Orange Vanilla Pancakes with Vanilla Maple Syrup

5 from 5 votes

Remember a few weeks ago when I said I didn’t like pancakes that much? I lied. I hadn’t made these pancakes yet.

Now? All I want to eat are pancakes. Preferably ones that are scented with orange and smothered in vanilla maple syrup. OMG.

stack of orange pancakes on white plate

I’ve never been a huge breakfast person. I mean, I love a cinnamon roll or some coffee cake as much as the next person (er, probably more) but I usually gravitate towards smoothies or cereal in the morning.

Honestly? My lack of hearty breakfast eating is most likely because I’m not the best morning person. I’d rather drink my coffee and spend an hour waking up than stand at the stove and make breakfast. My family knows this about me. Sometimes Jordan will start to ask for pancakes and then she’ll look at me with my blurry eyes and Eyore robe and say, “You know what? I’ll just have cereal.”

It’s not my fault that she and her dad are eyes-open-wide-awake people at 6am. I’m an eyes-open person at 6am…but wide awake I’m not.

But sometimes I don’t want granola or a smoothie for breakfast. Sometimes I just WANT PANCAKES. Sometimes I want them for dinner too. And when I get a hankering for pancakes I have to make them immediately.

On those days? Jordan is happy.

Orange Vanilla Pancakes (7 of 12)

These pancakes happened on one of those I NEED THEM NOW days. And you guys, they’re probably some of the best pancakes I’ve ever had. I’m not joking. It’s a good thing the batch only makes about 8 pancakes…because Jordan and I ate them all in one sitting.

Orange Vanilla Pancakes with Vanilla Maple Syrup. I probably would not have ever thought to put orange inside a pancake (why not? I have no idea, sometimes I wonder how I’ve made it this far in life) but it makes total sense. I mean…we always drink orange juice with breakfast. Why not put it IN breakfast?


This pancake recipe comes from my new favorite book. Stack Happy. It’s a book you need. Run right now to amazon and buy it. I’ll wait.

Did you get it all ordered? Good. You won’t be sorry!

Stack Happy is written my my friend Karly Campbell, who writes over at Buns in my Oven. If you haven’t ever visited her blog, you should. Not only do her recipes make you drool, but she’s hilarious. And she’s written a whole book on pancakes.

So far we’ve made two recipes from Karly’s book, this one and her Maple-Glazed Bacon Pancakes. Jordan marked about 12 recipes she wants me to make. I foresee lots of stove-standing over the next few months.

After reading her book, I’ve totally changed my tune on pancakes. They should be their own food group.

Orange Vanilla Pancakes (4 of 12)

This pancake recipe is super simple. The batter came together in minutes. The orange and vanilla in the batter makes the flavors just burst in your mouth. You can use any orange juice you like, but if you can squeeze fresh, I totally recommend it. Fresh is always best! I used mandarin oranges because I had a bunch left over but you can use regular oranges too.

One of the ways I ease the pain of pancake making is by using an electric griddle. If you love pancakes but hate making one at a time I totally recommend getting one. (BTW, I use mine for way more than just pancakes!! It’s my most used kitchen appliance.)

You might be tempted to just make the pancakes and top them with regular old syrup. That would be a huge mistake. The vanilla maple syrup in this recipe is the best thing I’ve ever had. Seriously, I almost got a straw.

To put it in context: I don’t use syrup with pancakes. Ever. And on these pancakes? I DOUSED them with the syrup. And making the vanilla syrup is easy – it’s just maple syrup and vanilla extract.

We ate these pancakes for breakfast a few weeks ago but I can’t stop dreaming about them or the other 69 recipes in Karly’s book.

I see a new diet: 70 days of pancake eating.

Orange Vanilla Pancakes with vanilla maple syrup - this is such an easy pancake recipe! They're bursting with orange and vanilla flavor and they syrup is the best syrup recipe!

Now that’s a diet I could stick to!

