This Is Why Your Pancakes Aren't Fluffy

Struggling to master the perfect, cloud-like, melt-in-your-mouth pancakes? Take a deep breath. Like growing pains, pancake pains are rights of passage that all of us go through in the quest for the fluffiest 'cakes. 

Let's review the basics. If your batter is too wet, all your mix could be missing is a little extra love in the form of flour (via My Recipes). If, however, achieving the right flour-liquid balance isn't the issue, you're probably looking at a baking powder and baking soda complications. Are you sure that your baking powder and baking soda haven't gone bad? Test if your leavening agents are working by dropping some into hot water. If you're testing whether or not your baking soda is good to go, add a bit of vinegar to your hot water, too, as baking soda only reacts when combined with acid (via The Kitchn). Your water should fizz up like a kindergarten science project. That's when you know you're pancake-prime.    

 Once you've got your ingredients straightened out, you'll need to work on your timing. 

Here's why you should never leave pancake batter waiting

We know that mornings are hard. But never, and this bears repeating, never, pre-prepare your pancake mix. Pancake mixes, like romance, don't like to be left in the lurch. That's because, as the Food Network explains, as soon as your baking soda combines with the wet ingredients, carbon dioxide gas bubbles start forming in your batter. These are the bubbles that your pancakes crave, and which will produce the fluff that makes your morning delights diner-worthy. Don't let those bubbles escape. Get your batter onto the hot stove for as long as possible to ensure maximum fluffiness.   

If you're using baking powder in addition to baking soda, you can relax ... just a little bit. A part of baking powder's rising powers are heat-activated, so even if you let a bit of their liquid-activated powers go to waste, the griddle will ensure that your pancakes rise a little (via Bon Appetit). That's it! Unless, of course, you're aiming for IHOP-quality pancakes, in which case buttermilk is non-negotiable.