The theme of "red velvet" is hard to ignore in baking. Almost any cake, dessert, or snack item has this variation, and it seems breakfast items, including those irresistible fluffy pancakes we enjoy, are no exception. Red velvet pancakes are something to behold, transforming breakfast into a vibrant display. Like the cake that inspired them, they are rich in chocolate flavor and stand out with their unusual red color.

Simply red, simply good

Red velvet pancakes are as simple as regular pancakes in the kitchen. Like red velvet cake, the batter contains small amounts of cocoa and is tinted with red food coloring or gel.

This recipe, however, takes things further with buttermilk. While regular milk will do, the buttermilk really brings out the color thanks to its acidic content. Hence, why it's preferred in most recipes with "red velvet" in the title. But this wouldn't be a red velvet creation without some cream cheese icing. Fortunately, a simple icing recipe is included, and it's pretty much like the one used for the cake.

The recipe

Pancakes Ingredients:

  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil or unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 or more drops red food gel
  • 1 cup self-raising flour
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • Vegetable oil as needed

Icing ingredients:

  • 8 tbsp cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp milk


Pancakes directions:

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, and vegetable oil or melted butter until combined. Whisk in the red food gel by the drop until the mixture reaches the desired tint.
  2. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and sugar to the mixture. Whisk them together until combined.
  3. Place a skillet or griddle over medium heat and coat the inside with vegetable oil. Use a measuring cup or a baster to measure out a batter portion at 1/4 cup each. Transfer each measured portion of the batter to the hot surface in two or more tablespoons. Cook them individually or at least make sure not to crowd the pan.
  4. Cook both sides of the pancakes for 3 minutes each. When bubbles begin to appear on their surfaces, it's time to flip them. Make sure the other side is golden brown first before flipping by slightly lifting it upward with the spatula.
  5. Serve with syrup or powdered sugar.

Icing Directions:

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and fluffy. Add the milk one tablespoon at a time to reach the desired consistency.
  2. Spread the icing across the surfaces of the pancakes and serve.

Serves: 4

If you enjoyed that recipe, you could check out another type called pumpkin pancakes here. Or If you're more interested in other red velvet style recipes, check out this one for red velvet molten cake.