Gluten Free Pancakes

08/05/2022 [Food]

Sometimes, I just want some freakin' pancakes! In a former life, I used to love nothing more than waking up at noon on a Saturday and leisurely making my way to our local diner for the most amazing stack of pancakes served with eggs over medium, thick cut bacon, and a cup of black coffee to contrast the rich maple syrup drowning the plate. These days however, I don't eat wheat and I don't go to restaraunts. What to do?

There are plenty of gluten free pancake mixes on the market but you don't need any of that commercial food product nonsense. All you need is corn masa. Corn masa or "Masa Harina" is a flour made from dry corn that has been soaked in a mineral alkalai. This is an ancient technique used to soften the corn fiber and make it more nutritious and easy to digest. Masa harina is often used to make tortillas and tamales but I use it as a more general purpose flour for breads, biscuits, and of course, pancakes.

Corn masa is cheap and available in most grocery stores in the US. You'll find it bears little resemblence to corn meal which is course and gritty and deep yellow by comparison. Masa harina is fine and soft like any good baking flour. It doesn't have the gluten of wheat based flours so you won't get that elasticity. However, it has a lovely corn flavor and a cakey texture. Think corn or banana nut bread.

Enough with the dissertation. Let's make some freakin' pancakes!


  • 1 cups Masa Harina
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Tbsp. Oil


  1. In a large bowl, whisk dry ingredients to combine and aerate.
  2. Add wet ingredients to the bowl and whisk until a smooth batter is formed.
  3. Melt butter in a skillet or griddle on medium heat.
  4. Pour some batter into the hot butter until it spreads out to a size you are confident you can still flip. If the heat and batter are right, bubbles will slowly emerge at the top and the cake will release steam.
  5. Cook until deep brown on the bottom, flip, and cook until browned on the other side.
  6. Serve hot.

This recipe make 4 decent sized pancakes which is plenty for my partner and I. We like them with blueberries and pecans for breakfast, or pulled pork and pickled carrots for lunch.