The pumpkin spice pancake recipe you have to try this fall!

We have survived another hot summer in the southeast this year and I have fully embraced the autumn season. This time of year has always been my favorite season for a number of reasons: football, great weather that includes chilly fall mornings and pleasant afternoons, the changing leaves, and most importantly … PUMPKINS!

One of my favorite things to make in the fall is delicious pumpkin pancakes. For the best pumpkin spice pancakes, you want the nice fluffy texture of a traditional pancake AND the sweet and savory pumpkin spice taste that remindW,W<M{wupp8888880Q)Z.Ns you of your favorite pumpkin pie. Try this recipe the next time you need a pumpkin fix this holiday season.

Why should you make this recipe instead of all the other pumpkin pancake recipes on the internet?

My pumpkin spice blend includes all 5 autumn spices – Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Ginger, Cloves, and Allspice for that perfect, robust holiday flavor!

H5BZ,’K I used the soufflé pancake technique of whipping egg whites to get that extra fluffiness to the pancakes.

It is dairy free, but you will never know since it still has that same rich flavor and texture of a traditional buttermilk recipe.

I use brown sugar and molasses instead of white sugar – these two sugars perfectly compliment the autumn spice blend.

The key tips for the best results when making this recipe are listed below:

1) Use the right combination of spices

You want to use cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and Allspice. This will give you that nice, perfect aroma and flavor that you get from a pumpkin pie. You could use a pre-mixed pumpkin pie spice from the store, but why not make your own homemade pumpkin spice blend? I like using a 5 spice blend which includes cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, ground cloves, and ground Allspice. Cinnamon and nutmeg are the main drivers to getting that classic autumn spice flavor. Ginger tends to round out these two spices. Adding cloves and Allspice will give you big flavor punch, but you want the proportion of these two spices to be less than the other three so the blend is not too overpowering.

Spices for pumpkin spice blend: right to left: cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, ground cloves, ground Allspice

2) Use the right techniques to get fluffy pancakes

You want to use same techniques that I discuss in this post to get fluffy pancakes. The pumpkin puree added to the batter will help you get an even fluffier pancake!

3) Use the right ratio of pumpkin to flour and milk.

One mistake I used to make was to add too much pumpkin to the recipe. This will result in the pancakes being very undercooked in the middle. Remember, most of the pumpkin flavor is coming from the spices, not the pumpkin. I have found using 1 can of pumpkin per 2 cups of flour to be the sweet spot.

4) Use convection heat to your advantage

Even when dialing down the amount of pumpkin, the pumpkin will make it harder to cook the inside of the pancakes, but the outside will brown very quickly. If you have a lid to your pan, place it over the pan after dropping the batter on the pan and keep it there for a minute or two. This will help cook the inside of the pancakes and also helps them rise a bit more.

5) Keep heat to low to medium low heat

We are finishing up our kitchen remodel and I finally have a gas stove! I have had to learn to keep the gas stove burner to a “3” on the dial in order to keep the outside of the pancakes from burning and still get the inside cooked. Whether you use a gas burner, electric, or induction – you will need to turn the heat down a bit from what you are used to doing for pancakes. I normally use medium heat for pancakes, but for this recipe, I turn it down to low-medium heat (about a 3 on a dial that ranges from 1 to 10) Keep the heat down keeps the pancakes from browning too quickly and allows the inside of the pancake to cook. If you get this step right, your pancakes will come off the griddle with a nice golden brown color.

Here are your basic steps to making this delicious recipe.

Gather your dry ingredients and place them a medium mixing bowl:

Dry Ingredients in bowl with the spices over the top

All purpose white flour

Pumpkin spice blend (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, ground cloves, ground Allspice)

Baking powder

Salt

Gather your wet ingredients:

Almond milk

Apple cider vinegar

Pumpkin Puree

Coconut Oil

Brown Sugar

Molasses

If the milk is straight out the refrigerator, warm it up in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Place your apple cider vinegar and milk in a large measuring cup and let it sit while you deal with the rest of the wet ingredients – this allows the milk to curdle similar to buttermilk.

Place the coconut oil in the microwave and add the melted coconut oil, brown sugar, molasses, and pumpkin puree into a large mixing bowl.

Crack two eggs and separate the whites from the egg yolk. Add the yolks into the wet ingredients. Whip the egg whites with a hand mixer.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and then add in the whipped egg whites and gently fold the batter with a spatula.

Place your griddle or pan on low-medium heat and let the batter rest while the pan heats up.

Use a 1/4 measuring cup to scoop out the batter and pour the cup of batter onto the pan – this amount will make small pancakes. If you want medium sized pancakes, use a 1/3 measuring cup.

Wait until the edges curl up and small bubbles form over the pancakes and then flip them with a pancake spatula.

My favorite toppings are a pat of butter on the pancakes (vegan butter works well if you are trying to keep this dairy free or vegan) and a little bit of real maple syrup.

A little bit of whipped cream or chocolate chips served over the pancakes also make delicious toppings!

Don’t forget to pour yourself a nice hot cup of coffee to go with these pancakes! If you have a little left over pumpkin puree from the can, scoop it up and put in your coffee along with about a teaspoon of the pumpkin spice blend. It you have a milk frother, froth some hot milk and make yourself a homemade pumpkin spice latte!

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with melted butter on top and sausages, pumpkins in the background.

FAQ’s:

Should you use a pre-mixed pumpkin spice blend or should you make your own?

