Fluffy with crisped edges and loaded with fruit, this Blueberry and Banana Pancakes recipe is a perfect breakfast to try out on your next camping trip.
Who doesn’t love pancakes? One of our fondest camping memories is having a big pancake breakfast. But while it might seem simple, whipping up a big batch of pancakes can go wrong in a surprising number of unexpected ways.
Dense, unevenly cooked, or scorched onto the pan—we’ve seen (and done) it all.
But with our recipe and a few of the tips and tricks we outline below, we promise you can make soft, fluffy camp pancakes with perfectly crispy edges.
How to make the batter
We kept our batter recipe pretty simple and refrained from using single-use ingredients (like buttermilk).
At home, you can mix all the dry ingredients together in a resealable container. This gets all the measuring out of the way and eliminates the need to bring a bunch of pantry items with you to the campsite.
At camp, whisk the milk and egg together, then fold in your dry ingredients in a large bowl.
As always with pancakes, you will want to refrain from over mixing. The way we approach this is to lightly mix until there are still a decent amount of clumps. Then we let the batter rest for about 30 minutes. The clumps will absorb the liquid and start to break down naturally.
Pancake making tips & tricks
Use a non-stick skillet: A well-seasoned cast iron skillet can work, but a non-stick skillet is an ideal choice for pancakes. The conductive metal (usually hard-anodized aluminum) offers better heat distribution, counteracting the hot spots caused by undersized camp stove burners.
Preheat the skillet: The reason why the first pancake never turns out right is usually that the skillet hasn’t fully come up to temperature.
Use medium-low heat: Too low and the process takes forever. Too high and the pancakes will be undercooked in the middle. So get yourself dialed into a nice medium-low temperature.
Use coconut oil instead of butter: Our secret to crispy edges comes from using coconut oil. While we love the taste of butter, we find it has too low of a smoke point and just ends up burning the whole time. Coconut oil has a higher smoke point and adds a nice, subtle flavor.
The key is to use plenty of it! We aim for around one tablespoon per batch of pancakes. You want to be able to roll the oil around in the pan so it coats the edges of your batter.
Add the fruit to the pancake, not the batter: If you dump all of your banana slices and blueberries into the bowl of batter, they will just sink to the bottom. To get an even distribution of fruit, we opt to add the fruit to each pancake.
We place the banana slices down first on the skillet, pour our batter on top, then sprinkle the blueberries on top. This produces a slight caramelization on the banana and gives the blueberries a wonderfully saucy jam-like quality.
Non-Skillet Skillet / Griddle: As mentioned above, you can use a well-seasoned cast iron skillet but we highly recommend using a non-stick skillet—particularly if you are cooking over a propane camp stove. We really love our GSI Bugaboo skillet, which has held up really well over the years. They also make a straight-sided square fry pan (featured in these photos) that offers a little more cooking surface.
Silicone Spatula: While you can use a wood, plastic, or silicone spatula with a non-stick skillet (so as not to scratch it), we prefer one made out of silicone. The extra flex can be helpful to sneak a peek at how your pancakes are doing.
Camp Stove: A camp stove that has good temperature control and blocks the wind will really help you dial in your pancake making. Here’s a guide to the best camping stoves to help you pick one out.
How to keep pancakes warm while camping
At home, it’s easy to transfer the first couple of batches of pancakes to the oven to keep them warm, but what to do at a campsite?
We’ve experimented with a couple of different ways to keep pancakes warm and here are the two that we’ve used in the past.
Note: These methods will reduce the crispiness of your pancakes, due to the trapped moisture. But it will keep them warm!
Cast Iron Skillet with Lid (Best Option): If you have also brought a cast iron skillet, it can work wonders as a holding zone. We preheat the cast iron skillet on the stove and then set it off to the side with the lid on. The cast iron really retains the heat for a long time, so we can transfer finished pancakes into the skillet to keep them warm.
Large Plate with Foil Top: If you don’t have any extra skillet with you, you can load all the pancakes up on a large plate and cover them with aluminum foil.
Blueberry Banana Pancakes
FOR THE PANCAKES
- 1 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 banana, sliced into ¼-inch pieces
- ½ cup blueberries
- coconut oil
- Maple syrup, jam, butter or honey
- At home, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a small sealed container.
- In camp, whisk the egg and milk together in a bowl with a fork. Add the dry ingredients and stir to combine, taking care not to over mix (some small lumps in the batter are okay).
- Heat a non-stick skillet on your camp stove over medium low heat. Add one tablespoon of coconut oil to the skillet and swirl to coat the pan. Place a few banana slices in the pan, then cover with ¼ cup of batter per pancake and sprinkle some blueberries onto each pancake. Cook for a few minutes until the tops begin to bubble and the sides are set, two or three minutes. Using a spatula, flip the pancakes and cook the other side until golden.
- Repeat with the rest of the batter, adding additional coconut oil into the pan as needed.
- To serve, stack the pancakes and top with maple syrup, jam, butter, or honey.