Searching for a healthy twist to upgrade your pancake experience? Look no further than spinach pancakes! These vibrant and healthy pancakes are not only visually appealing but also pack a punch of essential vitamins and minerals. Spinach, known for its impressive nutritional profile, takes center stage in this recipe, transforming traditional pancakes into a green and delightful treat that will please both kids and adults alike.
Indulge in the delightful blend of health and flavor with spinach pancakes—a clever solution to incorporate extra greens into your meals without sacrificing taste. The mild flavor of spinach blends seamlessly with the other ingredients, resulting in a well-balanced and delightful pancake experience. Whether you're looking for a creative way to serve breakfast to your family or simply want to explore new culinary adventures, spinach pancakes are a fantastic choice that will elevate your morning meal.
In this post, we will take you through a step-by-step process of creating these delicious and healthy spinach pancakes. From choosing the right ingredients to achieving the perfect consistency, we will provide you with all the necessary information to make your spinach pancake journey a success.
Fluffy Spinach Pancakes
1. Clean your spinach leaves by giving them a thorough rinse under cold water, eliminating any dirt or impurities. Gently dry them using a paper towel or a clean kitchen cloth.
2. Transfer the spinach leaves into a blender or food processor, and blend them until a smooth puree is achieved. If necessary, add a splash of water to facilitate the blending process.
3. Using a fork, mash the ripe banana in a spacious mixing bowl until it transforms into a velvety smooth paste.
4. To the mashed banana, add the spinach puree, whole wheat flour, oats, milk, honey or maple syrup, baking powder, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt. Stir the mixture diligently until all the ingredients are impeccably blended, resulting in a seamless and luscious batter.
5. Let the batter rest for approximately 10-15 minutes, allowing it to settle and develop its flavors. This resting time helps the ingredients meld together and allows the oats to absorb some of the moisture.
6. Heat a non-stick frying pan or griddle over medium heat. Apply a light coating of cooking spray or a small quantity of oil to the pan to prevent sticking.
7. Pour approximately 1/4 cup of the prepared batter onto the preheated pan for each pancake. Allow them to cook until bubbles start forming on the surface, indicating readiness for flipping. Flip the pancake gently and cook for an additional minute or until both sides turn a delightful golden brown. Repeat this process with the remaining batter until it is all utilized.
8. Transfer the cooked spinach pancakes to a plate and serve them warm. You can top them with granola, strawberry, blackberry, and maple syrup.
Tips & Notes
Properly measure the ingredients: To ensure precise measurements and preserve the ideal balance of flavors and textures in your pancakes, employ measuring cups and spoons. This method guarantees accuracy and consistency in your recipe.
Adjust the consistency: Depending on the thickness of the spinach puree and the desired thickness of your pancakes, you may need to adjust the amount of milk in the batter. If the batter seems too thick, add a little more milk; if it's too thin, add a bit more flour.
Blend the batter well: Ensure that the batter is thoroughly blended to distribute the spinach and other ingredients evenly. This will result in a smoother texture and consistent flavor throughout the pancakes.
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4.8g
Saturated Fat 1.9g
Total Carbohydrate 85.6g
Dietary Fiber 6g
Total Sugars 15.3g
Vitamin D 1mcg
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Preheat the pan properly: To achieve uniform cooking and prevent the pancakes from adhering to the pan, preheat your pan or griddle over medium heat before beginning the cooking process. This step ensures that the heat is evenly distributed, resulting in perfectly cooked pancakes.
Don't overcrowd the pan: Give each pancake enough space in the pan to spread and cook properly. Avoid overcrowding the pan, as it can cause uneven cooking and make flipping the pancakes more challenging.
What Ingredients You Will Need To Make Spinach Pancakes
Fresh spinach leaves
Fresh spinach leaves are highly nutritious and packed with vitamins and minerals. You can use any type of fresh spinach, and that includes baby spinach and regular spinach.
Spinach leaves are a remarkable natural source of iron, a crucial mineral that supports healthy blood and energy production in the body. Additionally, spinach is abundant in vitamin K, which plays a vital role in promoting bone health and aiding in blood clotting processes. Additionally, it contains vitamin C, an antioxidant that supports the immune system, and folate, which is important for cell growth and development. Including spinach in your diet can provide these essential nutrients for overall well-being.
