The Star of Pancake House Menus Has a Long History

pancake house menusThey may be the preferred item on pancake house menus, but people have been eating them since long before restaurants.

Pancakes have long been a favorite of the American breakfast table.  You’d be hard pressed to find people who did not grow up enjoying the classic combination of pancakes and maple syrup.  But what do you know about the history of the humble star of pancake house menus?  You may be surprised to learn that pancakes are actually an ancient dish.

It is believed that the earliest pancakes may date as far back as the Stone Age.  These ancient versions weren’t made with flour, but more likely from ground up starchy vegetation that was mixed with water and cooked on a hot stone.  This practice of making flat cakes from some form of grain or starch continued throughout history.  The ancient Greeks made a version from wheat flour, olive oil and curdled milk.  They were sweetened with honey and eaten for breakfast.  Another Greek version was made with spelt flour and topped with honey, sesame and cheese.

The modern American pancake evolved from the hoe cakes and johnnycakes of Colonial times.  These were made from cornmeal or buckwheat.  The first recipes were published in the 1796 cookbook American Cookery by Amelia Simmons.

Today pancakes of all varieties are found in America and many other countries all around the world.  They are, of course, still the star of all of The Original Pancake House menus, made from our signature sourdough starter.  This gives them the light and airy texture they are known for.  Come celebrate culinary history with us any day of the week!


We Are Oven Lovin’ for National Baking Month!

January is National Baking Month and we can think of no better way to warm your kitchen (and heart!) than by baking something special to share with loved ones!  For chilly mornings at home, we love to set the oven to 350 degrees and create delicious baked breakfast treats.  Here are a few of our favorites:

Bacon, Tomato and Cheddar Breakfast Bake with Eggs


  • 1 pound bakery white bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (16  cups)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound sliced applewood-smoked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • One 28-ounce can whole Italian tomatoes—drained, chopped and patted dry
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 pound extra-sharp cheddar, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 pound Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons snipped chives
  • 1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • Salt
  • 8 large eggs
  • Hot sauce, for serving



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a 9x13-inch glass baking dish. In a large bowl, toss the bread with the olive oil and spread on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, tossing once or twice, until the bread is golden and lightly crisp.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain; reserve 2 tablespoons of the fat in the skillet.
  3. Add the onion to the skillet and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and crushed red pepper and cook until any liquid is evaporated, about 3 minutes.
  4. Return the toasted bread cubes to the bowl. Add the contents of the skillet, along with the bacon, shredded cheeses, chives and broth. Stir until the bread is evenly moistened. Season with salt. Spread the mixture in the baking dish and cover with lightly oiled foil.
  5. Bake the bread mixture in the center of the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the top is crispy, about 15 minutes longer. Carefully remove the baking dish from the oven and, using a ladle, press 8 indentations into the bread mixture. Crack an egg into each indentation. Return the dish to the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, until the egg whites are set but the yolks are still runny. Serve the breakfast bake right away with hot sauce.


Raspberry Swirl Sweet Rolls



  • 1 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • One 10-ounce package frozen raspberries, not thawed
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream



  1. In a small saucepan, warm the milk over moderately low heat until it reaches 95°. Pour the warm milk into the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the dough hook and stir in the sugar and yeast. Let stand until the yeast is foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the softened butter, eggs, grated lemon zest and sea salt. Add the flour and beat at medium speed until a soft dough forms, about 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the dough is soft and supple, about 10 minutes longer.
  2. Scrape the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it with your hands 2 or 3 times. Form the dough into a ball and transfer it to a lightly buttered bowl. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 2 hours.
  3. Line the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, allowing the paper to extend up the short sides. Butter the paper and sides of the pan. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling pin, roll it into a 10-by-24-inch rectangle.
  4. In a medium bowl, toss the frozen raspberries with the sugar and cornstarch. Spread the raspberry filling evenly over the dough. Tightly roll up the dough to form a 24-inch-long log. Working quickly, cut the log into quarters. Cut each quarter into 4 slices and arrange them in the baking pan, cut sides up. Scrape any berries and juice from the work surface into the baking pan between the rolls. Cover the rolls and let them rise in a warm place until they are puffy and have filled the baking pan, about 2 hours.
  5. Preheat the oven to 425°. Bake the rolls for about 25 minutes, until they are golden and the berries are bubbling. Transfer the pan to a rack to cool for 30 minutes.
  6. In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners' sugar with the butter and heavy cream until the glaze is thick and spreadable.
  7. Invert the rolls onto the rack and peel off the parchment paper. Invert the rolls onto a platter. Dollop glaze over each roll and spread with an offset spatula. Serve warm or at room temperature.

