My Amazing German Apple Pancake Recipe – How to Make it in 18 Simple Steps

While most people think of stacks of cakes dripping with maple syrup when they think of pancakes, this recipe for German Apple Pancakes is made in European style. It is light, fluffy, and loaded with apple goodness. The batter is cooked in a skillet and then baked in the oven.

A freshly baked German apple pancake on a wooden table.

When most Americans think of pancakes, they picture stacks of hot, steamy cakes, dripping with butter, maple syrup, or fruit. American pancakes are cooked on a hot griddle or in a frying pan. They’re formed from a runny batter that’s poured into rounds. The cakes are flipped once during cooking before being removed to a plate and served alongside eggs and bacon or sausage.

However, in other parts of the world, the idea of pancakes conjures up a different image. Our recipe for a classic German Apple Pancake tends toward the European version of a pancake, something that many Americans might call a “Dutch baby.” This style of the pancake is entirely different from American pancakes. European pancakes rely on eggs for fluffiness, rather than baking powder. The batter is poured into a hot skillet, cooked for a few moments, and then the whole skillet is placed in a hot oven and baked. There is no flipping the pancake with a spatula.

A freshly baked German apple pancake on a wooden table.

German Apple Pancake Recipe

April Freeman
This German Apple Pancake combines the flavor of apples with spicy cinnamon, rich caramel, and a buttery crepe-like breading. If you are hosting a brunch for friends and family, this German apple pancake is perfect for any special occasion.

Video Version

Prep Time 15 mins
Baking Time 20 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Cuisine German
Servings 6 People

Equipment

  • Large skillet
  • Medium-Sized Bowl
  • Small bowl
  • Spatula

Ingredients
  

  • 4 pcs Medium-Sized Cooking Apples
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Lemon Juice
  • 2 pcs Large Eggs
  • 3/4 cup Half and Half
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 cup Flour
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • Powdered Sugar for topping

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. It’s very important that the oven is extremely hot as soon as you place the skillet inside it. This will help the pancake immediately fluff up and achieve maximum height.
  • Wash, peel, and slice the apples. You want larger chunks that are about ½ inch thick.
  • In an oven-safe, non-stick or well-seasoned cast-iron skillet, melt the butter.
  • When the butter is sizzling and just starting to brown a little bit, add the apples along with the brown sugar and the cinnamon.
  • You will want to cook this mixture for about ten minutes, until the sugar is caramelized and the liquids are thick, rather than runny.
    The apple chunks are cooked at the skillet.
  • While the apples are cooking, you can prepare the pancake.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, use a wire whisk to combine the flour, sugar, and salt.
  • In a separate, smaller bowl, use a whisk to mix together the eggs, half and half, and vanilla.
    The wet and dry ingredients are mixed in separate bowls.
  • Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and use a wire whisk to thoroughly combine the two mixtures.
  • Set this aside until the apples are finished cooking.
  • When the apple mixture is cooked brown and bubbly stir in the lemon juice.
  • When the oven is completely hot, pour the pancake batter around the outside edges of the pan and then over all of the apples in the center of the pan.
    The baked apple pancake is removed from the oven.
  • Remove the skillet from the stovetop and place it in the hot oven. Close the oven door and lower the oven temperature to 425 degrees.
  • The outer edges of the pancake will begin to rise and brown. Bake the pancake for 18 to 24 minutes until the outer edges of the pancake are a light golden brown and rising above the rim of the skillet.
  • Remove the skillet from the oven.
  • Lightly, using a spatula or a butter knife, try to loosen the edges of the pancake from the skillet. With a quick flip of the wrist, invert the skillet onto your serving plate.
  • Dust the top of the pancake with a few teaspoons of powdered sugar.
  • Cut into wedges and serve piping hot.
    A plate of freshly-made German apple pancake.

Notes

In our particular recipe, the apples are cooked in a skillet on a hot stove. They are sauteed in hot butter along with some brown sugar to create a fragrant, tasty, caramelized fruit sauce that will end up being at the bottom of the pancake. Then the lightly sweetened batter is poured around and over the apples as they are still cooking in the hot skillet. After a few moments, the pan is placed in a hot oven and baked. When the pancake is done, the pancake is inverted onto a serving plate where it is sliced into wedges and served topped with caramel, maple syrup, or powdered sugar.
For this recipe for German Apple Pancake, you will need to find a good cooking apple. Apples like Granny Smith, Braeburn, or Yellow Delicious give great apple flavor without falling apart in cooking. The classic Red Delicious, while pretty to look at and nice to eat fresh, will turn to mush when exposed to the heat of the skillet.
You will also want to use a nonstick skillet to prepare this recipe for German Apple Pancake. Since the apples are cooked in a buttery, caramel sauce, and then the pancake is baked, having cookware that will easily release is crucial. A well-seasoned cast-iron pan is a great choice for this recipe as well.
Keyword Breakfast, German Apple Pancake, Recipe

Meals: All Recipes | Breakfast | Dinner (Mains) | Dessert | Side Dishes | Soups | Appetizers | Salads | Snacks

Dishes: PastaChicken | Ground Beef | Casseroles | Rice | Potato | Pies | Cookies | Sausage | Bread | Cakes | Pancakes | Cheesecakes | Scones

Key Ingredients: Cream Cheese

Other: Quick Dinners (Under 45 min.)

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