- Why do I need to extend the life of my pancake mix?
- How long does pancake batter last?
- How to store pancake batter
Luckily, you don't have to throw it away. If you've ever wondered how long pancake batter lasts, you've come to the right place.
Today we're going to be telling you the best way to store your pancake batter to maximise its shelf life, depending on what ingredients you've used.
We've even included some extra hacks and helpful tips to help you have the best pancake day yet!
Let's get started...
Why do I need to extend the life of my pancake mix?
First, let's touch on why it can be useful to store extra pancake batter.
If you don't have time to weigh out ingredients and prep your pancake mix in the morning you can easily get ahead of the game and prepare your pancake batter in advance. This is perfect for the morning of pancake day when you're rushing to get out of the house. You'll have a lot less mess to deal with, too. What a great time-saving hack!
For most people, however, this is good to know for those times when you make a little bit too much pancake batter. We know - is there such a thing as too much pancake batter? If you don't feel like eating 12 pancakes in one sitting, you can spread the pancake love out over a couple of days. You'll be doing your tastebuds a favour and curbing food waste all in one go.
If you don't know how to properly store your pancake mix, you could make yourself unwell or, arguably even worse, you could end up with some sorry-looking pancakes! Neither of these outcomes makes for a good pancake day, so that's why we're here to help...
How long does pancake batter last?
Unlike some foods which never go off, fresh pancake mix does expire! The answer to exactly how long it lasts isn't straightforward, though. The main factors that'll determine how long your pancake batter will last are the ingredients and where you store your batter.
How long does pancake batter last at room temperature?
The FDA states that you should use the "two-hour rule" when it comes to leaving refrigerated items out of the fridge at room temperature.
Because pancake batter normally has milk and eggs in it, we'd suggest only keeping it at room temperature for a maximum of two hours. After this, your batter could enter the "danger zone".
Does this apply to pancakes made from UHT or dairy-free milk? You should check the packaging when it comes to using shelf-stable ingredients - most of them will require refrigeration once opened, just like normal milk. Even vegan pancake batter needs to be stored in the fridge.
TOP TIP: Discover these surprising foods that should NOT be kept in the fridge.
How long does pancake batter last in the fridge?
Standard pancake batter (made from flour, milk and eggs) should last for between two to four days when stored in the fridge, depending on the expiry date listed on your milk and eggs.
If your eggs and milk expire before this window, we would suggest using the batter in line with the expiration dates listed on the packaging, going with whichever date falls first.
TOP TIP: Did you know that there are a whole bunch of non-edible things that should be stored in the fridge, too? Check them out now!
Can you freeze pancake batter?
Absolutely! For best results, dispense the pancake batter into a ziplock bag. Make sure to remove as much air as possible and then carefully seal and flatten the bag. The flatter and thinner you make the liquid, the quicker it will thaw when you're ready to use it again.
To thaw, you can place the mixture in a bowl of warm water or, if you don't mind waiting, place the frozen bag into a clean bowl and leave in the fridge to defrost overnight. The best part about having it in a zip lock bag? You can cut off a corner of the bag and use it to pipe your pancakes directly into the pan. Now that's a pretty nifty freezer hack!
How to store pancake batter
We've covered how to store your pancake batter in the freezer (zip lock bags to the rescue!), but what about in your fridge? It's important to store your pancake mix properly to keep it as fresh as possible. You should always transfer your pancake batter to an airtight container to keep it fresh. If you don't have one, you can cover a bowl with a piece of clingfilm - just make sure that you get a good seal on the bowl.
If you don't seal your mixture correctly, not only will you have a hard time keeping it fresh, but the bacteria in your fridge (from things like meat and vegetables) will also be able to spread to your pancake batter. Don't forget to also label your pancake mix with the date it was made and its expiry date. An organised fridge is essential!
If you're storing pancake batter at room temperature for a prolonged period of time, you should also keep it in an air-tight container. We'd also recommend placing the container in a bowl of ice to try to keep it as cool as possible.
TOP TIP: Save your squeezy ketchup bottle and use it to store pancake mix. It'll keep it nice and fresh and make it easy to dispense into your pan. What a great baking hack!
Why does pancake batter need to rest?
When making pancakes, you might have noticed that your recipe tells you to leave your pancake batter to rest. Why is that? By letting your mix rest, the gluten will relax and you'll end up with evenly textured, fluffy pancakes.
You might then be wondering what happens if you don't leave your pancake batter to rest? If you don't leave your mix to rest, don't worry. Your pancakes will still be edible. You only really need to rest your batter if you've mixed it a lot while trying to get the lumps out of the mixture. This can activate the gluten in the flour and makes for much tougher pancakes.
To find out about even more common cooking mistakes, check out our article.
Will my pancake batter be as good the next day?
Whilst it's perfectly safe to store and use pancake batter (if done correctly), you might find that the results are not as fluffy as on the day the mix is made. The baking soda in your pancake batter will lose about half of its power. The other half will be activated by the heat from the pan.
How much pancake batter do you normally get through? We rarely have any to store! Get in touch using the comment section below.