49er Pancake … Sort of

by | Apr 28, 2008 | Breakfast & Brunch | 28 comments

One of our favorite breakfast haunts is the Original Pancake House, not to be confused with the International House of Pancakes or IHOP. The Original Pancake House is also a chain, but one of greater distinction. Founded in 1953 in Portland, Oregon it is still a family run business with franchises coast to coast.

We’ve been patrons of the Original Pancake House since the early 1990s. We can’t remember who introduced us to this culinary delight, which is a shame since a sincere “thank you” is owed.

Our favorite meal at the Original Pancake House is the 49er pancakes. They are large, crepe-like pancakes that are both tender and chewy. Over the years, I’ve tried various recipes seeking to duplicate or at least approximate this family favorite. Recipes online often call for a sourdough starter, but I’ve never tasted sourdough in the 49ers.

A friend recently shared a recipe for Palacsinta, a Hungarian Crepe that her grandmother used to make for her. I made her recipe and it was oh so close to 49ers. The next try, I adjusted the recipe slightly by cutting back on the sugar, adding a bit of salt and a bit more flour. We now have something that comes close enough to satisfy our 49er cravings, at home and on the cheap.

I now use my blender to mix the batter the night before as a tip from Alton Brown when making crepes. It’s easy and quick. The batter can be used right away, but the overnight stay in the refrigerator helps the bubbles escape and improves the flavor.

Vegan Version Update (May 2014)

I’ve missed these pancakes since becoming vegan. After a few failed attempts, I’ve finally created a vegan version that is as good as the original. So, if you also follow a vegan diet, try this version.

Watch 49ers Being Made

28 Comments

  1. Amy

    delicious! Actually I was a hostess at OPH and while the recipe is a secret I do know (and they will only let you in on this part) but it does start with a sourdough culture surprisingly enough. one of these days i plan to experiment!

    Reply
    • Syl

      Amy, thank you for the tip. I had read somewhere that it does have a sourdough culture. These are not exactly the same, but it does scratch that itch when I want some at home.

      Reply
      • Carol

        I had an friend that worked at the OHP and she said that there were five ingredients in the 49er flapjacks:
        1. flour
        2. nonfat milk
        3. eggs
        4. peanut oil
        5. ? she wouldn’t divulge the fifth ingredient.
        I would guess that the fifth ingredient would be sourdough starter. However, if not, it could be a very small amount of white vinegar.
        She said that there was no sugar or vanilla in the recipe.

        Reply
        • Jill

          Any chance she told you the crepe recipe ?

          Reply
      • Riley

        First time I’ve ever made pancake batter that came out so…liquidy. I’m hoping letting it sit in the fridge overnight thickens it up.

        Reply
        • Sylvia

          It is supposed to be thin. It’s like a crepe batter. I hope they work out for you.

          Look at this video on YouTube which shows folks from the Original Pancake House making some. https://youtu.be/kU_qXbbSd2E

          Reply
  2. Michael Procopio

    Wow. I woke up with a hankering for pancakes this morning and did nothing about it. You have just inspired me to get off my ass and make some this week.

    And I’m gonna use this recipe.

    Reply
  3. Syl

    I hope you like them. I made some again last Sunday.

    Reply
  4. Jess

    My husband and I always drive 45 min to get to the original pancake house just for their 49er flapjacks and we were thrilled to find your recipe!! Finally- an easy replica we can make at home..my husband won’t stop raving about them. Thanks, fellow flapjack lover, for our new go to recipe!!

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      Thank you for the kind words. It’s not exact, but close enough to satisfy that 49er craving. Glad you and your husband are enjoying them.

      Reply
  5. Margarita Darcy

    So goooeeeyyyy! So goooeeeyyyyy!! I grew up in Anaheim right by the OPH and loooooovveeddd all of their food..especially the 49erss…So gooeeyyy! Love the easy recipe! Did I mention i love the gooey ness! Scrumptious Chica! Thanks for the recipe!

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      So glad you like it!

      Reply
  6. Catherine

    I just found this recently when I was on the mad search for 49ers recipes. I don’t have sourdough starter and having grown up with a father that was a mad man with his sourdough… not going there. This recipe was great as is but second time I made it with low fat buttermilk which gave it a little tang! Making some tonight to sit in my fridge until breakfast!!! Thanks!

    Reply
  7. Christina

    These are very, very close to the 49ers. My husband is very picky and thinks they are better than OHOP! We both prefer thin pancakes and these are absolutely Delicious. I will never use another pancake recipe! Great job and thanks!

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      Thank you, Christina. I’m glad you like them.

      Reply
  8. Joel

    This was excellent!! I’m Not the chef in the house but they came out very well on the first try. Your method for getting pan temp right was a huge help for a non chef 🙂

    Reply
  9. Traci Irving

    Oh I absolutely love these pancakes. Not a fan of thick pancakes. We went to a pancake house in Chicago and the person next to us had ordered 49er pancakes. After seeing his thin pancakes, I ordered the same thing. I’ve been hooked for years. This is the best recipe that I’ve found. Perfect thin and chewy pancakes. 💗

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      That’s great! Thank you for letting me know.

      Reply
      • Georgia

        I only have a beater not a blender, I wonder if this would work as well?

        Reply
        • Sylvia

          I’m not sure if a beater would work, but you could try it. Use a high speed on the beater.

          Reply
  10. L

    How many pancakes does this make?

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      This makes about 8 or 10 depending on how big you make them.

      Reply
  11. Edna

    Absolutely delicious! This is now the second time I make it. Love the idea of making it the night before. We get to enjoy Great breakfast during the week instead of just weekends.

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      Thank you, Edna! I’m glad you like it.

      Reply
  12. Jenivi

    Thank you for this amazing recipe!
    Which type of milk is better to use (nonfat, 2%, whole, etc)?

    Reply
    • Sylvia

      I would use either 2% or whole as some fat is useful. It’s been a while since I’ve used dairy but have found that cashew milk is a good non-dairy substitute for dairy.

      Reply
      • Sandy Matteo

        5 stars
        Thankyou Sylvia! I’m not much of a cook but this is so easy and sooo delicious!!!! I love the 49ers at Original House but now I never have to go again!! These are great!😀

        Reply
        • Sylvia

          Thank you! I’m so glad you like the recipe.

          Reply

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Updated on
Jun 12, 2022

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