Lemon Ricotta Pancakes*

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes from thenovicechefblog.com

I’m worried that you are all going to break up with me for posting too many pancake recipes. Is there such a thing as too many pancake recipes? I say no, but maybe normal sane people don’t seek out new pancake flavors like I do? This weekend I found myself with an overload of lemons and a carton of leftover Ricotta to use up.

So when Sunday (i.e. Pancake Day) rolled around, I immediately started wondering if it was possible to put them both in a pancake. I was about to go into recipe development mode, but I did a quick google search and found that Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are actually quite popular! Who knew?

I ended up making a recipe I found on chow.com, but I changed it up quite a bit. I felt it needed a little more flour, baking soda to help them rise more, and a few other changes. But the one part I didn’t change, is to beat the egg whites before adding them to the batter. I usually skip this part when I make pancakes, but it truly does produce a different/lighter texture. If you are like me and have a severe pancake obsession, it’s a fun way to switch it up on Pancake Day.

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes from thenovicechefblog.com

I was watching Julie & Julia a couple weeks ago (I know Рhow clich̩d) and one of my favorite scenes is where Julia (Meryl Streep) is whipping the whipped cream by hand. Nowadays almost everyone has an electric mixer to do it for them. I have a hand mixer and a stand mixer, but for some reason I wanted to see how long it would take me to whip up these egg whites by hand. Half way through I realized what a masochist I was!

Holy arm burn! I got them whipped, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have to keep switching arms like a wimp. In the end, it was all totally worth it. These pancakes are a great change from the ordinary pancake and a fun way to use up any leftover ricotta cheese. If you don’t have a full 3/4 cup of Ricotta, don’t let that turn you away — the recipe still turns out great with less.

While these pancakes a fun citrusy breakfast treat, I do have to say that they don’t hold a flame to my absolute favorite Sweet Hoecakes. Just being honest. 😉


Lemon Ricotta Pancakes

Yield: 12 pancakes


  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 cup milk
  • zest from 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup ricotta cheese


Preheat oven to 200 degrees.

In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk egg whites until they start to bubble like a bubble bath. Sprinkle in 1 tablespoon sugar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Set aside.

In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together melted and cooled butter and milk. Then in a large bowl whisk together egg yolks, remaining 3 tablespoons of the sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla. Whisk in half of the milk-butter mixture, then whisk in the remaining milk-butter mixture until smooth.

Add the flour mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined (do not overmix). Then fold the whipped egg whites into the batter until just combined.

Gently fold the ricotta into the batter, being careful not to break down the texture of the cheese (the batter will be lumpy and streaked with ricotta); set aside.

Heat a non-stick skillet to medium heat. Using a 1/2 cup measuring scoop, pour batter on to skillet. Once you start to see little bubbles form, flip and continue to cook until pancake is evenly browned on each side. Repeat with the remaining batter.

Place pancakes on an oven safe dish and place in oven to keep warm. Serve with your choice of toppings (such as butter, maple syrup, powdered sugar or even lemon curd!).

inspired by chow.com

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35 Responses to “Lemon Ricotta Pancakes”

  1. 1

    Renee @ Awesome on $20 — June 3, 2013 @ 3:10 am

    I’ve had to whip egg white and whipped cream by hand before. I switch arms a lot and don’t use any discernible pattern. Just keep swishing stuff around until it’s done. I felt like I was in heaven when I finally had a stand mixer again and could just switch it on and walk away. These pancakes look divine. I’d love to try them.

  2. 2

    Belinda @themoonblushbaker — June 3, 2013 @ 7:59 am

    For beating with a whisk I separate my arm into two parts, one uses the lower muscles and one uses the shoulder muscles. This way I keep up the speed!
    Love the pancake combo. Anything is good with pancakes right?

  3. 3

    Tieghan — June 3, 2013 @ 8:19 am

    Love these pancakes and the photos are just beautiful! Makes me want to lick the screen! LOL

  4. 4

    Robin @ Simply Southern Baking — June 3, 2013 @ 10:56 am

    These look amazing and mouthwatering! Beautiful photos!

  5. 5

    Marcie@FlavortheMoments — June 3, 2013 @ 11:53 am

    I had a recipe that said to whip cream by hand, and I did. It took forever and my arm was killing me, too! Soft peaks should not take that long. It’s been the stand mixer ever since. Your pancakes look SO tasty!!

  6. 6

    Sues — June 3, 2013 @ 12:14 pm

    Break up with you for too many pancakes?? Never!! These look absolutely incredible!

