I don’t really like to play favorites with food, but I’m going to go ahead and say it: homemade pancakes are my favorite breakfast food (shhh… don’t tell the waffles and eggs!). I make them at least every other weekend. And these fluffy berry oat pancakes may have just hit the top of the charts. I dare you to look at this picture and tell me you don’t want to eat these:
Since pancakes are a weekend staple at my house, I (almost) always make sure to make them as healthy as possible, using whole grains and little to no refined sugar (like in my banana chia seed pancakes and my pumpkin pie pancakes).
These fluffy berry oat pancakes are just that- they are made with 100% whole grains (a mixture of whole wheat flour and oats) and only 2 tablespoons of brown sugar (for which honey can be substituted- see recipe below). The flavor is slightly sweet and salty, kind of like a biscuit, balanced out by the natural sugars in the fresh (or frozen) berries that are folded into the batter.
The best thing about them? THE FLUFFY. Made with baking soda AND baking powder, these pancakes poof up (a highly technical culinary term) while cooking to make air pockets and a melt-in-your-mouth pancake.
Let me tell you why I love pancakes so much.
- They taste amazing. Every time. They are hard to mess up.
- They are simple and fast to make.
- Two words: Maple. Syrup. (be sure to use the real stuff!)
- You can freeze the leftovers and pop them in the toaster or microwave for a quick weekday breakfast.
- They are healthy, if you use whole grains and real ingredients!
- They are fun to photograph- it’s so satisfying to stack a bunch of pancakes up, drizzle syrup all over, and shoot awesome photos in the natural morning light (food blogger nerd alert).
- You can use up leftovers in them! Whenever I have something to use up (ripe bananas, leftover canned pumpkin, mashed sweet potatoes, or in this case, a bunch of berries), I throw it into pancake batter so it doesn’t go to waste.
Here’s the most important thing to remember when making whole grain pancakes: do not over mix the batter. When you mix too much, gluten begins to form from the flour, which will make the batter stick together and cause a dense pancake. (Note: this applies when making muffins, bread, or other baked goods with whole wheat flour as well.)
For these pancakes, I made my own “buttermilk” by adding vinegar to whole milk. Have you ever tried this? It works so well! Because when do you EVER have buttermilk just lying around? If you do have buttermilk, you can absolutely use it in this recipe. But milk + vinegar will work just fine.
What’s your favorite pancake recipe? I need some more ideas! :-)
Fluffy Berry Oat Pancakes (made with 100% whole grains)
- 3/4 cup milk + 2 tablespoons white vinegar or 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup quick oats old fashioned oats can also be used
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar*
- 1 egg
- 1 cup fresh berries any combination of blueberries, sliced strawberries, blackberries, or raspberries, plus more for serving
- butter for frying
- maple syrup for serving
- Mix the milk and vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside for 5 minutes (the milk will thicken and sour to the consistency of buttermilk).
- Meanwhile, mix the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl.
- After 5 minutes is up, crack an egg into the milk mixture and beat.
- Add egg mixture to dry ingredients, stirring until just combined (do not overwork the batter!)
- Fold 1 cup of berries into the batter gently.
- Heat a heavy or cast iron skillet / griddle and cook pancakes in melted butter in 1/3 cup amounts over medium heat. Flip when slightly browned around edges and bubbles form at the top.
- Serve with extra berries and maple syrup.