Whole wheat flour
Whole wheat flour is produced by finely grinding the entire wheat grain, which includes the bran, germ, and endosperm. It retains the fiber and nutrients found in the grain, making it a healthier choice compared to refined all-purpose flour. Whole wheat flour serves as an excellent source of dietary fiber, which plays a vital role in promoting healthy digestion and supporting weight management. It also provides B vitamins, such as niacin and folate, and minerals, like magnesium and zinc.
Incorporating oats into your pancakes not only adds texture but also introduces a wealth of nutrition. Oats are a highly nutritious whole grain known for their abundance of fiber. They contain beta-glucan, a soluble fiber that aids in reducing cholesterol levels and supporting heart health. Moreover, oats serve as a valuable source of complex carbohydrates, supplying sustained energy while promoting satiety. Additionally, they offer an array of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, including manganese, phosphorus, and vitamin B1, further enhancing their nutritional profile.
For this recipe, you have the option to choose between old-fashioned rolled oats or quick oats. Quick oats, also referred to as instant oats or quick-cooking oats, are essentially rolled oats that have undergone additional processing to create smaller and thinner flakes. They are partially cooked during processing, which makes them cook faster than old-fashioned rolled oats. Quick oats have a softer texture and break down more easily, resulting in smoother pancakes. They are a convenient option for a smoother texture and quicker cooking time.
Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats are whole oat groats that have been steamed and flattened into flat flakes. These oats offer a slightly chewy texture, adding a heartier consistency to the spinach pancakes. Compared to quick oats, rolled oats maintain a more natural and distinct texture and require slightly longer cooking time. If you prefer a pancake with a substantial and textured bite, rolled oats are an excellent choice, imparting a satisfying and robust element to your breakfast.
Ripe bananas serve as a natural sweetener in the spinach pancake batter. They contain natural sugars, including fructose, which adds a pleasant sweetness without the need for excessive added sugar. Bananas are not just delicious, but they also serve as a valuable source of potassium—a mineral that plays a crucial role in maintaining optimal heart and muscle function. In addition to potassium, bananas provide dietary fiber and are rich in various vitamins, including vitamin C, vitamin B6, and vitamin A. By including bananas in your diet, you can enjoy their nutritional benefits, supporting overall health and well-being.
Milk contributes moisture and serves as a vital liquid component in the pancake batter, ensuring a smooth and desirable consistency. It provides a creamy texture and contributes to the overall richness of the spinach pancakes.
If you follow a dairy-free or vegan diet, feel free to substitute regular milk with alternatives such as oat milk, nut milk, or any other plant-based milk of your choice. These options provide a suitable dairy-free alternative that will work well in the recipe and cater to your dietary needs.
Since this recipe excludes eggs or other animal-based ingredients, it can be effortlessly adapted to create vegan spinach pancakes. Simply make a substitution of dairy milk with plant-based milk alternatives or any other suitable vegan option. This simple swap allows you to enjoy delicious vegan spinach pancakes that align with your dietary preferences.
Maple syrup is a natural sweetener that adds sweetness to the green pancakes. However, you can swap this with other types of natural sweeteners like honey, coconut sugar, date syrup, and such. They are healthier alternatives to refined sugar as they contain trace amounts of beneficial minerals and antioxidants.
Considering that we have incorporated ripe bananas into this recipe, which naturally adds a touch of sweetness to the green pancakes, you have the option to omit this ingredient if you prefer a less sweet taste.
Baking powder, a crucial ingredient, acts as a leavening agent that imparts lightness and fluffiness to the green pancakes. It consists of a combination of baking soda, which serves as the alkaline component, and an acid, often the cream of tartar. When combined with liquid, it produces carbon dioxide gas, creating air bubbles in the batter, resulting in light and fluffy pancakes.
Vanilla extract is derived from vanilla beans and adds a delightful aroma and flavor to spinach pancakes. It enhances the overall taste profile and adds a hint of sweetness. Pure vanilla extract is typically used, and it contains small amounts of antioxidants and trace minerals.
The addition of a pinch of salt to the pancake batter serves multiple purposes. Not only does it balance the flavors and enhance the sweetness, but it also plays a crucial role in bringing out the natural flavors of the other ingredients. By doing so, salt contributes to creating a well-rounded taste profile, ensuring a delightful culinary experience.
Cooking spray or oil
Cooking spray or a small amount of oil is used to grease the pan or griddle before cooking the spinach pancakes. By greasing the pan or griddle before cooking, you create a non-stick surface that prevents the batter from adhering and facilitates effortless flipping and removal of the pancakes once they are cooked to perfection.
