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Trader Joe’s Pancake Bread Copycat Recipe

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If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

GOOD OLE TRADER JOE’S. The newest obsession: PANCAKE BREAD.

They certainly know how to start a trend and the hype for all their products is real.

And what is so astounding is that they don’t do any advertising. AT ALL.

Everything is word of mouth.

Every new product of theirs that’s “viral” or has people scrambling to their local stores to seek out is all word of mouth.

From cauliflower gnocchi to everything bagel seasoning to now this pancake bread.

I was intrigued because everyone was saying how good it was but I hadn’t been able to find it at my local Trader Joe’s.

I finally tracked it down and bought two loaves of pancake bread because why not?

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

So, I can see why everyone is obsessed.

I got a Trader Joe’s insider pro tip at the register.

The team member told me that the pancake bread is best when it’s warm and heated up.

I popped a few slices into the toaster oven when I got home and it was epic.

It was a little toasty/crusty on the outside but still warm and tender on the inside.

There was a subtle hint of maple syrup but it wasn’t overpowering.

I wouldn’t say it tasted exactly like a pancake but I can see the resemblance.

I knew I had to recreate this.

One, because not everyone has a Trader Joe’s locally and two, I actually had a bunch of people message me on Instagram asking me if I could try to recreate it.

I must say, my pancake bread copycat is pretty similar.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Trader Joe’s in any way whatsoever. They didn’t pay me to talk about this (why would they? I feel like they would want to keep selling their pancake bread haha)

This is also not “their” recipe. I didn’t call them up and ask for it.

I developed this based on my knowledge of baking and what I’ve used in past recipes for the crumb layer.

Trader Joe’s owns the right to their name and everything associated with “Trader Joe’s.”

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

What is pancake bread?

As Trader Joe’s packaging says, it is a “twist on a buttermilk stack, baked into a sweet moist loaf.”

Does it taste like a pancake?

Okay, so we PERSONALLY think that it tastes like a sweet, tender, coffee cake texture with a hint of maple syrup and sweetened cornbread flavor.

So, definitely not like a stack of pancakes.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

What is the batter like?

It actually resembles pancake batter.

Thick, velvetty, and ribbon-like when you hold the spatula in the air.

How do you get mile high crumb?

You literally pile it on.

The crumb mixture makes a lot but you definitely use majority of it.

You have to use majority of it because a lot of it gets ‘swallowed’ by the batter during baking.

I don’t have buttermilk, can I use regular milk?

You can make your own!

For every 1 cup of regular milk, add 1 tablespoon of regular white vinegar to it.

Stir then let it sit for 5 minutes and you’ll have buttermilk!

Why did you use malt powder?

I was reading the ingredient list on the package and it said there was malt barley flour.

It did taste a bit malty/butterscotchy so I decided it couldn’t hurt to add in the malt powder.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

My crumbs got swallowed by the batter during baking

The crumb layer was too thin.

You need to pile it on at least three or four layers thick.

Why does it take so long to bake?

Because it is DENSE!

And because all that crumb mixture on top weighs down the cake so it will take a bit for it poof up and cook.

But also it bakes at a low temperature.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

Why does it bake at such a low temperature?

Because I noticed that if you bake it at a high temperature, the exterior gets really dark and sometimes will have a burned taste.

The low temperature ensures it bakes through but also doesn’t scorch the exterior.

How do I prevent it from burning?

If the top of your pancake bread is getting really dark, you can tent the top of it with foil for the remainder of the baking process.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

What kind of loaf pan should I use?

A 9×5″ nonstick loaf pan is best.

Glass could work too.

Just make sure you line either with parchment paper and grease it well so the loaf releases easily.

How long will this keep?

Up to five days.

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

How should this be eaten?

With zero self control, LOL

I 100% recommend eating the pancake bread warm and 30 minutes out of the oven.

However, for leftover slices, pop it into the toaster oven at 325 degrees for 5 minutes and it’ll be just like fresh out of the oven again!

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

Other copycat bread recipes that you may like:

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb!

