Yes, folks, it’s true. But I believe that I’ve finally reached the summit. These pancakes represent the final frontier. Kudos and thanks must go to CinnamonQuill, who put on her knee high boots and slugged through the mud to find the answer to the conundrum I’ve found myself in every Sunday morning.
“What conundrum?” you ask. I’ve been searching high and low to find the right combination of ingredients to make gluten free, dairy free, and egg free pancakes that are just the right texture, not wet, not gummy, but dry and fluffy, like the gluten-filled pancakes I used to order while dining at Perkins Pancake House in Toms River, NJ. As a kid, we often went there on Sunday mornings. I always ordered (and I mean ALWAYS) the he-man special. You know, the platter with a mile high stack of pancakes, three eggs, homefries, bacon, and toast. And I always ate every bite on my plate. My parents thought I had a hollow leg. Little did they know, the food was going right through me. Well, at least it tasted good:).
I came close with this recipe, and although tasty, they didn’t meet my criteria for dry and fluffy gluten free, dairy free, and egg free pancakes. I’d just about given up and went back to using eggs in my pancakes, as you can see in this recipe. These were excellent, but I was still looking for an egg free version.
Skip this paragraph if you only want info on the recipe. If you want to know why I prefer not to use eggs in my baking, keep reading. Several commenters have asked me why I feel the need to bake without eggs. In January 2006, I went gluten free. A year later, in an effort to relieve some of the intestinal issues and phlegm (sorry, I know it’s gross) I was still experiencing, I went dairy free. I have no doubt that this was the right choice for me. I don’t think I have an allergy to dairy. But anecdotally I can tell you, if I have even a little dairy, the phlegm in the back of my throat comes right back to remind me why I shouldn’t eat dairy. It’s uncomfortable, annoying, and actually a downright nuisance, given that I make my living as a singer. By the way, initially, it had nothing to do with compassion for animals. For me, at the beginning, it was about relieving the discomfort I had when I ate dairy. Meanwhile, I started reading vegan cookbooks and vegan blogs, in order to learn how to bake and cook dairy free. I was able to substitute gluten free flours in the vegan recipes that used gluten, and their use of dairy free alternatives taught me how to bake and cook without dairy. But vegans who aren’t gluten free don’t face the lack of gluten in their baked goods. It’s a whole other story when you are baking vegan AND gluten free. It’s hard enough to bake without the protein and stretchiness that gluten provides, but when you remove eggs, it adds a whole other challenge. In any case, I started reading more about why vegans eliminated all animal products from their diets. And I began listening to podcasts made by Colleen Patrick Goudreau, who writes the Compassionate Cooks blog. Since then, I’ve moved closer and closer to following a vegan diet. I’m not 100% vegan – it’s nearly impossible to find suitable food choices when my husband and I travel (for work or pleasure), so there are times when I find myself faced with no choice but to eat chickens or cows or fishies (once you pluralize the word, the animals become beings – go ahead, say it out loud and you’ll see the difference – I eat chicken vs I eat chickens. See what I mean?) It’s VERY hard to change food choices after a lifetime of eating one way. But the more I read, the more I learn, the more I watch online videos and movies like Food Inc., the more I strive to eat a plant-based diet. And if you don’t agree that eating animals is ethically wrong, then take a look at the very strong evidence for why we should be following a plant-based diet. Please know that this blog isn’t about standing on a soapbox. I mostly want to share my recipes with you. If you’re still with me, thanks for listening. I just wanted to clear up why I’m moving towards cooking and baking gluten free and dairy free and egg free.
This morning, I finally reached the summit. An extra special shout-out and thanks to CinnamonQuill. I emailed her yesterday, knowing that I wanted to try her Thick and Fluffy Pancake recipe this morning, but fearful that my attempts would result in the usual pancake disappointment. She answered me immediately and assured me that her results would render fluffy, dry pancakes. In fact, she thought I might find them too dry, which would really be ironic. And in fact, my husband thought they were a bit dry. So, CinnamonQuill – you were right! LOL! I think my husband’s reaction was completely in response to how wet and gummy my prior pancakes have been! He’s just not used to dry and fluffy gluten free, dairy free, and egg free pancakes!
I made some modifications to CinnamonQuill’s recipe – the teacher in me hopes that you will use my modified recipe as a template to further customize it to your own liking.
Perfect Gluten Free Pancakes (gluten free, dairy free, egg free)
inspired by CinnamonQuill
servings: nine to ten 5″ pancakes
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp non-dairy milk (I used vanilla hemp)
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup millet flour
2 tbsp tapioca starch
2 tbsp potato starch
2 tbsp almond meal
1 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp baking soda
smidge of sea salt
Preheat your griddle.* Brush or spray with a light coating of oil.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Add the dry ingredients, stirring until you have a smooth batter. It helps to let the batter rest for a few minutes before cooking the pancakes.
Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, pour the batter onto the hot griddle. Cook until the edges are firm and bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake. Flip and cook for another 30 – 60 seconds, until the bottom has turned golden brown.
Use your first pancake as a test to determine exactly how many minutes your pancakes need to finish cooking.
*I made a few of the pancakes on an electric griddle and a few of the pancakes in a cast iron pan. I much preferred the pancakes made on the electric griddle. You will need to experiment to find which of your pans works best for you.