October 8, 2011

Apple Pie Pancakes

by IsaChandra

Serves 4 (makes 12 four-inch pancakes)
Time: 30 minutes

Maybe Vegan Pie In The Sky has me dreaming of pie for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but woman can not live on pie alone! Or can she?

These pie-inspires pancakes are actually a recipe that I created for Appetite For Reduction (but forgot to put in the manuscript), so they’re deliciously healthful with no added oil. Applesauce and a few tablespoons of flax seeds make them moist and fluffy. Laced with fragrant spices and topped with sweet, luscious cinnamon apples, they’ll satisfy any sweet craving and time of day.

Choose whatever average sized red apples look best to you; honeycrisp, gala and fuji are all good choices. I would stay away from super tart green ones for this. Prepare the apples first then start the pancakes while the apples cook, and you should be able to get everything done in 30 minutes or so.

And just a pro-tip about prepping here: Apples are kind of my culinary nemesis. I love eating them and cooking with them, but for some reason prepping them drives me crazy. The peeling, the coring…if ever I’m owed a favor, you know that person is gonna’ be peeling my apples. If you feel similarly, rest assured that you don’t need to be too meticulous with your peeling. Just get most of the skin off, a few surviving strips here and there is fine and actually looks pretty. I also don’t bother with apple corers because those devices are made in Satan’s workshop. Just slice around the core and you are good to go.

For Apple Topping:
4 apples, peeled, diced into 1/2 inch pieces (about 1 1/4 pounds)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup apple juice
1 tablespoon organic cornstarch or arrowroot
1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

For Pancakes:
1 cup plain almond milk (or preferred non-dairy milk)
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons ground flax seeds (sold as flax meal)
1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or all-purpose flour, but not regular whole wheat flour)
2 tsp baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
pinch ground allspice
pinch ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
2 tablespoons apple sauce
2/3 cup apple juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

Prepare the topping:
Toss all topping ingredients in a medium (4 quart) pot, sprinkle on the cinnamon. Mix it up so that the corn starch dissolves. Use an angled wooden spoon to do the mixing since it reaches the bottom corners of the pot.

Cover pot and bring to a boil, keeping a close eye. Once boiling, lower heat to a simmer and cook for 20 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Once apples are nice and tender, smash a few of them to thicken sauce. Remove from heat and keep covered until ready to serve.

Prepare the pancakes:
Pour almond milk into a measuring cup. Mix in apple cider vinegar and ground flax seeds with a fork. Set aside; mixture will thicken.

Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, sift together flours, baking powder, spices and salt. Create a well in the center and add the milk mixture and the apple sauce, apple juice, vanilla and maple syrup. Use a fork to mix until relatively smooth, a few lumps are okay. Let the batter rest, and preheat a large, non-stick or cast iron pan over medium heat.

When pan is hot, spray with a thin layer of cooking spray and use an ice cream scooper or scant 1/4 cup measure to pour batter and form pancakes. If you can fit three at a time that’d be great. The pancake should start to form little air bubbles, but not as much as pancakes with oil do, so don’t worry if they don’t bubble too much. Cook until the edges are dry and the tops of the pancakes are only slightly wet, about 2 1/2 to 3 minutes, then flip and cook for 2 minutes more. Keep warm on a plate covered with tin foil until all pancakes are ready to serve.

Serve hot with apple topping.

  • October 8, 2011 at 8:32 pm: Lexi

    I just bought this apple gadget. Best thing ever! http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000X9EQ7Q

  • October 8, 2011 at 8:44 pm: Jojo

    I’m going to make these right this very second! It’s almost 10pm here & I’m going to have to use Apple & mango juice but I’m going for it!

  • October 8, 2011 at 9:04 pm: Cadry

    That looks so amazing! I can’t wait to try it!

  • October 8, 2011 at 9:50 pm: Amanda

    Do you have a suggestion for making this gluten-free? Can you swap the GF all purpose flours 1-1?

