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(Photo courtesy of Blue Willow)

The Best Pancakes in Tucson

Updated March 5, 2024

Are you a pancake aficionado looking for the fluffiest, most mouth-watering pancakes in Tucson? Look no further! We’ve scoured the city’s breakfast spots and diners, from down home to upscale, to bring you a curated list of the best pancakes in Tucson. From classic buttermilk stacks to innovative creations that push the culinary envelope, our guide covers it all.

Learn how we create our guides here.

The Snickerdoodle Pancake at Baja Cafe (Photo credit: Jackie Tran)

Baja Cafe – Broadway

Foodie Favorite:

“Baja Cafe is a must! The blueberry pancake must have a pint of fresh blueberries in it and it’s as big as the plate.”

Baja Cafe offers inventive breakfast and brunch dishes, and you better believe that includes their pancakes, too.

Grab yourself a Pineapple Express, loaded with pockets of orange brown sugar butter and pineapple chunks, or a Two Pan Sam Lemon Blueberry (emphasis on the blueberry).

For some of us, the Snickerdoodle Pancake is the way to go. It’s huge and rich, topped with a vanilla bean cream cheese glaze and covered in a snowstorm of cinnamon sugar.

a picture of syrup being poured on a pancake
(Photo courtesy of Blue Willow)

Blue Willow Restaurant & Gift Shop

Foodie Favorite:
Max Wingert

“That Cinnamon Roll pancake is straight up dangerous. I’m not saying I licked the plate, but…I’m not NOT saying that, either.”

Blue Willow is renowned for house made comfort food, including an impressive breakfast menu served until 3pm every day.

Grab one of their plate-sized pancakes which come in either the Buttermilk or Cinnamon Roll variety, the latter filled with cinnamon sugar and topped with cream cheese icing. Whichever way you go, don’t forget to load it up with add-ons — blueberries, chocolate chips, Nutella, you name it!

a chocolate chip pancake sprinkled with powdered sugar
Chocolate chip pancake goodness! (Photo courtesy of Bobo's Restaurant)

Bobo’s Restaurant

Bobo’s is a local favorite known for its homey atmosphere and generous portions. Their pancakes are no exception.

Get a short stack of classic buttermilk or grab a giant specialty pancake or two (chocolate chip, banana, apple, or blueberry) — but be careful, they’re almost bigger than the plate they’re served on.

For extra pizzazz, add chopped pecans to any pancake or turn it into a hearty meal with eggs, sausage, and bacon.

a bowl of food on a plate
(Photo courtesy of Cafe a la C'art)

Cafe a la C’art

Nestled within the historic Stevens House, Cafe a la C’Art is more than just a cafe; it’s a culinary experience that combines art and food in a beautiful setting. Their pancakes are a work of art in themselves, made with high-quality ingredients and a touch of culinary flair.

For those looking for something a bit different, their seasonal pancake specials often feature unique ingredients, so you’ll have to keep coming back to find out what’s new.

(Photo Courtesy of Cafe Santa Rosa)

Cafe Santa Rosa

Cafe Santa Rosa offers a fusion of traditional American and Native American cuisine. They make everything from scratch, and use indigenous ingredients whenever possible.

The pancakes themselves, which come in plain, blueberry, or banana pecan versions, are warm, fluffy, and delicious. Order the combination plate and you’ll get two of them with eggs, potatoes, and either sausage or bacon.

a plate of food with a slice of cake on a table
(Photo courtesy of El Chinito Gordo)

El Chinito Gordo

El Chinito Gordo is a fusion restaurant that combines Mexican and Asian flavors. If you’re seeking something nontraditional, the Tequila Pancakes are a must-try. Made with a blend of traditional pancake batter and, yes, a shot of tequila, they offer a delightful kick. Topped with whipped cream, powdered sugar, and fruit, they go great with, say, a Prickly Pear Meximosa or even some fish tacos.

a picture of pancakes
(Photo courtesy of Five Points Market)

5 Points Market & Restaurant

Five Points is a trendy, farm-to-table restaurant that prides itself on using locally sourced ingredients. Their pancakes are no exception, made fresh with organic flour, clarified butter, Saigon cinnamon, and natural syrup. Add berries, bananas, and/or toasted walnuts if you like, or leave it simple and fluffy.

