No baked or pan cooked treat epitomized Sunday afternoon quite like crumpets. These small, fluffy pancakes are easy to make and require minimal ingredients, simply combine flour, baking powder ,eggs and milk. Cook on the pan and enjoy with jam and butter. In worse case end of the month scenario Amma simply made them with milk and self rising flour. Other forms of Amma‘s pancakes included sour dosa and fried ones which often served as a substitute for bread.
south african crumpets recipe


  I made these South African crumpets to go with strawberry jam, my son made at preschool this week (by make I mean helped cut strawberries), none the less it was one of my proudest moments yet.

Crumpets vs Flapjacks 

There is much debate about the difference between flapjacks and crumpets. From childhood, I know  that the small pancakes made with baking powder were referred to as crumpets, larger ones, were flapjacks.

How to Make South African Crumpets

Crumpets are best made using self rising flour or flour with baking powder, this gives the crumpet their soft, fluffy texture. For an egg less version, omit the eggs and use milk and baking powder combined with flour. If you are using eggs, combine with castor sugar until fluffy, this results in a smooth crumpet batter.
The consistency of crumpet batter is thick yet runny, and can be poured onto the pan. Some prefer crumpet rings to achieve a uniform shape. In my opinion the only tools needed when making crumpets are a spoon for pouring the batter onto the pan and a spatula for turning.

To cook perfect crumpets, make sure the pan is warm. If you use a good no stick pan, you require minimal butter for greasing the pan.

South African Crumpets Recipe

Easy South African Crumpets Recipe

Easy South African Crumpets Recipe

18 medium sized crumpets
Prep time
10 Min
Cook time
15 Min
Total time
25 Min
South African crumpets are small, fluffy pancakes. They often contain baking powder, milk and eggs and have a characteristically soft texture.


  • 1 cup flour + 1 teaspoon baking powder or 1 cup self rising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • ¼ cup castor sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • pinch of salt


  1. Heat a non-stick pan on medium heat. (This may vary depending on your stove. I use a gas cooker and medium works just right for me).
  2. You can apply butter to the pan before pouring the crumpet batter. I find a non-stick pan does not require any butter and cooks with an even colour.
  3. Combine egg, sugar and vanilla essence.
  4. Sift in flour and salt.
  5. Add milk.
  6. Combine to form a smooth pourable batter.
  7. Use a large serving spoon to spoon onto the pan.
  8. Cook for two to three minutes on each side. When you notice bubbles on one side turn and cook the reverse side.
  9. Enjoy warm with butter and jam.
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How to Serve Crumpets
 In my opinion, crumpets are best served with something sweet. Jam, marmalade or fresh fruit, or if you really want to indulge maple syrup! 
south african crumpets

 This recipe has been my go to one for years! I retested it on 8.11.2020 (pictured above) following a reader comment. The results speak for themselves. I used one cup of flour and combined with two eggs and half a cup of milk. This liquid quantity is just right to make the perfect crumpet batter texture. Crumpet batter should be thick. If you have tried this recipe, do let me know how it turned out!

Gluten Free Pancakes

Try my homemade oat flour pancakes using ground oats and banana for a guilt free Sunday treat.
gluten free pancakes

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  1. This recipe is a disaster..way too little liquid. You need almost 3 times the liquid. Please remove this from the web

    1. Thanks for taking the time to leave valued feedback! This has been my recipe since childhood, it works! I retested it today and the results speak for themselves. The batter should be thick. Adding three times the amount of liquid, as you suggest will result in crepe batter.

    2. Hi. This site, "Food Like Amma Used To Make It" has been my go to food site in search of truly delicious and dependable recipes, for at least 4 years.
      For this crumpet recipe, I even wrote it in my recipe book, that's how good it is.

      Thank you Amma family for imparting knowledge and allowing others to enjoy food cooked the 'old fashioned way'.

      Much love and appreciation.

    3. Not sure what quantities you were using.... Mibe came out perfectly and I followed the recipe to the T.. Even doubled up to make more.

    4. Not sure what quantities you were using.... Mibe came out perfectly and I followed the recipe to the T.. Even doubled up to make more.

    5. Not true. I followed it exactly and they were perfect. I'm South African and these are just how my mum used to make them.

  2. Just did it, super nice and very easy and I am a old man on pension. My grandchildren want me to make more

    1. Thank you for taking the time to leave feedback! Glad it worked well:-)

  3. Hi. I don’t know about too little liquid like the other user says because using an actual set of measuring cups I had to cut down on the milk - used a quarter cup of milk plus another 1/8th as opposed to a full 1/2 cup. 1/2 cup yielded too running a consistency for me. Then regarding the temperature- medium heat was a definite no-no. Low, medium or high then? Definitely low as in 1 or 2. Probably depends on one’s stove and how hot it gets however quickly but that’s what worked for me. First batch with half a cup of milk on medium heat ie 4.5 on a stove that goes from 1 to 9 burnt my first batch of “pancake batter.” But after making the adjustments with my second batter they turned out “perfectly crumpety” - fluffy and perfectly cooked. Only a minute or 1.5 minutes on each side at that low temperature on my stove. Also found that I got a better result without greasing my pan for the second batch.

  4. Hi. Used this recipe for my first time making crumpets ever and it was so easy and they are delicious😋
    Next time I had to double the recipe (family wanted more😉)and still perfect and loved by all.
    Thank you

  5. HI I just wanted to ask how many does one batch of batter make

  6. Hi, depends on the size of crumpets you make. I made 18 crumpets, approximately 3-4 cm diameter. It's enough for 3 people.

  7. Made this for breakfast this morning and it was hit! I usually buy the ready mix stuff (please don't judge me 😂) but I'll never go back. It was so easy to throw together, it took me literally a few minutes and it also made the perfect amount! I'll definitely be trying more of your recipes in the near future.

    1. Hi Claudia, So glad to hear the recipe worked well for you! Thanks for taking the time to leave feedback too! Definitely not judging, in these times convenience is king, but as you've experienced with this recipe homemade is always best:-) Hope to hear from you again after you try other recipes. Best Wishes.

  8. This recipe is terrible!!! I just made it this morning and it was too runny. I had to add a bit more flour and could only manage to make 6. Please can you alternate your recipe.

    1. Sorry to hear that the recipe did not work well for you. I make this recipe every Sunday with the same result as pictured in this blog post.

  9. The crumpets came lovely! Picture perfect. Thank you for the recipe

  10. I just made this recipe, and agreed the liquid wasn’t enough but I added half a cup of double cream yoghurt. Also, I realized I didn’t have baking powder, so I substituted with half a teaspoon of bicarbonate soda and a tablespoon of white vinegar. The result was amazing! Super fluffy and yummy crumpets. The family couldn’t stop eating them.


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