I like to make my own! That way you control the flavor! My combination for pumpkin spice is as follows:

1 tablespoons of cinnamon

1 teaspoon of nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon of ginger

1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves

1/8 teaspoon of ground Allspice

This is the amount per 1 cup of flour, so for this recipe it totals to 2 tablespoons of cinnamon, 2 teaspoons of nutmeg, 1 teaspoon of ginger, 1/2 teaspoon of cloves, 1/4 teaspoon of Allspice

Should I use fresh pumpkin or canned pumpkin?

It is definitely easier and faster to make this recipe from canned pumpkin. It is time consuming making your own real pumpkin puree and it is difficult to get the flavor and texture just right. If you do want to tackle this adventure, I suggest making the puree on a different day and storing it in the fridge. That way, you don’t spend your whole Saturday morning in the kitchen and miss out on taking the kids outside for some fun fall activities. I suggest mixing the pumpkin with sweet potatoes or squash to give it a richer flavor. This is my mother’s secret to making delicious pumpkin pie each Thanksgiving.

What type of cooking spray should I use?

I love using natural high melting point nut oils such as macadamia oil or walnut oil. If you don’t have any of this on hand, you can use vegetable oil or olive oil. Just keep in mind, olive oil has a lower melting point, so if your pan is too hot, it is going to burn away. A more decadent option is placing a little butter or coconut oil on the pan which will make the outside of the pancakes extra crispy.

What do I do with the leftover pancakes?

You really think there will be leftovers? If there are, put them in a sealed container and keep them in the fridge. They will still taste great for several days and you can put them in the microwave to re-heat them.

Pumpkin spice pancakes with sausage, a fork is placed over a partial eaten piece of pancake.  Pumpkin are in the background.
Pumpkin spice pancakes on a plate with sausages, whole pumpkins in the background.
Yield: 10-12 pancakes (medium sized)

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Delicious dairy-free pumpkin spice pancakes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of All-purpose white flour
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 tablespoons of cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons of ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground Allspice
  • 1 1/2 cups of almond milk
  • 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 1 can of pureed pumpkin
  • 2 large eggs

Instructions

Place all dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, Allspice) in a large bowl and whisk together

Place the milk and the apple cider vinegar in a large bowl and stir together

Separate the egg yolks from the whites by pouring the whites into a small bowl

Add the melted coconut oil, brown sugar, pumpkin puree and egg yolks in with the milk/vinegar mixture in the medium sized bowl

Whip the egg whites with a hand mixer

Pour the wet mixture into the large bowl with the dry ingredients and use a spatula to gently fold together the ingredients

Gently fold in the egg whites

Pre heat your griddle or pan on low to low-medium heat (I place my dial on 3)

Let your batter rest for 5-10 minutes while the pan heats up

Once your pan is sufficiently heated, use a 1/4 cup to scoop out the batter and place it on the pan or griddle. If you have a pan cover, place it over the pan for about 1 minute to help create convection heat

Wait until the edges curl and bubbles form in the pancakes, then fip them to the other side

Let them cook on the other side for about 2 to 3 minutes, then remove and place on serving plate

Serve with your favorite toppings

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

14

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 118Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 193mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 3g

Delicious Dairy-Free Buttermilk Pancake Recipe using Almond Milk

If you are lactose intolerant or have any an other type of dairy intolerances, you can still enjoy the great classic taste of mouth watering, fluffy buttermilk pancakes. The key to get that great buttermilk taste is to add an acid into your favorite dairy free milk. Almond milk or cashew milk are two of my favorite go to dairy free milks.

The key dry ingredients that you will need are as follows: all purpose white flour, baking powder, baking soda, coconut sugar, and salt. The key wet ingredients include your nut milk, apple cider vinegar, eggs, and melted coconut oil. The melted coconut oil is a great substitute for melted butter if you want to get that rich classic taste in your pancakes. In my opinion, coconut oil gives pancakes a much better flavor than canola oil or olive oil.

Ingredients for Almond Milk Buttermilk Pancakes: From top row left to right:  Almond milk, coconut oil, large egg.  Bottom row left to right: salt, baking soda, baking powder, coconut sugar, white flour.
Top Row, Left to Right: Almond Milk, Coconut Oil, Large Egg Bottom Row, Left to Right: Salt, Baking Soda, Baking Powder, Apple Cider Vinegar (in oval shaped portion of 1 tbsp), Coconut Sugar, White Flour

To start off, you want to get your measuring cup, measure out each dry ingredient, and place them in a small bowl. You will want to mix them together with a fork or a whisk. If you have access to a flour sifter, you can use this to sift in each ingredient into the bowl. This helps mix the ingredients and incorporates air into the particles, which helps make the pancakes fluffier.

Next place your apple cider vinegar and nut milk of choice into a medium bowl and let it sit for about 5 minutes. This will cause the milk to curdle a bit just like regular buttermilk. Melt your coconut oil into the microwave and add it your milk-vinegar mixture. Last, crack your eggs, separate the whites into a small bowl, and add the egg yolks to your mixture. Stir everything together.

Then, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold gently with a spatula. You want to intentionally undermix the batter.

Then add in the egg whites and gently fold them in until everything is mixed together but still a little bit lumpy. You don’t want to over mix the pancake batter.

Turn on your electric griddle or stove top to medium-low heat. Let the batter sit while you wait for the pan or griddle to heat up. This will allow the double acting baking powder (your main leavening agent) to do its magic and bubbles will start to form in the batter.

