I have accumulated jarfuls of starter discard in my fridge from the past two week’s or so of awakening my sourdough starter. I was desperate to make some sourdough pancakes, but I wanted a recipe that also used buttermilk since I needed to use up. I found a relatively easy one from NY Times Cooking here so decided to try it. 

These are quite dense, so next time I’m going to separate the egg and whisk the whites before folding in to try and make them lighter! I made a double portion so I could freeze them for quick weekday breakfasts. 

You can make waffles using this batter as well, but think I’ll stick to pancakes as we don’t have a waffle iron.

Ingredients for the overnight sponge:

  • 240g sourdough starter (i.e. “discard” – this is unfed)
  • 224g buttermilk 
  • 120g AP flour (I made this half wholemeal)
  • 13g sugar (I used brown sugar)

Next day batter:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 c melted unsalted butter (or neutral oil – I used grapeseed)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3g fine seasalt
  • 6g baking soda


  1. First, start combine your sourdough starter in a large bowl with the buttermilk, flour and sugar. Cover bowl and leave out overnight. I kept mine in the fridge overnight as the Singapore weather is very humid – perhaps a little too humid. I brought it out this morning and let it sit out for an hour to get going. 
  2. When you are ready, whisk egg, melted butter, vanilla extract and then add to the sponge. 
  3. Add the baking soda, salt into the mix. Tip: adding a tablespoon of water and mixing the soda and salt will help it incorporate into the batter a little easier. 
  4. Heat up your pan, lightly oil it and ladle some batter in. Flip after a few minutes when the pancakes start to bubble. I cooked on medium heat, but turned it up now and then to crisp and brown them up. 
  5. Serve with fruit, lemon & sugar, or drizzled with your favourite syrup. 

Here’s the overnight sponge ready to go in the fridge

Next morning – batter up!

Batter ready to use

Time to flip