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When the weekend rolls around and you're ready for lazy mornings filled with pancakes, you don't want to make a grocery store run for the right type of pancake mix if you don't have it on hand. If you do have waffle mix, however, you can turn waffle batter into pancakes. With a few tips and suggestions, using waffle mix for pancakes is no problem. Don't forget to slice fruit for a side or topping for this warm and fluffy breakfast feast.

Difference Between Pancakes and Waffles

While the difference between pancakes and waffles is largely in their texture because of how you cook the batter, a couple of other fundamental differences exist between the two breakfast favorites as well. Pancakes are usually lighter in color and have a cake-like texture. The rounds are soft and flexible with an almost spongy bounce. Waffles, on the other hand, have a crisp, golden-brown exterior and are light and airy inside. Waffles are cooked between two oil-covered metal plates rather than on a stovetop or griddle.

Beyond appearance and texture, waffle batter typically contains more sugar than pancake batter to help it caramelize when frying, which ensures a crisp and golden exterior. Waffle batter also includes a slightly higher concentration of fat, which also helps the exterior get crispy.

Using Waffle Mix for Pancakes

With a few slight adjustments, waffle mix can be used to make pancakes. If you're using a Krusteaz waffle recipe, add less oil to the recipe and more water. This will help dilute the amount of fat in the batter, which allows the pancakes to cook without getting too much color or becoming overly crisp. Minimally grease the pan or griddle to avoid the batter absorbing the additional fat. Try spraying the surface with non-stick baking spray. Avoid adding additional sugar to the waffle mix when making pancakes with waffle batter.

Just as you're trying to balance the waffle mix for pancakes by reducing the amount of sugar and fat in the batter, you can also "doctor up" a pancake mix to make waffles. Simply add additional canola oil or melted butter and more granulated white sugar to the batter, mixing thoroughly to combine. For every cup of waffle mix, add half a stick of melted butter or 1/4 cup of canola oil and 2 tablespoons of sugar.

Making an All-Purpose Batter

Though using a store-bought pre-made waffle and pancake mix is easiest, you also can make an all-purpose batter using pantry staples on hand when a grocery run isn't possible. Making a homemade pancake and waffle mix gives you the opportunity to avoid preservatives and allergy-sensitive ingredients and allows for some customization.

To prepare enough mix for four batches of pancakes or waffles, combine 1 cup powdered sugar, 6 cups of flour of your choice (all-purpose is best, but whole wheat or gluten-free options also work well), 2 cups of cornstarch, and 5 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons of baking powder. For an exceptionally smooth batter, place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well-combined. Sift the mixture; then store in a self-sealing glass or plastic container.

To make pancakes, simply combine 2 1/4 cups of mix with two eggs, 1 1/2 cups of the milk of your choice, half a stick of melted butter and a dash of vanilla extract. Watch for the pancakes to set and bubble while on the heat, and flip. Serve warm with all your favorite toppings.

About the Author

Molly Harris

Molly is a freelance journalist and social media consultant. In addition to Leaf.tv, Molly has written for Teen Vogue and Paste magazine. She is the former assistant editor of the Design and Style section of Paste magazine. View her work at www.mmollyharris.com.