Place a little bit of vegetable oil cooking spray or melted coconut oil onto the pan. Place about 1/4 cup of batter onto the pan and wait until bubbles form in the pancake and the edges curl up. Flip the pancake. If you timed your flip right, the side you just flipped should be golden brown.

This recipe is such an easy recipe and is great for beginner cooks and advanced home chefs alike!

Delicious Dairy-Free Buttermilk Pancake Recipe using Almond Milk
Yield: 15 to 18 medium sized pancakes

Delicious Dairy-Free Buttermilk Pancake Recipe using Almond Milk

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This a great classic dairy-free pancake recipe that gives you that same great buttermilk pancake flavor!

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) of melted coconut oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) of coconut sugar  
  • 2 tablespoons of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

Instructions

  1. Measure out your dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) and sift each ingredients into a small mixing bowl. Mix the ingredients with a whisk or a fork
  2. Measure out the almond milk and apple cider vinegar. Place the almond milk and the apple cider vinegar in a medium bowl and let it set for a few minutes until the milk curdles
  3. Measure out the coconut oil and place it in the microwave for about 30 to 45 seconds to melt it, then add the coconut oil to the milk-vinegar mixture
  4. Crack the eggs and separate the white from the yolks, place the whites in a separate small bowl and add the yolks to the milk-vinegar-coconut oil mixture
  5. Whip up the whites with a hand mixer until they form soft peaks
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and add the whipped egg whites.
  7. Stir gently using a spatula until the dry ingredients and egg whites are mixed in. Don't over mix! The batter should still look lumpy, but you shouldn't see any large pockets of dry ingredients
  8. Let the batter sit for about 10 minutes while you heat up the griddle or pan to medium-low heat
  9. Test the griddle by placing a splash of water on it - it should evaporate within 1-2 seconds but not "explode" into steam
  10. Use a 1/4 measuring cup to scoop out the batter and place it on the pan
  11. Wait until bubbles form on the pancakes and the edges curl up, then flip
  12. Remove the pancakes about 1-2 minutes after flipping and place them on a serving plate

FAQ’s:

What can I substitute for apple cider vinegar? White vinegar or lemon juice can be used, but keep in mind the flavor will change a bit.

What can I substitute for coconut sugar? I love coconut sugar because it cooks similar to brown sugar but has a lower glycemic index. Brown sugar is a great option and gives some extra sweetness to the pancakes. White granulated sugar will also work. If you use it, your pancakes will be a bit sweeter and lighter in color.

Can vanilla almond milk be used? It can, but it will change the flavor a bit. If you want a hint of that vanilla flavor but don’t have vanilla almond milk, just add one teaspoon of vanilla extract per one cup of milk to the recipe. I don’t recommend using sweetened almond milk. It is better for you to control the sweetness of your pancakes with the amount of sugar you add to the recipe.

What other non-dairy milks can be used instead of nut milks? Oat milk or soy milk can be used the same way as almond or cashew milk, but the pancakes will have less of a nutty flavor.

Can whole wheat flour be used? It can be used, but it will change the texture of the pancakes quite a bit. One suggestion is to use half whole wheat flour and half regular flour.

Can vegan butter be used instead of coconut oil to keep the pancakes dairy-free? I haven’t tried this, so I can’t speak to the results. If you make this recipe and use vegan butter, let me know how it turned out in the comments below!

What are some topping options other than good old-fashioned pure maple syrup? Fresh fruit is great. I like adding fresh strawberries, blueberries, and banana slices. If you are in the mood for a sweeter option, try some chocolate chips! Make sure to add them over the pancakes when the pancakes are still hot, so they melt a bit. Yum! Another less common option is adding almond butter or peanut butter with a little bit of your favorite fruit jam for peanut butter and jelly pancakes!

Do you want a plant-based vegan version of the this recipe? Substitute flax eggs for the eggs or use one ripe banana and mash it up. You won’t have to worry about whipping the egg white in this case. Keep in mind, the pancakes will not be quite as thick and fluffy as the traditional version, but they will still taste great!

How to make pancakes in a cast iron skillet

In my opinion, there is nothing better than pancakes made from a cast iron skillet. The crevices in the skillet allow the oil or butter in the pan to soak into the pancakes and creates a nice texture on the surface of the pancakes.

What are the keys to success? Use the tips below to get perfect pancakes every time!

Make sure the heat is evenly distributed.

Although iron cookware retain heat very well, they don’t distribute the heat as evenly. Hot spots can form resulting in a pancake with is overcooked at one part and undercooked at another. Hot spots can be minimized by making sure the heat of your pan is appropriate for pancakes.

Place the cast-iron skillet on the stove top at medium heat or medium-low heat.

Be patient and allow the pan to properly heat up.

Spash a bit of water on the pan, if the pan is the right temperature, it should sizzle away and evaporate.

Don’t use high heat for making pancakes! Save the high heat for getting that perfect sear on your steak.

Make sure your pan has been seasoned properly.

If your pan hasn’t been seasoned, the pancake batter is going to stick to the pan, even if you coat the pan with butter or oil. You can buy a pre-seasoned pan, but I would still recommend you season it yourself after you buy it.

Make sure you coat the pan with butter or oil

cast iron pan coated with oil

Even with a pan properly seasoned, this ain’t no non-stick pan. A little butter or oil on the pan can go a long way. I sometimes love using salted butter since the salt gives the pancakes a nice flavor.

If you are watching your salt content, unsalted butter works fine too. Make sure the butter is cold, since butter’s melting point is fairly low, you don’t want the butter immediately burning when it hits the pan.

