slightly with a spatula to take a look underneath. If you can see it’s golden brown and the edges are set, you are good to go to flip!
Troubleshooting Temperature-Related Pancake Issues
Lower the heat. If your pancakes are sadly consistently burning and destroying your ego, start with reducing the heat on your griddle. This is going to slow down the cooking. In addition to lowering your heat, you can adjust the cooking time. You also have the option of flipping them sooner or cooking them for a shorter amount of time from preventing them to burn.
Undercooked or gummy pancakes
Increase the heat slightly. This will help the batter cook more thoroughly.
Uneven cooking due to temperature inconsistencies
Problem: You don’t know what to put on top of your pancakes?
Maple syrup, chocolate chips, melted butter or fresh fruit.
Can you reheat pancakes on a griddle?
Yes. Do not let those leftover pancakes go to waste. Start by preheating your griddle on a medium-low heat setting. For this, high heat is only going to burn or overcook your pancakes.
So now you have a better idea of all the ins and outs of finding the best griddle temp to cook pancakes. By understanding the factors that affect griddle temperature, experimenting with different heat settings, and making adjustments based on what type of pancake you’re cooking, you are well on your way to success. Just remember the griddle temperature is the key to striking the perfect balance between cooking time, browning and texture.
Grab any your favorite pancake recipe and fire up the griddle. Get ready to impress your family and friends. May your griddle always be at the perfect temperature for pancake success!