The Japanese quite literally take pancakes to new heights with this recipe. Popularly known as soufflé pancakes, these soft, cottony clouds of deliciousness melt in your mouth and make getting out of bed completely worth it.

Fluffy Japanese pancakes


  • Cooking essentials
  • 2 tbsp oil (for greasing the pan)
  • 60 ml water (for steaming)
  • large non-stick frying pan with lid
  • hand whisk
  • ice cream scoop or measuring cup
  • Egg Yolks
  • 6 (18 g) egg yolks
  • 6 (12 g) tbsp sugar
  • 0.5 tsp vanilla essence
  • 30 g milk
  • 30 g cake flour
  • 1.5 tsp (1 g) baking powder
  • Egg Whites
  • 12 (60 g) large egg whites
  • 9 tbsp (18 g) sugar
  • 0.75 tsp (0.4 g) cream of tartar



Put the bowl of egg whites in the freezer for 15 minutes


Whisk the egg yolk with vanilla essence and one tablespoon of sugar until frothy and pale. Mix the milk in batches. Sift the baking powder and flour over the yolk mixture and whisk well to ensure everything is incorporated.


Take the half-frozen egg whites and whip with the cream of tartar until pale and frothy. Add in the sugar in batches at a time until the mixture becomes a glossy meringue with medium/firm peaks (be careful not to over-whip).


Preheat the frying pan to 150ºC over the lowest heat. Brush with cooking oil and lightly remove any visible oil with a paper towel. Keep the pan on low heat in the meantime


Take a third of the whipped egg whites and whisk it into the bowl with the yolks until completely incorporated. Add half of the remaining egg whites and whisk into the yolk batter, being careful not to break the air bubbles. Transfer the egg yolk mixture to the remaining egg whites, whisk and then gently fold the mixture together with the hand whisk


Using an ice cream scoop or measuring cup, scoop two or three mounds of batter onto the pan, scoop the batter onto the pan. Add a tablespoon of water in the empty spaces, cover and cook for four to five minutes on the lowest setting.


Remove the lid and add some more batter on top of each mound. If the water evaporated, add a bit more. Cover and continue to cook for four to five more minutes.


If you still have any batter left, pile it on top of the pancakes and then very gently lift each mound and flip with a ‘rolling over’ motion. Cover and cook for five to six minutes. The pancakes will grow even taller and fluffier when they’re done.


Once they are nicely browned and cooked through, gently remove and serve on a plate with powdered sugar, and toppings of your choice. Enjoy immediately!

Written by Ashleigh Nefdt for Woman&Home