It’s no secret that I enjoy staying fit and generally try to lead a healthy lifestyle. However, I’m also a big fan of balance rather than deprivation, and another poorly-kept secret is that my sweet tooth can get the best of me even on my strongest days. One of my many sugar-laden weaknesses is flapjacks, or pancakes as they’re called in the UK. Among other sweet breakfast foods (hello, french toast and coffee cake!) flapjacks are easily one of my favourite weekend breakfast/brunch treats. So what’s a girl to do when she desperately wants a stack of that fluffy, buttery, sugary goodness but can’t afford to go into a glucose-induced stupor in the middle of the week?
Oh yeah. Looking at those bad boys, with their perfectly-browned exterior and hints of gold peeping out from underneath fresh strawbs and blueberries, you’re probably thinking Margaret’s lost it, no way those are healthy.
And you, my dear friend, would be wrong (sorry).
This divine plate of breakfasty goodness has only 4 ingredients, plus toppings, but can be cut to 2, with zero refined sugars or carbohydrates. Say what??
Yeah. They’re AMAZING and all you need for one serving is a banana, an egg, a skillet, cooking oil or spray, and whatever your heart (and taste buds!) fancy to top it all off.
Because I try to get a fair bit of protein in every meal, I add protein powder and get the “batter” texture back to normal by finishing it off with a splash of milk or water. But if all you want is a more wholesome stack of pancakes that won’t leave you sleepy and sluggish an hour after devouring them (because these will get devoured, I promise you) feel free to stick with just the banana and egg!
For starters, you’ll want to heat your skillet, or frying pan, on medium heat. Make sure to coat it with cooking oil or a good cooking spray; I like using coconut oil in most of my cooking and especially with banana, but that’s just me. While it’s heating up, take your banana (I like mine hovering on over-ripe because it’s sweeter and easier to mash) and slice it, then mash in a medium bowl with a fork. Once there aren’t any big chunks, crack your egg into the bowl and mix the two together. Alternatively, if you want super smooth “batter” put your sliced banana and egg into a blender and give it a spin for a minute or so. If the mixture is too thick for your liking just add a few teaspoons of water until it thins out enough, though I’ve never had trouble with it as it. Here’s a few photos for my fellow visually-oriented bakers.
Once your skillet is hot enough-the oil should be sizzling just a bit-take a spoon, ice cream scoop, rubber spatula,
your fingers, whatever you want to scoop some of the batter into the skillet. Now, unlike regular pancakes these don’t get the signature bubbles that tell you it’s time to flip them, so you’ll have to play it by ear. In my experience, it usually takes 2-3 minutes on the first side and 1-2 minutes on the seconds when the skillet is on medium heat (think 3 on a 1-6 scale). Also keep in mind that the sugars in the banana will make these pancakes brown more than usual; that’s normal and as long as they aren’t black you shouldn’t taste the difference! But if you or whoever you’re cooking for is wary of darker pancakes, keep an eye on them and cook longer at a lower temperature.
By now you should have a beautiful stack of banana-y good pancakes. Feel free to toss fresh fruit into the skillet while you finish cooking them up, as I do when I warm the pancakes that got cooked first back up. Just look at that divinity:
Other delicious add-ons are more sliced banana and toasted unsweetened coconut, cinnamon and almonds, or if you want to be traditional and just a bit cheeky (like I do) a hint of pure maple syrup.
Serve ’em up, and enjoy! If you want to make more than one serving, doubling this recipe is super easy: one banana and one egg will make 3 small-medium sized pancakes (depending on the size of banana and egg, of course) which I often find to be filling enough. To increase, simply add a banana and egg for each additional serving. The full recipe in picture form is below, so print it or save it and let me know how your guilt-free flapjack stack turns out!