Easy South African Crumpets Recipe

Cooks in 25 minutes Difficulty Easy 19 comments
4 from 12 votes

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-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, which 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, and larger ones, were flapjacks.

How to Make South African Crumpets


Unlike English or American crumpets which use yeast in the batter, South African crumpets use baking powder as a rising agent. 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.


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! 

Gluten-Free Pancakes

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

easy oat flour pancake recipe

Easy South African Crumpets Recipe

Easy South African Crumpets Recipe

4 from 12 votes
Recipe by Ms Pillay Course: Breakfast, TeaDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




Total time



South African crumpets are small, soft pancake-like treats to enjoy at any time of the day. This recipe yields 18 small crumpets. A single serving is 6 small crumpets.

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  • 1 cup 125 g flour + 1 teaspoon baking powder or 1 cup self-rising flour

  • 1 teaspoon 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

  • 2 2 eggs

  • 1/2 cup 118.29 ml milk

  • 1/4 cup 50 g castor sugar or fine sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • 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). 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.
  • Combine egg, sugar and vanilla essence.
  • Sift in flour and salt.
  • Add milk. Combine the ingredients to form a smooth batter.
  • Use a large serving spoon to spoon onto the pan. The size of the spoon used will determine the size of the crumpet. For larger crumpets add more batter.
  • Cook for two to three minutes on each side. When you notice bubbles on one side turn and cook the reverse side. Enjoy warm with butter and jam.

Recipe Video


  • There are two methods for making this crumpet recipe. The first is to combine the dry ingredients first as listed in the recipe instructions. Alternatively, use the method shown in the recipe video. Combine wet ingredients first then slowly sift in the flour. The second method yields a smoother crumpet batter with fewer lumps. Sifting the four also helps avoid a lumpy crumpet batter.

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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

  2. 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.

  3. The recipe worked out nicely

  4. 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.

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

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

  7. Anonymous

    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.

  8. 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

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

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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Thosha Moodley

    Perfect recipe, made it for breakfast this morning- simple and delicious

  18. Michelle Venter

    Made these today for breakfast. My son loved them.

  19. Cara Shozi

    These came out so well. Today I was patient enough to allow the pan to heat up properly. So easy to make and I rested mine before cooking! Beautiful golden Crumpets and the recipe was absolutely correct!

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