Yeast Pancakes – Polish Racuchy That Taste Like Doughnuts

By 1 year ago


Do you like doughnuts?

If I asked such a question, most of us would react: who doesn’t?! But if I asked if you have ever made them, probably very few would answer positively.

Why? Because donut preparation is seen as difficult and time-consuming. I have made them many times and know the process is simple. However, you do need a few spare hours.

So here comes the good news: if you would like to have the homemade donut experience but only have a little time to spare, you can make Polish Racuchy – Yeast Pancakes that taste just like donuts. Jump to Recipe


Origin of Polish Fluffy Pancakes – Racuchy

Racuchy are a beloved dish enjoyed in Poland for generations. Their origins can be traced back to traditional Polish cuisine. It features many delicious dishes passed down through families for centuries.

And while these Polish pancakes with yeast have many variations, the basic ingredients usually include flour, eggs, milk, sugar and yeast.

The name “racuchy” probably comes from the Polish word “raczyć,” which means “to treat” or “to indulge.” And it is really a perfect name, as racuchy are often seen as a special treat.

They are enjoyed on special occasions for dessert, as a weekend breakfast or …made by grandmas for their grandchildren as probably no kid wouldn’t want them.


Can These Yeast Pancakes Substitute Doughnuts?

The ingredients required to make these yeast raised pancakes are almost the same as the ones for doughnuts. However, the preparation is so much easier and faster!

When you make donuts, you have to beat the eggs with sugar for a long time, knead the dough even longer, and then spend quite a while forming and frying them.

In the case of racuchy, you can mix almost everything with a wooden spoon, and no kneading is necessary! Forming and frying is also much easier and shorter.

But what about the taste?

The yeast pancakes do taste similar to doughnuts. They are golden and crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, with a subtle sweetness that makes them a crowd-pleaser. However, their texture is slightly heavier than doughnuts.

Racuchy are pretty thick but flattened because they are not deep-fried like donuts. So you don’t stuff them with filling. But you can serve them with so many delicious accompaniments. You can eat them with your favourite jam, honey, chocolate, or powdered sugar to get this instant donut experience.


Alternative versions of Yeast Pancakes

The above serving suggestions are great. But you can alter the pancakes already during the preparation.

One of the most popular types of racuchy is made with apples, a staple fruit in Polish cuisine. You make these Polish apple pancakes by mixing the dough with grated apples. Then you serve them with a dusting of powdered sugar or a drizzle of honey.

Another popular variation is racuchy made with blueberries, raisins, rhubarb or even savoury ingredients like cheese and herbs.

You can also experiment with different toppings and flavourings to make them even more exciting.

Add a dash of cinnamon or vanilla extract to the batter for a more flavorful twist. Alternatively, drizzle them with honey, maple syrup, or chocolate sauce for a decadent treat. Or – for a healthier option – serve them with fresh fruit, compote or fruit in jelly.


Tips for Making Perfect Fluffy Pancakes

If you would like to make sure your racuchy will be fluffy, golden and delicious, you will have to remember a few essential points:

  • Make sure the milk is warm but not too hot. If it’s too hot, it will kill the yeast, and the batter won’t rise properly.
  • The batter must rise, i.e. double its volume. It can take between 45 and 90 minutes, depending on the room temperature. In winter months, I usually heat my oven to approx. 35- 40C, turn it off and put the bowl with the dough there.
  • Use a non-stick frying pan to prevent the pancakes from sticking to the pan.
  • To form pancakes and make placing them on a pan easier, dip a tablespoon in hot water, then scoop the dough and drop it onto the frying pan. You will have to repeat the dipping in hot water each time you want to make another pancake so that the dough does not stick to the spoon and easily comes out of it.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan. Cook the pancakes in small batches so they have enough space to expand.
  • Ensure the oil is hot when you place the pancakes on the frying pan; otherwise, they will absorb too much oil and be greasy.
  • Fry them on medium heat. If the heat is too high, the outside will burn, but the inside will still be raw.
  • When unsure if your batch of homemade pancakes is cooked inside, insert a skewer and check the same way you test your cakes for doneness.


Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Are Polish racuchy the same as American pancakes?

No, they are different. They are pancakes with yeast instead of baking powder, which gives them a slightly tangy flavour but also helps achieve very fluffy pancakes. They are also smaller and thicker than American pancakes.

2. Can I make these Polish pancakes without yeast but with baking powder or baking soda instead?

No, yeast is an essential ingredient in racuchy. It makes them rise and gives them their characteristic texture and flavour. However, you could use instant yeast instead.

3. How do I store leftover yeast pancakes?

They taste best when they are fresh and hot. But if you have leftover pancakes, you can store them in the fridge and reheat them in the microwave before serving. They will lose their crispiness but still be nice and fluffy.



Polish racuchy or yeast pancakes are a delicious breakfast option or a treat that will satisfy your sweet tooth. They are easy to make and taste like donuts. You can make these fluffy but crispy pancakes with the right ingredients in no time.

So, why not give them a try? Your taste buds will thank you!


Yeast Pancakes - Polish Racuchy That Taste Like Doughnuts

Agnieszka Weiner
Made with simple ingredients such as flour, eggs, milk, sugar, and yeast, Polish Racuchy or Yeast Pancakes are easy to make and can be served as a dessert or a breakfast treat. And the best part is that they taste just like doughnuts!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Polish
Servings 22 small pancakes
Calories 126 kcal


  • 450 g plain flour
  • 30 g fresh yeast (or 15 g dry yeast*)
  • 0.25 tsp salt
  • 1-2 tbsps sugar
  • 375 ml warm milk
  • 1 egg
  • 6 tbsps oil for frying


  • Sift the all purpose flour into a mixing bowl, add a pinch salt and stir. Make a well in the middle, crumble fresh yeast* into the hollow, cover it with sugar, and pour approx. 125ml warm milk. Cover with a towel and leave in a warm place for 10-15 minutes.
  • When the leaven has risen after that time, add the rest of the milk and egg, and mix with a wooden spoon for 3-5 minutes till the dough is smooth and without lumps of flour. (You can also use an electric mixer).
  • Leave for 45-90 minutes in a warm place to rise and double in volume.
  • Warm up 1-2 tablespoons of oil on medium heat in a big non-stick pan.
  • Prepare a cup of hot water.
  • Dip a tablespoon in hot water, then scoop the dough and drop it onto the frying pan. Repeat until you place 4-7 pancakes (depending on the pan size) on the frying pan. Fry on medium heat for about 2-3 minutes on each side until the racuchy are golden brown.
  • When done, transfer to a plate covered with a paper towel sheet.
  • Serve with honey, jam, icing sugar or your favorite pancake topping.


* If you use dry yeast, you do not need to make a leaven; simply mix it with flour.


Serving: 1 pancakeCalories: 126kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 3gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.02gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 37mgPotassium: 59mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 39IUVitamin C: 0.001mgCalcium: 26mgIron: 1mg
Keyword fluffy pancakes, pancakes, racuchy, yeast pancakes
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