I once binge-read a murder mystery novel titled In My Dreams, I Hold a Knife in which a group of friends gather for their 10-year college reunion and attempt to uncover the truth about their friend’s murder during her senior year. In my dreams, I too hold a knife—a butter knife— which I use to slice a stack of pancakes that tower as high as the Empire State Building. Maybe they’re all plain, maybe they’re alternating chocolate chip and banana pancakes, or because I’m dreaming, maybe they’re four dozen Pillsbury Unicorn pancakes. The mix-ins are less important than how they’re cooked—golden brown on both sides with a slightly pale equator and a fluffy, bubbly interior is preferable.
The batter matters, as does what you use to grease the pan, but above all, the griddle makes the difference. Does the griddle make it easy to flip the pancakes? Do they cook evenly, batch after batch? And after pools of batter and butter have been poured onto the griddle, is it easy to clean? With these factors in mind, we rounded up the best pancake griddles for better breakfasts.