Difference Between Flapjacks And Pancakes | 10 Key Points to Focus On

difference between flapjacks and pancakes

Depending on your location, the difference between flapjacks and pancakes varies. For example, you might get a pancake if you’re in the US or Canada and order a fluffy, round-shaped cake in a restaurant. However, this almost identical cake in the UK goes by another name; they call it flapjacks. 

Although these two cake types are almost similar, yet there are some essential factors to consider. The flapjacks and pancakes differ in their baking procedure, ingredients, taste, and geographical surroundings. They appear with different names in different locations. Check out how the flapjacks and the pancakes are different from each other.

Comparison chart 

Name based on LocationsUKUS & Canada
Baking ProcedureBaking/cooking on a pan is the procedure to make itCooking on the pan is the only procedure to make it
IngredientsOats, golden syrup, brown sugar, dried fruit, butter, etcFlour, white sugar, baking powder, egg, milk, butter, vegetable oil, and a pinch of salt, etc
ShapeSquare/ RectangleRound
TasteSweetSweet/ Savory
TypesMany typesTwo main types
Rich inFiber, Vitamins, MineralsCalories, carbohydrates, protein
Cooking DurationTake a bit more timeTake less time
ToppingsMight or might not have toppingsAlways have toppings

What is Flapjacks? 

The extra fluffy small pancakes are known as flapjacks in the United Kingdom. However, in North America, flapjacks and pancakes mean the same. Getting the same snack under a different name is just a regional fact.

Why So Popular?

You can eat this humble tray-back flapjack any time as your main dish, whether it’s your breakfast, lunch, dinner, or a simple tea time. It matches your meal type depending on its super-healthy ingredients, like oats, fruits, nuts, and golden syrup. So, the flexibility of having it anytime to fill your meal makes it a popular snack for people of all ages. 

Flapjacks Recipe and Ingredients 

The flapjack recipe follows a simple process, requiring very few ingredients to collect. With only 4 ingredients, you can make the delicious food item at home. 

  • Sugar
  • Oats
  • Golden Syrup
  • Dry Fruits / Nuts, Chocolates  (Additional)

How to Make Flapjacks?

Following the simple few steps below, you can make your flapjack trouble-free. But remember, this cake will require more time to prepare. Here’s how-

  1. Preheat your oven to a little more or less 180°C
  2. Now put butter in the oven
  3. When the butter is melted well, add the golden syrup and sugar
  4. Stir them at low heat
  5. Now add oats 
  6. Stir them for 30 minutes
  7. Ensure the batter looks brown but not burnt
  8. Once it gets your desired form, turn off the heat and let the batter cool for 20 minutes.
  9. Add chocolates or dry fruits to the cake if you want to make it more delicious.
  10. Now, keep the cake in the refrigerator and allow it to cool for another 40 minutes.
  11. Cut into your desired square or rectangle shape once the cake is cold. 

NB: You can store the flapjack for 10 days and use it as a perfect snack at breakfast, on a picnic, or in your kid’s tiffin. 

What is Pancake? 

It’s a flat cake with a round shape that can be prepared on either the hot surface of a frying pan or griddle.  Flour is the main ingredient in preparing pancakes, and it appears as batter bread, one of the most popular breakfasts in the US. 

Why So Popular? 

Since pancakes are high in fat, calories, and protein, they can be ideal snacks to energize you. And the main reason behind the tremendous popularity of the pancakes is their flavors. Various flavors and ingredients make it a good choice for dinner, lunch, or breakfast dishes.  Another significant reason why people love having pancakes is its effortless making procedure.

Pancakes Recipe and Ingredients

Unlike flapjack, pancakes require very little preparation time. However, it requires more ingredients compared to the flapjacks.

  • Flour (All Purpose) – 1 Cup 
  • Eggs- 2 
  • Butter- 1 Tablespoon
  • Milk- ⅔ Cups
  • Salt- ¼ Teaspoon 
  • Baking Powder- 1 ½  Teaspoon
  • Sugar- 3 Tablespoon

NB: The ingredients can be more or less in amount, depending on your preference and the number of servings. Here, the ingredients we have mentioned will be perfect for 4 servings.

How to make Pancakes?

  1. In the first phase, you have to make a batter with flour, egg, butter, and milk.
  2. Add the flour and egg first and mix them well
  3. Once the flour and egg are mixed, add milk and keep it semi-smooth
  4. Now add the butter and bake in your oven for 30 minutes
  5. While baked properly, get your cake out of the oven and let it cool for 5 minutes
  6. Your Pancake is ready to serve

