I forgot Shrove Tuesday! I’m not Catholic, but I’ve got a bit of a religious connection with pancakes, and they are one of my favorite things to eat, make, and get creative with. When I first started eating healthy I at an egg white oatmeal pancake every day. These pancakes got me off boxed cereals, gave me some protein in the morning, and were the beginning of a long and creative road to healthy eating. But I can’t believe I forgot the pancake holiday!
I did give you latkes, another form on pancake on Wednesday, but on Tuesday I was on a train, and then off to work after being away for the weekend. I couldn’t believe I missed my opportunity to be perfectly timely with pancakes. But now I’ve got it. The pancakes for anyone not observing lent–although, they are healthier than your average pancakes, they also a lot more decadent. I know that sounds a little contradictory, but it’s possible. What I’m going for here is an Oscar-worthy pancake, double dark chocolate dressed up with a lot of cocoa, cacao nibs, and my most favorite syrup version of all: salted peanut butter syrup. Oh yes I did.
Not only are these pancakes amazing because they’re the pancake equivalent of a 70% dark chocolate bar….but they’re healthy and fluffy. The journey to healthy pancakes has been a long one, and just recently have I hit the fluffy level that compares to a regular white-flour-not-good-for-you pancake. The secret to fluffy healthy pancakes is quinoa flakes. I stumbled upon these at my local healthy bulk store, Strictly Bulk. This store has 2 locations in Toronto, and only one of them has quinoa flakes. So they’re a little hard to come by, but well worth the search if you can find them. In this batch I used entirely quinoa flakes for my grain, but using 1/3 cup spelt flour and 1/3 cup quinoa flakes works just as well. You can always sub in your grains of choice, but the fluffiness might not be all it could be. They’ll still taste great. The cacao nibs add a nice crunch, compared to just chocolate chips. Here we go!
- Pancake Ingredients:
- 3 T plain non fat greek yogurt
- 1 cup (minus 3 T) egg whites
- ⅓ cup +1/8 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
- ⅔ cup quinoa flakes
- 2 T ground chia seeds (or flax meal)
- 1 t baking powder
- 3 T cocoa powder (I used dark dutch pressed)
- 2 T cacao nibs
- 2 T dark chocolate chips
- coconut oil for your pan
- *I find that using a ⅛ c measuring scoop to give me the perfect sized pancakes
- Make your syrup while the pancakes are flipping. Syrup ingredients:
- 2 T maple syrup
- 2 T flax oil
- 1 T peanut butter
- pinch sea salt
- MAKING THE PANCAKES
- Preheat your pan to medium
- In a 2 cup measuring cup, combine all liquids (start with greek yo, and pour egg whites over top until you reach 1 cup, then add the rest) and beat with a fork
- add in all powder ingredients and mix well
- if the mixture is too thick, add a little more milk
- pour or scoop* batter onto pan, and sprinkle cacao nibs and choc chips….press down with a little more batter so the nibs and chips are hidden
- when pancakes begin to bubble…or appear firm enough, flip them
- MAKING THE SAUCE:
- Melt the peanut butter for about 20 seconds in the microwave
- Stir in syrup and salt…give it a couple minutes (we don’t want to heat up the flax oil much)
- Stir in flax oil when ready to serve
- ENJOY! Sprinkle any leftover cacao nibs and chip onto pancakes when serving.
Because of how decadent these are, I have to tell you why you should eat them. From a nutrition student standpoint, of course.
- Complete protein coming from the quinoa flakes
- Source of flavanoids coming from dark cocoa powder, dark chocolate chips, cacao nibs (which are shown to be anticancer, brain stimulator, cough preventer, reduced risk of heart disease and antidiarrhoeal).
- Source of Omega 3 coming form the flax oil, and chia seeds
- Fibrefrom the whole grains, and chia.
This recipe serves 2, but after all that info, I think you might want to make a double batch.