My Favorite Ways to Reheat Leftover Pancakes

Should you use the microwave? The oven? The toaster? Here, I break down my favorite ways to reheat pancakes and why.

Pancakes with a glass of orange juice

Simply Recipes / Nick Evans

Has anyone in the history of the universe ever made the right amount of pancakes? I think the answer is no. Because the worst thing for breakfast is not enough pancakes, I always tend to make more than I need. And that, of course, means leftovers. 

Pancakes are one of those foods that actually reheats to the same quality (and some might argue better) than the original if you use the right method. Read on and learn how to bring those cold fridge pancakes back to life.

A pile of pancakes on a red plate

Simply Recipes / Nick Evans

The Method to Avoid: The Microwave 

Okay. Let’s get this one out of the way first and foremost. Yes, you can technically microwave pancakes in that they will get hot and you can smear butter on them and pour syrup on them. But here’s the thing: The microwave will make your pancakes very soggy. If you’ve ever tried to spread butter on a microwaved pancake you’ll find that it just kind of falls apart. It has no structure because the microwave steams the pancake from the inside out which demolishes the cake-like texture. 

So, technically, yes you can, but let’s not.  

Pancakes in the toaster

Simply Recipes / Nick Evans

The Best Method for Single-Serve Pancakes: The Toaster

My favorite way to reheat pancakes is to use a plain old toaster. This works best if you are reheating one or two pancakes, which I frequently do in my house. My kids will request a leftover pancake for breakfast and it’s so easy to pop one in the toaster, and it always comes out perfect. 

If your toaster has different settings, put the toaster on a gentle setting—like toast or bagel. The pancake will need probably 90 seconds to two minutes in the toaster. Each model will be a bit different so you might have to experiment with a trial pancake. If you make massive pancakes and they won’t fit in the toaster, you can cut them in half or try the oven method below.

My favorite part about using the toaster for reheating pancakes is that they get really crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. It’s almost identical, if not better, than straight off the griddle. 

One note on the toaster method: If your pancakes have any leftover toppings on them or any fillings (like chocolate) I would avoid the toaster method. The toppings can burn onto the coils in your toaster and make a smokey mess. 

Pancakes on a baking sheet

Simply Recipes / Nick Evans

The Best Method for Large Crowds and Large Pancakes: The Oven 

If you are making large pancakes or you are anticipating having to reheat a bunch of pancakes for a crowd, it’s probably better to switch to the oven method. Here’s how I do this at home: I preheat my oven to 350˚F and lay out my pancakes on a baking pan in a single layer. Cover the pancakes with foil and pop them in the oven for about four minutes. The foil will keep them from drying out and the single layer will make sure each pancake is in contact with the hot baking pan. 

This method works really well, but you won’t get quite the same crust as the toaster method. 

A Note on Storing Pancakes

Pancakes are pretty sturdy and can be stored in a variety of ways once they are cooked. The biggest tip for storing pancakes is to let them cool to room temperature before storing them in the fridge. If you store hot pancakes, they will create condensation which will make your pancakes soggy. 

You can either wrap pancakes in foil and just stick them in the fridge or store them in an airtight container. Pancakes keep fine in the fridge for a week. 

If you have a large amount of leftover pancakes, you can freeze them. Just wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and then store them in a freezer-safe bag. They will keep for three months that way. You can thaw them before reheating. If you reheat straight from the freezer, it should work, but you will need to add 30-60 seconds onto your toaster time. 

Pancakes with a fork

Simply Recipes / Nick Evans

Need a Good Pancake Recipe?

If you know how to reheat pancakes well, then you never have to worry about the amount of pancakes you’re making. Just make a bunch! And if you need a good pancake recipe, I’d recommend this simple buttermilk pancake recipe. It’s a classic and you can jazz it up with toppings once it comes off the griddle.