LIFESTYLE COLUMN: 3 top tips to making healthier pancakes

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LIFESTYLE COLUMN: 3 top tips to making healthier pancakes

Find out the secret to healthy and delicious pancakes

So Lent begins on Wednesday, but before we give up indulgent treats for 40 days, we have the indulgence of pancake Tuesday to enjoy. If you are trying to eat healthy or avoid excessively sugar, pancake Tuesday and Easter can be potential mine fields.

My top tips for making pancakes lower in sugar are:

1. Make them savoury...

Sweet pancakes aren’t the only option; there are loads of savoury pancake possibilities. Try salmon and crème fraiche for an indulgent breakfast. For those short on time, spinach, bacon and mushroom pancakes could be paired with a filling salad for an alternative dinner. If you are after a vegetarian option, courgette pancakes with feta and red pepper is a fun filling substitute.

2. Fresh fruit is king...

Add lots of fresh fruit and natural yogurt. For fun ideas for kids, why not mash blueberries or raspberries and have colourful pancakes, or place blueberries into the batter in the pan to make happy faces. This helps kids to get more healthy by eating fruit but still keeps the pancakes sweet without adding too much sugar!

3. Change your sugar...

You can replace granulated sugar with alternatives like coconut sugar or granulated stevia. You could also drizzle warm pancakes with maple syrup or honey. These are still sugars so you should use them sparingly. I always include cinnamon in my pancakes as it helps to balance blood sugars and adds some natural sweetness.

Martina's delicious recipe for amazing Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes:

These are a healthy alternative to the traditional Irish pancake. They pack a more nutritional punch and the sweetness in these pancakes comes from the honey and the fruit. So why use buckwheat? For a start, it’s not a grain; it’s not even related to wheat. It comes from the same family as rhubarb! It is gluten free and is a rich source of nutrients, including B vitamins, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus. It is also a great source of fibre and antioxidants. I got my buckwheat flour in Holland and Barrett but you can get it in most health food shops.

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

Ingredients

1 cup of buckwheat flour

2 eggs

2 tablespooons of honey/maple syrup

2 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1 teaspoon of baking powder

Pinch of coarse salt

1 cup of almond milk, unsweetened

100g blueberries

Coconut oil for frying

Method

Add everything but almond milk and blueberries to a food processor and blitz until well combined.

Gradually add the cup of almond milk and blend until you have a smooth, slightly thick mixture.

Transfer mixture to a jug and stir in the blueberries. Heat some coconut oil in the pan on a medium heat. Pour in pancake batter to make your desired sized pancakes.

Cook until bubbles form on the side and flip.

Cook for another 30 seconds and remove to a warm plate.

Serve pancakes with yogurt, fresh fruit and drizzle of maple syrup or honey!

Top Tips:

  • These pancakes can cook quickly so be careful they don’t become dry.
  • To make these pancakes dairy-free just substitute the yogurt for coconut yogurt.

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