  • October 8, 2011 at 10:34 pm: Susan Park

    I cut the apple in half and then cut each half into 4 slices. It is very easy to cut off the core side of each slice than to core it the old fashioned way. Also I peel them with a cleaver or other big knife. I may lose a little more of the apple but it’s a lot faster and easier.

  • October 8, 2011 at 11:26 pm: Mary

    For Gluten-Free vegan baking: use the normal recipe, and substitute in equal amounts of flour(s). For whole-wheat like texture, I like to use a combination of buckwheat flour, garbonzo & fava bean flour, Bob’s all-purpose flour, and brown rice flour. Gluten-free oat flour, flax meal, corn flour, and quinoa flour add more specific flavors and textures, but the important part is that you use a mixture so that it is balanced. Don’t forget to add in 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. of xantham gum! After trying so many different flours and combinations (resulting in some tasty gluten-free baked goods), plain old wheat flour seems pretty boring!

  • October 9, 2011 at 1:57 am: b.a.d

    These look fantastic! I love pancakes coated in fruity-sauce mix.

  • October 9, 2011 at 5:16 am: TuxedoCat

    These look delicious. Will make me step up my game since the Perfect Pancakes recipe! Does your new book have any savory pies? Can’t wait to buy it!

  • October 9, 2011 at 9:28 am: Gourmandelle

    Wow, this is a must-try! Lovely recipe!

    Gourmandelle from Gourmandelle Lifestyle Blog

  • October 9, 2011 at 6:25 pm: Dawn

    These are gorgeous!

  • October 10, 2011 at 1:48 pm: AusFox

    We had this for breakfast this morning – delicious!! My kids loved them too.

  • October 10, 2011 at 7:10 pm: Megan

    I have been CRAVING pancakes and I love that these are oil-free. WIn!!!

  • October 10, 2011 at 9:22 pm: KimP

    Oh my gourd….mmmmmm!!!!

  • October 12, 2011 at 8:12 pm: Kim

    Since these were for AFR, do you have the nutritionals for them? They sound amazing, I am making them this weekend.

  • October 15, 2011 at 4:32 pm: Hillary

    Is there some secret to pancakes that I don’t know? I’ve been trying all my life to make pancakes, and they’re always nasty and gooey inside. I hoped these would be different since there is no oil, but no. Still gross wet pancakes. ;~;

    What is the pancake secret?

  • October 17, 2011 at 7:25 pm: Jennifer Cornbleet

    Isa, I LOVE your Appetite for Reduction Book. After eating mostly raw for years, I started eating too much fat and gaining weight. Your book has saved me. Best tasting low fat vegan food I have ever made. My question is WHEN or IF will you do a lowfat baking/desserts book that includes pancakes, muffins, and all the yummy baked goods and other desserts–but without too much oil?

    • October 18, 2011 at 7:36 pm: IsaChandra

      I’ve thought about it! We’ll see… and thanks!

  • October 22, 2011 at 3:40 pm: Robbie

    About the time it takes for apple peeling. I just made these without peeling the apples and the apple topping was delicious. No problem with that.

  • October 22, 2011 at 3:44 pm: Robbie

    Hillary, about your question: I found with this recipe that you need to have the pan on just about the perfect temperature or else you do get a goopy, hard to turn over, set of pancakes. When the pan heated up more, the second set was fine. I have also found that vegan pancakes take a little longer to set properly in the pan than the non-vegan variety, so I keep them in the pan longer. In this recipe the applesauce is probably the goopiness if that’s a word. If you leave it out you might get less goop, but also a bit less apple taste. Because the recipe has the apple topping maybe you don’t need it in the pancakes themselves? Hope this helps.

  • October 23, 2011 at 4:52 pm: anti-carne

    Regarding gluten-free, I made these with Bobs All-Purpose (felt lazy) and they came out great. ALSO, I tried a slow-rise on them reading suggestions from a few other food blogs. I prepped the batter the night before with yeast. I heated the apple juice and added a pack of active dry yeast and let it get foamy. Mixed the batter. Tossed in the fridge overnight. The next morning I simply put a ladle-full on the skillet and each pancake was nearly an inch thick, 5-6″ round and super fluffy. I cooked them at a slightly lower great to make sure they weren’t soggy in the middle. They were a hit at breakfast. Definitely the fluffiest GF pancakes I have encountered.

