With pancake day around the corner, it doesn’t take two guesses to work out what has been going on in my kitchen. The result is these vegan and gluten-free blueberry coconut flour pancakes that would be the perfect treat for pancake day, a slow weekend brunch or as tasty dessert.
Cooking with coconut flour was a new adventure for me as it’s an ingredient I’ve never used before, so naturally when Holland & Barrett challenged me to create some perfect pancakes using a bag of their coconut flour I was more than eager to try it out. As my one and only pancake recipe I’ve shared in the past is my vegan spinach pancakes, I knew this one had to be sweet. I added dried blueberries into the mix and topped with a simple drizzle of maple syrup. Deciding on the flavour, however, was the easy bit.
There are a few things I’ve learnt about coconut flour: you don’t need very much of it, it’s very tricky to get a coconut flour pancake batter to stick together without eggs, and it tastes delicious. Before these blueberry coconut flour pancakes were born, there were several batches of not-so-lucky pancake batter that didn’t make the cut.
To get started I did a bit of research on coconut flour and other coconut flour pancake recipes; all of the ones I found (even ones that came up in a Google search for ‘vegan coconut flour pancakes’) had eggs in them, and some had lots of eggs in them. My starting point was simply replacing the eggs and other dairy with vegan equivalents and seeing what happened, but when it came to cooking them I found there was very little holding the pancakes together so they sort of turned to fluff in the frying pan.
Here’s how the development process worked and a few tips for making vegan coconut flour pancakes:
- To replace the eggs, I found that when I used chia seed “eggs” the mix stayed gooey no matter how long I cooked them for, while flax seed “eggs” worked a treat. I couldn’t say how any other egg replacers would work so do let me know if you try them.
- I still found that the flour needed something stronger to keep it together than just an egg substitute so adding nut butter made for a more stable mix.
- The real breakthrough, however, was adding cornflour – this made sure the pancake batter stayed together and firmed up in the pan.
- A couple of tablespoons of yoghurt helps keep them fluffy.
- Though this final recipe is stable, it’s a good idea to keep the pancakes small in size so they’re easier to flip and, as a bonus, they look really cute.
- Finally, the ingredients list looks quite long but some of them are things you’ll have in your cupboard already, such as cornflour and baking soda, and others can substituted for things you might have, such as different plant milks and alternative nut butters.
- 30g coconut flour
- ¼tsp baking soda
- 2tbsp cashew butter (can sub with almond or peanut)
- 2 flax "eggs" (2tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 4tbsp water, whisked with a fork for a couple of minutes)
- 2tbsp soy yoghurt (I used a coconut-flavoured soy yoghurt)
- 60ml almond milk
- ½tsp maple syrup
- 2tbsp corn flour
- 1tbsp dried or fresh blueberries
- 1tbsp coconut oil or dairy-free spread to cook
- 1tbsp fresh or dried blueberries
- Maple syrup
- Add the coconut flour and baking soda in a bowl together.
- In a separate bowl, add the cashew butter, flax, yoghurt, almond milk and maple syrup. Mix together until completely smooth.
- Slowly begin to add the wet mix into the coconut flour, stirring as you go. Stir until fully combined. Now add the cornflour, mix, then add the blueberries.
- Place a medium-sized frying pan over a medium heat. Allow the pan to heat for a couple of minutes then add the coconut oil or dairy-free spread (whichever you prefer).
- Once it has melted, spoon the mixture in one tablespoon at a time to create mini pancakes. Be sure to allow enough space between each pancake so they don't merge.
- Cook for around 3 minutes then carefully turn and cook for a further three minutes on the other side, moving the pancakes occasionally to prevent burning or sticking.
- Remove from the pan, drain on kitchen paper if necessary, and serve with extra blueberries and maple syrup.
Have you cooked with coconut flour before? Any tips and tricks are welcome!
This is my entry for the Fire Label best dressed baking award.