IHOP Secret MenuFounded in 1958 in Los Angeles, California, IHOP is perhaps one of the best known and most loved restaurants in the United States. While IHOP continues to be a breakfast powerhouse, they also serve lunch and dinner.

In case you aren’t familiar with what IHOP stands for, it’s International House of Pancakes. But, their menu certainly doesn’t stop with the mouth-watering, light, fluffy delicious breakfast staple – pancakes. In this article, we’re going to share a bit about their menu – some things you may know and certainly some you don’t, because we’re sharing their secret menu.

First, let’s meet IHOP. Started in the heart of the movie capital by Albert Kallis, a professional artist who designed the film posters of American International Pictures, Jerry Lapin, Al Lapin, and the help of a few others, IHOP quickly rose to fame and started franchising.

Originally, IHOP featured pancakes, crepes and blintzes at affordable prices. They were also well-known for various flavored syrups. In the 1980s, they expanded to lunch and dinner.

Let’s get to the secret menu:

Secret Menu Item #1: Spinach and Asparagus Risotto

Risotto, an Arborio rice, is prepared in a lemon broth and served with spinach and asparagus. Patrons of this delicious dish suggest ordering the monster mozzarella sticks on the side.

Secret Menu Item #2: Onion and French Fry Omelet

Can you just say, yum? And, after you’ve said yum and tasted this full-bodied omelet, we recommend washing it down with a nice glass of orange juice followed by some antacids! The taste is certainly worth it.

Secret Menu Item #3: Roquefort and Pear Soufflé

Who would have thought you could order a meal fit for a Paris bistro at IHOP? It turns out you can order this fluffy extraordinary dish off the secret menu.

IHOP imports their Roquefort from the South of France every weekend for freshness, and they bring in their pears from the Netherlands. Only the best fruit will do for this dish. Diners recommend adding a short stack of fruity pancakes to go with your soufflé.

Secret Menu Item #4: Warmed Syrup

While the condiments are on the table at IHOP, you can ask for warm syrup instead of the bottle at your table. Warm syrup adds that extra delight to your pancakes whether you’re eating them morning, noon or night.

Secret Menu Item #5: Real Eggs

IHOP is willing to cook items off their menu, and one of those items is eggs. What do we mean? If you ask, IHOP will make your eggs with real eggs. Surprising, right? Apparently, they use egg substitutes in their egg dishes, but if you ask, they’ll tailor your meal to your needs.

Secret Menu Item #6: Ordering off the Kids Menu

Once you hit the magical age of 12, it seems like most restaurants won’t let you order off the kids menu, and let’s face it, sometimes grown-ups just aren’t that hungry.

So, will they let you order off the kids menu if you aren’t under the age limit? Turns out, yes they will. The next time you’re in IHOP and not hungry enough for a regular menu, take a look at the kids’ menu and see if something there suits your appetite.

Secret Menu Item #7: Red Velvet White Chocolate Cheesecake Macaroons

Macaroons are supposed to melt in your mouth, and these delights are absolutely delicious. When ordering this item to finish off your meal, you’ll be smiling all the way out the door!

Secret Menu Item #8: Steak Tartare

This dish off the secret menu isn’t for the faint of heart. Steak Tartare is a dish made with rare meat. IHOP seasons the meat with egg yolk, capers and onions. IHOP regulars say the dish is similar to IHOP’s Philly Cheese Steak Stackers, so order this if you’d prefer your meat cooked.

Secret Menu Item #9: Prawn Ceviche

In order to enjoy these prawns from Argentina, you need to reserve them at least four hours before dining. Fresh and delicious, these are a delight for IHOP diners, many of whom recommend lemonade as an accompaniment.

Secret Menu Item #10: Diet Friendly Breakfast Items

While not secret, if you’re looking for some diet friendly items at IHOP, we’re going to share a few of them with you.

We consider them secret because no one will know you’re enjoy these items for under 500 calories and with 15-20 grams of fat or less. Here they are:

  • Whole Wheat French Toast Combo for Me: Two slices of whole wheat French toast topped with sliced bananas and served with scrambled egg substitute (you can ask for real eggs) and two strips of turkey bacon
  • Two x Two x Two For Me: Scrambled egg substitute with two strips of turkey bacon and two buttermilk pancakes
  • Two-Egg Breakfast For Me: Scrambled egg substitute with two strips of turkey bacon, whole wheat toast and fruit
  • Just Right Spinach, Mushroom & Tomato Omelet For Me: Egg substitute with fresh spinach, mushrooms, onions and Swiss cheese and topped with diced tomatoes and served with fresh fruit
  • Just Right Veggie Omelet For Me: Egg substitute with mushrooms, green peppers, onions and oven-roasted tomatoes and served with fresh fruit

Try Your Hand at Pancakes

If you’re stuck at home and can’t get out to your neighborhood IHOP, we found a recipe online for their famous pancakes. Go ahead and make them, then visit IHOP and come back and tell us if your homemade version was up to par.

Here’s the recipe for IHOP pancakes:

  • 1 1/4 c. flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. Baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 1/4 c. buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp. melted butter
  • 1/4 c. sugar

Stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix the egg with the buttermilk and add to the flour mixture, stirring only until smooth. Add the melted butter and sugar. Fry on a greased griddle. Serves 4.

In a pinch and don’t have buttermilk on hand? You can mix one tablespoon of regular milk and just under one teaspoon of vinegar. Let it stand for about five minutes for the vinegar to interact with the milk.

To Conclude

With nearly 1,000 stores nationwide and each store’s sales exceeding $1 million, we can say with certainty, you’ll find something to enjoy at IHOP. It seems they will make your dish to your specifications, and you can customize and request numerous off-menu or secret menu items.

If you’ve enjoyed a secret menu item at IHOP that we haven’t mentioned here, please share it with us! We’d love to hear about it.

Image: Mike Mozart