  7. 7

    TiffanyAzure — June 3, 2013 @ 12:26 pm

    Jessica you can never ever have too many pancake variations!! If I could eat pancakes for breakfast lunch and dinner every single day I promise you that I would. I will have to try these lemon ricotta ones, they look delish!

  8. 8

    Courtney @ BakeMeBetter — June 3, 2013 @ 12:39 pm

    The first thing I saw was the title and I said to myself, “wow, this girl really likes pancakes.” I won’t break up with you for it though. I just hope you are using real maple syrup (we live in New England and make the stuff). 😉

  9. 9

    Cookbook Queen — June 3, 2013 @ 12:55 pm

    No such thing as too many pancakes!!!

  10. 10

    Eileen — June 3, 2013 @ 1:30 pm

    There is no such thing as too many pancake recipes! I definitely need to get my hands (teeth?) on these tangy lemon beauties. :)

  11. 11

    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — June 3, 2013 @ 1:58 pm

    Oh my goodness gracious, holy gorgeousness! These could make my weekdays mornings infinitely brighter, Jessica. Great recipe!

  12. 12

    Joanne — June 3, 2013 @ 3:11 pm

    I am so impressed by your whipping SKILLZ. I always give up midway through. Always.

    Lemon and ricotta sound heavenly together in pancake form!

  13. 13

    Deborah — June 3, 2013 @ 3:21 pm

    I can’t believe you beat them by hand! I know I’m too much of a wimp. Your pancakes are gorgeous!

  14. 14

    Meagan @ A Zesty Bite — June 3, 2013 @ 3:34 pm

    These pancakes are almost too pretty eat. ALMOST……

  15. 15

    Monet — June 3, 2013 @ 5:11 pm

    I can’t believe I missed pancake day! Especially since I’ve been eating them most everyday of my pregnancy! These look and sound so good. Thank you for sharing them with us.

  16. 16

    Mimi @ Culinary Couture — June 3, 2013 @ 5:20 pm

    I love Julie & Julia! Such a great movie. I don’t think I’d ever to be able to whip anything by hand–I have ZERO arm strength! Looks like you did a great job!

  17. 17

    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — June 3, 2013 @ 5:38 pm

    These are dreamy!! And there are never too many pancake recipes – yours are my favorite!!

  18. 18

    Carolint — June 3, 2013 @ 7:34 pm

    These are my favorite!!

  19. 19

    Jenn@The Boiled Noodle — June 3, 2013 @ 9:06 pm

    These look awesome! Can’t wait to try…think I may toss in some blueberries too….oooohhhh…or blueberry syrup!!

  20. 20

    Nutmeg Nanny — June 3, 2013 @ 10:19 pm

    Oh, these looks magnificent! Lemon & ricotta is amazing together.

  21. 21

    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — June 4, 2013 @ 12:47 am

    Ok, first, you can never have enough pancake recipes! There’s just no such thing! Second, these look amazinnnggg!

  22. 22

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  23. 23

    Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste — June 4, 2013 @ 11:58 am

    These look absolutely incredible, Jessica! Will you be at BlogHer Food this weekend? I hope to see you there!

  24. 24

    ashley - baker by nature — June 4, 2013 @ 12:32 pm

    There can never be too many pancakes! These are just amazing!!!

  25. 25

    MarbellaSD — June 4, 2013 @ 1:24 pm

    These look great, I’ve made them before with another recipe and love them. But oh, this recipe takes so many bowls!!!!

  26. 26

    Kristi — June 4, 2013 @ 7:47 pm

    I’ve tried blueberry ricotta pancakes and loved them! I will definitely be trying this lemon recipe.

  27. 27

    Gerry @ Foodness Gracious — June 5, 2013 @ 2:07 am

    Are you crazy? The more pancakes the better! Bring it pancake girl…

  28. 28

    Lori @ RecipeGirl — June 5, 2013 @ 8:48 am

    I want these pancakes in my belly like RIGHT NOW! They’re so pretty!

  29. 29

    Tina Seanez — June 9, 2013 @ 12:30 pm

    These are light and fluffy! I only used zest of one lemon. Really good.

  30. 30

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  31. 31

    B. Anderson — September 13, 2013 @ 7:40 pm

    I learned at my mother’s knee to separate the eggs and to fold in the whites at the end. She did it with buttermilk pancakes…to die for. I went looking for the lemon-ricotta recipe because of some yum cakes we had at the Sheraton in Sacramento, served with blueberry compote, and your recipe and the one from CHOW look the best. But I do take issue with the amount of vanilla you listed. I love vanilla but it can be ovrpowering, and I’m thinking of leaving it out altogether. I think the lemon and the cheese should shine, especially with the blueberry sauce.

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