How to elevate this Spinach Pancakes recipe
Add herbs and spices
Elevate the flavor profile of the green pancakes by incorporating a delightful blend of herbs and spices. You can try adding a pinch of nutmeg, cinnamon, or ginger for a warm and aromatic touch. Alternatively, fresh herbs like chopped basil or mint can provide a refreshing and vibrant twist.
Mix in other vegetables
While spinach is the star ingredient, you can experiment with adding other finely chopped or grated vegetables to the batter. Carrots, zucchini, or bell peppers can add extra color, texture, and nutrients to the green pancakes. Just make sure to adjust the overall moisture and consistency of the batter accordingly.
Make savory or sweet Spinach Pancakes with toppings
Elevate the green pancakes further by pairing them with a creative topping. Try a dollop of Greek yogurt, a poached egg, or a sprinkle of crumbled bacon for a savory option. If you prefer a sweet topping, consider fresh berries, sliced bananas, a drizzle of honey or maple syrup, or a dusting of powdered sugar.
Garnish with fresh herbs or fruits
Before serving, garnish the green pancakes with a sprinkle of fresh herbs like cilantro, parsley, or basil. You can also add a few slices of fresh fruits like strawberries, blueberries, or kiwi to brighten up the presentation and provide a burst of freshness.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can I use frozen spinach instead of fresh spinach?
While you can use frozen spinach in this spinach pancakes recipe, we don't recommend it because frozen spinach has different moisture and texture.
When utilizing frozen spinach, it is crucial to thaw it beforehand and remove any excess moisture by gently squeezing it. Thawed and well-drained spinach can then be blended into a smooth puree, ensuring optimal texture and consistency in your pancakes. Adjust the batter as needed by adding more flour or liquid to achieve the desired consistency.
Can I make the batter ahead of time?
Absolutely! You have the option to prepare the pancake batter in advance. Simply combine all the ingredients, cover the bowl, and refrigerate the batter for a maximum of 24 hours. When you're ready to cook, give the batter a gentle stir to ensure proper consistency before using it to make your delicious spinach pancakes. Note that the batter may thicken slightly as the oats absorb more liquid during the resting period, so you may need to adjust the consistency by adding a splash of milk if necessary.
Can I freeze the spinach pancakes?
Certainly! Spinach pancakes can be conveniently frozen for future enjoyment. After the spinach pancakes have completely cooled, stack them with parchment paper or wax paper in between each pancake to prevent sticking. Place the stack in an airtight container or freezer bag, and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. When you're ready to enjoy them again, you can either toast them in a toaster or warm them in a preheated oven until they are heated through and ready to be relished.
How can I make the pancakes gluten-free?
To cater to a gluten-free diet, you can easily replace whole wheat flour with a gluten-free flour blend when making spinach pancakes. This alternative flour blend ensures that individuals with gluten sensitivities can savor these pancakes without any concerns. Ensure that the oats you use are labeled gluten-free, as some oats may be cross-contaminated with gluten during processing. Additionally, double-check that all other ingredients you use, such as baking powder and sweeteners, are also gluten-free.
How to sweeten this Spinach pancakes recipe without adding sugar?
If you prefer to sweeten the spinach pancakes without adding sugar, there are several natural alternatives you can consider. Here are some options:
Ripe bananas can add natural sweetness to the spinach pancakes without the need for additional sugar. Enhance the flavor and add natural sweetness to the batter by mashing a ripe banana and incorporating it into the mixture along with the other ingredients. The natural sugars in the banana will provide sweetness and contribute to a pleasant flavor. However, remember that bananas add a flavor and will result in naturally sweet banana spinach pancakes.
Unsweetened applesauce is another excellent option for adding natural sweetness. Substitute the sugar or sweetener in the recipe with an equivalent quantity of unsweetened applesauce, a healthier alternative. It will sweeten the pancakes and add moisture and a subtle apple flavor.
Elevate the natural sweetness of the pancakes without relying on additional sugar by incorporating high-quality pure vanilla extract into the batter. The vanilla extract enhances the flavor profile and adds a delightful aromatic touch to the spinach pancakes. It provides a pleasant aroma and flavor that complements the other ingredients.
Cinnamon or Spices
Adding spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or cardamom can give the pancakes a natural sweetness and enhance their overall flavor profile. These spices impart a comforting warmth and subtle sweetness to the pancakes, all without the need for any additional sugar.
Fruits and Berries
Incorporating chopped fruits or berries into the pancake batter can naturally sweeten the pancakes. Blueberries, raspberries, diced apples, or mashed strawberries can add bursts of sweetness and juiciness to each bite.