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Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes

Vegan Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes with healthy chia seeds and zesty lemon are thick, fluffy, and tender. They’re a deliciously quick and easy way to start your day!

head on view of maple syrup being poured on lemon chia seed pancakes stacked on a small plate.

I’ve been making a lot of breakfast foods lately. My daughter is getting back to school, and I try to do different things in the mornings.

We love pancakes and mix it up with these Vegan Oatmeal PancakesVegan Pumpkin Spice PancakesVegan Buckwheat PancakesClassic Vegan Pancakes, or Cinnamon Applesauce Pancakes. All are filling and equally delicious!

Honestly, I’ve never had lemon poppy seed pancakes before, but I’m sure this chia seed version is just as good, if not better. This vegan version is healthy, dairy – and egg-free, and comes together fast so you can get on with your day!

Chia seeds are a healthy replacement for poppy seeds in this pancake recipe. They provide extra nutrition and a little added crunch. Chia seeds contain omega 3 (a great source for vegans) and are a complete protein.

Adding zesty lemon makes for a bright flavor any time of the day. Depending on the size and/or if you simply love that lemon flavor, use as many as 2 lemons for the zest.

Healthy and delicious vegan food isn’t so hard at all!

top down view of ingredients used to make vegan lemon chia seed pancakes recipe.

Ingredient Notes

In this recipe, flour, chia seeds, sugar, and lemon are mixed into a batter, poured onto a warm griddle, and cooked until fluffy and golden, making a hearty vegan breakfast that’s quick and easy.

Here is everything you will need, plus ingredient variations (measurements are in the recipe card below):

  • Flour – We love using spelt, whole wheat, all-purpose (pref unbleached), or GF flour blend (or combo of these).
  • Chia seeds – You can find chia seeds at most grocery stores or purchase them online from Amazon (affiliate link).
  • Sugar – My top picks are organic pure cane, coconut, date, or monk fruit sugar
  • Baking powder – Preferably aluminum-free.
  • Salt – My all-time favorite is Himalayan pink salt, but regular or sea salt works too.
  • Non-dairy milk – Use your favorite plant-based milk (almond, cashew, oat, soy, etc.).
  • Lemon – Use 1 or 2 small lemons.
  • Vanilla – If using vanilla-flavored milk, you can skip this or add it for extra flavor.
side by side photos showing zested lemon and making vegan buttermilk.

How To Make Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes

Following is a step-by-step guide with photos. The full printable recipe is at the bottom of this post.

  • Zest the lemon using a zester or fine grater.
  • To make vegan buttermilk, simply add the juice of 1 small lemon or apple cider vinegar to the milk and let it rest for 10 minutes to curdle.
side by side photos showing the process of making vegan lemon chia seed pancake batter.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, chia seeds, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  • Add the vanilla to the milk.
  • Pour the milk into the dry ingredients and mix well.
side by side photos showing the process of making lemon chia seed pancakes on a griddle.
  • Using a 1/4 or 1/3 measuring cup, scoop and pour pancake batter onto a lightly greased, preheated griddle or skillet.
  • Let cook for 3 minutes. Pancakes will be ready to flip when they start to bubble and the edges look leathery, as shown above right.
  • Flip and cook another 3 minutes.
  • Let cool on a rack, as shown below, or eat right away.

Top Tips

  • Add lemon extract. Add a teaspoon of lemon extract to the batter if you want a lemony flavor.
  • Keep pancakes warm. If using a method that cooks a few pancakes at a time, you can keep them warm on a baking sheet in a preheated oven set to 200 degrees.
  • Can I make this recipe gluten-free? Yes, use a trusted 1 to 1 gluten flour blend, such as this Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose GF Flour or 1 to 1 GF Flour Blend (affiliate links).
  • Can I make this recipe oil-free? Yes! To make oil-free pancakes, use a non-stick ceramic electric griddle (affiliate link). They may not be as golden, but they will be nice and healthy!
  • Can I make waffles with this recipe? Yes, no changes are needed, just cook the batter using your favorite method of making waffles. You can also check out this Easy Vegan Waffles recipe!

top down view of lemon chia seed pancakes cooling on a wire rack.

How To Store + Reheat

Lemon chia seed pancakes can be stored in the fridge or freezer with these easy instructions. You can even make extra pancakes to store for a quick and easy breakfast or snack.

