It’s the 21st again, which means it’s Recipe ReDux time! May’s challenge is about do-it-yourself kitchen essentials:
“What favorite kitchen staples do you now make from scratch – but in the past you purchased? Show us your best DIY recipe for keeping cupboards, fridge or freezer stocked with healthy basics.”
This month’s challenge is my favorite one yet because it encourages taking the extra time and effort to cook something that can be bought in the store. That may sound pointless and like a waste of time, but cooking things at home is a great way to avoid unnecessary additives, like sugar and salt. My food philosophy is to cook and avoid as many processed products as possible, so I really liked this challenge and am eager to see what my fellow ReDuxers created! I decided to showcase my pancakes for this recipe because I remember the last time I made them for my boyfriend and he said, “I didn’t know you had any pancake mix.” And I said, “I don’t use a mix… it’s like 6 ingredients.” Pancake mix is generally just flour, baking soda, sugar, and additives to help maintain shelf life. I’ve found that I can make a fresher, more natural pancake without any added sugar in the same amount of time as a mix! The banana and blueberries make these pancakes deliciously sweet, hearty, and healthy. And as an added bonus, these pancakes are well balanced with healthy carbs in the form of fruit and oats and healthy protein and fats from the nuts. They are great before or after a morning workout! Feel free to sub in any other frozen fruit for the blueberries and any other nut for the pecans. What’s your favorite healthy pancake combination?
Makes 8 pancakes
1 cup flour
½ cup oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup frozen blueberries (you can also use fresh, but I always have frozen on hand)
½ cup chopped unsalted pecans
Cooking spray OR butter
- Combine the flour, oats, baking powder, and cinnamon in a bowl.
- In a separate bowl, mash the banana with a fork until it looks like baby food.
- Add the milk, egg, and vanilla to the mashed banana and stir.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix with a spoon. (It is fine if the batter is chunky.)
- Add the blueberries and pecans to the batter and stir.
- Heat a frying pan or griddle to medium high heat. Spray the pan with cooking spray or coat with butter. Pour the batter onto the hot pan in pancake circles.
- Heat on one side until tiny bubbles start to form in the pancake (about 3-4 minutes). (If the pancake gets too dark, turn the heat down slightly.) Flip the pancake and cook for 3-4 minutes on the other side.
- Top with banana slices, a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar, or a drizzle of syrup
Tip: To keep the pancakes hot while making multiple batches, place them in a heated oven.
- According to the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, a diet including blueberries may improve motor skills and might reverse short-term memory related to aging.
- Blueberries are packed with antioxidants, which help prevent the risks associated with aging, such as cancer, heart disease, and Diabetes.
- Pecans contain 19 vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, several B vitamins and zinc.
- Studies have suggested that eating 1.5 ounces of nuts per day as part of a healthy diet may reduce the risk of heart disease.