Now the company admits it was just to promote its new burgers.
The restaurant chain kept up the charade for weeks, which prompted some customers to question if pancakes were still available.
"Spoiler alert: we still pancake pancakes," the pancake house tweeted June 21.
The company has gone back to what it's known for ahead of its 60th birthday, when it will offer a deal on short-stack pancakes on July 17 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
"We're giving away 60¢ short stacks on July 17 from 7a-7p for IHOP's 60th birthday. That's right, IHOP! We'd never turn our back on pancakes (except for that time we faked it to promote our new burgers)," the company tweeted Monday.
On Twitter, IHOP was apologetic, but mostly frank about the change.
The brand was a bit more sarcastic on Facebook, however.
"When your ad campaign fails so bad you pretend it didn't happen," one person wrote.
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