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Q&A

How to avoid air bubbles forming when baking a pancake in the oven?

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I like to bake a pancake in the oven, instead of in a frying pan atop the stove. The basic recipe is the same (flour, milk, eggs, butter, salt; mix, pour into a roasting pan, bake in the oven at medium heat) but since one uses all of the batter at once, it ends up being thicker.

However, it seems that every single time I do it, after about half the time in the oven or maybe ten minutes, rather large air bubbles start to form as the batter begins to set. At that point I usually reach in with a knife to pop them, but I'd like to be able to avoid that.

What can I do to reduce the chance of those air bubbles forming in the first place?

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Two techniques from baking cakes might help with your baked pancakes:

  1. After you pour the batter into the pan, let it sit for five minutes before putting in the oven. This helps the batter to settle. I've seen this suggestion when mixing pancake batter for pan-frying, too -- mix the batter, let it sit, and then cook the pancakes.

  2. Before putting the pan in the oven, pick it up and drop it onto your counter from a height of a couple inches. (This assumes a metal pan, not glass.) Repeat a few times. This pushes bubbles that are forming immediately up and out.

I haven't baked pancakes; I've done #1 for pan-cooked pancakes and #2 for cakes and cornbread, so I'm sort of combining approaches here.

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