By Steven Doyle
There is nothing more satisfying in the morning than a few slabs of terrific pancakes and a perfect cup of steaming hot black coffee to set your day in motion. Go for an entire stack and a pot of coffee for a more extreme perpetual motion. We have been scoping out some of the top spots in the Dallas area for pancakes, and hope you enjoy them as much as we have. We know there are many more that we enjoy, but we had to limit this list to 10. Here they are in no particular order.
Oddfellows is located in the Bishop Arts District in Oak Cliff, and enjoys a steady clientele of happy guests who frequent more than often. The food is hearty, inexpensive, and screams Texas. Here you will find a fantastic example of chicken and waffles served with pepper gravy, but also a duck confit chilaquiles and pretty damned good Benedict with wilted spinach, country ham, a tomato, an herbed potato hash and hollandaise. But the pancakes are unreal. You can find your buttermilk variety, but also a red velvet pancake. Each day there will be something different in the pancake category which can keep things exciting.
So & So’s
The brunch at So & So’s brings with it a splendid stack of blueberry pancakes laden with fresh blueberries, lemon curd and Fernet Branca-spiked maple syrup. The pancakes are feathery light but hold up well to the additions prepared by this chef-driven bar. It is the perfect example of the elevation of brunch in Dallas.
Coffee House Café
Relegation to the suburbs feels a little breezier with super savvy hot spots like this cafe. Besides having some of the best coffee around, the Lemon Riccotta Pancakes are the real deal. Be sure to also check out the beignets and the breakfast flatbreads that are topped with eggs and other breakfast fare.
Jonathon’s Oak Cliff
This is another Oak Cliff morning staple operated by the gravy king of Dallas, Jonathon Erdeljac. Of course this makes the grade for his light and fluffy pancakes, but there are other breakfast items needing your attention including his danger dogs, which resemble corn dogs, but made with sausages and pancake batter. Chicken and waffles also are a hit.
The Original Pancake House
With many locations across Dallas, The Original makes insanely good pancakes. After all, it is in the name. Pancakes. We love that the blueberry pancakes are wonderful, but you also should try the apple pancake made with a single large pancake smothered with sautéed apples and cinnamon sugar baked, then given a treatment of a rich cinnamon sugar glaze. For a real treat go for the Dutch Baby which is a giant air-filled delight that is oven baked and served with lemon, whipped butter and powdered sugar. Nothing else quite like this.
Henk’s European Deli and Black Forest Bakery
At Henk’s you get a lot of love, and a lot of pancakes for a great bargain at $5.25 for a full meal deal. Henk’s also features a German and Polish breakfast where you can order a great schnitzel in the morning.
The pancakes here are large and fluffy, just as you would hope. This is a crazy-good, off-the-beaten-path-type of restaurant that forages from its own huge garden in the back of the house. Choose from buttermilk, whole wheat, or the sweet potato pancakes, all topped with organic Vermont syrup. This is real food made by a pretty cool real chef.
There is nothing in Dallas as good as the chicken fried steak at AllGood Cafe. The menu is literally all good as well. Sure you can select from a short of full stack of the pancakes, and add a myriad of toppings such as fresh fruit or pecans. There are a few other options here you might try to slide the pancakes in for a heartier choice. The Hat Trick comes with huevos rancheros, peppered bacon and a short stack. But if you feel up to it, order the chicken fried steak and eggs, and ask to substitute grits for a short stack. Pay whatever extra they want to charge you. You will not need to eat again for a few days.
Here you will find a large selection of pancakes, from the very plain yet delightful buttermilk variety, to one laced with pecans, or stuffed with caramel apples. Save room for the very best corned beef hash in the county, but always start with the insane cinnamon sticky bun. Freaking cinnamon sticky bun. Then be prepared to finish your breakfast later that day at home. One of the very best breakfasts in Dallas.
Ellen’s Southern Kitchen
Grits really do rule here. Especially when infused with copious amounts of cheddar. But we are here for the pancakes, and Ellen’s does them very well. Choose the big pancake breakfast which comes with two pancakes, two eggs, two slices of bacon, two sausage links and hash browns. There are plenty of additions for the pancakes including roasted figs, fresh strawberries, blueberries and more. See if you can manage a side of those grits, too.