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Student Recipes

Cheap and easy pancake recipe

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Buying a ready-made pancake mix might seem like the easy option, but how about trying to make pancakes from scratch? It's fun, easy and much more rewarding.

stack of pancakes with fruit toppings

Pancake Day only comes around once a year, so make the most of the chance to eat as many as is humanly possible.

And, contrary to what you might think, making pancakes from scratch is actually really easy. After a lot of research (and extremely vital taste testing), we've come up with a flippin' good and cheap pancake recipe to impress.

Many of the ingredients used to make pancakes may already be in your kitchen cupboard. And even if they're not, you can pick them up at the supermarket for almost nothing – especially if you chip in with your friends!

For the best results, we'd recommend getting your hands on a decent non-stick pan. It's one of the best kitchen gadgets for students and we're sure you'll notice the difference straight away.

How to make pancakes from scratch


Makes: 5–7 pancakes | Costs: £0.93* (£0.13 – £0.19 per pancake) (not including fillings) | Time taken: 15–20 mins

  • 300g plain flour (£0.14)
  • Two eggs (£0.30)
  • 200ml milk mixed with 75ml water (£0.13)
  • 50g butter (£0.36)
  • Optional fillings (Nutella, fresh fruit, lemon juice, sugar, etc.)
Pancakes make a great weekend breakfast treat – which is why we've included them in our student meal plan.


  1. Start by measuring out the flour. Then, sift it through a sieve into a mixing bowl.
  2. Make a little pit in the middle of the flour and break the eggs into it.
  3. Use a whisk or fork to whip the mixture together in the bowl. You might get a few lumps but, if you carry on mixing, it'll smooth out eventually.
  4. Slowly mix in the water and milk mixture. There will be lumps at the beginning but, if you keep mixing, these should go away. Top tip: One Save the Student user (thanks, Anka!) swears by using sparkling water here instead of tap water, just to make your pancakes extra fluffy.
  5. Heat the butter in a pan. Once it's melted, add about two tablespoons of it to the batter and stir. Now you're ready to start cooking!
  6. Put your pan on a medium heat and pour some of the batter in. After about a minute you'll need to flip the pancake. If your pan is very oily, it may be safer to use a spatula to flip your pancake. The first pancake usually goes wrong, so don't worry if it's a bit messy.
  7. Once your pancake is cooked to your liking, take it out and repeat step 6 until you're all out of batter. Top tip: If any of the pancakes start sticking, you may need to add more butter or oil to the pan.
  8. Time for the filling! This comes down to personal preference, but most people tend to go for chocolate, honey, lemon, sugar or some kind of fruit. Whatever you fancy, really!

When we say that you can add whatever you like, we're not kidding.

Here at Save the Student, we cover all the bases.

We have Owen, who's a fan of the simple but effective lemon and sugar approach (the cheaper option, too), while Tom loves a bit of Nutella and banana. And one of our alumni, Bronni, says that "galettes with Gruyère cheese and ham" are her fave. Seriously.

Making pancakes from scratch with your housemates should be on your university bucket list.

* Prices were correct at the time of writing (using prices as a guideline).

Jake Butler

WRITTEN BY Jake Butler

Jake joined Save the Student in 2010 and is the COO. As an expert across student finance, Jake has appeared on The BBC, The Guardian, Which?, ITV, Channel 5 and many other outlets. He particularly enjoys sharing tips on saving money and making extra money with opportunities like paid surveys and part-time jobs.
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