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A perfectly delicious recipe for fall!
These cinnamon pancakes are light, fluffy, and topped with a sweet maple-flavored apple topping. Make a batch for a tasty weekend breakfast!
One fall morning, while John was mixing up his usual pancake batter, he decided to toss in some cinnamon. That’s when I got an idea — sticky apple topping!
I quickly peeled and diced a few apples, which was literally the most difficult part of this recipe. And because the fruit pieces were so small, the sauce cooked up just in time to spoon over each stack.
If you’re craving more fall flavors, you’ll love my pumpkin walnut flapjacks! I also have two different lemon poppyseed pancake recipes for fruit fanatics — one topped with an irresistible blueberry compote and another with ricotta that is fantastic with fresh berries.
Key ingredients & substitutions for Cinnamon Pancakes
- Apples — Any variety will work for this cinnamon pancake recipe, just remember not to overcook them! They should be soft, but not mushy.
- Milk — Use whatever you have on hand, including your favorite plant-based alternative. Soy and oat milk tend to have the best texture as well as a neutral flavor, but almond is a good option too.
- Walnuts — If you don’t mind washing another pan, toast these for a minute or two in a skillet on the stove.
- We love our electric griddle and use it over and over — not just for batches of pancakes, but for bacon and grilled sandwiches as well! It’s also non-stick, which means clean up couldn’t be easier.
How to make apple cinnamon pancakes?
STEP 1 | Mix the batter
Combine the wet and dry ingredients in separate bowls, then blend the two together. The texture will appear a bit lumpy, but that’s fine. It’s important not to overmix, or your pancakes won’t get nice and fluffy.
STEP 2 | Heat up the griddle
Aim for medium-high heat, which is usually around 350 degrees (if yours has numbers on the dial). Once it’s hot, use a measuring cup to scoop evenly-sized rounds onto the surface. Work in batches until all the batter is gone.
STEP 3 | Make the topping
Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the chopped apples, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cook for a few minutes just until the fruit is tender — you should be able to easily poke a fork through the pieces. Then, remove from the heat and stir in the maple syrup.
STEP 4 | Serve
Spoon the fruit over each stack of cinnamon pancakes and add a sprinkle of chopped walnuts for extra crunch.
- You can easily double or triple the amount of topping for these apple cinnamon pancakes if needed. Or, use half and save the rest for later. It should keep for 3-4 days in the refrigerator when stored in an airtight container.
Frequently asked questions
Typically, you would want something firm that will hold its shape in your baked goods like Granny Smith or Honeycrisp. Because the fruit goes on top instead of inside the batter, the texture isn’t quite as important for this cinnamon pancake recipe.
I made this with Red Delicious because it’s what I had on hand, but you can use whichever variety you’d like! Fuji and Gala are both sweet and usually the most affordable, while Pink Lady and Braeburn have a good balance of sweet and tart flavors.
After you scoop the batter onto the griddle, keep an eye on the tops — once they are covered in tiny bubbles, it’s time to flip!
They only need about a minute after that. Watch the sides and carefully lift each one to see if the bottom is golden brown. You can also press gently on the center — if it feels more solid than squishy (like a finished cake) then they’re done.
For the best texture, pop them in the toaster oven or air fryer for a few minutes. I recommend warming the topping separately in the microwave or on the stove.
You don’t need much else alongside this cinnamon pancake recipe, but it never hurts to add some sausage links or crispy bacon!
If you happen to have any leftover apple topping, it’s delicious over a bowl of vanilla ice cream.
Cinnamon Pancakes with Apple Compote
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 large egg beaten
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 2 medium apples peeled, cored, and diced
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
- In a large bowl stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a small bowl combine egg, milk, and oil; then pour all at once into dry ingredients. Stir until blended, but still a little lumpy.
- Heat griddle to medium high heat and spray lightly with cooking spray. Pour batter by 1/4 cupfuls on the hot griddle and cook until golden brown; flipping once to cook other side. (Pancakes are ready to flip once the surface is bubbly all over.)
- To a medium sauce pan, add butter, apples, brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Stir and cook over medium heat 3-5 minutes, or until apples are tender. Add maple syrup and serve over warm pancakes. Garnish with chopped walnuts.
About Sheila Thigpen
Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer
Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.