  • Refrigerator: Leftovers will keep for up to  7 days, in a covered container.
  • Freezer: For longer storage, pancakes will last for up to 2 – 3 months in the freezer. To freeze, let cool completely and store in sealed freezer-safe containers or ziploc bags, removing as much as possible before sealing. You may want to separate each pancake with a piece of parchment paper.
  • Reheat: To reheat lemon chia seed pancakes, place on a baking sheet in a single layer and cover with foil. Place in a preheated oven set to 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes or until warmed through. Alternatively, cover and microwave using 30 to 60-second intervals until warmed through (covering will help to retain moisture).
head on view of stack of lemon chia seed pancakes with sliced removed on a fork.

More Vegan Breakfast Recipes!

Let me know if you try this lemon chia pancake recipe or have a question! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.



5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 5 reviews

Lemon Chia Seed Pancakes feature lemony flavor, protein rich chia seeds and cook up perfectly light and fluffy for a quick and easy vegan breakfast! Serve with fresh berries and pure maple syrup for a delicious start to your day!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 6 pancakes 1x
  • Category: Breakfast, Brunch, Entree
  • Method: griddle, stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


  • 1 cup flour (spelt, whole wheat or flour of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons organic pure cane sugar
  • pinch of mineral salt
  • 3 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 cup buttermilk (one cup non-dairy milk + juice from 1 lemon or 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar)
  • zest of 12 lemons
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
  • coconut oil, for greasing


Vegan buttermilk: Start by making your buttermilk, combine milk and lemon, set aside for 10 minutes or so. This allows them time to mingle.

Preheat: Preheat griddle to manufacturer’s instructions. Or warm a skillet over medium heat. Lightly grease before using.

Make batter: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and chia seeds in medium mixing bowl, give a good stir to combine and distribute the seeds. Pour in the buttermilk, vanilla, and lemon zest, mix well.

Scoop and pour: Using a 1/4 or 1/3 measuring cup, scoop and pour batter on to griddle. Cook until bubbles form on top or edges, and flip, usually about 3 minutes per side, depending on your griddle/skillet. Repeat until batter is gone.

Serve with strawberries (or other berries of choice) and pure maple syrup.

Makes about 6 pancakes

Serves 3

Store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days in a covered container. For longer storage, keep in the freezer for 2 – 3 months. Pop in toaster oven or microwave to reheat.


If using a heavier flour, such as oat, whole-wheat or whole-spelt flour, you may need to add a tad more milk to the batter before cooking.

For even more lemon flavor, try adding 1 teaspoon lemon extract to the batter.

For thinner pancakes add more milk.

Nutritional values are estimates only. See our full nutrition disclosure here.

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  1. I love this recipe and keep coming back to it! But I realized today that it doesn’t say how much baking soda to use. Can you add that in?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Hi Meera! This recipe does not use baking soda. The baking powder does it all (it already includes baking soda in the mix). But if you want to add a little baking soda, feel free to use 1/2 teaspoon and reduce the baking powder to 1 teaspoon. I hope that helps, and I’m so glad you’re enjoying the recipe!

  2. Bernadette Duboff says:

    I made it with Oat Flour. Also baking soda and baking powder are listed in the instructions but no amount for baking soda is listed in the ingredient list. I used 1 teaspoon. They were really good!

  3. Amy Bosnoian says:

    Delicious! I love the pancakes have a slight crunch to them because of the chia seeds. So yummy.

  4. HI! I love that you include the nutritional info on your recipes. I just have a question – does it include the maple syrup? I track my meals on an app, so I just want to be accurate! Also, what flour (spelt or whole wheat?) and non-dairy milk did you use when making the nutritional label? Thanks!!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Hi Samantha, that’s a great question! I didn’t include the syrup in the nutrition information. I used whole wheat flour and unsweetened almond milk in the calculations. You’ll notice the numbers are different from when you first looked at them, as I noticed they were off and the wrong ingredients were used to calculate. It’s all fixed now and reading correctly! Enjoy :)

      1. That makes more sense! It did seem like too much protein! Thanks :)

  5. This is the recipe that keeps on giving! I made this in waffle form and it was so good I have some frozen on hand for the week now.

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      I love it, thanks for the inspiration! :)

  6. These were great! I cheated a bit and made them muffins instead of pancake – easier for me to grab on the fly.. Followed all of the instructions and ingredients otherwise. They were amazing with wild blueberry preserves!

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