Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup are a perfect and healthy breakfast yet they taste like dessert. Packed with carrots, oats and yogurt they will satisfy even picky eaters. Serve them for Easter breakfast or any special weekend treat.
Breakfast. Breakfast. Breakfast. I’m thinking back and trying to remember my childhood. I remember many meals, yet breakfast is something that I remember more vividly. Mornings weren’t always special but the pictures of those moments are burnt into my memory.
Open-faced bread with cheese sandwich, grilled to the bubbling and charred perfection in our small toaster oven, was the breakfast of choice for most school days. After getting dressed and ready for school, my mom and I would have those sandwiches in our small kitchen, drinking tea and watching tv before the day started.
On the weekends there would be eggs, farmers cheese cakes, pancakes, or crepes – more special, more unique, requiring more work and preparation. Still, those easy melty cheese sandwiches are what I remember most. Easy and simple yet bringing back so many tender moments.
For years, I didn’t eat breakfast on weekdays – too busy with getting ready for work, too tired to cook. Now that I am home with the baby, I rediscovered my love for weekday breakfasts.
I treat myself everyday to something different: peanut butter and banana toast, farmers cheese with yogurt, gluten-free apple-banana fritters, toast with cheese.
I love those mornings with Baby. She sits happily in her high chair, looking curiously at this new big and strange world around her. I make coffee and breakfast for myself, warm up baby’s food, and we eat together before the craziness of the day starts.
This recipe for the Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup was inspired by baby food. I was steaming carrots for her purée and realized I made too much.
With Easter in a few weeks I had an idea to make Carrot Cake Pancakes. If I could use pumpkin to make Pumpkin-Ricotta Pancakes and beets to make Cinnamon-Beet Pancakes then why can’t carrot purée be used?
Besides nutrient-filled carrots this recipe uses oats, yogurt, and pecans, making the pancakes quite healthy too. They are soft and spongy with an occasional crunch of pecans and a hint of carrot sweetness.
Having a stack of these pancakes will feel like you are eating Carrot Cake for breakfast!
How to make Carrot Cake Pancakes
Just as most pancake recipes, this one is also quite easy. All you have to do is mix everything together and done.
Many recipes always ask for combining the wet ingredients in one bowl and dry ingredients in another bowl. It is done so that there’s as little mixing as possible happening once everything is together.
I find that I can totally use just one bowl and cut down on cleaning time. All you need to do is thoroughly mix the wet ingredients, then add the dry ingredients on top and be very mindful of how much you mix.
It’s better to under mix than to over mix. Over mixing of the batter will result in tough and rubbery pancakes. You want the batter to be still lumpy.
- In a large bowl, combine all the wet ingredients and whisk really well until the mixture is smooth
- I like to also add my spices and pecans at that point, this way they are more incorporated into the batter without the need to mix it more
- Add the rest of the ingredients and mix with a spatula until all the flour disappears but the batter is still lumpy
How to make Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup
Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup sounds indulging but it’s not really. It’s a mix of cream cheese (you could use light version if you’d like), yogurt and a little bit of maple syrup.
And let me tell you, do not skip this Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup, it’s amazing! In fact, make a double batch and just spread it on toast, it’s that good! For an extra special treat add a splash of rum too!
- Make sure to use room temperature cream cheese, otherwise it will be difficult to mix
- Add the yogurt and maple syrup to taste
- Add vanilla or rum or even some orange zest for more flavour!
How to make Carrot purée
Making homemade carrot purée is not difficult. All you need is carrots, water, and a steamer basket.
Two medium carrots will yield about 1 cup of carrot purée, however, you only need 3/4 cup for this recipe.
- Steam two peeled medium carrots until very soft.
- Purée the steamed carrots in a food processor or a blender.
- Add a couple teaspoons of steaming water if the mixture is too chunky. Do not add too much water, you want the purée to be quite thick.
Can you substitute homemade carrot purée?
If steaming and pureeing carrots for the Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup sounds daunting then you could actually use pre-made jarred baby carrot food, just make sure that it has no extra ingredients like peas or chicken.
When I tested this recipe with jarred baby carrot food, I noticed that the purée is pretty thin and much more liquid than if I make it myself. That means that you may need to adjust the amount of milk that you use in the recipe and use less. It all depends on the brand of the jarred baby food that you use.
Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup
Carrot Cake Pancakes
- 3/4 cup carrot purée (homemade or from a jar)
- 3/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
- 1+1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup quick oats
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- oil for frying pancakes (I like using coconut oil)
Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup
- 1/4 cup cream cheese (room temperature)
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1.5 tablespoon dark maple syrup (or more for sweeter syrup)
For the Carrot Cake Pancakes
- In a large bowl whisk together all the wet ingredients until well combined.
- Add all the spices, dry ingredients, chopped pecans and whisk just until flour disappears. Do not over mix. Batter will be lumpy.
- Heat pan on medium heat, lightly brush with oil and add heaping tablespoons of batter.
- Cook for 3-4 minutes until bubbles start to appear and the batter looks no longer glossy.
- Flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Repeat with the rest of batter.
For the Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup
- Whisk all the ingredients really well until smooth and creamy.
- Serve Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese-Maple Syrup and some extra pecans on the side.