Today’s Post: Our Best Pancakes, Attitude, & Mules



Today I’m bringing you our very favorite recipe for pancakes. My husband and kids have declared these the best pancakes on earth and I have to agree that they are the best I’ve personally ever had, mostly thanks to buttermilk being one of the primary ingredients! I hope you’ll get a chance to try and enjoy them soon. But first, my tangent. Sit back and get comfy, I got my soap box out for this one!

Life was hard for my ancestors, especially for my great grandmother, Lela, as a sharecropper. They awakened each day to work from sunup until sundown in the fields, kids included. Going to school was a treat not so much because they were eager to learn but because it meant they got to take a break from farming. Lela often didn’t know where the next meal was coming from and had to make do with what few staples she had on hand as any money paid to her husband seldom made it back home.

Grandmama says some days they’d come in so tired from the fields that they’d walk into the house and just fall asleep on the first spot of empty floor they came to. Lela would get a bowl of water and a rag and go around and wash the dirt off of their feet, letting them rest before waking them up and sending them to crowd into one bed for the night.

If anyone ever had a right to throw a big old pity party it was the people I came from, which makes their example all the more important to me. You see, Lela never complained. She woke up each morning with a smile on her face, humming a little tune as she went about preparing a simple breakfast of biscuits and gravy – because there was seldom any meat. But no one looked at that breakfast and said “Oh, just biscuits and gravy.” Instead their attitude was “Isn’t it wonderful that we can have biscuits and gravy.”

Their attitudes were always positive, always hopeful, and always grateful for what little they had. They had the ability to look at the cotton field as it was blazed beneath the Alabama sun and think to themselves “Aren’t we lucky that we have this field to tend and food on the table?” They could walk into the shack house and think “Isn’t it wonderful that we have this roof over our heads?”.

Their happiness was not dependent upon a set of ideal circumstances,

it was entirely dependent on their own attitudes and how they willingly chose to look at life.

I cannot think of a finer legacy to have been given or a more important one to pass on to my children.

I have always felt strongly that my attitude affects everyone I come into contact with and so I try to give each person I meet my best whenever possible. As a result, I’m often asked how I stay so positive. Folks seem to think it’s something you’re either born with or not. Usually if they’ve tended to lean towards negative thinking they dismiss the possibility of ever being positive as something that just unattainable to them. This is where I often have to sit down and give folks my “happiness is a choice” pep talk.

You see, no one is born positive, being positive takes work. Sometimes even the most positive people in the world have spells of negativity. We all have down days and I’m no different, but I’ve worked hard through the years in order to be able to see it for what it is, a phase I go through from time to time, and remain objective. Still, it’s a struggle and I’ve never had nor heard of an easy win.

Just as I looked to my parents and grandparents as examples of looking on the bright side of life during times of distress, I have spent some time studying others who have clearly battled these down swings and yet still came out to be considered positive thinkers. One of my favorite people to study for this very reason is Winston Churchill.

Churchill suffered from depressive spells so prevalent in his life that he took to calling it his little black dog. When going through a bout he’d simply say, “My little black dog is following me around “

I like that. I like how he gave it a name and set it apart from himself, it’s a way to own it, identify it, but make the statement that this is not a result of my life but rather an event within my life – a speed bump or a pothole.

I liked Mr. Churchill’s idea so much that I decided to do something similar. Rather than a little black dog, something I can’t help but see as cute and friendly, I’ve decided mine is an old gray mule and I’ve named him Abner. Now, like most mules I’ve ever heard of, to say Abner is stubborn would be an understatement. Abner is persistent, honery, and when he wants attention he’s gonna neigh and bray until he gets his way.

For me, this is part of the natural cycle of things. I think we all have times in which we need to allow our pendulum to swing the other way. I used to look at these negative spells as meaning I’d failed myself in not thinking positively enough, but now I see it as more of a recovery process, a time to heal. You see, on normal days I push myself. I try to be all things to all people and I work very hard at it. The only time I really slow down is when Abner is around. Abner and I take long walks and sleep a little more, we go to bed early and try to do things to pull me out of my funk.

When Abner is with me, it’s raining and when it’s raining my heart just naturally sets to looking for a rainbow.

Abner would like nothing more than for me to just saddle him up and parade him right down the middle of main street, but I’m not going to give him that kind of power. Instead, I keep him separate from myself and call him for what he is. Rather than say “Oh, I’m depressed, my life must be horrible.” I just say “Well, I reckon Abner needs a bit of attention.” So I let him out of the barn, walk him around the yard and spend a little time with him as needed until it comes time to send the old mule back where he belongs.