The key differences flapjacks and pancakes

  1. In the US or Canada, flapjacks and pancakes are used interchangeably. However, in the UK, it brings a completely different meaning considering the variation of their ingredient type.
  2. Flapjacks offer a taste like backed oats with caramel with a little chewy and crunchy taste. Sometimes the taste varies depending on the dressing ingredients. On the other hand, Pancakes are soft, thicker, and taste sweet, but in terms of their ingredients’ variations, they can taste savory sometimes.
  3. Flapjacks have several types: ginger flapjack bars, coconut flapjacks, strawberry flapjacks, peanut butter flapjacks, etc. Unline flapjacks, the pancakes have only two main types: Crepes and American-style pancakes. The Crepres is a French-style cake, and the American style is the thickest and most fluffy.
  4. Making flapjacks requires you to monitor the recipe constantly so it won’t become hard continuously. Baking the ingredients for more than it should be will make it hard, which can drop the taste. Pancakes, on the other hand, are pretty easy to make compared to flapjacks.
  5. There’s a significant difference between these two types through their applied ingredients. The flapjacks have its staple ingredient, oats, while the pancakes require its main ingredient, flour. Again you need brown sugar to prepare flapjacks but white sugar to prepare pancakes.
  6. Due to the various ingredients used, taste also comes into consideration to make the difference.  Although the flapjacks always taste sweet, your pancake will bring a savory taste sometimes along with its sweet relish. 
  7. Commonly, flapjacks have square or rectangle shapes, but you can change the shape into triangles too. The pancakes, however,  always come in round fluffy shapes, unlike your flapjacks.
  8. In restaurants in the United Kingdom, you’ll get the two cakes, flapjacks and pancakes in a separate menu on the menu chart. However, in America, it makes no difference.
  9. You can make the traybake bars flapjacks in an oven, but you need either a frying pan or griddle pan while making pancakes.
  10. Pancakes can be cooked on a frying pan, which takes less cooking time than flapjacks.

Similarities between Flapjacks and Pancakes

Despite some significant dissimilarities, both these cakes come with a few similarities as well, and these are-

  • Both the flapjacks and pancakes use butter along with other ingredients
  • Both these cakes can offer a sweet taste
  • You can have both these cakes in your breakfast, lunch, or dinner time
  • Like flapjacks, pancakes also comes with similar dressing ingredients on their top, like chocolates, nuts, vegetable, and fruits. But it also can be dressed and drizzled with honey, butter, cheese, cinnamon, etc. 

Difference Between British & American Pancakes

Pancakes in America is usually made of baking powder to make the cake fluffy and slightly thicker compared to the traditional crepe. British pancakes, on the other hand, are larger and thinner, folded up or rolled up into triangles.

British pancakes are almost similar to French crepes, while American pancakes are filled and served with sugar and lemon juice. But the traditional British pancakes are filled with caster sugar and lemon juice. Here’re some popular British pancake toppings-

  • Lemon Curd
  • Banana
  • Chocolate Spread
  • Peanut Butter
  • Cheese

 Flapjacks vs Pancakes: Health Benefits

Considering the healthier ingredient types, both the flapjacks and pancakes are rich in nutrients. Let’s check out the health benefits you’ll get from these two types of cakes. 

Flapjacks Health Benefits

Flapjack is sweet and sugary, but its many health benefits cannot be overlooked. You can get a quick solution with a healthy and delicious flapjack when you have nothing to make for breakfast in your refrigerator. Also, flapjacks can be an ideal pre/post-workout snack to indulge your energy. The key health benefits of flapjack are-

  1. This cake is a super source of vegan protein 
  2. It will keep your guts healthy
  3. You can be energized for a long time as it’s a slow energy releaser. 
  4. It will help you lower your cholesterol 
  5. You’ll get a good amount of Vitamin B from flapjacks.

You’ll consume the following proportion of potassium, sugar, and butter from flapjacks-

Type of NutrientsApprox Proportion of Nutrients (Per Serving)
Potassium258 milligrams 

NB: We strongly recommend not keeping flapjack in your daily breakfast or lunch dessert as it contains a natural amount of sugar.  

Pancakes Health Benefits

Pancake is undoubtedly a great snack for good health purposes, especially when you eat homemade pancakes. The ingredients of pancake are a combination of fiber and iron, which helps maintain the blood sugar level and provides sufficient oxygen to one’s lungs. 

Having pancakes at meals will also help enhance your immunity and allow the immune cells to function well. Pancakes can ensure 3 top health benefits, and these are-

  1. It’s rich in carbs and iron.
  2. Provide an ideal portion of Vitamin C
  3. You’ll get a good portion of calcium for stronger bone health.

You’ll consume the following purporting nutrients from your homemade cake-

Type of NutrientsApprox Proportion of Nutrients (Per Serving)
Fat8 grams
Sugar7 grams
Protein 8 grams
Carbohydrate 37 grams
Sodium 800 milligrams

NB: The pancake isn’t recommended for regular breakfast or snacks purpose.

Frequently asked questions

What are the popular pancake toppings in the UK?

Lemon and sugar are the preferred pancake toppings in the UK; however, bacon and maple syrup are the most used toppings there.

For what purpose can I eat flapjacks or pancakes?

You can have them according to your preference at any time, so taking a slice of flapjack with tea is perfect. Again, if you want to have this cake for breakfast or evening snacks, you can have it too.

Why do my flapjacks become too hard and dry?

You must know the proper baking procedure to solve this issue; for example, baking the cake for more than its required time will make it dry and hard.  So, the essential tip is to remove the pan from your oven right when the cake appears a golden brown colour.

Can I put my flapjack in the refrigerator?

You can put your flapjacks in the fridge, but using a freezer bag will be a good option to keep them fresh.

Where are the pancakes most popular?

Pancakes gain popularity in several places around the world, for example: America, Canada, Netherlands, France, Russia and many more

Are Flapjacks cake or biscuit?

Depending on your regional surroundings, it can be cake and biscuit with the same taste and appearance.


Flapjacks and pancakes are ideal energy sources that fuel and energize your active lifestyle. The difference between flapjacks and pancakes lies in location, taste, ingredients, etc. However, both delicious cakes offer great health benefits and follow a quick recipe. For your convenience, we have covered everything you need to know to distinguish the two food items.

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