And for those days when you want to go out to breakfast in Denver, allow your friends at The Original Pancake House to bake you one of our favorite breakfast treats.   Our oven-baked omelets are always a crowd-pleaser. With your choice of filling and a side of our buttermilk pancakes, we promise you’ll head home happy!

cowboy breakfast

The History of the Cowboy Breakfast

One of our favorite annual Denver events is the National Western Stock Show which brings in herds of cattle, livestock, and cowboys to our city each January.  With all the cowboys and steers in town, we were wondering where the term “Cowboy Breakfast” comes from and what exactly the term refers to in a historical sense.

As it turns out, the term “cowboy breakfast” originated in the old west during the time of the American frontier.  The original frontiersmen and women and cowboys were hard working folks and needed a hearty, rib-sticking breakfast to get them through long days working out on the cattle drive or ranch.  Frontier breakfasts were often limited by what could be easily stored and transported on the chuck –wagon.  Breakfasts were created from dried beans, flour, ground corn, coffee beans, lard, hard-tack crackers and large sides of salt-cured meat.  Each morning, the cowboys would cook breakfast in cast iron grills, skillets, and pots over a hot fire.  Meals often consisted of hot coffee, a large pot of beans, and biscuits that were baked in a cast iron pot and slathered with lard and gravy.

Today the term “Cowboy Breakfast” has evolved to include eggs and skillet potatoes, bacon or sausage, and perhaps biscuits and gravy to round out the plate.  One thing has remained constant since the American frontier days – a cowboy breakfast will stick to the ribs and keep you going all day!  If you are out for breakfast in Denver, we’d love to share with you our version of a cowboy breakfast.  You’ll love our Biscuits and Gravy or our Cowboy Omelet which comes filled with diced ham, bacon and Tillamook cheddar cheese smothered in our homemade sausage gravy, served with three buttermilk pancakes.

Enjoy the National Western Stock Show Denver!

The History of the Most Famous Breakfast in Denver

The exact origins of the Denver omelette may be a little scrambled, but the dish has made its way onto menus everywhere.

breakfast in Denver

If you go out for breakfast in Denver, or just about anywhere else in the country, you’re bound to find a Denver omelette on the menu.  This simple but tasty combination of eggs, bell peppers, onions, ham and cheddar cheese has long been a morning favorite.  But do you know exactly how this dish came to be?

You might be surprised to learn that the Denver omelette started its life as a sandwich.  It was essentially the same thing, except served between two slices of toast. Some historians say it was created by Chinese cooks to serve to the workers on the transcontinental railroad.  The Denver sandwich is also believed to have been very popular with cowboys on long cattle drives.  Both stories make sense as a breakfast sandwich is convenient and portable.  However, Denver restaurateurs Albert A. McVittie and M.D. Looney both claimed they invented it separately in 1907.  And to further complicate the history of the dish, a plaque located on California Street in downtown Denver states that the omelette was created in order to mask the taste of stale eggs that had been shipped by wagon.

Regardless of who the true innovator of the dish was, by the 1950’s the sandwich was popular all over the country, not just for breakfast in Denver.  But by the 1970’s it was all but extinct from menus, having given way to the Denver omelette inexplicably.  We’re carrying on the long tradition of the dish at The Original Pancake House.  Celebrate history with us next time you join us for breakfast!


Expect These Top Trends at Breakfast Restaurants in 2017

breakfast restaurantsWill we be eating chocolate cake for breakfast in 2017?

Food is subject to trends, just like music, fashion and design.  Here’s a quick look at the top trends you can expect to see on menus at breakfast restaurants in 2017.

Big Flavors and Textures.  Forget simple and smooth items like eggs and grits.  Breakfast in 2017 will be bolder in flavor and texture.  Expect to see crunchy items like fried chicken on menus at breakfast restaurants as well as big flavors like chimichurri and spicy chorizo.

Breakfast All Day.  This is something that many consumers have been wanting for a long time.  Now that you can get breakfast all day under the “golden arches,” you can expect to see more and more places offering it as well.  People enjoy breakfast foods at any time, especially if they skip breakfast but still have a hankering for eggs and bacon at 1:00 in the afternoon.

Healthy Options.  As more and more people are prioritizing their health, or switching to specialized diets, you can expect breakfast restaurants to respond with expanded options in 2017.  This includes choices such as gluten free, grain free, dairy free, vegan, vegetarian, high fiber, organic and more.

Chocolate.  Recent studies linking chocolate to increased health benefits means that people may feel more prone to indulge in the sweet treat in the morning.  You may see items like chocolate breakfast cakes popping up on menus in 2017.

Eat the Best Breakfast for Weight Loss in 2017

If you’re trying to lose weight, you might want to consider putting yogurt on the breakfast menu.