Coconut oil works really well since it has a high melting point and adds a nice flavor to the pancakes. Another oil I love using for pancakes is walnut oil. It has a high melting point and adds a nice nutty flavor. Don’t use olive oil. Its melting point is too low and it will burn when you place it on the pan.

How much oil should you use? One half of a teaspoon is usually enough for several pancakes, then add another half of a teaspoon after you have made 3 or 4 pancakes.

Keep the pancakes away from the edges of the pan

Remember, unless you have a unusually large cast iron pan or a rectangular cast iron griddle, you don’t have a lot of real estate on this pan. Keep the pancakes small and pour batter near the center.

For a 10 inch cast iron pan, you are only going to be able to make 2 or 3 pancakes at one time. If you try to make any more than that at one time, when you flip them, they are going to hit the edge or running into a each other.

Tiny pancakes are easier to flip. Use a measuring cup to get the right amount of batter. A 1/4 cup seems to work best in my experience.

Make sure you have a thick batter

Thick pancake batter

If your batter is to runny, the pancakes won’t rise as much and will be much harder to flip. Of course, you don’t want the batter so thick that the pancakes end up to dry

How do I get extra fluffy pancakes?

For the best ways to get nice fluffy pancakes, you need to use the techniques I discussed in my post entitled “The best techniques to get fluffy and delicious pancakes every time”.

First make sure you have the right milk mixture to flour mixture. Next use a sifter to sift the dry ingredients. Use the right amount of leaving agents (baking powder and/or baking soda). Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. Whip up the egg whites and stir them in at the very end. Don’t over mix the batter! Let the batter rest for about 10 to 15 minutes. In order to avoid wasting a bunch of time, you can make the batter first before turning on the stove top.

Once you have mixed the batter, turn on the stove top and place your cast iron pan over the burner. 10 to 15 minutes on the burner is usually enough time to get rid of the hot spots on the pan. You kill two birds with one stone, your batter gets to rest it needs and your pan gets heated appropriately. Once you drop the pancake batter on the pan, place a cover over the pan for about 30 seconds or so. Use all of these techniques, and you will have yourself some of the fluffiest pancakes your heart can desire.

How do I know when to flip the pancake?

Wait until bubbles form over the top of the pancake and the edges of the pancake start to curl up. These two signs let you know the bottom of the pancake is sufficiently cooked. Flip the pancake, the side you just flipped should be golden brown.

pancake batter in cast iron pan

What kind of pancakes are best to make in a cast iron pan?

Good old fashioned traditional pancakes are a great option. Blueberry pancakes are also great. Just make sure your pan is seasoned and you add enough oil, since blueberry pancakes will stick to the pan more easily. How do you get that great buttermilk taste? Well, you could just use buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, or you want to make non-dairy pancakes, use some vinegar or lemon juice and place it into the your milk of choice. Adding some sour cream the batter can also get you that butter milk taste.

If you are making gluten-free pancakes, low-carb pancakes, or vegan pancakes, make sure your pan is seasoned well and apply a bit extra oil to the pan, since these types of pancakes won’t hold together quite as well as a traditional gluten pancake with eggs.

Another fun option is making one big pancake in the cast-iron pan. Just filled the whole pan with pancake batter. Cover up pain with a lid to help the pancake cook and rise. Once it bubbles up, flip the huge pancake. You can cut the pancakes in equally sized slices and serve at as “pancake pizza”.

One more idea is to use a smaller cast iron pan to make dutch baby pancakes. One thing I love about making pancakes this way is you are using the edges of the pan to help cook the pancake. This results in nice tasty crispy edges to each pancake.

Healthy Gluten-Free Banana Oat Pancakes

I have a confession to make. Even though I love making and eating pancakes with my family on the weekends, I sometimes dread the pancake coma that comes after eating the pancakes. All I wanted to do after eating breakfast was to take a long nap. On the other hand, my 5 year old son, who I will affectionately refer to as “The Pancake Kid”, only becomes more energized after eating pancakes.

After a good breakfast of hearty pancakes, while I am struggling to keep my eyes open, he is running around the house like a caged animal finally set free. I developed this recipe for a healthy alternative without the gluten, melted butter, buttermilk, and cane sugar that has contributed to my after pancake crash.

I have been experimenting for a while on methods to make gluten free pancakes, but I was never quite satisfied with the results. One problem I have had was that the batter didn’t have the same structural support as a pancakes with gluten flour. I often would tear the pancake apart when flipping them, no matter how gentle I tried to be during this maneuver. I made a few changes from my original pancake portions which really seemed to make a difference. The key was to stick to the foundation of the pancake anatomy by making sure all 8 core ingredients are covered. See my post entitled “The 8 core ingredients of the pancake (Pancake Anatomy)”.

Ingredients: Left to Right- upper row: 1) Oats, 2) Coconut sugar, 3) baking soda, 4) banana, 5) cinnamon, 6) vanilla extract, 7) salt, lower row: 8) cashew milk, 9) 2 eggs
INGREDIENTS – LEFT TO RIGHT:
UPPER ROW: whole oats, coconut sugar, baking powder, banana, cinnamon, vanilla extract, salt
LOWER ROW: cashew milk, two eggs

For the flour, I use gluten free old fashioned oats. For the leavening agent I used my standard portion of baking powder – 1 tablespoon per 1 cup of flour. I leave the baking soda out for this recipe (reasons are discussed later). For sugar, I use coconut flour instead of cane sugar. The coconut flour helps brown the edges of the pancake similar to cane brown sugar, but has a much lower glycemic index. I add my standard 1/4 teaspoon of salt. I use cashew milk instead of cow’s milk. Cashew milk is a little creamier than almond milk and a little higher in fat content which helps add to the overall flavor.

For an acid, I add 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract. Since I want the vanilla flavor to come out in the final product, I don’t use baking soda to react with it. Instead of my standard one egg per 1 cup of flour, I add 2 eggs for this recipe. This helps make up for the loss of structure by not using gluten. For fat, I use 2 tablespoons of walnut oil. Walnut oil has a high melting point so it is great for cooking and baking. It adds a nice nutty aroma to the batter.

Finally, I add one banana to the batter. The banana adds to the sweetness of the pancakes and makes up for the loss of some sweetness by using coconut flour instead of cane sugar. But more importantly, the banana (like the extra egg) helps the pancake batter stick together. By using the banana and the extra egg, the pancake is almost easy to flip as a traditional pancake and shouldn’t fall apart when flipping.

I add all the dry ingredients together in a large blender cup and stir together with a spoon. Then I add all the wet ingredients into the blender (except the egg white) and blend it all together. The blender makes the whole oats into oat flour and mixes in the banana evenly with the rest of the batter. Finally, I gently fold in the egg white, let the batter sit for about 10 minutes while I let the stove top warm up the cast iron pan, and pop those pancakes onto the pan.

Gluten free Banana Oat Pancakes on a white plate with a pancake spatula in the bottom of the picture with fruit (lemons, oranges, bananas, and an apple) in the top of the picture.
This recipe makes 10 to 12 pancakes. There were 11 pancakes made during this session, but I ate one before taking the picture – sorry, I couldn’t resist!

The pancakes really turned out great! I have repeated the recipe a number of times with consistent results. In fact, I just had these pancakes this morning and have I finally have the energy to write this post even after chasing The Pancake Kid around in the backyard.

Healthy Gluten Free Banana Oat Pancakes
Yield: 10-12

Healthy Gluten Free Banana Oat Pancakes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Healthy Gluten Free Banana Oat Pancakes. Non-dairy milk and fat is used. These pancakes are light and slightly crispy with a soft texture and a nice semi sweet taste.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of gluten-free old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup of coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 3/4 cup of cashew milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla
  • 1 whole banana
  • 2 eggs - separated into yolks and whites

Instructions

  1. Add the oats, coconut sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt in a large blender cup and gently stir together with a spoon
  2. Add the milk, vanilla, and banana into the same blender cup
  3. Separate the egg yolks from the whites keeping the whites in a small mixing bowl, add the yolks to the blender cup
  4. Blend the mixture on high until all items are evenly mixed
  5. Whip the egg whites until a frothy white foam is formed and it starts to form soft peaks
  6. Add the egg whites to the mixture and gently fold in the batter with a spatula, do NOT overmix!
  7. Let the batter sit for about 10 minutes while you turn the stovetop burner to medium low heat and place a well seasoned cast iron pan on the burner
  8. Test the temperature of the pan by placing a few drops of water on the pan, the water should sizzle and evaporate over about 2 seconds (if it takes longer, its not hot enough; if it explodes instantly into steam, the pan is too hot)
  9. Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to scoop some batter out and place it on the pan, repeat for one or two more pancakes depending on the size of your pan
  10. Wait until some bubbles start to form on the pancakes (it won't bubble as much as gluten flour pancakes), then wait a bit longer until the edges of the pancakes curl up on the sides
  11. Flip the pancakes and let them cook on this side for about 45 seconds to one minute
  12. Place the pancakes on a plate and serve with maple syrup or sugar free syrup

Notes

1. For thicker, fluffier pancakes: If you have a cover for the pan, place it over the pan for about 30 seconds - this helps cook the pancakes with convection heat and will help the pancakes rise a bit more

2. This recipe is gluten-free and dairy free.

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Delicious Fluffy Lemon Blueberry Cardamom Pancakes

What is better than a good stack of blueberry pancakes on a Saturday morning? Lemon-blueberry pancakes! The tartness of the lemons goes perfect with the sweetness of the blueberries. Several months ago, I woke up early on a Saturday morning on a quest to come up with the perfect blueberry lemon pancake recipe. My four year old son also woke up early and of course, he asked me “where are the pancakes, daddy?”.

So I decided to take him on a field trip to the grocery store. I needed something to make these pancakes unique and a little exotic. Cinnamon? No, it doesn’t really go well with blueberries and lemons! Aha! Lavender! Lavender would pair well with both the blueberries and lemons. I asked a clerk at our local grocery store where the lavender was, he looked at me like I had three heads. He replied, “I don’t think we have that kind of thing here”. I thought about going to another grocery store, maybe Whole Foods? But when 4 years olds get hungry, they get cranky. Cranky 4 year olds are no fun on a Saturday morning before I have had my pancakes, let alone my coffee.

We searched the spice aisle, then it came to me. Cardamom! Cardamom is exotic enough to give these pancakes that special something without being too overpowering. So we grabbed some ground Cardamom, frozen blueberries, and lemons and headed home. The pancakes turned out magnificent! Since this first session, I experimented with the amount of Cardamom to add to the batter. 1/2 tablespoon per 1 cup of flour wasn’t enough and didn’t taste that much different from standard lemon-blueberry pancakes. 2 tablespoons per 1 cup of flour was a little too much and a little overpowering. 1 tablespoon per 1 cup of flour seems to be the sweet spot.

