In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, and a pinch of kosher salt. Whisk together until well combined.
In a large bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup buttermilk, 1/4 cup water, 1 large egg, 2 tablespoons canola oil, and 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Whisk until combined, and the egg has fully broken apart and is combined in the mixture.
Sprinkle the dry ingredients (from the 1st step) over the surface of the wet ingredients (from the 2nd step) and whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, just until combined — do not overmix! Overmixing leads to tough, chewy pancakes. You want to keep mixing only until the dry ingredients have just disappeared, and no more. The batter will appear lumpy, but that’s normal. Sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate chips over the batter, and whisk a couple of times until the chocolate chips are evenly distributed throughout the batter. Let the mixture stand aside for 10 minutes — the mixture should continue to thicken and almost become foamy and sponge-like in texture.
After around 10 minutes, heat up a frying pan over medium heat. Spray the cooking surface with a light coating of cooking spray and pour in around 4 tablespoons of batter. Cook until you see bubbles foam around the edge, about 1 to 2 minutes, before using a spatula to loosen the edges and bottom of the cake and flipping over. Continue to cook another minute or so, until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter. Make sure you continue to monitor the heat of the pan, adjusting it accordingly — if the pan becomes too hot, the outside of the pancakes will brown before the inside gets a chance to cook.