Good morning! I’m sitting cross-legged on my hotel bed in San Antonio, next to a big window overlooking the Tower of Americas. It’s so cloudy I can barely see the top of it. The fog in my head is slowly lifting as I sip on my cup of coffee, and I just scraped the last bits of my “all natural, super premium” (what does that mean?) instant oatmeal off the sides of its disposable cup with a plastic fork. It’s not bad.
That oatmeal and these photos of fluffy banana pancakes take me back to last Saturday, when I took my time making breakfast, with Cookie by my feet. Cookie loves bananas almost as much as she loves cheese, did you know that? I couldn’t resist making her twirl around on her back feet for bites of banana. Sometimes I think she escaped from the circus, that dog.
These banana pancakes are a little more time consuming than the average from-scratch pancakes, but my oh my, was my work rewarded on my lazy Saturday morning. After making, photographing and fending the cakes from Cookie, I sat down and slid the side of my grandmother’s old fork through three layers of the most creamy, fluffy, heavenly sweet pancakes I have ever tasted.
To my pleasant surprise, I realized that the pancakes inherited oatmeal’s creamy texture thanks to the oat flour, and that the bananas contributed such a lovely, natural sweetness that they hardly needed any syrup. I topped my banana pancakes with sliced banana, toasted coconut flakes and a drizzle of maple syrup, but peanut butter or coconut butter would be a natural fit as well.
- 3 small bananas (9.5 ounces), mashed
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (about 1 small lemon, juiced)
- 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup oat flour*
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- In a small mixing bowl, stir together the mashed bananas, coconut oil (or butter), lemon juice and honey (or maple syrup).
- Beat in the eggs. (If your coconut oil goes back to its solid state like mine did at this point, just warm the mixture for short 20 second bursts in the microwave, stirring between each, until it is melted again.)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, baking soda, salt and spices.
- Form a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. With a big spoon, stir just until the dry ingredients are thoroughly moistened. Do not overmix!
- Let the batter sit for 10 minutes. You may want to thin out the batter a bit with a touch of milk or water.
- Heat a heavy cast iron skillet/non-stick pan over medium-low heat, or heat an electric griddle to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly oil the surface with coconut oil, butter or cooking spray. (If you're using a non-stick electric griddle, you might not need any oil at all.)
- Once the surface of the pan is hot enough that a drop of water sizzles on it, pour ¼ cup of batter onto the pan. Let the pancake cook for about 3 minutes, until bubbles begin to form around the edges of the cake.
- Once the underside of the pancake is lightly golden, flip it with a spatula and cook for another 90 seconds or so, until golden brown on both sides. You may need to adjust the heat up or down at this point.
- Serve the pancakes immediately or keep warm in a 200 degree Fahrenheit oven.
Yields about 8 pancakes.
A note on the gluten free: These pancakes are gluten-free, so long as you used certified gluten-free oat flour or certified gluten-free old-fashioned oats.
*How to make your own oat flour: To make oat flour out of old-fashioned oats, simply pour one cup of oats into a food processor and process until it is ground well. One cup before and after grinding measures just about the same, believe it or not! That's a fun little tip I picked up from the King Arthur cookbook.
Preparation tips: This whole grain batter is thicker than most, so it's more difficult to gauge when the pancakes are ready to flip. I learned that it's easier to go by the timer: set it for for 3 minutes for the first side, then flip and wait another 90 seconds for the other side to finish. The time will vary depending on your temperature setting, but that's about the time it should take for pancakes that are fully cooked and golden on each side.
Freeze it: These pancakes freeze well. (I've never met a pancake that doesn't.) Commenter Megan had good luck making the batter the night before, refrigerating it overnight, and proceeding with the recipe the next morning (add a splash of milk to thin out the batter).
Make it vegan: Use maple syrup instead of the honey.