Pancakes – Traditions of Imbolc and the Midwinter Feast

Pancakes on Imbolc? Absolutely!

The Festival of Lights at midwinter is one of our oldest, most ancient pagan holidays. Imbolc, also known as Candlemas, St. Brigid’s Day, or in America Groundhogs Day, falls on February 2nd and marks the midpoint between the winter and spring. It is truly my favorite of all sacred holidays as we celebrate and honor Brigid, the Goddess of the sacred and eternal flames. As the sun begins to descend upon the earth once more, we look forward to spring when the earth will soon be reawakened. We celebrate this magical Celtic Fire Festival with the lighting candles, blazing bonfires and a generous feast as we look forward to the return of the sun.

So, back to pancakes. The pancake represents and is symbolic to both the womb of the goddess and power of the sun, indicative of their round shape and golden color. This is why Imbolc is known for being a time of sacred fertility. Pancakes were traditionally prepared and eaten at Imbolc to insure a healthy harvest which would bring abundance and prosperity for the coming year. Wishes were made by flipping pancakes into the air and stones were even placed into the batter which divined the future for the coming year.

One of our family traditions here is to prepare a feast of pancakes on Imbolc. We’ve been doing it for as long as I can remember. Its easy, its fun, and its a wonderful way to get young people involved with learning about the spirit and season of midwinter. When our kids were little (of course they’re not so little anymore, 25, 28 and 32), I would make stacks and stacks of pancakes with homemade Lavender syrup, and the babes would just dive in. If you have children or grandchildren, young people in your life, older people in your life, anybody you wish to share the Imbolc experience with, making and sharing pancakes is a great way to give them a taste of old pagan traditions of midwinter and Imbolc. Kids love pancakes, and I guarantee they will show a great interest in wanting to learn more about Imbolc and all of its magic when you’re serving up heaping helpings of cakes with all the fixings. In our home the kids will still refer to Imbolc as “Pancake Day”. So adorbs.

OK, so that pancake in the iron skillet looks pretty amazing right? Here’s the recipe:



4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 cup Gold Medal® All-Purpose Flour
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup halved raspberries
powdered sugar, syrup and/or freshly whipped cream for topping


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Use a blender or hand mixer to combine the eggs, milk, flour, sugar, lemon zest and salt.

3. Heat a 12-inch cast iron skillet over high heat on the stove. Add the butter and melt. Pour the batter into the skillet, then scatter the berries on top. Put the pan in the oven, and bake until puffed and cooked through, about 20 minutes. Slice and serve, topped with powdered sugar, syrup and/or freshly whipped cream, as desired.

Have a lovely Imbolc everyone and enjoy your pancakes! Many blessings to all –