A day off is reason enough to celebrate with a special breakfast. Whether it’s a typical Saturday with no obligations, or you’re observing a mid-week mental health day, you should put the “break” in “breakfast” with a tall stack of pancakes.
But not just any pancakes. The conventional, all-purpose flour pancakes are fine, but they lack substance. You deserve a hearty switch-up, a pancake that can stand up to a puddle of syrup and a mountain of juicy fruits. Make breakfast better with a tower of oat pancakes.
Oat pancakes get all of their charm from the oat flour. This rustic breakfast grain offers a wonderful texture, and has excellent binding capabilities. It’s the difference between a chocolate chip cookie and an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie. Both are good, but if you’re a fan of texture, bulk, and that rustic chew, the oatmeal cookie wins every time. Along with the comforting, knobby texture of the oats is the unique hydration the pancakes have. Maybe you’re accustomed to buttermilk or yogurt being the only moisture-makers in a pancake mix, but oat groats do something different. Just like when you make a bowl of oatmeal and the oats swell and become gelatinous, the same absorption happens in the pancake mix. The extra moisture softens the oats but instead of becoming gloppy like oatmeal, the starches bind well with the other pancake ingredients. This makes oat flour a far more effective gluten-free pancake flour than almond or coconut flour, both of which fall apart so easily they’re nearly impossible to flip in the pan.
I don’t follow a gluten-free diet of any kind, but I prefer these pancakes over the all-purpose flour variety any day. I formulated this recipe because I had leftover oats in a canister that I needed to use up. I pondered making oat milkbut decided that’s not something I wanted to mess with, so oat flour it was. Making oat flour is almost too easy, and it doesn’t have to be perfectly milled for this recipe. In fact, I like to pulse old fashioned oats just to the point where most of are reduced to a fine powder, but I can still see some larger particles (about the size of uncooked quinoa) mixed in. I think the irregular grind adds that rustic allure I always look for in oat products.
Once the oat flour is ready, proceed with the recipe the same way you would any other pancake batter. There is one important difference that needs to be observed: The soak. Once the wet and dry ingredients come together, the batter will be slightly thin. Cover the bowl and let the batter sit for 15 minutes. This is when the oat flour absorbs water from the batter, the starches will begin gelatinizing, and, most importantly, binding to the other ingredients. Do not skip this wait time. Cut some fruit, make some fried eggs, play with your cat, just let the oat batter do its thing. When you stir it 15 minutes later, you’ll see what I mean. A thick, sumptuous batter will greet you on the other side, ready for a hot skillet.
Allie’s Oat Pancakes (Yield: 8-10 pancakes)
- 2 cups oat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- ¼ cup plain greek yogurt
- ¾ cup almond milk
- 2 eggs
- Butter for the bread
Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Whisk the wet ingredients in a measuring cup.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and whisk until combined. There’s no gluten to worry about so you can whisk until all of the oat flour is fully mixed in.
Cover the bowl and let the mixture sit for 15 minutes to hydrate the flour. After the wait time, give the batter a little stir.
Lightly coat a skillet with butter and, over medium heat, drop in ¼ cup of batter. Cook until bubbles pop dry on the edges and the middle has bubbles but they aren’t quite dried. Flip and cook for another minute or until the center bounces back when pressed lightly with the spatula. Enjoy with all of your favorite pancake accouterments.
If you don’t finish them all, they freeze well. Lay the pancakes out separately and flat on a parchment lined baking sheet and put it in the freezer. After 30-40 minutes when they’re firm, take them off the patch and load them into a Tupperware or a storage bag for up to two months.