Cinnamon Bun Christmas Pancake Recipe

Picture this: It's Christmas morning and you wake up hungry and ready to eat something festive, delicious, and special. Brunch restaurants are closed and you're not exactly a baking pro. Luckily, this cinnamon bun Christmas pancake recipe is oh-so-tasty and far easier than whipping up a batch of (also delicious) yeasted cinnamon rolls. By separating a bit of the batter and adding in molasses and cinnamon, you can give these pancakes a boost of holiday spirit without too much extra effort. The cinnamon pancake batter is swirled into the plain batter while the pancakes cook on the griddle. Top it all off with some powdered sugar and maple syrup to complete this magical Christmas breakfast.

Recipe developer Taylor Murray brings us this breakfast dish that's near and dear to her heart. "My mom would make something similar to these every Christmas. They go perfectly with a few pieces of crispy bacon and some hot coffee," says Murray.

Gather the ingredients for cinnamon bun Christmas pancakes

The base recipe for these pancakes is very simple and easy. The wet ingredients are composed of a combination of eggs, melted butter, milk, and vanilla extract. If you want to use non-dairy milk instead of regular milk, you can substitute it with no other changes (almond and oat milk are good choices). The dry ingredients are all-purpose white flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt. These pancakes have a special cinnamon swirl, which is made of ground cinnamon and molasses added to the base recipe. The molasses isn't strictly necessary but adds a nice color to the cinnamon swirl and deepens the flavor. 

Top the pancakes with a dusting of powdered sugar (to mimic cinnamon bun icing) and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Step 1: Gather the wet ingredients

Add the milk, butter, eggs, and vanilla to a medium-sized bowl.

Step 2: Whisk the wet ingredients

Whisk to combine.

Step 3: Gather the dry ingredients

Add the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda to a large bowl.

Step 4: Combine the dry ingredients

Stir to combine.

Step 5: Combine the wet and dry ingredients

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry.

Step 6: Add flavorings to part of the batter

Remove ¾ cup of batter to a separate bowl and whisk in cinnamon and molasses.

Step 7: Transfer cinnamon batter to a pastry bag

Transfer the cinnamon batter to a squeeze bottle or a pastry bag.

Step 8: Prepare a griddle

Prepare a nonstick pan or griddle for cooking pancakes, and apply nonstick spray if needed.

Step 9: Add pancakes to the griddle

Scoop 3 ounces (about ⅓ cup) of pancake batter per pancake onto the griddle.

Step 10: Swirl in the cinnamon batter

Cut the tip off the pastry bag and pipe a swirl of cinnamon batter onto each pancake.

Step 11: Cook and flip the pancakes

Let the pancake cook until bubbles appear on the surface, then flip.

Step 12: Cook the pancakes through

Continue to cook pancakes until cooked through, about 5 minutes total.

Step 13: Repeat with the remaining batter

Remove from pan or griddle and set aside, repeating with remaining batter.

Step 14: Serve the pancakes

Serve the pancakes with a sprinkle of powdered sugar and drizzle with maple syrup, if using.

Can I make these cinnamon swirl pancakes with a different type of flour, like gluten-free or whole wheat?

These cinnamon-swirl pancakes are versatile and can accommodate different types of flour as necessary to suit dietary needs or preferences. When using gluten-free flour, opt for a 1:1 gluten-free flour substitution to ensure the texture remains as close to that of the original recipe as possible. Varieties of gluten-free flour can be found at most grocery stores or health food stores and are designed to ensure the recipe bakes in the same way as it would if you used regular all-purpose flour.

Whole wheat flour also makes a great substitute and adds a nuttier, heartier flavor and additional fiber. However, it's important to note that whole wheat flour absorbs more liquid, so you might need to add a little extra milk to achieve the desired batter consistency. Keep in mind that the substitution may slightly alter the texture and taste of the pancakes, but they will still be delicious!

How can I store and reheat leftover pancakes to maintain their texture and flavor?

Storing and reheating leftover cinnamon swirl pancakes is easy and can be a great way to save time and avoid the hassle of cooking on Christmas morning so you can focus on the festivities. To store, let the pancakes cool completely to room temperature. Then place them in an airtight container with sheets of parchment paper between each pancake to prevent them from sticking together. You can refrigerate them for up to 3 days or freeze them for up to 2 months. 

When you're ready to enjoy them again, reheat the pancakes for about 5 to 10 minutes in a toaster oven or a regular oven preheated to 350 F. This method helps to preserve their texture and flavor. Avoid using a microwave, as it can make the pancakes rubbery. Reheating them properly will ensure they remain just as enjoyable as when they were first made.

Cinnamon Bun Christmas Pancake Recipe
5 from 22 ratings
Cinnamon bun Christmas pancakes are an easy way to add festivity to Christmas morning: all of the sweet spiciness of Cinnamon buns with a fraction of the work.
Prep Time
15
minutes
Cook Time
15
minutes
Servings
8
Pancakes
Plate of cinnamon bun pancakes
Total time: 30 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 8 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons molasses
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • Maple syrup, for serving
Directions
  1. Add the milk, butter, eggs, and vanilla to a medium-sized bowl.
  2. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda to a large bowl.
  4. Stir to combine.
  5. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry.
  6. Remove ¾ cup of batter to a separate bowl and whisk in cinnamon and molasses.
  7. Transfer the cinnamon batter to a squeeze bottle or a pastry bag.
  8. Prepare a nonstick pan or griddle for cooking pancakes, and apply nonstick spray if needed.
  9. Scoop 3 ounces (about ⅓ cup) of pancake batter per pancake onto the griddle.
  10. Cut the tip off the pastry bag and pipe a swirl of cinnamon batter onto each pancake.
  11. Let the pancake cook until bubbles appear on the surface, then flip.
  12. Continue to cook pancakes until cooked through, about 5 minutes total.
  13. Remove from pan or griddle and set aside, repeating with remaining batter.
  14. Serve the pancakes with a sprinkle of powdered sugar and drizzle with maple syrup, if using.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 336
Total Fat 14.3 g
Saturated Fat 8.4 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 75.1 mg
Total Carbohydrates 45.7 g
Dietary Fiber 1.2 g
Total Sugars 20.6 g
Sodium 294.7 mg
Protein 6.2 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Rate this recipe