Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pancake Paradise! Without the Guilt!

I am a huge fan of pancakes, especially a certain restaurant chain that serves Harvest Grain 'n Nut pancakes. If you live anywhere near Prescott, Arizona you are undoubtedly familiar with Wagonwheel Pancakes from Zeke's; the most incredibly buttery pancakes that are so large they hang over the sides of the platter...yes, platter!

In my opinion, pancakes are not to be eaten dry. I want each bite dripping in syrup, or smothered in fruit and juice. Yes, I am aware of the massive amount of calories involved in my pancake fest. For that reason, my pancake meals are few and far between...a real treat.

So when I ran across a recipe for Oatmeal Pancakes I had to look twice. They must be healthy, they're made with oatmeal. And maybe that same ingredient will give it some of that grain 'n nut taste that I like.

These pancakes are delicious! And while I love them dripping with syrup, they are fabulous topped with a fresh fruit sauce and low cal whipped topping. The best part...they really are healthy and will not send your daily calorie count into the stratosphere.

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 egg

Place flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, buttermilk, vanilla, oil and egg in a blender and puree until smooth.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

Servings: 4
Calories: 207
Fat: 9.3g
Carbs: 24.6g
Protein: 6g

If you don't keep buttermilk on hand just add a Tbsp of apple cider vinegar to regular milk and let it stand for 5-10 minutes.

For nuttier pancakes: After you pour batter onto pan, sprinkle 1/2 Tbsp chopped walnuts on it. (as opposed to mixing into the batter)


These sauces are so easy to make and are great on pancakes, waffles and ice cream.

Fresh Fruit Sauce: This sauce works best with any kind of fresh berries (strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries) or peaches, fresh, peeled and cut into pieces. Put berries into blender or food processor and puree until smooth. If too thick, add a little cold water. (Should be thin enough to scoop with a spoon and spread over pancake.) If it isn't naturally sweet enough, add Stevia* and blend. Start with a tsp and add until you reach desired sweetness.

Frozen Fruit Sauce: Put frozen berries in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Stir as berries thaw and heat. Add Stevia* until desired sweetness. This method will yield more juice. I like to leave the berries whole and let the juice soak into my pancake. To make it a little thicker, smash some of the berries as they heat and thaw. This is wonderful warm over pancakes or ice cream.

If you are not familiar with Stevia, check out their website
It is a natural alternative to sugar and is available in powder or liquid form. I caution you to start with a just a little and add as you need until you become familiar with using Stevia. It is much more potent than sugar. Most people I know use 1 drop of liquid Stevia (literally) in a cup of coffee or tea. You can find it in your local grocery store on the sugar/sweetener isle. You will find dozen of flavors (vanilla, root beer float, orange, etc) available in liquid form at sprouts, whole foods, etc.

What is your guilty indulgence? Have you found a healthy way to enjoy it? Are you interested in finding a healthy version so you can enjoy it more frequently?

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