Pin this pancake bread recipe for later:

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb! #traderjoes #traderjoescopycat #pancakebread #breadrecipe #bread #recipes

If you love Trader Joe's pancake bread and can't find it or aren't near a Trader Joe's — don't fret. You can make your own pancake bread at home! It's tender, moist, and FULL of crumb! #traderjoes #traderjoescopycat #pancakebread #breadrecipe #bread #recipes

Trader Joe's Pancake Bread Copycat Recipe

Not near a Trader Joe's or your local Trader Joe's has run out of pancake bread? Don't fret! Make your own loaf at home!
4.88 from 8 votes
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Author: Julie Chiou
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Ingredients 

For the crumb topping:

  • cup granulated sugar
  • cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt

For the bread batter:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ cup malted milk powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
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Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and line a 9x5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper overhanging on either side. Lightly spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together all the ingredients of the topping. It will resemble coarse crumbs that are pea-shaped with various sizes (some will be powdery and some will form into balls). As long as when you take some into the palm of your hands and firmly grasp it, it holds it shape, it is all good. Set aside. 
  • In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, malt powder, and salt.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, or a regular bowl with a hand mixer, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time and mixing after each addition. Add the buttermilk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract and mix together.
  • Pour half the dry mixture into the wet ingredient bowl and mix until no flour remains. Pour the remaining dry mixture into the bowl and mix until just incorporated.
  • Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan. Top with the crumb topping in an even, thick layer. You'll think there is far too much but there is never far too much, haha. Don't press/push it down into the batter. Just let it sit on top.
    Place the loaf pan on top of a large baking sheet in case the crumb mixture spills over during baking.
    Bake for 90-100 minutes, OR until a wooden toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Please note: ovens all vary in hotness. Some will need longer, some will need shorter. Just keep an eye on it. If you notice the edges are getting very brown, tent the pan with foil for the remainder of baking. The exterior of the bread will be slightly darker in color than normal because of the sugar and butter content in the bread :)
  • Let cool for 15 minutes then run a knife around the edges then carefully lift out the loaf by the two sides of parchment paper and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Slice, serve, and enjoy!

Video

Recipe Notes

For the malted milk powder: I used the Carnation brand. You can use Ovaltine but make sure it is not chocolate and it says malt powder on it. I do not recommend omitting it; however, if you do omit it, you may need to replace that omission with more flour.

YOUR NOTES

NUTRITION FACTS

Serving: 1 slice | Calories: 587 kcal | Carbohydrates: 82 g | Protein: 7 g | Fat: 25 g | Fiber: 2 g | Sugar: 44 g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bread, pancake

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Recipe Rating




Deb

Saturday 1st of January 2022

Hi, it is 18 degrees out today and we have snow/ice on our roads so I was looking for something warm and comforting to make today or tomorrow for a New Year's treat. I came across your recipe and want to make it, NOW. I don't have any malt flour or Ovaltine however, does this mean I should wait until the roads thaw and I can buy some (and be very sad today) or is there a substitute? Sounds so wonderful, thanks for any ideas.

Julie Chiou

Tuesday 11th of January 2022

so sorry for my delay, had a bit of a personal emergency. i hope you were able to make this; for future reference, i would definitely try to find the malt flour/ovaltine! it gives the bread its unique flavor.

No name

Thursday 28th of October 2021

Why didn’t you just use the malted barley flour like they did instead of malted milk powder? Your reasoning doesn’t make sense if malted barley flour already exists and is the reason for the butterscotch flavor.

Colleen

Saturday 14th of May 2022

@No name, why not give us your name? Surely we should all be following YOU for your epicurean brilliance! Why so modest?

Julie Chiou

Thursday 28th of October 2021

because it's far easier for readers to find malted milk powder than malted barley flour. they can also have multiple uses for malted milk powder than they would malted barley flour. the goal for all my recipes is to be easily accessible and use ingredients that you don't have to buy for 1 recipe only. i know this because my readers have expressed this type of sentiment/feedback so it's something i keep in mind when developing recipes. but please, continue to tell me how i should be developing recipes and how to make my reasonings for ingredient usage make sense to you!

Debra McCafferty

Tuesday 19th of October 2021

Could the Trader Joe pancake bread be made into muffins?

Julie Chiou

Wednesday 20th of October 2021

that would be a great idea! i haven't tried myself but please let us know if you do!

Rebecca R

Wednesday 12th of May 2021

Hi! I hope you will see since it’s been awhile. I made this and the crumble melted into the bread. I melted the butter and made it as instructed. Could I be doing something wrong?

Julie Chiou

Saturday 15th of May 2021

also, in the blog post itself there's a section where it addresses this..i think you might have made the crumb layer too thin...it needs to be piled on! hope this helps

Julie Chiou

Saturday 15th of May 2021

hi, this sometimes can happen because the batter will take it with it when it bakes. to combat this, you could either bake it halfway without the crumb or make more crumb so it piles up more.

Cari Ann Bird

Tuesday 3rd of November 2020

I am so excited to try this! We don’t live near a a Trader Joe’s and my husband lives this bread. Any tips on how to adjust this for high altitude? We are at about 7000 altitude....

Julie Chiou

Thursday 5th of November 2020

i am not familiar with high altitude baking but my friend over here has a guide! https://mountainmamacooks.com/high-altitude/