My son likes to help make these pancakes and loves to be the one to squeeze the lemon juice out of the lemons. The first couple of times we made these, we just squeezed the lemons by hand but found a couple of lemon seeds in the pancakes while we were eating them. This is kind of like finding a bone in your fish as you eat it, not a great experience. Since then, I have gotten a citrus squeezer which catches all the seeds. It is also easier for him to use.

This recipe is now one of my wife’s favorites! I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have!

Helpful Tips

  1. Don’t skip out on sifting the dry ingredients. Sifting adds air to the batter which helps make the pancakes fluffy. Also sifting in your baking powder and baking soda makes sure no clumps of baking soda are hiding in the batter. Nothing is worse than biting into an otherwise tasty pancake and discovering a little clump of baking soda in your mouth.
  2. Add the lemon juice to the buttermilk to until you get the desired amount of total liquid. If you use the amount of milk you would normally use for a “plain” pancake recipe, when you add the lemon juice, you will shift the ratio of flour to liquid to too much liquid and the pancake batter will be too thin
  3. Add the melted butter to the milk/lemon juice mixture before adding the egg yolk. This warms the milk and cools the butter. If you add the melted butter and yolk first, the hot butter will start to cook the egg. Warm milk make better pancakes, but I ain’t got no time for leaving milk out to warm it before starting. I’ll forget about it and it will spoil, and my wife will get on to me about it. The hot melted butter instantly warms the milk
  4. Don’t whip the eggs until right before you are gonna add them in. They will get stiff and won’t stir into the batter quite as nicely. Also, don’t whip to hard peaks. Whip only until bubbly and soft peaks start to form.
Stack of Blueberry Lemon Cardamom Panckaes with extra blueberries and banana slices
Yield: 15-18 medium sized pancakes

Lemon Blueberry Cardamom Pancakes

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Simple the best light and fluffy Lemon Blueberry Cardamom Pancakes. These are my wife's favorite pancakes!

Ingredients

  • 2 cup all purpose white flour
  • 2 tablespoons of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 4 tablespoons of melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons of cardamom powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 4 large lemons

Instructions

  1. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom in a large mixing bowl
  1. Zest the lemons and set aside for the lemon zest
  2. Pour the buttermilk into a medium sized measuring cup
  3. Squeeze the lemon juice from the lemons into the buttermilk until you have two cups total of milk and lemon juice
  4. Melt the butter and add it to the milk and lemon mixture
  5. Crack the eggs and separate the whites into a small bowl
  6. Place the yolks in large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar and stir together
  7. Add the milk, butter, lemon juice mixture to the brown sugar and egg yolk and stir together with a wisk or a fork
  8. Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredient bowl and add the lemon zest into the batter and use a spatula to gently fold the contents together, do NOT over mix!
  9. Use a power mixer to whip the egg whites until firm peaks are formed
  10. Add the egg whites into the batter and gently fold them in
  11. Let the batter sit for 10-15 minutes while you turn on the burner to medium-low heat and place your pan on the burner
  12. Measure out your blueberries and keep them in a small cup next to the pancake batter
  13. Test the pan by dropping a few drops of water on the pan - the water should boil away over a few seconds
  14. Use an ice cream scoop or 1/3 measuring cup to scoop batter and place on the pan
  15. Drop the blueberries on the pancake
  16. Wait until the pancake bubbles and edges begin to curl, then gently flip with a spatula
  17. Repeat steps 15 thru 17 until all the pancakes are cooked
  18. Serve with maple syrup and fresh fruit of your choice

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12 pancakes

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 156Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 42mgSodium: 468mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 4g

FAQs

  • Should I use frozen blueberries or fresh blueberries? I prefer frozen blueberries. Fresh blueberries will retain much more heat than the rest of the pancake, so when you bite into them, they will be so hot they can burn your mouth. If I have fresh blueberries on hand, I do like to sprinkle them over the top of the pancakes
  • Should I mix in the blueberries into the batter or drop them on each pancake just after placing the pancake batter on the pan? I have always liked to mix in the blueberries into the batter because the streaks of blueberry juice that leak into the batter add a great flavor to the pancakes. However, you have to make sure you don’t over mix! I have converted to the drop them on the batter method, because my oldest son doesn’t like blueberries. This way I will make a “Lemon Cardamom” pancake batch first for him, then drop on the blueberries for the rest of the pancakes.
  • What if I don’t have buttermilk? No worries! Just mix in the lemon juice with plain milk or the non-dairy milk of your choice and let it sit for a bit before adding the melted butter and than the egg whites
  • What can be substituted for the sugar? Coconut sugar works well and cooks similar to brown sugar. Just keep in mind, the pancakes will be a little less sweet.
  • How do I make this recipe dairy-free? Substitute the buttermilk with your favorite nut milk and add the lemons into the milk to “cirdle” the milk. Replace the melted butter with melted coconut oil. I have tested the recipe with this substitution and it still tastes great!

Best techniques to get fluffy and delicious pancakes every time

There is no better way to start the weekend off right by than making homemade pancakes that are light and fluffy. I used to struggle with getting pancakes to rise when making them from scratch. I would bail out and get a pancake mix just to get the pancakes to the right consistency. Often my pancakes would end up flat and rubbery and I couldn’t figure out why. Over time and with research, I realized I was over-mixing the batter. However, when I under-mixed the batter, there would be clumps of flour or, even worse, clumps of baking soda in the pancakes.

