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The Unofficial Happy History of Pancakes

Created January 10, 2017
The pancake’s cake-y goodness has been making people happy since the dawn of man. Here are a few notable moments in the pancake’s journey to greatness.


600 BC - The first recorded mention of pancakes dates back to ancient Greece and comes from a poet who described warm pancakes in one of his writings. 

1100 AD – Shrove Tuesday (Pancake Day) becomes a traditional way to use up dairy products before lent – the pancake breakfast is born. 

1445 - The year that villager’s in Olney, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom, started their famous pancake race. Each year the winner receives a smooch from the church bell ringer. 

1700s – Before baking soda chefs used fresh snow, which contains ammonia, to help make pancakes light and fluffy. 

1800s - Milk and occasionally cream become the preferred liquids for pancake batter: before then, brandy and wine had been just as common.

1870s - The flapjack becomes known as the pancake and America is changed forever. 

1880s –Maple syrup becomes the preferred topping of choice.


1931- Bisquick is first introduced and good cooks across America start using it to make extra fluffy pancakes. 

1966 – A “New York Times” food editor publishes a recipe for a baked pancake that he discovered while visiting a friend in Honolulu. 

1985 – Bisquick becomes the official sponsor of National Pancake Week, creating a weeklong celebration of all things pancake. 

1995 - The largest pancake ever flipped was made in Rochdale, United Kingdom. It measured 16.4 yards across, weighed 3 tons and took more than just a frying pan to flip it over. 

2008 – Actor Rainn Wilson creates, a feel good website that encourages people to explore what it means to be human with a little laughter along the way. 

2009 – Aldo Zilli set a new world record for flipping a single pancake – he flipped it 117 times in 60 seconds. 

2012 – 890 people set a world record for the most people tossing pancakes — 930 tried but 40 flippers were disqualified for dropping their cakes.