An apple Dutch baby, also called a German apple pancake is a large, fluffy pancake cooked in a hot pan. It makes a wonderful breakfast or dessert.
The term “Dutch baby” was misattributed to the Netherlands by an American chef based on the word “Deutch” meaning German in the German language. So while the name is Dutch baby, it’s actually a German pancake recipe.
The best part is that it comes together quickly with a batter made from a few simple ingredients like eggs, milk and flour and can be topped with any number of fruits, though I prefer this spiced apple mixture. Once it’s put in the oven there’s no need to flip it. I recommend using room temperature ingredients for the best puffing!
Dutch baby pancakes are like a blend of crepes, popovers, Yorkshire pudding and traditional American pancakes. The thin, airy pancake batter is poured into a hot pan then cooked in the oven until the sides rise, poof up and turn golden brown. The pancake will deflate after it’s removed from the oven.
Key Ingredients in an Apple Dutch Baby
Apples – I use a mix of sweet and tart apples in this recipe for the best flavor. Combine apples like Jonathan, Gala or Honeycrisp with Granny Smith in this Dutch baby recipe.
Eggs – Since this batter doesn’t contain a leavening agent like baking soda, it relies on the eggs and milk to create steam which causes it to rise up.
Brown sugar – In this recipe I use dark brown sugar which contains 6.5% molasses (in comparison to 3.5% in light brown sugar). To get an accurate measurement, be sure to tightly pack the brown sugar in a measuring cup. Dark and light brown sugar can be used interchangeably for the apple topping.
How to Make Apple Dutch Baby
Instructions for the Dutch Baby:
Mix the dry ingredients. Add the flour, sugar and salt to a medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
Blend the ingredients together. Add the milk, eggs and vanilla to a blender and blend until the eggs are frothy, about 1 minute. Next, add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and continue to blend until smooth, about 30 seconds.
Let batter sit. Let the batter sit for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Heat skillet. Place a medium cast iron pan (should be either a 9” or 10” skillet) in the oven. Heat the oven to 425ºF so the skillet heats as the oven heats.
Melt butter. Quickly remove the pan from the oven, add the butter and allow to melt, swirling it around the pan. Add the batter to the pan over the butter, tilting the pan to make sure it coats the bottom.
Bake Dutch baby. Put the skillet into the oven and bake until the Dutch baby pancake is puffed and golden brown around the edges, about 20 minutes.
For the apple topping:
Melt butter and brown sugar. While the Dutch baby cooks, heat a large skillet over medium heat then melt the butter. Add the brown sugar and stir to combine.
Cook apples. Add the apple slices, cinnamon and nutmeg, stirring to coat in the sugar. Cook until the apples are tender, about 6 to 8 minutes.
Assemble and serve. Serve the Dutch baby hot in the pan topped with the sugared apples, whipped cream and confectioners sugar or cut into slices and top with the apples.
Tips and Tricks for This Recipe
This Dutch baby can be topped with other fruit toppings like blueberries or mixed fruit and whipped cream and powdered sugar.
This is also one of my favorite breakfast for dinner recipes. Try adding savory toppings like eggs, prosciutto and cheese.
For a fruit filled Dutch baby, arrange the fruit on the bottom of the pan and pour the batter over the top. Placing the fruit over the top of the batter will keep it from rising.
How to prepare the batter for best results
Use room temperature ingredients.
The batter for this Dutch baby pancake is made in a blender or a food processor. This combines the ingredients quickly and easily (with no lumps!) while creating a light and airy batter.
Rest the batter before adding it to the pan. This allows the flour to absorb the liquid and results in the best flavor.
Best Pans for a Dutch Baby
These pancakes require an oven safe pan that can easily be heated in the oven. I prefer a cast iron pan because it heats evenly and retains the heat. Learn more about seasoning cast iron here.
First heat the skillet in the oven to heat it through. Then the batter is added and it’s cooked until it puffs up. A 9-inch or 10-inch cast iron skillet will result in the best puffed up pancake that holds its shape. Another oven safe skillet, baking dish or pie dish also works well!
Other Recipes to Try
If you enjoy this recipe, I recommend checking out some of these: