When it comes to food, I’m a creature of habit for the most part. I like trying new dishes but I tend to have a handful of meals which I love and rotate between them. For the last 2 months, I ate the exact same breakfast almost every single day:
Yep, it tasted as epic as it looks, and made me wonder why I don’t eat pancakes more often. More than the taste, they’re probably one of the most nutritionally-balanced breakfasts…if made right. While you could easily Google a “healthy pancake recipe”, here’s my go-to recipe: filling, tasty, reliable! As for healthy pancakes in general, here are some tips for future batches…it is the weekend after all ;):
- Stick to homemade batter: Mixing up your own pancake batter is almost as easy as opening a box of Bisquick or Aunt Jemima…the only difference is that the latter are loaded with enriched white flour, partially hydrogenated oils, and a gazillion other ingredients.
- Experiment with flour: Essentially pancakes just need flour, baking powder and a liquid binder. For a healthy dose of fiber, I try to stick to wholegrain flours such as oats, oat bran, garbanzo bean flour, or wholewheat flour. Other great options include quinoa & buckwheat flour.
- Sweeten after: Rather than mix sugar/sweeteners into the batter, I stick with natural sweeteners like cinnamon, vanilla essence, or cocoa powder. I save the real sweeteners for topping purposes, preferably maple syrup or honey.
- Amp up its antioxidant value: Adding ground flax & and chia seeds to the batter is an easy way to increase its fiber & omega 3 fatty acid content. For sweetening purposes, I also tend to add fruit like berries or mashed banana into the batter. For moister pancakes, applesauce and pumpkin can both easily be used in place of oil.
- Pump up the protein: While pancakes tend to be associated with being carb-heavy, they’re actually an easy way to get a protein bomb of a breakfast. Adding whipped egg whites, milk, cottage cheese and protein powder instantly enhance the protein value while also producing fluffy pancakes. My stack above racked in 26g of protein, sans any protein powder.
- Choose your toppings wisely: loading up “healthy” pancakes with buckets worth of whipped cream or butter is like adding tempura to salads: it defeats the whole purpose. Some of my favorite toppings include fresh fruit, Greek yogurt, peanut butter, coconut shavings, nuts, fruit compote,or a drizzle of syrup.
Peace out IHOP…!
What’s your favorite pancake topper?