Grain Free, Sugar Free Chocolate Pancakes
My favourite meal of the day: dessert!
Ok, so I guess some could argue that dessert isn’t really a “meal”, however those of you who share a love for dessert so great you’d be happy to eat a plate of chocolate for dinner, well I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. And I’m sure you’d be extra happy if I told you that you could eat chocolate pancakes covered in whipped cream for breakfast and actually have the same (or better) nutritional value than most breakfasts out there! I’m guessing that I now have your attention ☺
Breakfast can be an especially rushed time for everyone, so in order to ensure getting in a healthy meal, I like to ensure that breakfast is not only quick and easy, but also filling and nutritious. Most breakfasts that I see today, especially for those with a sweet tooth, are very high in sugar, and marketed as healthy (think cereals such as Raisin Bran, flavoured yogurts, bran muffins, etc). Following consumption, increased blood sugar leads to an insulin spike which is essential to reduce blood sugar, however will ultimately be counteracted by a dip in blood glucose. During this dip, people will experience fatigue, hunger, and sweet and carbohydrate cravings. This is because your body is looking for glucose to rebalance blood sugar levels, however if you make the common mistake of attempting to correct this with a high-sugar snack, the cycle simply continues and your day is comprised of peaks and troughs in energy, along with sugar and carbohydrate cravings and binges. This cycle contributes to unwanted weight gain, poor sleeping patterns, mood imbalances, and various other issues.
One of the most critical and prevalent diet-ruining health-damaging issues that I see which results directly from this pattern: the afternoon binge. Due to the ease and availability of obtaining high sugar, high calorie foods immediately on demand, it becomes dreadfully easy to exceed your daily sugar and caloric limits in one quick moment of weakness. Essentially, you can be strong-willed for 23 hours and 55 minutes per day, and if you have a 5-minute lapse in that will-power, you’ve already downed a can of Coke and a package of Oreos before you’ve come to your senses. Oops.
So how can this cycle of fatigue, cravings, and binges be broken? The answer is simple….low sugar, nutrient-dense, highly satiating foods that will keep blood sugar and energy levels stable until the next meal. So that’s why I created these pancakes – for breakfast and sweet lovers across the world to eat a big plate of “dessert” as a meal, while secretly containing low sugar, a great ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids (including your entire daily value of omega-3’s*), varied antioxidants, and plenty of protein for a plate of pancakes. So, let’s get pancakin’!
Pancake Ingredients (makes one large or two small pancakes):
1 whole large egg
1 tablespoon milled flaxseed (I use golden milled)
1 tablespoon coconut flour
1 teaspoon cacao powder (or more if you’re a choco-lover)
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
¼ cup water
Optional: 1 tbsp nut butter
Coconut butter or coconut oil for frying
Whipped cream and toppings (for convenience, this can also be made the night before and refrigerated for several days after):
One can coconut cream (you can also use the cream from coconut milk that has been refrigerated overnight to separate the cream and liquid)
¼ tsp vanilla extract
Sliced strawberries or blueberries
- Whisk the egg, flaxseed, coconut flour, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt together. If using nut butter, I suggest microwaving the nut butter for 15-20 seconds to allow it to spread more evenly throughout your pancakes.
- Mix in the water slowly – the consistency should be just a bit thinner than regular pancake batter. Coconut flour tends to be quite “thirsty”, so depending on the brand and your environment, you may need a little more or less hydration.
- Heat coconut butter or oil in a pan over medium-high heat, and pour in mixture, spreading evenly to the desired pancake size. Let the pancake cook uncovered for 1.5-2 minutes, or until one side is cooked and able to be flipped easily. Flip and repeat on the other side.
Whipped cream instructions:
- In a bowl, add coconut cream and vanilla extract together. Using a mixer (or a hand-whisk if you’re feeling tough) whisk for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is fluffy.
Toss your pancakes onto a plate and add 2 tablespoons of whipped cream and 3 large sliced strawberries for a burst of delicious sweetness. Enjoy your dessert and stay satisfied!
Additional nutrition info:
Eggs: Source of vitamins A, D, K, B12, B6 pyridoxine, phosphorous, choline, chromium, zinc, copper, iodine, iron, molybdenum, selenium, vanadium, riboflavin, tryptophan, pantothenic acid, biotin
Cacao: Source of copper, managanese, magnesium, iron, phosphorous and antioxidants.
Strawberries: Source of vitamin C and manganese
Blueberries: Source of vitamins C and K, manganese and antioxidants.
Flaxseed: Source of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber and magnesium
Coconut: Source of fiber, medium chain triglycerides, lauric/myristic acid, folic acid, iron, magnesium, vitamin C, molybdenum
*The source of omega-3’s in flaxseed are alpha linoleic acid (ALA). This is useful for producing anti-inflammatory effects by displacing arachidonic acid, however it also displaces docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) , an anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acid. For this reason, it is not recommended to rely upon ALA sources as your sole omega-3 intake, but rather to incorporate them in moderation with other omega-3 sources such as oily fish.