Ebelskiver Pancake Maker for Pancake Day

This is a plug for family traditions. We’re not Catholic but we love the humble holiday of Pancake Day (or Shrove Tuesday). We pull out all our pancake recipes and heat up our favorite pancake maker – the cast iron Ebelskiver pan! Bonus, we’re including a sourdough Ebelskiver recipe…Ebelskiver Pancake Maker l Celebrate Pancake Day with Danish Ebelskiver Pancakes l Homestead Lady.com

If homemade foods, holiday traditions and fun things to do with your family are on your To-Do list this season, please sign up to be the first to know about our newest book, Homestead Holidays! This soon-to-be-released book will take you all around the calendar year on the homestead with traditions from around the world, recipes, crafts and so much more. Presented on three different levels of holiday commitment, you can choose to just try our suggestions, or follow the instructions for an all-out celebration! Subscribers will get special coupons, freebies and offers as we near release of the book. We hope this book will be a blessing and a tool as you grow closer on your homestead. Join us today! Homestead Holidays Newsletter Sign Up l Homestead Lady.com

What is Pancake Day?

I like any holiday that’s so simple all you have to do is become a pancake maker to celebrate it. Pancake Day is traditionally a Catholic holiday (although other Christian sects observe it). It’s celebrated right before Lent when eggs and fats are forbidden as part of an introspective spiritual observance of the time before Easter. In order to prevent their going to waste, those ingredients are used up making pancakes for dinner. What genius!

Pretty much every culture on earth has some kind of pancake – injera, crepes, tortillas, naan – it’s all just a pancake of sorts. And I love. every. single. one.

A Pancake Maker New to Us

We were introduced to a new-to-us kind of pancake maker this year in the form of an Ebelskiver, a very traditional Danish pancake. Using a pan with small wells all around it, you make these with basic pancake ingredients although you add egg whites for creating the traditional poof.

You can find the Ebelskiver pan here.

There are scores of recipes on the web and we even found this little cookbook.

In order to ease the use of grain on our tummies, we sourdoughed our batter and it worked wonderfully. Culturing our batters and dough with sourdough has brought such healing to our family – grateful for those happy, little yeasts and bacteria!  Here’s our favorite sourdough cookbook.

Here’s a little tip from an intrepid reader –  thank you, Lisa!

“A little fun fact from me, a Danish gal: the correct spelling for these is Æbleskiver, and this word is already plural. There is no need to add an “s” to the end.”

Why you Need an Ebelskiver Pan

This Ebelskiver pan is truly a magical pancake maker and gives these pancakes their distinct shape. Plus, using cast iron ensures an even bake and uniform results. Don’t worry if it takes you some time to make friends with your cast iron – it will be worth it. Here’s a pan similar to what I’m using:

To make an Ebelskiver in the pan:

  1. Fill the wells of the hot, buttered pan with batter.
  2.  Then, wait for the pancakes to bubble and turn them over with bamboo skewers (trying hard not to crush them).
  3. After a few more minutes of pan baking time, you have this wickedly tasty little pancake poof.
  4. My son and I have done several experiments since Christmas (when we got the pan) and are getting pretty good at it. We always seem to burn the first batch regardless of what we try, though. My favorite part about making these isn’t eating them, it’s chatting with him while we make them and watching him gain a new skill.
  5. It’s extra decadent when you fill them with something like apple pie filling or chocolate chips. Even the ones you completely deform as you learn your new skill will taste divine.

Pancake Maker Magic with Ebelskivers l They dont have to be perfect to taste great l Homestead Lady (.com)

Sourdough Ebelskiver Recipe

Here’s a basic recipe but feel free to fiddle around with it to find a variation you love. With any sourdough, your batter is going to need to time to culture. So, plan to set up your batter the night before and let it culture on your counter, finishing up in the morning.

5 from 1 vote
Sourdough Ebelskivers (Danish Pancakes)

User the unique pancake maker to create Ebelskivers, the traditional Danish pancake.  We celebrate Pancake Day every year with these and this delectable sourdough pancake recipe.

