When my children are grown, I hope they remember our slow, sticky, sweet Saturday mornings. Pancakes are the name of the game in our house. As today is National Pancake Day, I’m excited to share with you some of my family’s favorite places to get hotcakes around Charleston. Because pancakes are good on any ol’ Tuesday, too, we think they are equally as appropriate for dinner as they are for brunch.
Favorite Places for Pancakes Around Charleston
This classic diner serves up pancakes the size of my toddler’s head. You can add blueberries, chocolate chips (always a good idea), or pecans, and the restaurant usually has a daily special with unique, fun flavors. Butterfinger pancakes, anyone? An excuse to eat dessert for breakfast (or lunch or dinner!).
This is a friendly, sweet café serving breakfast and lunch. They use fresh ingredients and have a bunch of interesting pancake flavor combinations, including cinnamon apple, granola maple, and banana pecan. Their kids’ menu features ‘fun shaped’ pancakes with the option to add fresh fruit and other toppings. It’s always chocolate chips with my crew.
This café serves breakfast all day and reminds me of the small-town cafes I grew up on in Northern Minnesota. This is the place to get a classic, simple short stack. Paul Bunyan would not disagree.
I think this restaurant has the best view in town, and the locals know it has some of the best food. Pancakes are a staple on their diverse breakfast menu with the option to add fresh fruit, pecans, or chocolate chips. You may have a wait, but it’s worth it — and your kiddos will enjoy looking at the big, fancy boats in the harbor.
Millers All Day (also has a James Island location)
This Southern breakfast spot featuring locally sourced and fresh ingredients is one of my favorite places for brunch. Their short stack of cornmeal pancakes is perfectly accompanied by dark, rich hickory syrup. Get the banana bread with chocolate-hazelnut cream cheese for the table while you’re waiting. You won’t regret it.
Ruby Sunshine (also has a West Ashley location)
This New Orleans-based restaurant brings the decadent boldness of Louisiana to its take on pancakes. Think White Chocolate Bread Pudding Pancakes, Berry Chantilly Pancakes, and Bacon Praline Pancakes.
This place takes me back to my grad school days in Atlanta when weekend mornings were made for brunch and sleeping in late. This Atlanta-based restaurant serves up a fluffy short stack but also has ‘taco pancakes’ with egg, cheese, and sausage or bacon for those who can’t decide between sweet or savory.
Dining out is fun (unless you have two children under the age of two — I’m raising my hand here), but making pancakes at home has become a special tradition for my family. I truly believe there is a strong correlation between the messiness of the kitchen and the sweetness of the memory. I taught my oldest daughter to cook through our Saturday morning tradition of making pancakes. Below is a link to our no-fail, go-to, favorite recipe from the New York Times. They are called “Perfect Buttermilk Pancakes” for a reason.
We are syrup snobs in our house. My husband didn’t even like pancakes until he had them with pure maple syrup as an adult. I grew up with the good stuff. As a child, my family owned maple woods and in early spring my uncle would harvest maple syrup. I have vivid memories of throwing boiled maple sap in the snow and witnessing the magic of it hardening into candies. If you haven’t had pure maple syrup on your pancakes, you’re missing out on a wonderful treat. The investment in the upgrade is worth it. There’s not much sweeter than hot pancakes topped with freshly tapped, warm syrup — except for perhaps the conversation and time spent with your family on a lazy Saturday morning.
We’ll be eating pancakes tonight. How about you?