I’ve never been the kind of guy who insisted on eating only “breakfast food” for breakfast.
When I first switched to a Paleo-type diet, I wasn’t the one asking “But what do I eat for breakfast?” Maybe it’s because I’ve spent so much time in Asia and other countries abroad that have entirely different ideas about what to eat in the morning.
For example, in Indonesia a typical breakfast might have been some fish, vegetables, and rice. In Thailand it was much the same. Even here in the U.S., I’ve been known to eat everything from steak and potatoes to chicken bone-broth soup to yuca patties with sausage and sauerkraut.
Still, there are times when I just want some pancakes! And especially now that I have a young daughter, there’s just something about the Sunday morning ritual of pancakes and bacon that I didn’t want to give up entirely.
What I don’t want is to eat a lot of nutrient-poor wheat flour, or even gluten-free flour, and to feel like I need to take a nap after breakfast—which is often how I feel if I eat typical or grain-based gluten-free pancakes.
With this in mind, I’ve been experimenting over the years with several different pancake recipes. My criteria were:
- No sugar in the batter
- Fluffy, light texture
- Kid-approved (even kids that aren’t on a gluten- or grain-free diet)
- Easy to make
After a lot of trial and error, I’ve finally come to a recipe that meets all of the criteria above. My wife made them for our daughter’s preschool class and the kids gobbled them up and asked for more. These are kids that typically eat pancakes made from wheat flour, so that was high praise indeed!
What I love about these is that they are mostly plantains and eggs, with only a little bit of flour (cassava and tiger nut). That means that eating these pancakes is not much different from a nutritional perspective than eating scrambled eggs and sliced plantains. I still wouldn’t recommend eating these pancakes for breakfast every day, but there’s certainly no need to feel guilty about having them once a week!
Here’s the recipe. Note that we use the same batter to make waffles as well.
Chris’s Grain-, Gluten-, and Guilt-free Pancake & Waffle Batter
- 2 large, unripe (as green as possible) plantains, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 5 large eggs
- ½ cup almond milk
- ½ cup cassava flour (Otto’s Naturals is a good brand)
- ¼ cup tiger nut flour (Organic Gemini is a good brand)
- 3 tbs oil (either olive oil or melted coconut oil)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
Add all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. If batter is too thick, add ¼ to ½ cup additional almond milk. If too thin, add ⅛ to ¼ cup cassava flour.
Heat iron skillet or pancake griddle at medium temperature for 3 to 4 minutes. Brush skillet or griddle with oil (again, coconut or olive oil works well) and pour approximately ⅓ cup of batter for each pancake. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
Optional: add blueberries or other fruit to the pancakes while they’re on the griddle, before flipping the first time.
Serve with butter, ghee, coconut oil, and either fresh fruit, maple syrup/honey, or both.
Makes approximately 8 large pancakes, or 8 to 10 waffles.
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