Tomorrow — Feb. 28, 2012 — will be IHOP’s seventh National Pancake Day. The restaurant chain offers a free short stack of pancakes all day long. In return, they ask patrons to leave a donation to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and other local children’s charities.


IHOP says National Pancake Day has raised almost $8 million over six years, and company officials are hoping to raise another $2.7 million this year to bring their total to $10 million.


Here are a few facts about National Pancake Day:


  • IHOP served 4 million free pancakes on National Pancake Day 2011, and pancake lovers donated more than $2.5 million to children’s charities, exceeding the fundraising goal of $2.3 million.
  • All of the free pancakes served on National Pancake Day 2011 would create a stack nearly 16 miles high.
  • Since the inception of National Pancake Day in 2006, IHOP has raised nearly $8 million and given away more than 14 million pancakes to support charities in the communities in which it operates.  
  • National Pancake Day 2011 was IHOP’s largest one-day event in the company’s 53-year history.

Obviously, IHOP is not a model of a sustainable restaurant that serves healthy, eco-friendly food. If you want to get a free short stack and support children’s charities, stick with just the pancakes and a beverage. Skip ordering a side of meat that’s probably a product of factory livestock farming. (And please leave your server a tip that factors in what your bill would have been had the pancakes not been free.)


Or, celebrate National Pancake Day from your own home. Make your own donation to your favorite children’s charity and serve pancakes at home for breakfast or dinner and try one of these 5 not-so-ordinary pancake recipes.

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

IHOP's National Pancake Day raises money for children's charities
IHOP is giving away free short stacks of pancakes on Feb. 28 and asking guests to make a donation to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and other designated l