Vegan Protein Pancakes (Gluten Free, Soy Free, and Tasty!)

by Gena on April 23, 2012

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Before we get to protein pancakes: great comments yesterday! I’m too stressed with tonight’s exam to respond, but I intend to do so tomorrow or on Wednesday. I look forward to it.

Sometimes I’m slightly ahead of the blogosphere trend curve (see: banana soft serve). Sometimes I’m way behind. It took me about two years of blogging to try kabocha squash (which was, of course, life changing), a full four years to really get into green smoothies, and for a raw foodie, it took me quite a long time to finally make raw macaroons. Let’s add protein pancakes to the list of things that have I’ve been late to the party with. But now that I’ve found a recipe I really love, I’m hooked!

As you have probably gathered from my recipes, I have a moderate approach to the question of protein. On the one hand, I’m not the sort of person who dumps Sun Warrior/Vega into anything and everything, and I don’t typically track my protein unless I suspect I haven’t been getting enough for some reason or another (for example, if I’m traveling and vegan food is hard to come by, I’ll keep track and possibly use more than the usual Vega shake and go). On the other hand, I don’t think, as some plant-based eaters seem to, that the question of getting protein in a vegan diet is a trivial one, and that we should all shut up and eat some spinach like the great apes: protein is important, and if you’re brand new to veganism, it can be helpful to keep loose track of how much protein you’re eating and how varied it is, simply so that you fall into good, permanent lifestyle habits.

Anyway, the point of all this is to say that, while I don’t create too many recipes specifically to be high protein, I do create some that fall into that category. Oftentimes, they’re breakfast ideas, since breakfast foods (smoothies, for instance, or chia puddings) are a good vehicle for a scoop or two of hemp protein powder or the like. But what I love most about these pancakes–aside from the wonderful taste, the fact that they’re suitable for people with wheat and gluten allergies, and the fact that they’re fairly simple–is that, while I did add two tbsp hemp protein powder, the majority of protein in the recipe comes from the chickpea/almond flour mix. Even without hemp protein powder, they pack in 8 grams of protein per serving, which is decent for a pancake.

And did I mention that they’re delicious? I love cooking with chickpea flour; it lends a slightly savory taste to ostensibly sweet quickbreads, and I really dig the texture, too. This recipe is no exception: the pancakes are mildly sweet, but contain no added sugar of any sort (there’s a little stevia in there) so that you can derive your morning sweetness from fruit, rather than a syrup or crystal. They also have a savory undertone that makes them special, and a nutty flavor from the almond flour. They’re simple to make, and unlike 95% of the protein pancakes I’ve seen, they are free of eggs and egg whites–and any suffering that might come along with those foods.

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Gena’s Vegan Protein Pancakes (gluten free, soy free, vegan)

Makes 8-10 large pancakes

2/3 cup chickpea flour
1/2 cup almond flour
2 tbsp hemp protein powder (optional)
Dash salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 packet stevia, or a few drops (sweeten to taste)
1 1/4 cups almond milk
1 tbsp flax meal + 4 tbsp warm water

1) Mix together flax meal and warm water, and set aside for a second.

2) Mix together the flours, salt, baking powder, hemp, and stevia (if you’re using dry stevia) in a mixing bowl.

3) Heat a skillet on medium heat, and allow it to warm up.

4) Whisk together the almond milk and flax "egg," and add to dry ingredients.

5) Pour pancakes out by 1/4 cup measurements onto the skillet. When you see bubbles form on top, gingerly flip them, and cook till the bottom is golden brown. Serve!

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I like the taste of these pancakes so much I serve them plain, with fruit, but a little maple syrup, date paste, or some of my beet and berry syrup would be nice, too!!

I hope you love ‘em. Important disclaimer: these pancakes are made from no grain flour, and in my experience, these kinds of recipes can be a little fickle, You may need more almond milk, you may find you wish you had used a little less. They may take a minute or two of cooling to feel firm; they’re definitely softer than some other pancakes of mine. Still, I think they’re pretty painless, and I’ve had repeated success with them as is.

And as I said, I’m a little late to the protein pancake party. For other vegan (or easily veganizable) versions, check out:

Ricki’s amazing single serving protein pancake

Gina’s “perfect protein pancakes” (veganizable)

Nada’s lemon protein pancakes

Anna’s pumpkin protein pancakes

Wish me luck tonight, folks!

xo

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Averie @ Averie Cooks April 23, 2012 at 10:06 am

It can be quite the challenge making vegan AND gf pancakes (or anything) and making it turn out with great results and looks like you came up with a winner!

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Anna @ The Guiltless Life April 23, 2012 at 10:42 am

Oh I absolutely love pancakes made with almond flour – so perfect! Thank you Gena for the shout out, and for the fabulous pancake recipe. I’m always looking for new ones to try and you know I love a protein pancake recipe!

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Lida April 23, 2012 at 11:20 am

is almond flour the same thing as almond meal?

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Alex @ Raw Recovery April 23, 2012 at 11:24 am

I LOVE pancakes. They are one of my favorite foods-especially pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes. I’ve never tried almond or chickpea flour before so I’ll have to give it a shot. I’ve made lots of spelt pancakes before but unfortunately even when I don’t burn them, the smoke alarm goes off in my apartment.

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Evan Thomas April 23, 2012 at 11:24 am

These look excellent. i’m sure I’ll be making more than just oatmeal for breakfast come this Summer. I can’t wait to try this one out.

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Alexia @ NamasteYoga April 23, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I have been experimenting with protein pancakes and my current favourite combo is buckwheat, coconut flour, raisin, carrot plus a scoop of vanilla sunwarrior. its so tasty and since i am not a big fan of tooooo sweet pancakes, perfect for my taste. I also use the same ingredients to make “bakes” in the oven. just put it all in a ramekin. i love when the top gets slightly crunchy.. mhmm

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Prathiba @ Vehemently Vegan April 23, 2012 at 2:47 pm

These look fantastic! I’m so excited you posted a recipe. I always drool over them on other sites but they are usually not vegan friendly. I’ll have to try these out soon!

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Ela April 23, 2012 at 3:59 pm

I’ve still only ever had pancakes once–these look like some I might want to try!

Good luck on your exams and busyness!
love
Ela

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Hannah April 23, 2012 at 4:21 pm

Stevia has only just arrived in the UK and I really don’t understand what it is. Is it like xylitol (which I thought was a plant food then heard was an evil chemical?!?) I usually use coconut palm sugar in moderation (vegan, ethically sourced amd free of human exploitation too and full of vitamins) because it took me a long time to rehabilitate sugar and I don’t want to go back to always seeking a calorie- free version. But I really trust and admire your outlook and if you think stevia is safe, tasty and better than sugar then I would like to try it!

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bitt April 23, 2012 at 4:40 pm

stevia is from a plant. some versions are more processed than others, you can get the plant yourself for the least processed variety, or just to dried leaves. or an extract in drops. often the powdered versions will have additives. xylitol is not an evil chemical, it’s derived from birch. it’s processed, which some may not like but it is natural. both stevia and xylitol do not act like sugars in the body, don’t affect blood sugar, etc. important for people on special diets or who have health conditions.

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Hannah April 27, 2012 at 4:41 pm

Thanks bitt! Really appreciate the thorough explanation

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bitt April 23, 2012 at 4:41 pm

LOVE the looks of these! Grain-free, gluten-free, with protein, yippee! I’ve been really enjoying Ricki’s pancakes that you listed too. I am assuming your pancakes would work with another type of protein powder? We have sunwarrior right now, no hemp.

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Clare April 23, 2012 at 4:52 pm

Ahh yum.. completely going through a bit of a pancake ‘phase’ at the moment – can’t wait to try these! :)

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AmandaRunsNY April 23, 2012 at 6:06 pm

Hmmm, I’m intrigued that you like chickpea flour so much. I bought some to make falafels a while back, and they came out ok. I attributed it to the flour since the remaining ingredients are diet staples, but now I’m wondering if perhaps I just got a bad batch or if the recipe was just not to my liking. Now I want to give it a try again, maybe with these pancakes.

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DG April 23, 2012 at 6:09 pm

Another fabulous recipe! I am hooked on your avgolemono and this morning I tried the ginger-strawberry chia pudding. Divine! Best of luck for the exam!

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Ricki April 23, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Now that I’m officially in love with high-protein pancakes (it’s true–breakfast foods are so perfect for this type of thing), I must, must try these!! Thanks for the shout-out for my single-serve, too. :)

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Lou April 24, 2012 at 12:53 am

I LOVE chickpea flour too… It’s one of my staple stocks for sure :)

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Nada (One Arab Vegan) April 24, 2012 at 4:04 am

Thanks for linking to my recipe Gena!
I love cooking with chickpea flour too and it’s been forever since I’ve used any – these pancakes sound delicious! I’ve bookmarked to make for when I get my hemp protein powder.

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Hannah April 24, 2012 at 5:02 am

Anyone can take on Orgo test, dear Gena. Only you can give us this magnificence. xo

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Catherine April 24, 2012 at 5:21 am

Hi I have been cooking protein crepes (thin pancakes) for years and I just don’t do regular pancakes anymore! I use a 1/3 protein 2/3 flour ratio. It’s great with buckwheat or rice flour too, if you don’t like chickpea flour taste. I just love breakfast!!

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janet @ the taste space April 24, 2012 at 11:36 am

OK, this looks seriously yummy, Gena. I tried Ricki’s pancake but thought it was too gooey for me so I look forward to trying yours!

If you are into chickpea flour pancakes, have you tried making Indian Besan Chilla? Basically they are Indian Savoury pancakes… we make them on a weekly basis for weekend lunches. So good! This is my recipe: http://tastespace.wordpress.com/2011/10/28/savoury-indian-chickpea-pancakes-besan-chilla/

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A Tempting Vegan April 24, 2012 at 5:57 pm

YUM. I am always late to the party…seriously. And more often than not, I try to steer clear of recipes that call for protein powders and such, but these look delish. OH and BTW… I LOVE YOU. Wow, I mean I love your blog! You are fabulous, and that is all. Tara

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Anastasia@healthymamainfo.com April 25, 2012 at 12:37 am

Protein pancakes for breakfast – the best kind!!! I also love to make mine with almond flour rather than regular, as almond flour is highly nutritious, and it’s also very high in proteins. Love the presentation!

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Leslie May 5, 2012 at 8:17 am

I just made these for breakfast and they were delicious!! I was a little hesitant because I’m not always a fan of garbanzo flour but I couldn’t taste it in the cooked pancake. The almond flour really gave the pancakes great texture and flavor. I topped them with sliced banana and cinnamon, yum! I’m hoping the leftovers reheat well in the toaster!

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Gena May 5, 2012 at 8:42 am

So glad you enjoyed!

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Leslie May 6, 2012 at 7:07 am

Update: these reheat really well in the toaster! Just had to carefully remove them so they didn’t break. I will definitely be making these again since they make a great, fast breakfast that is super filling and healthy. Thanks again Gena :)

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Kaitlyn@TheTieDyeFiles May 5, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Love it! I’ve been experimenting with chickpea flour lately but it’s yet to make it into pancakes.

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Hannah June 26, 2012 at 9:46 am

I just made these for breakfast with my Mom! I was a little skeptical, to be honest, but they turned out great. The subtly savory flavor complemented the maple syrup and fruit really well. And almond butter on top added a little something! They were not heavy or too dense at all. My only concern was that they still came out sort of gooey. I recommend that for people who only have cheap/old skillets, that they put some coconut oil on the pan to keep the pancakes from sticking.

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Baltimore July 6, 2012 at 8:06 am

I wonder if you can sub coconut flour for the chickpea flour. Any ideas??Thanks!

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bitt August 9, 2012 at 12:07 pm

wanted to make these this morning but wasn’t sure what type of almond flour you used: store-bought, home ground, etc??? different almond flours seem to give different results and i am pretty broke so I don’t want to waste any. would rather get it right based on what you did. thanks!

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Gena August 9, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Good question, B! I used the Bob’s Red Mill, store bought brand.

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gab September 14, 2012 at 9:15 am

Hi Gina!
Thanks for this mouth-watering recipe!! I am going to make this for a Sunday morning B-fast :D
Just wanted to know, do you think that I can substitute 2tsp of SunWarrior Chocolate protein powder instead of hemp protein powder?

Thank you much!
Gab

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Sadie July 18, 2013 at 5:32 pm

I can’t wait to make these protein packed pancakes! How many people does this recipe serve? I was thinking about sharing with the fam.

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Catherine November 30, 2013 at 10:44 am

Gena I really liked these! Sometimes gluten free pancakes can be really gummy or sticky but these were not. I was very impressed with the texture – very fluffy!

I didn’t have almond flour so I subbed buckwheat flour. This led to a bit of a grainy taste, and more of a “healthy pancake” taste but I still really liked them. I also don’t have stevia, so I subbed a Tbl of raw turbinado sugar, but perhaps I needed a tad more.

I also added some chocolate chips because I simply can’t help myself with pancakes. It’s great to have a high protein pancake! Thanks Gena.

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Gena December 1, 2013 at 9:38 am

Really glad they turned out for you, Catherine! Yay.

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k Steadman January 2, 2014 at 9:10 am

I found this after trying and failing for about an hour to make coconut flour pancakes as im trying to lower my excessive carb consumption a bit. These worked first time! I like fluffy American style pancakes so i kept adding a bit more of the baking powder, and will probably double the amount in the batter next time. They have a bit more bite and savoury taste than wheat pancakes but theyre still good and will be my go to pancake recipe now. May have offset the health benefits with sugary toppings but baby steps…

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Gena January 5, 2014 at 8:14 am

So happy they worked!

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Marie Milliard February 12, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Sorry to say this but this was a terrible recipe. I did everything to the letter but they absolutely did NOT turn out. Some I left on for nearly an hour on medium yet still smeared and stuck to the turner. They never did cook through either. What a waste of expensive ingredients. … :-(

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