Settings for engraving on cooked pancakes needed within 6 weeks

Anyone with a GF/GF-Pro that has figured out how to shallowly engrave an image onto the surface of a freshly cooked pancake?
I want to engrave a photo of my kids faces onto their pancakes, because “that email” arrived yesterday and, more importantly, because they will get a kick out of it!

Also, my wife is a primary school science teacher who does a special after school club that creates ROVs (Remote Operated Vehicles) for a regional competition. She mentioned last year that she would have liked to give the students small awards for the tremendous amount of effort they put into the competition, but the ROV construction costs and other expenses use up the minuscule funding made available by sponsors (and us personally).

The students who participate are usually poor (parents work all day for low wages) so they really can’t afford to contribute. The students do work very hard to complete their ROVs for the competition and are always very excited to do the competition. The whole project isn’t an easy task to begin with for most of them (soldering electronics, water proofing, engineering decisions and testing/iterating final designs?! They are 4th/5th graders but they make it happen!). So, maybe for this upcoming competition, or the next one, my wife will be able to reward these students for their efforts. This means I will be probably designing and making the awards = less sleep than usual. I look forward to it.


Congratulations! :grinning::tanabata_tree::confetti_ball::tada::balloon::sparkles:

I haven’t done a pancake, but i’m going to guess you would want to go with a very high engraving speed and a very low power on your test pancake. If it doesn’t come out dark enough, you can engrave it again or increase the power a little.



Paging @jason.fuller0

How’s about crepe settings?

Another Pro has landed

Congrats on the email! The kids and you are going to have a blast!

I’m sure the ROV awards will mean a ton and be a great reminder down the road of something really cool.

And here I was excited about finding an Adult Soap Box derby race near by :rofl:


Hi Jules,

Thanks for the ideas. I was thinking that might be the case.
I do have experience using a magnifying glass and the sun to burn things as a kid. I managed to burn my name into some scrap wood at the time. So, its good to know that some of those same principles will probably, with some experimentation, lead to some smiles and wow moments.


Be sure to post some pics when you do them. :grinning:

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Depending on your level of comfort with food contamination, you might not want to laser food in the same device used for other things, due to health reasons.

A safer option would be to cut out a cardboard mask with your Glowforge, then use it to sprinkle powdered chocolate or icing sugar on top of the pancakes instead.


I was actually mostly toying with default settings related to proofgrade. I was a bit too excited about the laser in general to even be tracking cutting settings or anything like that. My advice, though, is that less is more, especially if you plan to eat them. A fast, light engrave tasted kind of crisped/toasted. It wasn’t bad at all, it is a flavor accent I kind of like on pancakes. Cut lines did taste burnt, though their area was small enough that it didn’t destroy the flavor of the crepe. If I was doing it again, I’d do 1000/25 with default or lower LPI, and adjust from there to taste.

Would I consider doing it again with a fresh, clean :glowforge:? In a heartbeat!


Masking is a cool idea, especially once you’ve been cutting wood and all sorts of other stuff. Personally, I’d probably use card stock or poster board for masking over cardboard, though.


Might not want to pour the batter directly into the GF. A spatula won’t slide across the honeycomb properly.


Jeez, wish you had posted this earlier.

Aside from pancakes, I did spend a whole day working with cookies. I figured that they wouldn’t call it a crumb tray if they didn’t want crumbs.

Tried many different types, turns out that Anna’s Thins worked best for me. Most of the others had too uneven a surface or were too tall without removing the crumb tray. The Anna’s Thins turned out pretty well and are big enough to hold a detailed logo and writing.

One interesting thing I found was that after lasering, I tried them and kept thinking I detected a “burnt” taste. But when I had others try them “blind”, they were unanimous and adamant in not tasting anything out of the ordinary. I really think it was just my imagination.


Thank you all for the very insightful feedback!
I’m thinking that just modifying the images and then making simple vectorized art will suffice. The GF should run fast and low power, so as not to cut.
The interior laser area will be cleaned of dust from any preliminary cut testing. I have this idea to put some paper over the tray and place the pancakes on top of the paper, with the idea that there would be less of a chance for contaminants to adhere to the food.

I was thinking of just using cooked pancakes, not the batter. I am not sure how that would work, selectively cooking pancake batter? The areas outside of the beam would remain batter. I wouldn’t want to clean up after that either. But I like reading about different ideas, so thank you!

I hear the proof grade pancakes are a bit bland and stale, but they cut and engrave well, with the food grade masking being just a bit difficult to weed.


Also, if you intend to stain your Proofgrade Pancakes, you should be using the Proofgrade food coloring. It’s the only one they can honor to give you accurate results, as third party coloring cannot be guaranteed.


It’s the proof grade syrup that is really pricey. I hear it’s more expensive than Inkjet ink.


Proofgrade Pro-Foods: Where the Proofgrade is the Pudding


Ya know I was joking, right?


For a moment I thought you were joking, but tried to err on the diplomatic side.


So more expensive than proof grade blood? My Vampire friends will be sad about that.

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@rpegg has got a very dry, occasionally quirky, sense of humor that we all love! :smile: