How to Score a Free Breakfast at IHOP on National Pancake Day

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On Tuesday, March 7, you can splurge on carbs—and save money—at the International House of Pancakes. In honor of its 12th annual National Pancake Day, IHOP will dish out one free short stack of buttermilk pancakes to customers between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m, with select locations extending their hours until 10 p.m. In turn, patrons are asked to donate to charitable children's organizations, including Shriners Hospitals for Children, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

But wait, didn't we just have a Pancake Day? Let’s sort out that holiday confusion: IHOP’s National Pancake Day has nothing to do with International Pancake Day, an annual pancake festival held in Liberal, Kansas, right before the Christian season of Lent. Nor is it related to Shrove Tuesday, which is also called Pancake Day or Mardi Gras—the day before Lent in which cultures around the world savor a hearty pancake supper before commencing 40 days of penance. While IHOP has hosted National Pancake Day on Shrove Tuesday before, the delicious fundraiser often takes place on a generic day in late winter, according to TIME.

This year, IHOP's National Pancake Day doesn't seem to fall on any particularly special occasion, which is fine with us—we don’t need a specific occasion to chow down on pancakes, especially when it raises money for a good cause. Since launching National Pancake Day in 2006, IHOP says its restaurants have raised $24 million for charity. This year alone, the chain is aiming to raise $3.5 million.

Visit IHOP's official National Pancake Day website for more information and updates.