Lemon Puff Pancake with Fresh Berries: easier done than said

Did you ever hear of a Dutch Baby?

How about a Swedish Puff?

David Eyre’s Pancake?

All three of these titles refer to a tender, eggy, oversized pancake, as wonderful to eat as it is spectacular to look at – and fast/easy to make.

This particular Lemon Puff Pancake recipe is based on one printed over 40 years ago in The New York Times. Called David Eyre’s Pancake (Mr. Eyre, a Honolulu resident, had served it to Times writer Craig Claiborne at his home), it was the “most requested reprint” Times recipe ever run, up to that point.

And for good reason. A rather unprepossessing flour, milk, and egg batter is poured into a pan, and 20 minutes later emerges as a giant golden puff, awaiting a final anointing of lemon juice and sugar.

It’s delicious; it’s easy; and who cares if it settles back a bit from its glorious oven-fresh heights as it cools? Part popover, part crêpe, part pancake, it combines the best aspects of all three. We like to serve it on a lazy Sunday morning, garnished with fresh berries, Sunday paper (New York Times?) close at hand.

First, preheat the oven to 425°F. You want the oven good and hot, to encourage the pancake to rise to its full height.

Lightly grease a 9″ cast iron skillet, or 8″ round cake pan. The size of the pan matters here, so measure carefully. Too small, it’ll overflow. Too large, it won’t puff as high. If you’re using a cast iron skillet, it should measure 9″ across the top; its bottom diameter will be smaller.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in the skillet; or melt 1 tablespoon butter, and pour it into the cake pan.

Did you know that by clicking anywhere on this block of pictures, you can enlarge them to full size? Go ahead, give it a try; it’ll work for any of our photos.

Whisk together the following:

1/3 cup (1 3/8 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar

In a separate bowl, whisk together the following:

1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until fairly smooth.

Add 1 tablespoon melted butter, and whisk again. A few small lumps are OK.

Pour the batter into the pan, atop the melted butter.

Bake the pancake for 15 minutes in the cast iron pan, 20 minutes in the cake pan, or until it’s puffed and golden, with deeper brown patches.

Remove the pancake from the oven, and sprinkle with 1/2 to 1 tablespoon lemon juice, then confectioners’ sugar.

Use more sugar than you’d think you need; since the pancake itself is basically unsweetened, and you’re adding lemon juice, be generous.

Sprinkle the pancake with berries, if desired. I always desire; they’re just so pretty, red raspberries or blackberries or blueberries on a golden pancake. Also tasty, of course.

Serve immediately.

This pancake serves two, as part of a larger breakfast (e.g., fruit salad, yogurt, etc.)

Or enjoy the entire thing yourself; it’s so light, you won’t feel like you’ve eaten a 9″ pancake!

Note: This recipe is easily doubled. If you don’t have more than one skillet, use a combination of skillet and cake pan; or simply use two 8″ round cake pans.

Also, if you have a large cast iron skillet – e.g., 11″ straight-sided, or 12″ with sloping sides – here’s the classic version of this recipe:

2 tablespoons butter, melted in the pan
1/2 cup (2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
small pinch of nutmeg, optional
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Lemon Puff Pancake with Fresh Berries.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


  1. Wen

    I just made my first Puff Pancake (Dutch Baby) thanks to your recipe. I just finished half of one with a banana and powdered sugar. I am very excited to have something that I can fix when relatives are visiting!
    Many Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      For a lemon-flavored pancake, you could add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice (in place of 1 tablespoon of the milk) or lemon zest to the wet ingredients in this recipe. Or, you could add 1 teaspoon of lemon extract or 1/4 teaspoon of lemon oil. All will give you a lovely lemon flavor.

      If you wanted to go the lemon curd route, you could prepare our lemon curd recipe separately and then decadently spoon it onto the pancake and then top with berries. You can find the link to that recipe here: http://bit.ly/1A7CBLn Good luck and happy baking! –Kye@KAF

  2. Cynthia Glorioso

    I have made these for years. Sometimes I sauté an apple in the skillet with spices and at the end add a little sugar, pour the batter over and bake. Delicious!

  3. kellyheidecker

    My boyfriend has been making these for years and learned the recipe from his mom. We never knew what they were called! Love them on a lazy morning or when the kids come to visit. We always use fresh lemon juice, particularly Meyer lemons if we have them.

  4. Jean Sheffield

    Wow! love this recipe. i added a very ripe banana, 1 1/2 tsp brown sugar, and used the waffle iron. wonderful flavor, the texture is like the dutch baby or popovers, it browned well but did not get crispy like a waffle. wonderful flavor……

  5. Elizabeth

    I tried it with almond flour – it cooked and puffed up the same but tasted quite different
    Thanks for sharing your results! ~ MaryJane


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