~ Pancakes are even more fun with these easy tips for making perfect numbers, letters and shapes! So great for birthdays, back-to-school and holidays! Or, make any day special with your kids’ initials or names! Guaranteed … they’ll love it! ~
So, did you read our post on The Secrets to Perfect Whole Wheat Pancakes?
And did you accept our challenge … our challenge of making perfect pancakes even perfecter (you know what we mean!)?
If so, then you’ve most definitely come to the right place!
This is where pancake nirvana happens. Where we take our deliciously light and fluffy, fully kid-approved, yet amazingly 100% whole grain pancakes … and we make them even better!
We make them … SHAPES!
And numbers, and letters …
It’s so easy!
And so perfect for special birthday mornings, or back-to-school, or helping kiddos have fun learning their numbers, or even for holidays like Valentine’s Day!
Shelley’s been making pancakes shaped like numbers for her kiddos’ birthdays for years.
And every year Gretchen’s sweet friend, Steph, posts pics of her gorgeous, smiling kids at breakfast on the first day of school … always holding up a plate with a number-shaped pancake on it, showing what grade they’re starting! Seriously, is that not the most adorable idea??
So we got to thinking about an easy way to make shapes …
Shelley (who typically just drizzles her pancake shapes with a spoon … with limited success) did a major face-palm when Gretchen suggested this (much easier!!!) idea to her. We don’t want you to hurt yourself or anything, but you may need to do a face-palm, too. Sorry. But this totally rocks, and your kids are gonna think it’s seriously the most fun idea!
No more drizzling with a spoon (which tends to produce bloppy shapes) or trying to use snipped-corner plastic bags or Wilton decorating bags (messssss-y!).
We’re recycling today! An old (but cleaned out and washed!) ketchup bottle is the ideal solution!
Years ago, Gretchen saw an idea on Pinterest to make perfectly round pancakes using a ketchup bottle. Brilliant! Works like a charm.
But we don’t always want perfectly round pancakes. Sometimes (like for back-to-school or birthdays!) we want perfectly shaped!
Turns out that ’ol ketchup bottle trick is the secret to making pancake shapes, too! Simply pour the batter into the bottle, place the lid back on, and make some super-fun pancakes!
Here’s what you need to know:
The easiest way to get the pancake batter into the squeeze bottle is to mix up your batter in a bowl that has a pouring spout. That handy spout makes the transfer process simple and practically mess-free. Just don’t pour too fast, or you’ll sort of loose that mess-free benefit!
You don’t have to use a ketchup bottle specifically – try any similar “squeezy” bottles that have larger caps (for loading up the batter) but small squeezy openings (for making thin, neat lines of batter). If you happen to be a food photographer (ummmm … you should see our shelves full of props!) or a picnic caterer with random empty condiment bottles in your basement (like the ones pictured above), those work well, too. Just snip the tops a little, if needed, to enlarge the hole.
For bigger pancakes, it’s sometimes easier to use two spatulas to flip them, since the shapes tend to be a little delicate and floppy (and a giant pancake “3” on your third birthday just isn’t as cool if it’s broken apart into pieces!).
One other important tip … remember that some letters and numbers don’t look the same backwards and forwards. So, you’ll either need to serve the pancakes flipped onto the second side you cooked (the first side cooked is typically the “serving” side that faces up) … or use your very best spatial relations skills to squeeze the letters and numbers onto the griddle backwards (so they’re forwards once flipped and served).
And there you have it!
Hearts, stars, numbers, letters, entire kids’ names … it’s kinda like art class meets cooking school! Have fun, friends! We can’t wait to hear about the pancake adventures you and your own kiddos have!