With more trial and error, I figured out some important techniques that seems to work best for me to get the outcome I desired. Now, armed with these techniques, I am able to create tasty, fluffy pancakes every time. Once you figure this stuff out, you will never need to get a pancake mix to get fluffy pancakes and your homemade pancakes will taste much better than from a pre made mix.

1. Make sure you have the right ratio of flour to liquid

If you have too much flour, the pancakes will be dry and flavorless. If you have too much liquid, the batter will be too runny and the pancakes won’t puff up and rise. The best ratio I have found is around 1 to 1 for a more traditional pancake recipe and slightly less liquid to flour for some other types of recipes (7 parts liquid to 8 parts flour, i.e. for 2 cups of flour you will have 1 and 3/4 cups of liquid). If you are using an acid such as vinegar or citrus juice, incorporate this amount into your total, otherwise the extra liquid from the acid will mess up the ratios and make the batter too runny.

2. Use a sifter to sift the dry ingredients together.

Using a sifter incorporates air into the dry ingredients, which will help them rise. Sifting also ensures that the baking soda and powder are evenly mixed into flour without lumps forming.

3. Don’t over mix the batter

After you have mixed the dry ingredients together, mix the milk with the acid together. Then add the melted butter to the milk to warm it. Mix the egg yolk with the sugar, then add the milk, acid, butter mixture to the wet ingredients. Then gently pour the wet mixture into the center of the dry ingredients.

Use a spatula to gently fold the dry and wet ingredients together. Use the spatula to scrape the edges of the bowl to make sure you don’t leave any dry ingredient unmixed and “fold” it into the center of the bowl. Do NOT over mix! The batter should look “lumpy” like in the picture above.

4. Separate the egg yolk from the white

If you are short on time or don’t have a hand mixer, just separate the whites from the rest of the wet ingredients. Gently mix the wet ingredients including the egg yolks and then fold in the egg whites

However, to really get those pancakes extra fluffy, we need to take it the next level. Whip the egg whites with a hand or power mixer. You want to whip the egg whites until they start to foam and then form soft peaks, then gently fold them into the rest of the batter.

5. Use convection heat to your advantage

If you follow all the steps up to this point, this step is probably unnecessary. I learned this technique from watching YouTube videos of Japanese souffle pancakes to get that extra tall, fluffy pancake. If you use a cast iron pan or non stick pan with a lid, place the lid on the pan right after you drop the pancake batter on the pan. This will trap some heat in the pan, making the pan act like an oven. If you have a glass lid, you will actually see the pancake puff up and rise a bit right after you place the lid on.

Where I find this especially useful is in recipes that are heavier, such as pumpkin pancakes, pancakes with sour cream or cheese, or pancakes with heavy fruits or vegetables blended in. Not only will this technique help these types of pancakes rise, it also cooks the inside a bit, which is needed in these types of pancakes. Otherwise, you either get the outside over done, the inside undercooked, or you have to turn the heat down too low which makes the pancakes cook too slowly and results in a rubbery pancake.

The 8 Core Ingredients of the Pancake (Pancake Anatomy)

As a surgeon, I have a deep appreciation for human anatomy and the important roles that different organ systems provide to overall function of the body as a whole. When I started medical school, we spent eight long but exciting weeks in the anatomy cadaver lab learning every little detail of the human anatomy. Then for the rest of the first two years of medical school, we learned every painstaking detail of biochemistry, histology, pathology, pharmacology, and other torture inducing subjects that mainly served to force us to forget everything we learned about anatomy. Of course this is from a surgeon’s perspective – others may have found these subjects more interesting.

Later, during the third year of medical school during our surgery rotation, we had to re-learn all the anatomy in order get the most out of the rotation. During my time in my orthopedic surgical residency training program after medical school, we had to learn every detailed step of many common orthopedic procedures. I quickly learned that if I focused on mastering the anatomy surrounding each procedure, the steps became more intuitive and easier to remember. As a practicing surgeon, I appreciate the importance of mastering the anatomy to a ever greater level. If you become a master of the anatomy, you are not restricted to memorizing the steps to the procedure, instead it becomes apparent what the next step is.

As I started my journey to become a “pancake master” I realized i needed to understand the purpose of each ingredient. Once, I finally understood the “anatomy” of the pancake, I was able to develop a better understanding on what each core ingredient is providing to the pancake as a whole. There are eight core ingredients to a pancake. The eight core ingredients to the pancake are as follows:

  • Flour
  • Leavening Agents
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Milk
  • Acid
  • Eggs
  • Fat

Flour

King Arthur All-Purpose Flour Bag with flour in measuring cup and flour spilled on background, cutting board at top right of image

Flour is the skeleton of the pancake anatomy. It gives the pancake support and structure. Flour is made of starch and gluten. The gluten is a protein molecule that forms a web like lattice when it is activated by water. Air pockets form between the gluten particles which help give the batter its shape. For best results, use all purpose flour.

Can you use gluten-free flour or low carb options such as almond flour? Absolutely! Just keep in mind, you won’t have the benefit of the gluten to provide that important structure to the pancake. Therefore, you are going to have to provide the structure with another ingredient in addition to the flour.

Leavening agents

Baking soda scooped into 1 tablespoon measuring cup

Keeping our pancake anatomy analogy alive, leavening agents are the “lungs” of the pancake. The leavening agents allow air bubbles to enter the batter and help make the pancake light and fluffy. The two most common leavening agents are baking soda and baking powder. Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate. It needs an acid to activate it. When activated, it forms carbon dioxide air bubbles. These bubbles get trapped with the gluten “web” which allows the pancake batter to rise and become light and fluffy.

