Although we adore the Trader Joe’s pumpkin pancake mix, I’ve always thought it needed more cowbell pumpkin, so I created my own recipe that ramps up the pumpkin flavor. (Note: If you like less pumpkin, just back it off and substitute applesauce).
|We love our learning tower|
Side note: This recipe is an adaptation of a blueberry banana pancake recipe I’ve been making ever since we lived in England. The whipped egg whites, applesauce, and pumpkin provide moisture, eliminating the need for dairy. It’s a useful recipe when you have about a half a can of pumpkin needing to be used up (usually I do after making “cheez-it bread”). It’s a simple recipe that even the kids can help make; we’re making griddle cakes this morning to participate in the Kids Cook Monday movement.
With the addition of buckwheat flour and cornmeal, these cakes are healthy by pancake standards and have a toothy bite to them. I know some people use the terms “griddle cake” and “pancake” synonymously, but in the south, griddle cakes have a cornmeal component. I grew up eating them in the mountains and love that slight crunch, but you can omit the cornmeal in favor of more flour if you prefer.
3/4 c. pumpkin puree
1/2 c. applesauce or mashed banana (~ 2 bananas)
2 Tbs. unrefined organic sugar
2 tsp. lemon juice
2 eggs, separated*
1/2 c. white whole wheat flour**
1/4 c. buckwheat flour
1/4 c. yellow cornmeal (we like Bob’s Red Mill yellow corn grits/polenta)
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
pinch of pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice and cloves)
1 Tbs. melted coconut oil
1 c. pecans or chocolate chips (optional)
Whisk together flours, baking powder, salt, and spices in a small bowl. In a medium bowl, mix together pumpkin, applesauce/banana, sugar, juice, egg yolks, and cornmeal. Let it sit a few minutes so the grits soften. Fold flour mixture into pumpkin mixture. This batter can sit in the fridge/freezer until you are ready to use it.
When you are ready to make the griddle cakes, whisk egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Fold into pancake batter.
|Needs some water.|
If the batter is still too thick (like mine was), add a few teaspoons of water until it has a still-thick but pourable consistency.
Heat a griddle over medium heat. Grease with coconut oil. Drop on a heaping tablespoon of batter. Smoosh it down into a pancake shape with the back of a silicon spatula. After one minute, sprinkle in a few pecans if you like, or chocolate chips if you want to gild the lily. They will take longer to cook than a standard silver dollar pancake, and you can’t rely on the bubbles to tell when they’re done. I treat them like any baked good and give it the old toothpick test after about 5 minutes on each side. I also cook them on lower heat after the initial sizzle to avoid burning the outside before the center is done.
While they are delicious with maple syrup or whipped cream, our preference is to top them with spiced applesauce (recipe from the Food in Jars book). They’re also fabulous drizzled with cranberry syrup (another recipe from the wonderful Food in Jars book). After conducting a quick Google search, I’m seriously considering making cranberry apple brandy syrup or pumpkin syrup. If you’re going for dairy-free all the way, you might try whipping some coconut butter.
These griddle cakes are even flavorful enough without a topping; I find that I can make them ahead, then heat them and stash them in a handkerchief for a breakfast-on-the-go, which is great for Sundays when we get up and go quickly, heading straight from church to choir practice.
*If you need the recipe to be vegan, substitute 2 Tbs. flax seed meal and 1/4 c. + 2 Tbs. water. Add this mixture when egg yolks are called for, and omit the egg white whipping step. Be sure to cook them at a low temperature so they are given a chance to cook through before burning on the outside.
**If you need the recipe to be gluten-free, substitute oat flour for whole wheat flour. Despite its misleading name, “buckwheat” flour is gluten-free.