How to Keep Pancakes From Sticking to Stainless Steel Pan?

Last Updated on May 28, 2023 by Lauren Beck

As a breakfast aficionado who has flipped countless pancakes in stainless steel pans, I understand the frustration of pancakes sticking to the pan and falling apart. But fear not! 

In this article, we’ll explore practical tips and techniques to ensure your pancakes slide off the pan effortlessly, allowing you to enjoy perfectly cooked flapjacks every time.

Get ready to master the art of pancake flipping without any sticky situations!

6 Ways to Keep Pancakes From Sticking to Stainless Steel Pan

  1. Preheat the pan properly: Simply let your stainless steel pan heat up over medium heat for 2-3 minutes before adding the pancake batter. This step is crucial as it helps create a nonstick surface, ensuring your pancakes slide off the pan effortlessly when it’s time to flip them.
  2. Use the right amount of fat: Apply a thin layer of cooking fat like butter or oil to the pan. Too much fat can cause the pancakes to become greasy and prone to sticking.
  3. Nonstick cooking spray: Consider using a nonstick cooking spray designed for high-heat cooking. Lightly coat the pan before adding the pancake batter.
  4. Season the pan: Seasoning a stainless steel pan can help create a natural nonstick surface. Heat the pan, add some oil, and spread it evenly across the surface. Let it cool, and wipe off the excess oil.
  5. Opt for a well-seasoned cast iron or nonstick pan: If you consistently struggle with sticking pancakes, using a well-seasoned cast iron or nonstick pan may be a good solution. These pans have a naturally nonstick surface that makes flipping pancakes a breeze.
  6. Adjust the heat: Cooking pancakes over medium heat is generally recommended. High heat can cause the batter to cook too quickly and stick to the pan. Finding the right heat level ensures even cooking and minimizes sticking.

Why Are My Pancakes Sticking to Stainless Steel?

Several factors can contribute to pancakes sticking to a stainless steel pan. These include inadequate preheating, insufficient or excess fat, and cooking at high heat. 

The smooth surface of stainless steel can make it susceptible to food sticking if not properly managed.

Is It Better To Cook Pancakes With Butter Or Oil?

The choice between cooking pancakes with butter or oil is a personal preference.

Butter adds a rich flavor and can enhance the taste of the pancakes, while oil has a higher smoke point and can withstand higher heat. 

Both options can help prevent sticking, so choose the one that suits your taste and cooking preferences.

How To Turn A Stainless Steel Skillet Into A Nonstick Pan?

While stainless steel pans are not naturally nonstick, you can improve their performance with these steps:

  1. Heat the pan: Preheat the stainless steel pan over medium heat for a few minutes.
  2. Add oil: Add a small amount of oil to the pan and spread it evenly across the surface.
  3. Heat and cool: Allow the oil to heat up until it starts to smoke slightly, then remove the pan from the heat and let it cool.
  4. Wipe off excess oil: Once the pan has cooled, use a paper towel to wipe off any excess oil.

Can You Use Cooking Spray On A Stainless Steel Pan?

Cooking Pancake On Stainless Steel Pan

Yes, you can use cooking spray on a stainless steel pan. However, be cautious, as cooking sprays can contain additives that may leave a residue and affect the taste of your food. 

If you choose to use cooking spray, opt for one specifically designed for high-heat cooking and apply it sparingly to avoid buildup.

Should You Oil the Pan Before Pancakes?

Yes, oiling the pan before cooking pancakes is recommended to prevent sticking.

Apply a thin layer of oil or melted butter to the pan, using a brush or paper towel to spread evenly across the surface. This creates a lubricated surface that helps the pancakes release easily.

Should Pancakes Be Cooked on High Heat?

No, pancakes should not be cooked on high heat. High heat can cause the batter to cook too quickly on the outside while remaining raw on the inside, leading to sticking and uneven browning. 

It’s best to cook pancakes over medium heat to ensure even cooking and prevent sticking.

When Should I Flip a Pancake?

Wait until you see bubbles forming on the surface of the pancake, and the edges look set before flipping. 

This usually takes about 2-3 minutes. Gently lift the pancake with a spatula and flip it over in one fluid motion. Cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side until golden brown [1].


In conclusion, preventing pancakes from sticking to a stainless steel pan is a skill worth mastering. You can achieve pancake perfection without any frustrating sticking incidents by preheating the pan properly, using the right amount of fat, adjusting the heat, and considering alternative pan options. 

Experiment with different techniques and find what works best for you. With a little practice and the right approach, you’ll flip flawlessly cooked pancakes that slide off the pan.

So, embrace the joy of pancake making, bid farewell to stick mishaps, and easily enjoy a stack of golden, delectable pancakes. Happy flipping!


Lauren Beck
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