Baking powder is baking soda mixed with an acid such as cream of tartar. The cream of tartar is in its salt form and thus doesn’t activate with the baking soda until water is added. Most baking powders are double acting, which means they react when mixed with water and then again when heat is added.

How much baking powder should you add in the recipe? I have found that 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) per 1 cup of flour seems to be the sweet spot. For baking soda, use about 1/3 to 1/6 of what you used for baking powder. So for one 1 tablespoon of baking powder, use one teaspoon of baking soda as a maximum amount and 1/2 teaspoon as a minimum. This is based on a recipe that calls for 1 cup of flour. If your making a double batch, double the amount.

Sugar

Sugar’s most obvious function is to provide sweetness to the pancakes. However, it does more than this. The granulated sugar particles become crystalized when they come into contact with the hot pan. This creates a nice crispy edge to the pancakes.

White sugar is a classic option, but other sugars can be used. Brown sugar is one of my personal favorites. It creates a nice robust flavor and helps you get those nice golden brown pancakes when it crystalizes on the hot skillet.

For healthy pancakes other granulated sweeteners with a lower glycemic index can be used such as coconut sugar. If liquid sweeteners are used in place of granulated sugar, the pancakes will not be quite as crispy but still may taste great.

How much sugar should you add to the batter? Add at least one tablespoon sugar for best results. For sweeter, more classic pancakes, you can add up to 1/4 of a cup (4 tablespoons) of sugar. If you are making whole wheat pancakes, consider adding a bit more sugar to help bring out some sweetness.

Salt

Salt crystals also help provide a crispy edge to the pancakes and help neutralize the sweetness of the sugar. A little salt goes a long way.

How much salt should you add? Even of “pinch” of salt can add a great deal of flavor to the pancakes. Most recipes call for anywhere from a pinch of salt to 1/4 teaspoon per 1 cup of flour. I have seen some recipes with 1/2 teaspoon. Any more than this and the pancakes will probably taste too salty.

Milk

Milk adds water to the pancake but also adds in fat and protein. Other liquids can be used, but milk is the most common and most predictable. Buttermilk is the classic liquid for pancakes. The acidity in buttermilk reacts with the baking soda which helps the pancakes rise. Any left over acidity give you that nice tangy flavor. Whole milk also works great. If you use whole milk without adding an acid such as citrus juice or vinegar, you may want to skip the baking soda in leau of baking powder since the baking soda won’t have an acid to react with.

Are you lactose intolerant or vegan? Not a problem at all! Plant based milks can work great for pancakes as well. My favorite is cashew milk since is slightly thicker and creamier than other nut milks such as almond milk. Oat milk also works great.

The ratio of milk to flour is very important. If other liquids are added into the batter (such as citrus juices), this must be calculated into the ratio. The highest ratio of milk (plus any other liquids) to flour is 1 cup milk for 1 cup flour. Any more than this, and your pancakes will be too thin and runny and won’t fluff up when you place them on the pan.

The lowest ratio should be 3/4 cup of milk to one cup of flour. If you use less then this, your pancakes will be to dry. You may have to experiment to find what works for you. For a thick batter, keep the ratio of milk to flour lower. For a slightly thinner pancake that is more moist and flavorful, add a little extra milk.

Acid

If buttermilk is not used, you will want to add an acid to react with the baking soda. Vanilla extract is a classic acid that adds flavor to the pancake and serves as an acid to react to the baking soda.

Citrus juices such as freshly squeezed lemons, limes, or oranges work great. Vinegar also works great. You want to add the acid to the milk and let it sit for a few minutes to “curdle” before mixing the rest of the wet ingredients in.

Eggs

Eggs provide structure to the pancake and help hold it together. When the whites are separated from the yolks and “folded in” at the very last step in mixing, they provide an extra level of fluffiness to the pancakes.

How many eggs should you use? One or two eggs per 1 cup of flour works well. When traditional all-purpose white flour is used, one large egg is enough. For gluten free recipes, 2 eggs can help the batter can help make up for the lack of gluten in providing structure to the pancakes.

What if you are on a vegan or other plant based diet? Can I still make great pancakes? Absolutely! However, the pancakes will turn out best if something is substituted for the eggs to help provide structure to the pancake. Common substitutes are mashed banana, a small amount of pumpkin or sweet potato puree, or flax seed.

Fat

Fat provides a richness in flavor to the pancakes. The classic fat is melted butter but other fats can be used. I recommend unsalted butter so it doesn’t affect your amount of salt you put in the recipe.

Coconut oil also works great and is a great option for those on vegan diets that still want to get that rich “buttery” pancake flavor.

Nut oils with high melting points such as walnut oil and almond oil also work well but will change the flavor and consistency of the pancake a bit. My favorite nut oil is walnut oil. It can be used in the recipe as a reliable substitute for butter and it also works well as a butter substitute for greasing the pan.

How much fat should you use? Typical amounts range from 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, melted butter, or coconut oil to 4 tablespoons. More fat will result in a richer flavor to the pancakes.

The next time you make homemade pancakes, pay attention to the “pancake anatomy” and make sure you incorporate all 8 core ingredients. Keep an ingredient checklist to make sure you have all eight ingredients covered. As described in this articles, substitutions can be made for each area as needed in order to keep true to your chosen diet. I wish you the best in your journey to making those perfect pancakes that your whole family will enjoy!

For techniques on making the tastiest, fluffiest pancakes, go to my post entitled “Best techniques to get fluffy delicious pancakes every time”.