  • October 31, 2011 at 6:36 pm: Anne

    is the nutritional informtaion available? thank you :)

  • November 19, 2011 at 6:10 pm: h

    These are soooooooo yum!!!

  • November 22, 2011 at 5:06 pm: Paula Spaceship

    My partner and I just made these for breakfast– Hands down the BEST pancakes we’ve ever eaten (and although we’ve been vegetarian for a while, we’ve only been vegan for a WEEK)!!! So happy for your recipes Isa. Thank you for sharing your divine gifts with the rest of us. Namaskar!

  • November 26, 2011 at 7:01 pm: Amy in Austin

    Made these today and they were great. We added whole cranberries & used a little less maple syrup in the topping. We had the same problem as a couple other people with our first couple pancakes being a little gooey in the middle. Try using the back of the ice cream scoop to spread the pancake batter our a little more in the pan. Once we got the pancakes a little thinner, they came out perfectly.

  • December 3, 2011 at 2:12 pm: Elisabetta Pendola

    mmmmm…..pancakes and hot apples….heaven!

  • December 27, 2011 at 8:08 pm: Bonnie

    I didn’t have any apple sauce or apple juice so I just put through in some apple chunks and used some mulled apple cider for the juice and went without the topping. OMG were they delicious!!

    My cousin has only very had blueberry pancakes in her life so boy was she in for a surprise when she first bit in to them. She loved them so much!

    These will definitely be made on a weekly basis. Thanks for much Isa for all your great recipes! I love finding ones that don’t call for cane sugar.

  • December 30, 2011 at 9:48 pm: Dani

    For those of you having pancake goo problems – I was making these when I had to take a work call which took me away from the batter (which was finished) for about an hour. Resting the batter for that long made amazing lovely pancakes! So that’s the secret – REST!

  • January 21, 2012 at 8:23 pm: Elizabeth

    These pancakes are BOMB! I probably ruined the low fat part though because instead of cooking spray for the pancakes i used coconut oil which made them taste so freaking amazing! It was worth it!

  • February 4, 2012 at 5:53 pm: Giovanni

    Hi, Isa. I was wondering, do you still have the nutritional information? Is there any way you could dig it up for the PPKers that love you? *Bats Eye Lashes*

  • March 22, 2012 at 8:20 am: thecatinthetree

    Yum! I wasn’t overly concerned about the low fat part, so we topped these with some leftover vanilla sauce we had from another recipe. They were good on their own, but the sauce took them over the top. Thanks!!

  • April 28, 2012 at 7:11 pm: melissa

    how do you figure out calories?

  • July 18, 2012 at 9:32 am: Hannah

    For people asking about nutritional info, I put this recipe into MyFitnessPal (not public, didn’t want to plagiarize Isa!) and got 337kcal, 66g carbs, 5g fat and 8g protein per serving. Some of the ingredients are UK-based but all the measurements are the same so I don’t think that’ll differ too much between countries.

  • September 27, 2012 at 6:46 am: Kat

    I am sooo happy someone agrees with me on apple corers!! I always refer to mine as Satan’s Ultimate Tool! God knows how many scars I have on my hands from that stupid thing!

    • September 27, 2012 at 1:23 pm: IsaChandra

      Haha! Totally Satan’s tool.

  • March 11, 2013 at 2:17 pm: Jen

    Satan’s workshop? That’s awesome.

  • April 30, 2013 at 4:55 pm: Donna

    Can these be made with Oat Flour only?

  • June 16, 2013 at 2:04 pm: Lucy

    Cool recipe! A little too sweet, but it’s pretty good.

  • January 26, 2014 at 11:48 pm: Jenny

    Unfortunately, these didn’t work for me at all. I love all of Isa’s other pancakes recipes but the texture of these were mushy and slimy! The topping is delicious though. I would recommend making Isa’s Perfect Pancake recipe, adding apple pie spices and then adding this topping. Live and learn- pancakes really need oil.

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