The Truth About What's Really In Pancake Mix

Pancakes are a classic item on breakfast menus, and if you've ever enjoyed a short — or a tall — stack all to yourself, then you likely know why. A pancake is as fluffy as it is smooth and as savory as it is comforting. Americans love them so much that there is a whole day dedicated to their existence. According to National Day, National Pancake Day occurs twice a year. You can of course whip up a batch from scratch on your own, but many of us head to our pantries for pre-mixed pancakes instead.

The first flapjack mix dates way back to 1889 and was created by the Pearl Milling Company, shares The Nibble. These days, you've got gluten-free, added flavors, thin, and extra fluffy varieties of pancake mix. But before you overwhelm yourself with selection in the pancake mix aisle, have you ever taken a step back and wondered what is really in the box?

Pancake mix has some questionable ingredients

The first few ingredients likely don't come as a surprise. My Recipes lists enriched flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder as common ingredients found in the popular Pearl Milling Company just-add-water pancake mix, but this is not where the ingredient list ends. Many just-add-water varieties also contain wheat gluten, a small amount of palm oil, a hefty amount of additives and preservatives, and a form of powdered fat. All of these extras, plus bleaching agents and extra sweeteners.

If boxed pancake mix is about as much as you can handle before your coffee in the morning, but you want the healthiest option, Clean Plate lists many of their healthy favorites to be boxed pancake brands that have few ingredients and minimal sugar.

There is nothing wrong with taking shortcuts to get to enjoy your short stack quicker. That being said, if you want the healthiest pancake possible, making your own from scratch will give you full control over the ingredients that make up your fluffy flapjacks. No powdered fat or bleaching agents are necessary.