Orange Vanilla Pancakes with Vanilla Maple Syrup

Fresh orange juice and vanilla make the pancakes burst with flavor. Don't forget the vanilla syrup - it's straw-worthy!
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Yield 8 -10 pancakes
Serving Size


  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup orange juice fresh squeezed is best if you can; I used mandarins
  • 1/4 cup nonfat or 2% milk
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract divided
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup


  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat, or heat an electric griddle to 350°F.
  • Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to combine.
  • Whisk together the orange juice, milk, egg, oil, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and orange zest in a small bowl or measuring cup.
  • Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Batter may be a bit lumpy.
  • Spray the cooking surface with nonstick cooking spray. Pour ¼ cupfuls of batter for each pancake. Let each pancake cook until it's bubbly on top the flip and cook until golden. Repeat with remaining batter until all pancakes are made.
  • While the pancakes are cooking, heat the maple syrup in a small saucepan over low heat until just warmed. Remove from heat and stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
  • Serve warm pancakes with warm syrup on top.
  • Remaining pancakes can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the refrigerator or frozen for up to one month. Store any remaining syrup in an airtight container or jar.

Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate

Click HERE for my PANCAKE & WAFFLE recipes!

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Last Updated on May 13, 2020

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43 CommentsLeave a comment or review

  1. For beginner bakers, people who read things straight and literal, or people who are looking for something fast and yummy: just buy orange zest/peel from a grocery store. Zesting and hand squeezing oranges takes a lot longer than you would think, and it takes a lot of oranges to get 2 tablespoons of zest.
    I ended up using 1tbsp zest, 1tbsp refrigerator orange juice, and 1/4c of more store bought orange, with 1/4c fresh squeezed and it worked great.
    Again, buy orange zest/peel, and don’t feel bad about using store bought orange juice.

  2. Why wouldn’t you use orange extract instead of vanilla in both pancakes and syrup? Or at least half of each orange and vanilla?

  3. Delicious twist on a classic. Along with the vanilla maple syrup, I also served this with fresh nectarine slices, fresh mint leaves and some coconut. Yum!

  4. Tasted yummy! Needed to use up some mandarins, and this recipe was great for that. Made them as waffles, used honey instead of maple syrup, still tasted delicious.

  5. Ok, so about a year ago I discovered this recipe. I’m proud to say it is our “go to” pancake recipe now. They are the only kind we make. My family is making them right now as I type this comment (on vacation in Florida). We have trained our extended family to make only this recipe on vacation at our summer cottage. It’s handwritten and posted on our fridge for regular refrence. Can’t thank you enough for figuring out and crafting this perfect pancake recipe. Orange juice, and extra vanilla extract are permanently on our shopping list so that we can always whip these up on a whim. 

  6. I made these today for my 20 year wedding anniversary breakfast and they were absolutely delicious! I wanted to make orange-flavored pancakes for a long time and I’m so glad I chose this recipe. I followed it almost exactly. The burst of orange flavor in the pancakes was so yummy and the vanilla maple syrup, amazing! Smothered with butter…..thank you!

  7. I made these this morning and added chocolate chips for the kids and they were absolutely DEVINE! The kids took one bite and said “ooooh delicious mum! As for that syrup…I agree about the drinking with a straw part as it is so yummy, I think it tastes like Mcdonalds hot cake syrup which I usually drink half of it before it gets to the hot cakes LOL. Thanks for a great recipe 🙂 
    From Jess Bakes the cake decorator from little ol’ New Zealand! 
    Check my website out if you want to see some of my cakes and cupcakes 🙂

    1. Oooooh chocolate. GREAT idea! And the vanilla syrup – I could have drank it too! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  8. I need more pancakes in my life…and waffles. The truth is, I can barely get out of bed in the morning. I usually skip breakfast and head straight for the coffee pot. The weekends are different. Bring on the hotcakes! Pinned.

  9. Oh my! Vanilla Maple Syrup! I have to try this! I love me a good breakfast but I would also rather stay in bed, for hours. 

  10. Thank goodness everyone in our family does not like to get up early!  Pancakes almost never happen first thing in the morning.  In fact, my kids know if they want pancakes for breakfast, they better ask me to make them the night before!  I am loving the idea of orange and vanilla in a pancake!  I’m totally down with your pancake diet!  And after reading Karly’s awesome book, I foresee lots of fun pancakes around here too.