Belfast Telegraph

Pancake recipes: From basic, quick and easy to healthy low sugar and gluten-free versions

Lemon or something sweet on your pancakes today? Here are some flipping easy and healthy recipes you can try

As you whisk up some traditional pancakes, why not opt for something other than sugar and lemon, honey, syrup or chocolate spread for a topping?

According to food psychologist Dr Christy Fergusson, from Channel 4's Secret Eaters, sprinkling as little as one tablespoon (three teaspoons) of sugar with lemon over pancakes increases our sugar intake by up to 14 grams and adds up to 49 calories.

Other tasty toppings such as honey contains a whopping 17 grams of sugar (64 calories) and chocolate spread includes 10 grams of sugar (100 calories).

With an increasing concern about our intake of "free" sugars - a term used to describe sugars added to foods, drinks or found naturally in honey, syrup and fruit juice - the World Health Organisation is calling for us to reduce our intake of sugars to below 5% or roughly 25 grams (six teaspoons) per day, which scientists claim helps lower body weight.

Top chef Sophie Michell, celebrated food writer, TV personality and executive chef at Pont Street in Belgravia and The Gorgeous Kitchen at Heathrow, says: "Low sugar fruits can make a lovely pancake topping by adding sweetness without overdoing the sugar.

"Take Chilean blueberries - rich in fibre and high in vitamin C - these delicious little fruits not only taste sweet, they are also incredibly low in natural sugars."

Michell believes it's easy to whisk up sweet pancakes that are low in sugar and delicious, so has produced a range of new recipes to try.

Go to for more information.

Sophie Michell's Spelt and Vanilla Chilean Blueberry Pancakes


500g white spelt flour

1 tsp baking powder

Pinch of sea salt

5 eggs, beaten

600ml of milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

200g Chilean blueberries


Mix the dry ingredients together, then whisk in the egg, milk and vanilla.

Heat up a little veggie oil in a large, non-stick frying pan. Then add a large dessert spoonful at a time to make mini pancakes and cook in batches.

Add about three to five blueberries to each pancake, before turning them over and cooking for about three minutes each side. Keep warm in a very low oven if needs be.

Makes eight to 10 pancakes.

Gluten-free pancakes


100g gluten-free flour

Half tsp gluten-free baking powder

Pinch sea salt

2 eggs

200ml milk

Sunflower oil


These wafer-thin pancakes are the perfect base for topping with fresh fruit. This gluten-free version is just as good as the normal, so you can make them for everyone.

Sieve the flour, baking powder and salt into a large mixing bowl.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk, then make a well in the centre of the flour and slowly add the liquid, mixing all the time until you have a smooth batter. Leave to rest for at least half an hour, or overnight.

When ready to cook, heat a little sunflower oil in a 20-25cm non-stick pan until hot. Stir the batter and pour a small ladleful into the pan, swirling it so the mixture spreads out to the edges of the pan.

Cook for a minute or two. When the top of the pancake starts to bubble, flip it over and cook until golden.

Wrap the pancakes in greaseproof paper and keep warm in a low oven until ready to serve.

Dairy and egg-free banana pancakes


1 banana

1 tbsp sunflower oil, plus extra to oil the pan

1 tsp lemon juice

Half tsp ground cinnamon

100g plain flour

Half tsp baking powder

400ml soya milk

Maple syrup, to serve


You would never guess that these thick banana flavoured pancakes are made without any dairy or egg. Top them with your favourite fruit and a generous dollop of creme fraiche - great for a weekend brunch or indulgent breakfast. In a mixing bowl, mash the banana with a fork and whisk in the oil, lemon juice and cinnamon.

Add the flour and baking powder. Stir, while gradually adding the soya milk. The batter will take on the consistency of yogurt.

Place a frying pan on a medium heat. Oil it, using a little sunflower oil on a scrunched piece of kitchen towel. Drop tablespoonfuls of batter onto the pan and swirl, so it spreads across the surface. When bubbles pop and the glossiness of the pancake becomes matte (about two minutes), flip over. Cook for a further couple of minutes.

Place the finished pancakes on a plate.

Repeat the process until the batter is used up. Serve hot, with creme fraiche.

Wholemeal herb pancakes with lemon cream cheese, avocado and tomatoes


100g light cream cheese

1 lemon, juiced and finely zested, plus extra to garnish

200g wholemeal plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

Small handful basil leaves, chopped

Small handful parsley, chopped

2 eggs, separated

200ml semi-skimmed milk

Butter, for greasing

1 avocado, quartered and sliced

150g cherry tomatoes, halved


These tasty wholemeal pancakes make for a simple but special breakfast. If there's no time to make the batter in the morning, make the pancakes entirely in advance, stack up between squares of non-stick baking paper, wrap and freeze. The pancakes can then be heated through in a toaster whenever needed.

In a bowl, combine the cream cheese with the lemon zest and juice.

Season with freshly cracked black pepper and set aside until needed.

Sift the flour, baking powder, herbs and quarter teaspoon of salt into a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre.

Add the egg yolks and half the milk.

Using a fork, gently stir to combine, drawing in the flour from the sides of the bowl.

Add the remaining milk and continue mixing, to form a completely smooth batter.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites, using an electric whisk, until stiff peaks form. Using a large, metal spoon, gently fold the egg whites into the batter, being careful not to knock the air out.

Put a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat and lightly brush with a little butter to grease.

Spoon four generous tablespoons of batter into the pan to make four separate pancakes - space them out, as they will spread a little.

Cook for one minute, until bubbles rise to the surface, then turn and cook for a further 30 seconds to one minute.

Transfer to a warm plate, covered with a tea towel.

Repeat, to make 16 pancakes.

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