Ingredients for Initial Batter
  • 1/2 Cup of sourdough starter
  • 1/4 Cup of raw or coconut sugar
  • 2 Cups warm water
  • 2-3 Cups Flour
In the Morning, Add In:
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 fresh eggs
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda optional - but it will make them poofier
Directions for initial mix:
  1. Mix all the above ingredients in a ceramic bowl until you form a thick batter.  It should look like any pancake batter you've made before.
  2. Cover and let the batter sit on your counter overnight.
Directions for the next morning:
  1. Preheat your Ebelskiver pan on medium-low heat.
  2. Add all the above ingredients to your cultured dough and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add butter to each of the wells in your pan.
  4. Fill each well of your pan halfway full with batter.  ONLY halfway.  Cook until the batter bubbles.
  5. If you're going to insert an add-in like spiced apples, chocolate chips or sausage, do it now.
  6. Using a bamboo skewer or knitting needle, carefully turn the pancake over so that what was on the top is now on the bottom. This will not only finish cooking the pancake, but it will also form the top of the pancake's spherical body.

Recipe Notes

Serve hot with lots of butter.  

Don't go too crazy with sweet stuff on top, especially if you've put in a filler.  Sourdough Ebelskivers have a rich flavor all their own and you may not want to smother it in sugar.  

Sometimes a little powdered sugar on top is delightful, especially if it's made from coconut or raw sugar.  

To learn to make your own powdered sugar, just follow this link.

Parting Advice

If you don’t want to use sourdough for this recipe, try this whole grain recipe that uses cultured dairy.

Here’s a coconut flour recipe. And a gluten free recipe.

I encourage you to pick up one new tradition this year to try out with your family. I’m a big believer in the power of wholesome traditions in families; as you can read about here and here.

Maybe Pancake Day should be the one you try first…?Pancake Maker Magic on Pancake Day l Sourdough Ebelskivers can be filled like donuts l Homestead Lady (.com)

Free Sample

Don’t forget to email me for that free sample from The Do It Yourself Homestead! We hope the book will be useful to you, but don’t just take our word for it. Here’s what cookbook author and whole foodie Stacy Lynn Harris has to say about it:

The Family on the Homestead l The Do It Yourself Homestead praise from Stacy Lynn Harris

Cover graphic gratefully attributed to this Wikimedia Commons user.


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15 thoughts on “Ebelskiver Pancake Maker for Pancake Day

  1. Our church does a Pancake Supper on Fat Tuesday, it’s always a lot of fun, and then we have our Ash Wednesday service that is always very solemn. We aren’t Catholic either though. But these sound really good, although I can’t spell it without scrolling back up! I’ll have to try them sometime. I’ll pin for later. Thanks!

    1. The Catholics have fun festivals – so do the Jews – we celebrate a lot of them and food is one of the best parts! These are very much worth a try, even if they are tricky to spell (that’s even the Anglicized version). 🙂

          1. Try refreshing the page – you should see both baking powder and baking soda. Unless my recipe plugin is malfunctioning which, honestly, wouldn’t be the first time. I’m not exactly convinced that technology makes our lives that much easier, are you?

            You can actually make these without either leavening agent because of the sourdough but to get a really good poof on the pancake, I like to use them. Let me know if you come up with something better. Also, let me know if you perfect filling them and what your method is. I’m such a spazz with the filling that it gets everywhere. Still tasty, of course, but very messy. I think I use too much filling at one time…my kids are actually better at making these than I am. Ha!

  2. These are Danish (from Denmark), not Dutch (from the Netherlands/Holland). The Dutch do have something similar, but they’re called poffertjes.

  3. 5 stars
    Thank you for the recipe! A little fun fact from me, a Danish gal: the correct spelling for these is Æbleskiver, and this word is already plural. There is no need to add an “s” to the end 🙂 🙂

    1. Thanks so much for that, Lisa! There are about 100 different ways to spell it when you look it up online; I’m so grateful to have an official spelling. 🙂 Thank you, too, for the tip about the plural form – you’re a wealth of information.

      So, did you ever eat these growing up?

  4. I’m so glad to find this recipe. Thank you! I have two aebleskiver pans that I’ve only used a handful of times over the years. My mother was half-Danish, so she made them a few times, too. But I think I’ll make them more with a recipe to use with my sourdough starter. Do you happen to remember or know how many aebleskiver this recipe makes?

    1. How fun, Karen, so glad it was useful! This recipe makes about 18-24. Whatever it is, it’s never enough. My kids can eat these faster than I can make them which is why we now have two pans. 🙂

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