While on vacation last week, we visited my cousins (who are awesome by the way) for a weekend. The large family breakfast that was planned for Sunday morning was pancakes (yum!), but there was a tiny problem: we forgot to get a gluten free pancake mix for me and my daughters. Now, while I can certainly get by eating eggs and various fruit and veggies for breakfast, my poor 3 year-old isn’t quite able to take the high road yet when everyone else gets pancakes but she doesn’t. I needed gluten free pancakes, and I needed them quickly.
Time to do one of my favorite things: invent a recipe through improvisation!
We had a lot of bananas in the kitchen and my cousin knew how to make “pancakes” using just eggs and bananas. BUT… we ran out of eggs (I know, I know – big oops there). Luckily, she had flax seed which can be used as an egg substitute in baking. I ground up the flax seed needed and mixed it in with the bananas but wasn’t getting anything that resembled pancake batter, so I decided to add some oat flour to the mix (which you can make by grinding up plain whole oats). Then I drew on some lessons that I learned while working on the Perfect Breakfast Muffin and added in baking soda and baking powder to make the pancakes more fluffy. (Side note: if you look at any store bought pancake mix, the baking soda and powder is already in there which is why you don’t usually need to add it.)
Finally, the batter got to the right consistency and we tried them out. I’m happy to say that they were delicious! Once we added the blueberries, they were naturally sweet and didn’t even need syrup. My toddler and 10 month old both gobbled them up, and many of the relatives who can eat gluten tried them and thought they were delicious as well.
So here is the recipe. Let me know what you think!
- 2 bananas
- 1 TBSP flax seeds
- 1 C whole oats (steel cut preferred)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 C water
- 1 pint of blueberries (optional)
Using a coffee grinder or bullet blender, grind the flax seeds into a fine powder. Grind the oats into a powder. Mix the flax seed powder, oat powder, baking powder, and baking soda together in a large bowl.
Mash the bananas and the water together until you get a smooth liquid (you can do this using a blender if you have one). Mix the banana/water liquid into the dry ingredients. Add additional water gradually until the batter is the right consistency (should be a little runny).
Heat a griddle to 350F and grease with a little butter or coconut oil. Pour pancake sized dollops of batter onto the griddle. If you want to add blueberries, place several on each pancake. Allow them to cook for about 3 minutes. The pancakes ready to flip when the edges firm up and there are small bubbles rising through the batter.
Flip the pancakes and cook for another 3 minutes.