Watch out for special and seasonal offerings that keep the menu exciting and ever-changing!

a plate of food on a table
Pancakes at Frank's (Photo by Isaac Stockton)

Frank’s Restaurant

Foodie Favorite:
Sam Jump

“The pancakes at Frank’s take me back to mornings at my grandma’s. Those crispy edges and fluffy centers, perfect for collecting that melted butter to ensure no bite gets skimped, leaving me longing only for music videos from the 90’s in the background.”

With a claim to some of the best breakfast in Tucson for over four decades, Frank’s provides the American diner experience with a Mexican twist. Their pancakes are thick, fluffy, and large enough to only be served one or two at a time (with blueberries or without).

Throw some bacon or hashbrowns on the side, grab a cup of Joe, and dig in!

a plate of food and a cup of coffee
Pancakes at Joe's Pancake House (Photo by Mark Whittaker)

Joe’s Pancake House

No matter what scope of pay grade, theological leanings, or political preference, a good old-fashioned coffee shop is a place of refuge for everybody. It’s just that feeling of walking in, being greeted by a friendly staff that has the patina of having worked there long before you received your driver’s license, booths filled with locals and travelers tucked deep into hearty plates of comforting goodness and the ever-present counter.

a close up of food on a plate
(Photo courtesy of Gourmet Girls)

Gourmet Girls Gluten Free Bakery/Bistro

Whether or not you have strict dietary restrictions, you’ll enjoy Gourmet Girls’ gluten-free pancakes. They use their own special batter that doesn’t compromise on flavor. Try their regular pancakes, blueberry pancakes, or, best of all, a Pancake Sandwich with sausage and eggs.

They’re only too happy to accommodate food allergies, so don’t hesitate to ask.

a group of people sitting at a table in a room
(Photo courtesy of Happy Rooster Cafe)

Happy Rooster Cafe

Happy Rooster Cafe is a charming, family-owned spot known for its friendly service and farm-fresh ingredients. Their pancakes are a local favorite, made from scratch daily, and can be ordered with blueberries, pecans, or even bacon.

Mmm….Bacon Cakes….

a bowl of food on a plate
(Photo courtesy of Le Buzz Caffe)

Le Buzz

The European-style Le Buzz Caffe offers an incredible all-day breakfast menu. Their pancakes are a sophisticated affair, featuring high-quality ingredients. Although the buttermilk pancakes are good, we recommend the Blue Corn Blueberry Buckwheat pancakes: Hearty and healthy, with a slightly crunchy texture, these bad boys are beautiful.

a dog sitting on a chair


Foodie Favorite:
Shane Reiser

“The cinnamon roll pancake at Nook is the fluffiest, sweetest, and most delightful pancake in Tucson. They ran it as a special once and everybody demanded it, so they put it on the menu. I daydream about this pancake.”

A modern, cozy eatery that specializes in American comfort food with a contemporary twist, Nook offers some of the best pancakes in Tucson (although they call them griddle cakes) — soft and sweet, stacked up so you can chow down.

The only catch is you have to decide between Cinnamon Roll or Chocolate Chip griddle cakes…and they’re both too dang delicious.

food on a table
(Photo courtesy of Toast 101)

Toast 101

Toast 101 is a trendy breakfast and lunch spot that offers everything from French toast to burgers to bacon boards.

Their pancake options are some of the most unusual and decadent we’ve seen. We’re talking Fruity Pebble Pancakes, Oreo Pancakes, Maple Roasted Pecan, Churro, and for St. Patty’s Day, Lucky Charm Pancakes!

Can’t decide? Not to worry — you can even design your own Pancake Flight! I know, right?

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