These mouth-watering pancakes are free from gluten, dairy and refined sugars but taste just like your typical American style pancake; they are light, fluffy and full of flavour!
Pancakes on a Sunday morning is a weekly tradition in my house, and these healthy blueberry and banana pancakes are a recipe that I keep coming back to!
I can remember when I was younger and went to my favourite American-style Diner, in London. Of course, I ordered a tall stack of banana and blueberry pancakes. A pile of at least six would arrive at the table, drowned in maple syrup and whipped cream. Sounds dreamy, right? Unfortunately, to a gluten and dairy intolerant individual, this is nothing but a recipe for disaster. The first two are delicious and go down like a treat. By the time I’d get to the third. However, my stomach would begin to groan, and I’d find myself bent over double in pain.
After being diagnosed with irritable bowel disease (IBS) two years ago, I had steered clear of pancakes. I thought that no gluten-free (GF) alternative could ever compete with the classic American-style diner pancakes.
Oh, how I was wrong! In my opinion, these banana and blueberry pancakes taste even better than the traditional version (but I guess I am biased) and are also jam-packed full of goodness. They will be sure to keep you full for hours, but without making you feel like you’ve swallowed a bowling ball!
Key tips to mastering the perfect gluten-free pancake
I’m not going to lie. Flipping pancakes is not my strongest point. I usually leave anything to do with a frying pan to my partner. However, he was away when I first tried out this recipe– so I had to take on the challenge myself.
The first few pancakes ended in disaster, resembling a pile of scrambled eggs rather than a pancake. I quickly gobbled up the evidence, which was something I didn’t complain about! After all, I would have to spend the next half hour taking photos before I could sit down and dig into the scrumptious pile of pancakes. Eventually, I perfected the technique and managed to flip five pancakes without them tearing apart in the flipping process (see proof above and below). Hurray! During this quest, I learnt that there are four key points worth bearing in mind to master the perfect gluten-free pancake:
- Keep them small. I used around 1/4 cup of batter per pancake, which prevented them from falling apart during the flipping process.
- Keep the heat low. Cooking them on high heat will lead to the bottom burning and sticking to the pan (I learnt this the hard way) whilst leaving the other side raw.
- Use a non-stick pan. This is a must. The bananas’ high sugar content will cause the pancakes to glue themselves to the bottom of a regular pan. I couldn’t live without my non-stick pan, it makes life so much easier, and there’s no scrubbing required following cooking. It’s a win, win really.
- Use some form of grease. Make sure to replenish the grease in the plan between each pancake, I used coconut oil, but butter also works well.
And remember: the first pancake is never perfect! It usually takes a little while for the frying pan to heat up, and this can cause the first pancake to turn out like a scrambled mess. Even if it doesn’t look like much, it will still taste amazing!
Blueberry and Banana Pancake Ingredients
- Almond Flour. This is my favourite gluten-free flour for baking cakes, biscuits, pancakes and muffins. It’s super fine and makes a lightweight pancake batter. Almond flour is rich in many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This makes it a nutrient-dense alternative to regular flour.
- Eggs. The egg is a necessary component to bind the mixture together and make a light, fluffy texture. There is a misconception that egg yolks are bad for your health. This couldn’t be further from the truth. They are truly a superfood, loaded with key nutrients, protein and healthy fats.
- Protein Powder. I tend to steer clear of whey protein and instead opt for plant-based protein sources (i.e. hemp, pea or quinoa). Whey proteins tend to be stuffed full of nasty sweeteners and preservatives whilst providing less fibre and nutrient density than plant-based sources. Whey protein is also harder to digest and often causes my stomach to bloat.
- Banana. One banana adds the perfect amount of sweetness to the batter, with no additional sugar required. Besides providing the sweetness, they also add B6, Vitamin C, fibre and manganese to the equation.
- Almond Milk. Whilst I opted for almond milk, this can be replaced with any milk of your choice. A liquid is required to thin out the batter.
- Cinnamon. I love adding cinnamon to these pancakes, adding a sweet and woody flavour to the pancakes.
- Salt. A pinch of salt goes a long way in balancing the pancakes’ sweetness and enhancing their flavour.
- 1 banana (medium)
- 1 Cup almond flour (or alternative GF flour)
- 2/3 Cup almond milk (or other milk)
- 1 Scoop vanilla protein powder
- 1 egg
- 2tsp baking powder
- sprinkle of salt & cinnamon
- 1/3 Cup blueberries
For the topping:
- 1/3 Cup blueberries
- Sliced banana
- Maple syrup (or honey)
- Blend banana, protein powder and milk in a blender
- Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl
- Whisk in the egg
- Fold in the wet ingredients into the dry, followed by the blueberries
- Warm up some oil in a non-stick pan
- Add around 1Tbsp batter, cooking until bubbles start to show. Then flip
- Repeat this process, adding more oil between each pancake
1 Cup = 250ml (metric measure)