Did you make a New Year’s resolution to eat right and lose weight in 2017?  If so, you’re in good company.  According to 2015 research reported by Statistic Brain, 45% of Americans usually do make a New Year's resolution and losing weight comes in number one on the top ten list of the most breakfast  If you’re on a mission to drop some pounds, you really want to make sure you eat the best breakfast to help you reach your goal in 2017.

Here are some healthy items you’ll want to be sure to include in your best breakfast to keep you fueled for the day.

Raspberries – Just one cup contains 8 grams a fiber.   Recent research in the Journal of Nutrition suggests eating more fiber can help prevent weight gain or encourage weight loss.  Researchers found during the two-year study that increasing fiber by 8 grams for every 1,000 calories resulted in about 4 ½ pounds of weight lost.  Pro-tip: put those raspberries on top of a bowl of oatmeal for added fiber and slow-release carbohydrates that won’t spike your insulin.

Yogurt – A Harvard report that was published in the New England Journal of Medicine listed yogurt as one of the top five foods that promote weight loss.  Research shows that this high protein choice can help you lose weight and gain lean muscle mass.  Be sure to choose low fat and low sugar options, such as non-fat plain Greek yogurt.  Pump up the flavor with fresh fruit, like raspberries.

Eggs – They’re packed with protein and will help keep you full until your next meal.  Besides that, eggs make for the best breakfast because they can be prepared in endless variations so you won’t get bored.

Apple Pancake

Happy New Year: Our Top 5 Favorite Breakfasts of 2016

Over the past year we’ve shared many scrumptious breakfast recipes and ideas on our blog.  Some are our own and some are recipes that we like to make for our families at home.  Since 2016 has truly been a year of amazing breakfasts, we’d like to share with you our top 5 breakfasts from the past year.

  1. Maybe because it ‘tis the season, but our Ho Ho Ho Pancakes top our list of favorite breakfasts! With Red and Green M&M’S inside our made from scratch buttermilk pancakes are topped with our fresh whipped cream and sprinkled with red and green Elf dust. You just can’t get more festive than that!
  2. From our Back to School Breakfasts post we love the Banana and Nutella “Sushi” recipe. It is so quick, so delicious, and so portable; it remains our go-to for mornings on the run!
  3. As they say…”When in Denver…” order a Denver Omelette! Our fluffy oven-baked omelette filled with diced ham, green and red peppers, onion and aged Tillamook cheddar cheese.  It’s a perfect hearty breakfast for those days when you need to fill your belly!
  4. For a breakfast at home that is sure to impress, our favorite recipe this year is for an Asparagus and Prosciutto Strata. Comforting, homey, delicious, and fancy enough to serve to your mother-in-law, we pull out this recipe every time we have friends over for brunch!
  5. Whenever we take our friends out to breakfast in Denver at The Original Pancake House, we always order an Apple Pancake for everyone at the table to share. This mountain of granny smith apples and pure Sinkiang cinnamon glaze is just too sweet a treat to pass up!


We wish you a very Happy New Year Denver!  Thank you for visiting us in 2016 and we look forward to seeing you at our breakfast table in 2017 because Tradition is Delicious!  Bon Appetite!

What are Millennials Eating at Breakfast Restaurants?

 Studies show Millennials pick more adventurous options at breakfast restaurants.

breakfast restaurantsPeople say a lot about the Millennial generation days, including that they love adventure.  And according to research by Datassential, that translates to their choices at breakfast restaurants as well.  In a survey of 1,280 consumers, Millennials were more interested in innovated new breakfast ideas than other age groups.  This includes healthy options and ethnic choices.

What specifically interests Millennials at breakfast restaurants?  The survey found that 65% would choose elevated comfort food options.  This includes things like biscuits and gravy made in “premium” versions.  63% of respondents said they were interested in breakfast sandwiches in either “monster” or mini options.

So what aren’t Millennials eating for breakfast?  Well, cereal most notably.  In February, the New York Times reported in a story about breakfast cereal that research showed 40% of Millennials said cereal was an inconvenient choice because they had to clean up after.  While this generation is most likely to skip breakfast all together, when they do eat, it’s in breakfast restaurants rather than at home.  They also prefer to eat breakfast options outside of the traditional hours.  About 16% of the participants in the Datassential survey said they breakfast items as an afternoon snack.  They also enjoy eating breakfast for dinner.

Eat These Foods for the Best Breakfast

Experts and mom say to be sure to include protein for the best breakfast.

best breakfastIf you want to start your day off right with the best breakfast, you need to make healthy choices.  A balanced meal of protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. The specifics will depend on your personal goals and current health, but in general your meal should be made up of about 25% protein, 25% carbohydrates, and 50% fruits and vegetables.  Given this information, check out these easy and nutritious ideas to start your day with the best breakfast.