No one is born happy and very few of us are naturally inclined towards optimism. It is a process, a training, and a decision we make. Some folks may have to seek medical help and that’s okay too. The fact is, I think we all have a mule.

The difference between positive and negative thinkers is who feeds their mule in the barn and who sets a place for him at the dinner table.

~steps down off her soap box and swings it over her shoulder by its little rope handle~

And now on to pancakes…


You’ll need: Buttermilk, Baking Soda, Two Eggs, Salt, Vegetable Oil (or butter), Plain Flour, and some Sugar.

The sugar isn’t pictured because you only need a smidgen of it and I didn’t want to put the whole big honking sugar canister in the pic.

I also made these a little before six this morning and five pounds of sugar weighs more before the sun comes up.


Pour enough oil in a skillet to cover the bottom.

I’m using a cast iron skillet  but you can just use a regular one if you like. The oil is going to give our pancakes a nice crispy outer layer, which is delicious! You can also use melted butter or margarine in place of oil if you like.


In a large mixing bowl, place your flour. Add salt.


And baking soda.


Add sugar


Stir to combine.


Add in your eggs and buttermilk.

Here is a hint for anyone new to Southern style cooking: If it has buttermilk in the ingredients, it’s gonna be good!

You can make your own buttermilk by adding one tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to a cup of whole milk. Let it sit for five minutes before using. Since this recipe calls for two cups buttermilk, you’ll need to add two tablespoons to two cups whole milk, of course.

Ooh, I just did math and it isn’t even ten yet. I’m gonna have a headache later for that…


Stir that up until well combined. It will still be lumpy but that’s normal.


I use a 1/4 Cup measuring cup to add my batter to the heated skillet.


It should sizzle really good as soon as your batter hits the oil.


Sometimes I need to spread my batter out a bit with a spatula.


See how it is sizzling around the edges and little bubbles are appearing on the top?

You want to cook it for a minute or two before flipping, wait until the edges appear dry and the top is covered in little bubbles.


FLIP and continue cooking until browned on the other side.


Serve with lots of syrup…


to the delight of young and old!

(umm, but I’m not quite sure if Ricky is young or old, but I reckon in our house he would be old. Either way, he looked hungry so I fed him)

Our Best Pancakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Cups Buttermilk*
  • Vegetable oil, butter, or margarine for cooking pancakes in
  1. Place enough oil or butter in the bottom of a skillet to coat it. Put on stove eye and heat on medium heat while you prepare the batter.
  2. In large mixing bowl, stir together all dry ingredients.
  3. Add eggs and buttermilk, stir until well combined. Batter will be lumpy.
  4. Drop by ¼ cup fulls into heated oil and cook on medium heat until edges appear dry and top is covered in bubbles, flip and continue cooking until browned on both sides.
  5. Serve warm with syrup!


This makes excellent waffles as well!

*To make your own buttermilk for this recipe, add two tablespoons lemon juice or vinegar to two cups whole milk. Allow to sit for five minutes before using.




I had to share some pics of my kids today. They are just getting more and more adorable.

(Of course, I’m not the least bit biased)

This is Brady and Katy at his Boy Scouts Blue And Gold Banquet.

Katy is holding the class bear, Booker Bear, because he came to stay with us for the weekend!


Brady and I made a cake together for a cake decorating contest celebrating the 100th Birthday of Boy Scouts..





Way to go, Braybo!

(the face painting is from a Webelo ceremony)


Katy Rose and Booker Bear at the gas station.

Well, now all we need is a photo of me and we’ll have the whole family in this post…


Here I am with my little Zoe. She’s a lab mix we adopted from the Humane Society last month.

She’s almost four years old and the sweetest baby!


I love my family.

When life gives you a 100 reasons to cry,

show life that you have 1000 reasons to smile.

~Submitted by IPlayOutsideTheBox. Submit your quote here.


Follow me on Twitter

Subscribe to Southern Plate by email for emails from me each time I post a new recipe and printer friendly versions of recipes in your inbox!


Enjoy This Post? Never Miss Another!

Subscribe to Christy's email list and receive all her new posts directly in your inbox


  1. says

    Thanks Christie, you can get on that soapbox any ol time as far as I’m concerned. I really needed to hear that today – been strugglin’ with the attitude lately. Am always impressed by your positive attitude. You are a good example to me and probably countless others.

