How to Make Crêpes Without a Crêperie

A brief tutorial on how to make crêpes at home, no crêperie required. Just you, your stove and a bit of batter and you’ll have a plate full of thin pancakes in no time at all.

I’ve always wanted to live abroad, even if just for a short time. While the dream of leaving and exploring was there, the reality was and is that I remain fully rooted in the Midwest.

In college I was a single parent. In order to declare my Spanish major, I had to get the mandatory study abroad waived. Rather than live somewhere new and explore, I sat in my apartment and cooked, dreaming of leaving. I volunteered at an ESL school teaching English instead.

One of my younger sisters, Rachel, lived in France for a year. Last year my youngest brother spent the year in Australia and Thailand. I am still cooking. I traded in my single-parent stripes for a rambler, a few more kids and a husband, but not in that order.

When my sister returned from France, she brought with her a new and intense appreciation for the culture of their food. She sought out hard-to-find cheeses at the market and hoarded good French mustard like it was going out of style. She told tales of kabobs and crêpes from street vendors. I seethed with jealousy.

When I stopped the pity party, however, I did what I do. With no way to visit the crêperie myself, I needed to learn to make the treats I was missing out on while I was holed up at home.

For the full on crêpe experience, we’re going to start by combining Julia Child’s and Alton Brown’s views into a collective wisdom. You’ll need a blender or a bowl, whisk and your arm. Eggs, milk and water are added here.

To the eggs and milk, add in flour, melted butter and a bit of salt. Blend until smooth, scraping down the sides of the blender as necessary. (Hint: It’s necessary if the flour sticks to the sides.) This goes for a rest in the fridge to get rid of some of the bubbles and to help the crêpe-flipping process go a bit easier.

When it’s time to cook, heat a pan with rounded edges over medium-high heat. Add in a bit of butter to grease and then lift the pan off the burner. Pour in just enough crêpe batter to cover the bottom, 1-2 ounces depending on the size of your pan. Immediately swirl the pan to distribute the crêpe batter evenly.

Cook the crêpe for 30 seconds or so. Run a heatproof spatula around the edge of the crêpe to get it unstuck from the sides. Slowly slide the spatula down the center of the crêpe and then flip.

Slide the crêpes into a flat pile and let them cool a bit while you repeat the process and make more crêpes.


And that’s it. Pretty basic, no? Now, for the filling, which is my favorite part of the crêpe. You could go sweet with fruit and ricotta spread inside, or you can leave it nice and simple with a dusting of powdered sugar or a drizzle of honey. The savory options are always good, too. A crêpe filled with chicken and mushrooms in a light sauce or topped with prosciutto and an egg are great meal options for any time of day.

TIP: Make a large batch and place a small piece of parchment between the crepes and freeze. Reheat easily in the oven on low heat or in the microwave for just a 20-30 seconds.

If you’re wondering, no, I still have not been to France, nor have I ventured to Australia. My sister, the youngest of us five, is only 15 and will probably head out before I do at the rate I’m going. However, I get back at them by making crêpes, putting pictures on the internet and then not inviting them over to share. Neener, neener.

5 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup water
2 cups flour
6 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
extra butter for frying

In a blender combine eggs, milk, water, flour and melted butter. Blend until well incorporated, scraping the sides of the blender as necessary. Allow to sit in the fridge for at least an hour but no longer than 36 hours.

When you’re ready to make the crepes, head a medium to large frying pan with rounded sides over medium-high heat. Add in a small tab of butter and immediately once the butter is melted pour in 1-2 ounces of batter, swirling the pan above the burner to coat the bottom evenly. Return the pan to the burner and allow the crepe to cook for 30-45 seconds.

Using a heatproof spatula, lift the edges of the crêpe to unstick them from the sides of the pan. Carefully slide the spatula down the center of the crêpe, lift up and flip to the other side. Allow to cook another 10 seconds or so. Slide the crêpe to a flat surface. (Note: The first crepe usually does not come out of the pan perfectly. Set off to the side and continue on.) Repeat, adding small dabs of butter as necessary.


Makes 25-35 crêpes.
Copyright © Food for My Family.


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Comments

  1. Thanks for the step by step tutorial with photos, Shaina. I’ve been trying to make these at home recently and they seem to turn out more like lefse than crepes, I think I’ll give it another go now!

  2. I am totally going to make these. I’ve been trying to get my mother-in-laws recipe for years and these look just like hers. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I absolutely love crêpes! At my house, we pronounce them “creps”, more like the French. My boys love them, too. Great post!

  4. We love crepes here…and yours look delicious!

  5. We adore making crepes and filling with savory mixtures or sweet ones. On weekends, we make a big batch, then set out yogurt, Nutella, brown sugar, lemon and fresh fruit. Everyone can fill their crepes with whatever combination appeals to them. Such fun!

  6. I haven’t tried making crepe batter in a blender. Sounds easy. I’ll have to give your recipe a try.

  7. My daughter has been obsessed with making crepes since she watched Julia Child make them on PBS.

    I think the blender method sounds easier!

  8. I love making crepes! Yours look perfect!

  9. Such great tips! I really need to make crepes now… I have no excuse!

  10. Jennifer S says:

    Now I know what I’m making for lunch today! Crêpes are so versatile, I think I could eat them nearly every day and not get bored. There is a vendor at one of the Farmer’s Markets near me who sells them for $8 a pop! She must be a millionaire by now.

    You’ll make it to France, Shaina – probably on a work trip if you keep up the quality blogging we all enjoy so much from you! And imagine how much nicer it will be to walk to that crêperie hand-in-hand with Ole than as a lone college kid!

  11. love making crepes Shaina – yours are perfect!! btw – having been a young single parent myself, i want to let you know that your day to travel will come if that is what you dream of doing. i didn’t get to travel until after my sons were grown but it was worth the wait – i spent more than 2 wks in Rome and that one experience opened my eyes to the world and i can’t wait to share that with The Professor who has never left the country. but all that will change in May when we both travel to Germany. raise your children, give them your best, but i promise your time to travel will come!

  12. caroleenat says:

    THANK YOU!! Crepes are one of my favorite foods, yet one that I’m most intimidated to make. You’ve given me courage!! I’m going to try them with a spinach souffle stuffing. Thank you, and neener, neener, indeed~

  13. Yum! Looks delicious. I learned to make crepes while we were in Quebec studying French. I found that it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, just a bit time consuming. My favorite fillings are either nutella with fresh raspberries or ham and cheese.

  14. We love creps, my mother makes for me since I was a child, & I do for my dougther for breakfast almost twice a week.
    Kisses from Spain-Europe

    (please, excuse my bad english, I nearly forget it all)

  15. I just wrote about crepe’s too, I some day want to go to France, I hope you get to go soon, maybe one of your kids can go with school and they’ll need a parent to go too! Get to france soon!!

  16. love some crepes!

  17. thiefraccoon says:

    great recipe! Also, I love the way you write! Your story about wanting to travel and cooking was just gripping to me.

  18. I find using a silicone spatula to release one edgde of crepe then pinch with index finger and thumb with both hands about 4 inches apart and peel crepe off. Trying to release the crepe by using a spatula down the center is surely going to tear through. Just an opinion, but i cook for many so I need to produce, I have not the time to be careful. :)~

  19. I just used this recipe, and my crepes turned out great. The first 3 or 4 were a little funny, but after I got the hang of it, they were beautiful. Thank you for the post!

    • I’m so glad you had success, Marcia! And the first one for me is always kind of a snacking crepe, as it preps the pan for flipping and it generally sticks somewhere or is rather uneven in comparison to the ones that follow.

  20. Yours look Great! i just got back from france, and i am obsessed!!!!!!!! Great job!

  21. Just made these with my dad- tons of fun! And they came out great…after a few lesser great ones on my account haha Great recipe though!

  22. Made these last night, turned out great! Used leftover chicken, some cooked greens, some sweet berries, a cheese sauce, all in different combinations. Oh, and pesto. The batter was perfect and the crepes were so easy. Thank you!

  23. We have lived in Germany since Aug. 2009– I still have not made one single crepe! So glad I came across this recipe.
    My son will be delighted to have these for breakfast on any school day
    instead of waiting to attend a festival. I might add, you truly need to vacation in Europe with your husband. It will be an eye-opening experience on several levels!

  24. You’ve made a very nice tutorial, very helpful! And your crepes look delicious.

    I’ve never made the batter with water, I use only milk. Next time I’ll try this way, I’m curious to see the difference.

    Greetings,

  25. oh man, those look good. i need to do this. i miss the crepes from europe so much!

  26. In France they put nutella and strawberries, and a lot of other different toppings on the crepes, and they are the size of a dinner plate. For one euro! Sooo good

  27. To make limpfree batter by hand, I combine the flour with half the liquids, whisk until limp-free and then add the rest of the milk. Also a pinch of sugar gives a fuller taste. :)

  28. I live in India and it’s hard to get good recipes with ingredients that are available to me, but this one was perfect!! We got some bananas and nutella to put inside and they were delicious! Thanks for posting the recipe!

  29. Wow.. I never thought to make the crepe batter in a blender! Fantastic idea!

  30. I can’t wait to make these! I was planning on buying the special pan, but I’m glad I can use one I already have.

  31. I love crepes!! My favorite since I was a kid are strawberry crepes. I’ve done a post, but love your step by step tutorial!

  32. Made these for dinner tonight – a huge hit! We had a crepe pan from our wedding (many years ago) and I can’t remember the last time I used it. While these were not hard at all to make, I somehow felt like I accomplished something huge. Everyone had a full belly. Adult fillings: swiss cheese, sautéed mushrooms and spinach and caramelized onions. Kid fillings: bananas, ricotta and maple syrup (perhaps a smear of nutella, too). Delish!

  33. i’m SO glad you referenced Alton Brown here!!
    anyway, thanks so much for the extra tips!!

  34. Nummmmmmy. I will certainly have to try these.

  35. I haven’t had a crepe since I was a child. I had a craving for crepes and googled several recipes before deciding on this one. I made these and they came out perfect! Everybody loved them. I loved them three days in a row….yes, I made a lot. Thanks for the easy instructions.

  36. Hi I’m planning on making these for my school’s homecoming picnic and I was wondering if you had any idea of how much it would cost to make just one batch?

  37. I like to use beer instead of water

  38. Great recipe, I’ll surely try it! Thanks for sharing!

  39. I loved the tutorial but I loved even more your story. I do want to meet the world but my “reality” isn’t helping, but I think as you do: you can meet the world and enjoy it without going outside!!! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  40. In norway, that is how we make pancakes. So we would say crepes = pancakes, and pancakes = american pancakes. When I make them, I only use milk, flour and eggs though.

  41. whaoo your story is so cute and the your way you put everything together is better than most recipe websites i come across! a true pioneer amidst your circumstances! congrats!

  42. I’ve never made crepes before, but you’ve inspired me to give it a try! Your beautiful photos and simple recipe make it seem very approachable!!

  43. This is fantastic – I’ve been looking for a good recipe for ages! Thanks

  44. Fantastic Recipe :)

  45. wow

  46. I just made these and they were both easy and delicious! I do not know why I waited so long to make them. I used a strawberry hazlenut filling.

  47. This post is genuinely a good one it helps new internet visitors, who are wishing in favor of
    blogging.

  48. YAAAAS. I am always buying crepes on campus, now I can make some at home!

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