Greek Yogurt with Granola and Berries.  Granola can really pack a punch of sugar and fat so always check the label.  Non-fat Greek yogurt typically contains about 22 grams of protein per one cup serving, just what you need to fill you up and fuel you for the day.

Egg White and Veggie Omelet.  Use whole eggs if you want or just the whites for a leaner protein source.  Pack your omelet with spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, and more.

Oatmeal with Peanut Butter and Fruit.  Use whole rolled or steel cut oats rather than the more processed quick or instant options.  Just two tablespoons of peanut butter contains eight grams of protein and a healthy dose of unsaturated fat.  Add some bananas and blueberries for vitamins and antioxidants.


Thank YOU to our Veterans! Join us for free breakfast on Veterans Day!

Patriotism: Military woman salutes American flag. Silhouette.

We’d like to thank our vets for their sacrifice and service to our country by sharing our breakfast table with them.  On November 11, 2016, in observance of Veterans Day in America, The Original Pancake House Denver’s Cherry Hills and Denver Tech Center locations will offer free breakfast and drinks to any active duty or retired military. We are proud to honor our veterans with a free breakfast and look forward to welcoming all active and retired military to our restaurants on Veterans Day. All active and retired military personnel who present a valid military ID on Veterans Day will enjoy a complete meal and beverage free of charge courtesy of your friends at OPH!

Our menu features homemade pancakes, crepes, omelets, benedicts and Belgian waffles, and signature dishes including the German style oven-baked Dutch Baby Pancake and the cinnamon glazed Apple Pancake.  We make batters from scratch every day and all are carefully prepared and blended by hand using only the freshest and finest quality ingredients available.  Everyone is sure to find something delightful to fill their belly! breakfast restaurants

We always strive to make The Original Pancake House Denver a welcoming community gathering place. Our veterans are such an integral part of our community and we are honored to show them a small token of our appreciation this Veterans Day!  So join us at either our Cherry Hills location or Denver Tech Center location on Veterans Day, both will be open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.!

What are Breakfast Restaurants Serving Around the World?

Pancakes and eggs may reign supreme at breakfast restaurants in Denver, but what’s cooking around the world?

breakfast restaurantsIf you dine at local breakfast restaurants like The Original Pancake House, you’ll likely find the classics.  Bacon and eggs, omelets, pancakes, French toast and waffles.  But what about breakfast restaurants in other countries?  What are people eating around the world?

In European countries, such as Spain, France and Italy, breakfast primarily consists of coffee and a pastry.  In England they’re enjoying what is usually referred to as “full English breakfast.”  This consists of bacon and eggs, sausages, grilled tomato, fried mushrooms, toast with butter and jam, and tea.  It may sometimes include beans and the sausages can be Black Pudding, which is made with pigs’ blood.

In Brazil, they enjoy strong coffee with bread, ham and cheese.  In Columbia, they eat arepas, a thick corn cake.  These are usually split open and filled with many types of ingredients and enjoyed all day.  But at breakfast they are most often served simply with butter and jam, or with eggs and meat.

If you dine at breakfast restaurants in Germany, you’re likely to be served a selection of breads with butter and jam, cold meats and cheese.  In Japan, the morning meal can include rice, miso soup, fish, pickled vegetables and a type of omelet tamagoyaki.  And if you eat breakfast in Jamaica, you’ll enjoy ackee, a type of fruit that is served cooked, along with salted fish, fried plantains and fresh fruit.

Is the Best Denver Breakfast Eaten at Home?

With the best breakfast in Denver available at so many restaurants, are you still eating the most important meal at home?

Denver breakfastOnce upon a time breakfast was primarily eaten at home as a sit-down meal.  Nowadays many people are either skipping breakfast all together, or eating on the go.  We’re lucky to have a lot of great Denver breakfast options, but are you taking advantage of them?  Do you bring something from home and eat in the car?  Or do you stop at a café or restaurant to grab something?

Nation’s Restaurant News (NRN) reported that according to market research conducted by The NPD Group, visits to restaurants at breakfast increased 2% in 2014.  NRN also reported on the results of an online survey of 1,508 adults who eat breakfast away from home at least twice a month.  The survey by Kellogg’s found that most of the respondents prefer quick-service restaurants in the morning.

The Kellogg’s survey also found that 21% of those who eat breakfast away from home focus on value and portability for their breakfast.  This means they want a good deal and something they can eat on the go.  About 12.5% of those surveyed prefer to drink something for their breakfast.

Kellogg’s also found a group of 20% of the respondents that are least likely to skip breakfast.  Within this group two-thirds are over the age of 44 and they prioritize value and quality.  This group often eats breakfast in full-service restaurants.  They make their choice based on price, quality of service and proximity to home.

If you’re in the mood to sit down and enjoy a delicious Denver breakfast, we’ll see you at The Original Pancake House!