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Cast iron skillet, stainless steel saute pan, deep pot, non-stick pan, and so on. What other pan can you possibly need in the kitchen? There is one that isn’t as common as the rest but is nonetheless an asset to have in the kitchen — the crêpe pan. Whether you’re a fan of thin, golden-brown crêpes or pancakes, a specialized pancake pan is just the optimal cookware item you need to make them in. This thin pan is commonly made of iron or steel and can be referred to as a crêpe pan, pancake pan, or even blini pan. Essentially, all of these refer to the same type of pan.
How big is a crêpe pan? Typically, it’s 8 to 10 inches in diameter depending on the manufacturer. It is just the perfect size to yield one crêpe or pancake at a time. You can also find a blini pan with molds such as the one from De Buyer. These pans are much larger in size but have separate slots to pour the batter into and produce anywhere from three or more pancakes, or blinis, at a time. These come in all shapes and sizes — the more slots mean more pancakes can be made at once, but also means you can make smaller blinis.
Why is a pancake pan better than any other pan for making pancakes? The material of most crêpe and pancake pans is steel or iron, which can withstand friction from a metal spatula, knife, or anything else you may use to flip your flat cakes. A non-stick pan, on the other hand, would quickly become a pan worthy of replacement as a few scrapes to the Teflon surface are enough to damage the coating. What about the other 12 inch pans you already have at hand? You can still make your pancakes or crêpes in these pans if they are steel or iron, but the size is much larger than what you would ideally want if you plan on spreading the batter across the entire pan. There’s no need to worry about investing in a dedicated crêpe or pancake pan only to use it for one purpose. You can actually fry eggs, grilled cheese sandwiches, toast muffins, and much more with these pans. In other words, it will turn into your go-to breakfast pan quite easily.