Rich buttermilk pancakes made with ricotta cheese and a hint of lemon zest. Inspired by the Lemon Ricotta pancakes available for brunch from The Cheesecake Factory.
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Why You’ll Love This Lemon Pancake Recipe
There’s something about ricotta cheese that makes it the perfect addition to pancakes. The light, fluffy texture of the pancakes pairs perfectly with the creamy, rich ricotta, and a hint of lemon zest adds a bright note that livens up the flavor. And they are made with ingredients that are pantry staples.
This recipe is inspired by the Lemon Ricotta pancakes available for brunch from The Cheesecake Factory, and it’s sure to become a favorite at your house on weekend mornings or a special occasion!
More Cheesecake Factory Recipes:
Why Add Ricotta Cheese To Lemon Pancakes?
Ricotta cheese is a fresh cheese made from milk and whey. It has a creamy, slightly grainy texture and a mild flavor. Ricotta is often used in lasagna and other Italian dishes, but it’s also great in pancakes.
The ricotta adds moisture to the pancakes, making them tender and fluffy. The cheese also adds protein and fat, which help to make the pancakes more filling.
Helpful Kitchen Tools
- Large Bowl
- Electric Griddle
- Non-Stick Skillet
- Rubber Spatula
Ingredients for Lemon Pancakes
*Ingredient amounts are located in the recipe card at the end of this post.
All-Purpose Flour: This is the best flour to use for these lemon pancakes. If you don’t have all-purpose flour, you can also use whole wheat flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour.
Baking Powder: Baking powder acts as leavening agents to help the pancakes to rise and gives them a little bit of a boost.
Salt: Salt is important in any recipe, but it’s especially important in this one because it helps to balance the sweetness of the pancakes.
Buttermilk: Buttermilk is a key ingredient in these pancakes. It adds flavor and moisture, and it helps to tenderize the flour. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can also use milk or yogurt.
Eggs: Eggs are another key ingredient in these pancakes. They add structure and help to bind the ingredients together.
Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract adds flavor to these pancakes. You can also use almond extract or other flavors if you prefer.
Vegetable Oil: Vegetable oil helps to keep the pancakes from sticking to the pan and makes them nice and crispy.
Ricotta Cheese: Ricotta cheese is the star ingredient in these pancakes. It’s important to use whole milk ricotta for the best results.
Sugar: Sugar is added to the batter to sweeten the pancakes. You can use more or less sugar, depending on your preference.
Lemon Zest: Lemon zest (lemon peel) adds flavor and a bright note to these pancakes. If you don’t have lemon zest, you can also use orange zest or another citrus zest.
How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
 Whisk together the Buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla extract in a separate medium bowl.
 Add the ricotta cheese, sugar, and lemon zest and mix to combine.
 Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix together.
 Heat a griddle or a non-stick pan to medium heat between 325 degrees and 350 degrees and grease with nonstick cooking spray or melted butter. Scoop approximately 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake onto the griddle.
 When bubbles begin to appear on the pancakes, flip them over and cook on the other side for 3-4 minutes until they are golden brown.
 Remove the pancakes from the griddle and enjoy with your favorite toppings!
Toppings for Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
- Fresh Raspberry Syrup
- Sweet Cream Cheese Syrup
- Maple Syrup
- Fresh Fruit
- Whipped Cream
- Fresh Berries
- Lemon Curd
- Blueberry Sauce
How to Keep Lemon Pancakes Warm
If you’re making fluffy pancakes for a crowd, you may need to keep them warm until they’re all ready to serve. Here are a few ways to do that:
Or, you can keep the pancakes warm on a plate covered with a clean towel. Place the plate in a microwave and heat on low power for 15-30 seconds at a time, just until the pancakes are warm.
How to Reheat Pancakes
If you have leftover pancakes, you can reheat them in the microwave or in the oven.
To reheat in the microwave, place the pancakes on a plate and cover with a damp paper towel. Microwave on high power for 15-30 seconds, just until heated through.
These pancakes freeze well, so feel free to make a double batch and save some for later.
To freeze the pancakes, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze for 2-3 hours. Once they’re frozen, transfer the pancakes to a freezer-safe bag or container and store for up to 3 months.
How to Store Leftover Pancakes
The best way to store these pancakes is in an airtight container or ziplock bag kept in the refrigerator.
How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pancakes With Pancake Mix
If you’re short on time, you can also use pancake mix to make these pancakes. Just follow the directions on the box and stir in the ricotta cheese, lemon zest, and sugar. Then cook the pancakes according to the package directions. Also check out my recipe for Pancake Mix Waffles here!
How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pancakes Gluten-Free
To make these pancakes gluten-free, use a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend in place of the regular flour.
What to Serve with Lemon Pancakes
Frequently Asked Questions
What do lemon ricotta pancakes taste like?
These pancakes are light and fluffy, with a hint of lemon flavor. The ricotta cheese makes them extra rich and creamy.
Can I make these pancakes ahead of time?
Yes! These pancakes freeze well, so feel free to make a double batch and save some for later. See the Freezing instructions above.
Can you taste ricotta in pancakes?
The ricotta cheese does not add flavor to the pancakes. You can not taste it. It does add weight, similar to buttermilk pancakes, and also adds more protein!
These Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are the perfect breakfast or brunch recipe, especially for the lemon lover in your life! They’re tender and fluffy, with a hint of lemon flavor. Serve them with your favorite toppings and enjoy!