  2. says

    Christy, your posts are always a ray of sunshine in my day. I follow many food blogs on Facebook and Pinterest, but yours is the only one that nourishes my soul as well… :-)

    Quick question: How many pancakes does this recipe yield? We’re only 2 of us at home so our ideal is about 8 or 9 pancakes. Should I halve the recipe?

  3. Maryam says

    Christy, I too, love your recipes with a message :) Since my little one does not like syrup, I use brown sugar with a dash of cinnamon instead of white sugar when making it at home. Your pancakes do bring optimism! I make them at work on occasion and before you know it, I’ve gone through 18 eggs and all of my buttermilk. Being served breakfast at work takes my coworkers by surprise and hopefully brightens their day.

  4. Molly Lindell says

    Christy you’re so funny and encouraging. I’ve been on meds for depression for a long time and I still have to work at staying happy and connected. In your reading about Sir Winston did you find the initials he used when his black dog was with him? KBO. It stands for “keep buggering on”. British and a little crude but I’ve taken to saying that to myself when I feel like hiding in a closet and sleeping. Thanks for a wonderful blog and all the great recipes.

  5. Jean says

    Thank you for sharing…I have been having anxiety due to a bad choice I have made…with God’s help I am making it one day at a time but it is still hard. Your posts have been a up lifting help for me.

    Thank you again and have a blessed day!

  6. Paula says

    My husband is a funny creature. He ONLY likes Snoqualmie Falls pancake mix. I was raised on homemade using cornmeal, wheat flour etc. He tolerates those, barely. I made these for him and he absolutely loved them. Hooray…I can quit with the package mix now. We get milk from a local farm and so skim the cream for butter and then I have the buttermilk for the pancakes, biscuits, etc. I am thrilled. Thank you for sharing…not only your recipes but your family, your joy and the Hope that is in you.

  7. Kimberly Pavish says

    Thank you! Thank you! I was looking for your pancake recipe and came across a double blessing! I enjoy your commentary and naming the “old mule, Abner”. How perfect in description. I also was most uplifted by your family story of perseverance in very tough times. It is so encouraging to me to remember there is always a choice. I am from the Pacific Northwest but have lived in the Carolina’s for 25 years. The Lord has blessed me with a lovely southern husband from the mountains of North Carolina. For 5 years I have looked for a “chocolate gravy” recipe and just found yours. His church has an Easter morning breakfast where I tried this delicacy. My step daughter adores it. I can now surprise them with it. Thank you for this additional blessing! Thank you for all your recipes, I have tried many. And your commentary is a blessing as well!

  8. Eva says

    Thanks for the reminder Christy, I have bouts of depression which actually have gotten better over the years, but they still show up. I found they have almost totally gone since I started supplemental vitamin D, along with the sunburn which happened in under 10 minutes. But I have spent many years telling myself that things will get better, and they usually do. Never thought to name it though, but I like mules so that’s out! LOL
    And thanks for the pancake recipe, will give it a go this weekend, but will have to get a jug of milk first! Don’t drink the stuff, so its hard to make buttermilk without it, I shall have to look for the powdered buttermilk. That lasts years.

    • Brenda says

      Hello Christy,
      I made my second batch of Craving Beans,the first batch I made,were good,I did cheat a little and added some Pineapple, and a touch of garlic…Oh My they were good…so I denied that Iwas craving them….but the next day, I had them for (dinner) Lunch and also for (Dinner) Supper..I have always had Dinner (noon meal) and Supper ( Evening) meal…then I had them one more Noon Meal..before I put them in the freezer, that way I did not admit how good they were…the second batch I have eaten only one time…but there is tomorrow, after Church… Also I like the Pancake recipe…I agree if it has buttermilk in it cannot wrong…course I always say if you have WD-40 & Duck Tape, you can fix anything…I will try the Pancakes…I also read what you said about being positive, but will comment on that later….hope you have a great week..can’t wait for your apple recipes…

  9. Jen says

    I had a pancake craving this morning and so made these for breakfast. They were awesome. Your recipes are always a sure thing. Thank you for another great one. I halved the recipe since it was only me eating them this time. I plan to make your quick stir fry recipe this week too. God bless.

  10. Jane Foster says

    This pancake recipe is delicious. We seldom cook them but when we want them, we want them to taste as we remembered as kids. Thank you for all of the research you’ve done to provide us with Your Best! Do appreciate your recipes on FB.
    God Bless.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *