October 12, 2009

The Vegan Pancake Technique

Anyone who has attempted veganizing a pancake recipe will quickly discover the foremost roadblock in the way of making them cohesive and flippable: lack of eggs. If you ask me, nearly any ingredient in a pancake recipe can be played with or substituted to your liking/taste, but it’s really the eggs that make them solid and turn the batter from liquid to solid. A flax “egg” substitute stands in fine when baking, but where pancakes are concerned, it’s just not the same as the real thing.

Needless to say, when I was moved to make some pumpkin pie pancakes this weekend, I shouldn’t have been surprised to have the first couple turn out like this:


Did they taste like pumpkin pie? Sure—pre-oven pumpkin pie.


I kept my thinking cap on, though, sure that there must be a way to make vegan pancakes look like their traditional counterparts. It’s Vegan MoFo, for Pete's sake—the magic is in the air! Surely I could make it work.

So I did.



The stumbling block was not in my recipe, it was in the cooking technique. Now, this may not be news to experienced Vegan Mofos, but for someone flying by the seat of her pants, it was pretty revelatory.

Turns out that the lack of eggs can be somewhat compensated for by creating a convection effect around the pancakes on the griddle/skillet. All I did was pour the batter into the pan per usual and then cover with a lid. Allow to cook through until the top looks dry and you have yourself a fully-flippable vegan pancake!


Pumpkin Pie Pancakes


  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax + 2 tbsp water; allow to stand at least 5 minutes)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp each nutmeg, cloves, ginger
  • 1 packet stevia (or sweeten otherwise, to taste)
  • 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (add more if you prefer thinner batter)


  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Heat a skillet over medium—make sure this skillet has a matching lid, or a lid that is smaller than its diameter so that it can sit on the bottom around the
  3. Pour batter into skillet per normal pancake procedure and cover. Allow to cook several minutes; keep an eye on it. After pancake appears dry on top, flip and continue cooking for a minute or two, until browned to your liking.


Now, there is one distinct advantage to using a “flax egg” in place of a chicken egg: the texture. When veganized, these pancakes stay somewhat batter-ish and moist inside, no matter how long they are cooked—kinda like pumpkin pie filling!

As for that blob on top of the pancakes, I have an explanation, and it is the following, inspiration courtesy of HEAB:

Banana-Almond-Tahini Butter (or “BAT Butter”)


  • 1 cup almond pulp reserved from making almond milk (or use almond/nut butter)
  • 1 tbsp raw tahini
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 banana

Just between you and me, I was too lazy to put all of the above in my food processor in order to get the smooth and creamy texture you might expect of such a condiment. I just smooshed it all together with a fork. It worked fine—I ended up with a slightly chunky or “rustic” spread, if you will. Mash by hand or process in the machine, it’s up to you.

So there you have it: seasonal, vegan pancakes that do not resemble potholders. Flip out.


Devan Geselle. N said...

ooh! thanks for the recipe :D

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

My husband lovvvvves pancakes and I dont buy eggs (or wheat flour) so this is a good recipe for us! And I can just use Bob's GF flour and Im all set. I do the egg flax goo thing too but yeah, the flip technique is the stumbler...prob solved thanks!

Anonymous said...

oh PANCAKES! those look amazingggggggggg!

I hope you have a wonderful evening and a splendid Tuesday Miss D!

Lizzy said...

these look amazing! i wish i were that creative

Missy said...

Looks delicious! I could go for some pumpkin pancakes right nowwww!

Anonymous said...

WOW. Saved those! Must make both recipes STAT.

BroccoliHut said...

Thanks so much for the pumpkin pancake recipe--I always seem to fail at making them on my own!

VeggieGirl said...

I just started "loving" flax as an egg substitute - great choice for those luscious pancakes!!

The Candid RD said...

YEah, pancake success!! If at first you don't succeed...try try again! Nice job. They look amazing. I have one more can of pumpkin left and I am tempted to make some pumpkin pancakes. I will probably use egg, but the flax idea is nice too. I bet the flax adds an extra nutty flavor. Yum

K from ksgoodeats said...

Those pancakes sound fantastic!! Nice and autumn-y :)

Thanks for the recipe!!

Gina said...

Nice!! I've actually never had a problem flipping vegan pancakes, but sounds like an awesome method. Plus...pumpkin pancakes? Amazing!

Pam said...

Looks really good!

Jenny said...

considering my brother dropped the enter carton of eggs on the floor today and mom just bought pumpkin and whole wheat flour - I'm pretty sure the world is trying to tell me that I need to make this stat.

Abby (Abbys Vegan Eats) said...

Delicious.. I love how many pumpkin posts I have been seeing. Looks wonderful. Thanks for the recipe :)

Shannon said...

great job :) pumpkin pancakes definitely need to make an appearance in my life soon!