I personally ate this entire batch of gluten-free vegan blueberry pancakes in one sitting.
I’ve started kicking my training into high gear for my next race, which will be a 50K (about 31 miles) later this winter. I don’t know specifically which race I’m doing yet – all of the ultramarathons around here this time of year use a lottery system, so I signed up for a few different ones and will wait to see how the dice roll. If I don’t get into any of the ultras, then I’ll run a marathon as a backup. If I do get in, this will be my first ultramarathon! Pretty cool. My goal is definitely just to complete the race, not to go for a specific time. Especially because winter conditions around here can be pretty unpredictable. (Just this morning, despite “balmy” temperatures in the mid-30’s, I was slipping around on black ice during my run).
Anyway, that was a roundabout way of saying that I did an 18-mile training run this weekend, and really wanted carbs, specifically pancakes, afterward. So I whipped up a batch of these gluten-free vegan blueberry pancakes, thinking that I’d eat half and freeze the other half. A little while later, I was staring down an empty plate with a few pancake crumbs and some maple syrup. Honestly, I don’t regret a thing! Eating huge meals is a great perk of distance running (I may or may not have paired them with a bunch of potato chips)… and as far as pancakes go these are actually pretty healthy. I think you could probably even make them without the oil (haven’t tested that yet, though!).
Lately I’ve been playing around with oat flour a lot. I love the naturally sweet flavor of oats, and that oat flour is nearly as soft and delicate as all-purpose wheat flour while also being whole grain. Plus, oat flour is relatively cheap pound-for-pound, even more so if you make it yourself from quick or rolled oats. Win-win! For some baked goods, it’s better to combine oat flour with another grain flour that isn’t as sticky, but for these gluten-free pancakes, all you need is a little bit of starch and you’ll get a nice soft and fluffy texture. Officially these are just blueberry pancakes, but I mixed some chocolate chips into half of the batter and I gotta say, that was a pretty tasty addition. If I was even hungrier (which is seriously difficult to envision) I might have also added some toasted pecans on top. Mmmm.
- ½ c. + 2 tb. oat flour (certified gluten-free if needed)
- 2 and ½ tb. tapioca flour (cornstarch may also work, but I have not tested it)
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- big pinch of salt
- (optional) ¼ tsp. guar gum
- 1 tb. flaxseed meal
- 2 tb. water
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ c. plain, unsweetened nondairy milk, room temperature
- ½ tsp. apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar)
- 2 tb. maple syrup
- 2 tsp. coconut oil, very soft or melted
- heaping ¼ c. frozen blueberries, slightly thawed, and drained (use a straight ¼ c. if using wild blueberries, which are smaller)
- In a mixing bowl, mix together all of the dry ingredients and try to break up any clumps.
- In another bowl, mix the ground flax with the water and let sit for 5 minutes. Add the vanilla, nondairy milk, vinegar maple syrup, and coconut oil, and whisk to combine until the coconut oil is emulsified.
- Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until there are no lumps remaining. Fold in the blueberries. It is normal for the blueberry color to bleed out into the batter a little bit. Let the batter rest for at least 5 minutes while you get your skillet ready.
- Heat a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat and drizzle a few drops of neutral oil onto it, using a paper towel to spread the oil around. Pour about a quarter cup of batter for each pancake (I could only fit 2 at a time on my skillet - I recommend starting with just one pancake to test the batter thickness).
- When the edges have set and the middles of the pancakes are bubbling, flip them over and cook for 2-3 more minutes on the other side, until the pancakes are set all the way through.
- Repeat with the rest of the batter, oiling the skillet again in between batches. Serve with generous amounts of real maple syrup, and nondairy butter if desired.
Guar gum is a natural food derived from beans. It is used to help keep the ingredients emulsified together. Using it is optional for this recipe, because flaxseeds are also used, but if you have some on hand, you can add it to give slightly better binding power to the pancakes.
The reason that the nondairy milk should be at room temperature is so that the coconut oil doesn't solidify when it comes into contact with the cold liquid. I take my soy milk right from the fridge and nuke it in the microwave for 30 seconds to get it up to a warmer temperature.
Sources consulted: blueberry muffin pancakes by Minimalist Baker; oat flour pancakes by the Food Prepper.
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