Do you ever wake up just wanting a giant stack of pancakes all to yourself? if you said yes to that, good job, because it means we can be friends. It’s no secret that I love brunch. I think it’s one of the best meals, mostly because it usually involves actually taking time to enjoy a leisurely weekend meal with friends. Actually having time to sit down and enjoy my first meal of the day is something that is certainly reserved for weekends. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big advocate of breakfast – I never go a day without my greek yogurt, but scooping some yogurt into a tupperware to bring to work is hardly what you would call gourmet.
Chicago, like most big cities these days, is big on brunch. From restaurants touting all-you-can-drink mimosa brunches to good old fashioned pancake houses, there’s something for everyone. I often find myself eyeing everyone’s plates as I walk in (or more likely, as I wait several hours for a table). Usually, I spend a few moments drooling over the pancake section of the menu. Red velvet, lemon poppyseed, or apple cinnamon pancakes always sound incredible, but here’s the problem: whenever I order pancakes, I find myself hungry an hour later, and crashing from the sugar. So, I usually pass on the pancakes, and opt for something on the savory side: equally delicious, but with a little more protein. Like the amazing egg white and turkey omelet with avocado salsa I had on Saturday (seriously, if you like in Chicago, check out brunch at Summer House Santa Monica). Don’t worry, the omelet also came with a giant, fluffy homemade english muffin on the side. I figure the egg whites balanced that out. 🙂
This morning, I decided that in my quest to eat a giant stack of pancakes and still feel like I got a nutritious meal, I would try and make my own pancakes. Well, mission accomplished: these pancakes are easy to make, and put together from just a few good ingredients, like whole grain oats, greek yogurt, and fresh summer berries.
I don’t usually calculate the nutrition information of the food I eat, but I was curious about this particular recipe, so I plugged it in online, and I’ve gotta say… if I can eat this whole stack of pancakes for just over 300 calories, I’ll take it. Oh, and it packs a nice 18 grams of protein (thank you greek yogurt!), so take that, egg white omelet.
Next time you’re craving your own personal pancake stack, whip these up. It really takes no time at all, and since you mix it all together in the blender, there’s minimal cleanup. I know I’ve been waxing on about the health benefits of these pancakes, but don’t worry – they taste great too! They’re slightly sweet on their own from the vanilla and raspberries in the batter, and are made even better when topped with a little maple syrup (the good stuff!) and some extra greek yogurt.
While traditional buttermilk pancakes still have their place in my heart, I promise these will cure your pancake cravings. In fact, I made the recipe three different times just to get them right. The first time, they were too mushy, the second, too hockey-puck-like, third time – perfection. If you’re curious, adding an 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda was the trick for me here; oatmeal pancakes can be dense, and these needed a little extra rise, so the baking powder/ soda combo here is necessary to get the fluffy texture you want. As you can tell, I’m learning all sorts of things from my baking exploits – and, uh, my fridge is full of pancakes. Now that’s what I call a successful Sunday.
Oatmeal Berry Yogurt Pancakes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 pancakes (1-2 servings)
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup (half of a sinlge-serve 5.3oz container) nonfat vanilla greek yogurt
2 tablespoons unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
10 fresh raspberries
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)
Butter or non-stick spray for greasing the pan
1/4 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
Maple syrup or remaining greek yogurt, and extra raspberries for topping (optional)
In a blender, combine oats, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Blend for a few seconds until the oats look like flour. Add yogurt, egg, almond milk, vanilla extract, raspberries, and lemon zest. Blend until thoroughly combined – mixture will be slightly pink, and will look thin.
Allow the mixture to rest and thicken for a few minutes while your pan heats up. Heat a medium frying pan or griddle over medium-low heat. Grease with butter or non-stick spray. Pour batter out of the blender, dividing it to make four pancakes (I made mine two at a time). Drop a couple blueberries into the pancakes, and cook until bubbles form at the surface and the pancake batter does not re-close the holes. Flip pancake and cook for another minute, until golden on the underside as well.
Serve topped with greek yogurt, fresh raspberries, and a drizzle of maple syrup, as desired.