Substitute for Milk in Pancakes

Pancakes are hands down one of the best breakfast foods around. One of the reasons is because they are just so simple and easy to make. This is great because that means you can make pancakes to suit any special diet, such as egg free or vegan or gluten free.

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It also means they are a great all around food to make even if you don’t have all of the ingredients on hand, they are very forgiving.

Today, let’s take a look at what we can use as a substitute for milk in pancakes. Whether you have a milk allergy, or have just run out, don’t worry, you can still make delicious pancakes.

Can I make pancakes without milk?

Of course you can make pancakes without milk. You will need to replace it with another liquid to act as a milk substitute. Simply using water in your pancake batter works well, but we have more ideas for you too. Keep reading for some of the best dairy-free pancakes swaps we have ever tasted

Substitutes for Milk in Pancakes

Now let’s take a closer look at some great ideas for swapping milk out of a pancake recipe.


If you’re looking for a substitute for milk in pancakes, water is a good option. You can use it in place of milk in any recipe, and it will still produce light and fluffy pancakes. The water will also help to thin out the batter, making it easier to pour into the pan.

However, keep in mind that using water in place of milk will result in a slightly different flavor. If you’re looking for an exact replica of milk pancakes, you may want to try a different substitute instead of these water-based pancakes. But if you’re open to experimenting, give water a try next time you’re making pancakes!

Soy milk

Soy milk is a popular substitute for cow’s milk. It is a dairy-free milk that can be used in any recipe that calls for milk, including pancakes. Soy milk is a good option if you’re looking for a dairy-free substitute. It’s also lower in fat than cow’s milk, so it’s a good choice if you’re watching your fat intake.

Almond milk

Almond milk is another substitute for cow’s milk. It has a similar consistency to soy milk, so it can be used in the same way. Almond milk is a good choice if you’re looking for a dairy-free substitute.

Rice milk

If you’re looking for a substitute for milk in pancakes, rice milk is a good option. Rice milk is made from either white or brown rice and water, and it has a slightly sweet taste. When used in pancakes, rice milk will produce a final product that is light and fluffy.

You can find rice milk in most grocery stores, and it can also be made at home. If you’re interested in making your own rice milk, there are a number of recipes available online. ADD RECIPES Whether you choose to buy it or make it yourself, rice milk is a great substitute for milk in pancakes.

Coconut milk

Coconut milk is another good substitute for milk in pancakes. Coconut milk is made from the meat of a coconut, and it has a creamy texture. When used in pancakes, coconut milk will produce a final product that is light and fluffy.

Keep in mind that coconut milk may give your pancakes a slightly nutty flavor but it is a great dairy-free option.

Oat milk

Unsweeteneed oat milk is a popular substitute for milk in pancakes, since it’s a popular milk alternative, especially for those who can’t have nuts in addition to dairy. It is creamy and has a similar consistency to milk, making it a good choice for those who are looking for an alternative.

Oat milk pancakes are quite tasty but can be known to have a specific taste, so keep that in mind.

Orange Juice

Orange juice is a great sub for milk in pancakes, especially if you love orange. It may sound a bit strange at first, but really is delicious.

Here is a great recipe!

Apple Juice

Apple juice instead of milk in pancakes is another great option you may not have thought of. Apple sauce is a popular swap for eggs in baking because of its mild flavor, and apple juice works the same way in pancakes.

Keep in mind that using fruit juice will make your pancakes a bit sweeter.

Half and Half and Water

You’ll need to make a ratio of half water and half half and half to equal whatever the amount of milk your pancakes call for. You’ll need the same liquid amount in total, just half of it needs to be water and half needs to be the half and half so it comes out the proper consistency. If half and half is all you have, you will still make some decent pancakes.

Heavy Cream and Water

Just like half and half, you can still make a decent batch of pancakes with heavy cream. You’ll still need the same total amount of liquid in the end, but it needs to be 50% water and 50% heavy cream, just as you would have done using half and half from the above suggestion.

It brings a rich flavor that is an excellent choice to use in place of milk in your favorite pancake recipe.

Cashew Milk

This is also another popular and excellent substitute for milk in pancakes. It’s a common swap and great replacement for those who use plant-based milk regularly. Just use the cup of cashew milk (or however much your recipe calls for) in place of the regular cup of milk in the original recipe.

It’ll work the same way and will give you delicious dairy-free pancakes every time.

Questions About Replacing Milk in Pancakes

If you’ve never made regular pancakes without milk before, you may have some questions. Don’t worry, we have answers!

Are pancakes better with milk or water?

It depends on what you’re looking for. If you want an exact replica of milk pancakes, then you should consider using a non-dairy milk option. Water does work just fine in pancakes instead of milk, but the flavor will be slightly different than you are used to.

Can I add water instead of milk to pancake mix?

Yes, you can add water to pancake mix in place of milk. The pancakes will not be quite as fluffy as if you had used milk, but they will still taste good.

Can you substitute butter for milk in pancakes?

No, you should not substitute butter for milk in pancakes. Butter will make the pancakes dense and greasy, instead of light and fluffy. You do not want to use just melted butter either. 

Can I use water instead of milk for Bisquick pancakes?

Yes, you can substitute water for milk when making pancakes with Bisquick mix. Did you know you can also make Bisquick pancakes without eggs

Can I use sour cream instead of milk in pancakes?

No, you should not substitute sour cream for milk in pancakes. The texture of sour cream is much different than that of milk. You need the liquid from the milk in pancakes to make them light and fluffy, so be sure to add some water along with the sour cream if you choose to use it. But, do know that we do not think this is the best substitute to use in place of your wet ingredients in your pancake recipe. 

Does using something else other than milk change the pancake batter consistency?

Not usually. If you are replacing your milk with a liquid milk substitute in the same ratio then your pancake batter consistency should be about the same.

What can I add to my pancake batter without milk?

if you want to give your flavor profile of your milkless pancakes a little boost, an easy way to do that is by adding a little something to your batter. Here are a few options you can try:

  • cinnamon
  • vanilla extract (this is what we commonly add to pancakes and waffles)
  • almond extract
  • peppering extract (perfect for the holidays)
  • maple extract
  • mini chocolate chips
  • white chocolate chips
  • dark chocolate chunks
  • cinnamon baking chips
  • diced strawberries, blueberries, or other chopped berries or fresh fruit

What to top your moist pancakes without milk with?

You can add just about anything to your milkless pancakes! Here are a few things to try:

  • extra butter and syrup
  • pure maple syrup
  • fresh fruit
  • mini chocolate chips
  • whipped cream
  • any of your other favorite toppings

No matter why you need to use an alternative ingredient instead of milk in your pancakes, we hope you can find one that you can try in the above 11 different options. Using milk in your pancake recipe helps bring a fluffy, flavorful pancake to your breakfast table, but using any of these milk substitutes will still result in a fantastic stack of pancakes on your kitchen table for breakfast! Now get to making a batch of flapjacks and let us know what your favorite swap is in the comments below.

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