It’s pumpkin season! The time of year when everything turns a shade of orange, and the aroma of warm spices fills the air. These light and fluffy Whole30 Pumpkin Pancakes are not only scrumptious but also packed with grain-free ingredients, making them a great alternative to regular pancakes. Whether it’s a cozy Saturday morning or a festive holiday breakfast, this delicious recipe is sure to become a favorite.
❤️ Why You Will Love This Recipe
Bursting with Pumpkin Flavor
There’s something undeniably comforting about the rich, earthy taste of pumpkin. These Whole30 pumpkin pancakes capture that essence perfectly. Every bite is a delightful blend of pumpkin puree and warm spices, making them a true celebration of pumpkin season.
More Nutritious Than Traditional Pancakes
While regular pancakes often contain refined sugars and flours, these paleo pumpkin pancakes are a testament to the fact that you don’t have to compromise on taste for nutrition. Made with almond flour, coconut flour, and sweetened naturally with banana, they’re low-carb (7g net carbs per pancake) and packed with healthy fats. Plus, they’re gluten-free, dairy-free, and grain-free, making them suitable for those with dietary restrictions.
Fluffy and Scrumptious
Nobody wants a flat, lifeless pancake. The combination of ingredients in this paleo pumpkin pancakes recipe ensures that your pancakes are fluffy and light, just the way they should be. The addition of apple cider vinegar reacts with the baking soda, giving these pancakes their perfect rise.
Quick and Easy to Make
Time is of the essence, especially during busy mornings. Thankfully, this recipe is straightforward and doesn’t require any fancy techniques. In just a few simple steps, you’ll have a stack of golden-brown pumpkin pancakes ready to be devoured.
Perfect for Special Occasions and Everyday Breakfasts
Whether you’re hosting a brunch, celebrating a holiday, or just craving a special breakfast on a lazy Sunday, these Paleo pumpkin pancakes fit the bill. They’re versatile and can be dressed up with your favorite toppings or enjoyed plain with a drizzle of pure maple syrup.
A Great Alternative for Dietary Needs
For those on the Whole30 program or simply looking to reduce processed foods from their diet, finding tasty breakfast options can sometimes be a challenge. These gluten-free pancakes are not only compliant with the Whole30 guidelines but also offer a delicious alternative to traditional breakfasts.
🗝️ Key Ingredients & Substitutions
Navigating the world of Whole30 can sometimes feel like a maze, especially when it comes to ingredients. Let’s break down the key components of these pumpkin pancakes and explore some potential substitutions to suit various preferences and dietary needs.
This is the primary flour used in the recipe. Almond flour is a fantastic low-carb, gluten-free alternative to traditional all-purpose flour. It provides a nutty flavor and a moist texture to the pancakes. If you’re allergic to almonds, coconut flour or tapioca flour can be used, but keep in mind that the texture might vary slightly. Another nut flour like tiger nut flour or hazelnut flour would be a better option.
Also known as tapioca starch, this ingredient helps give the pancakes a slightly chewy texture. If you don’t have tapioca flour on hand, arrowroot powder is a good substitute in equal amounts.
Coconut flour is highly absorbent and helps bind the ingredients together. It also adds a subtle coconut flavor to the pancakes. If you’re not a fan, you can increase the amount of almond flour, but be cautious as coconut flour’s absorbency is unique.
Pumpkin Spice and Cinnamon
These warm spices are the heart of the pumpkin flavor. If you don’t have pumpkin spice, you can make your own by combining 2 tablespoons of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon each of nutmeg and ginger, and 1/2 a teaspoon each of allspice and cloves. Feel free to adjust the amount of cinnamon based on your preference.
Eggs act as a binding agent and provide structure to the pancakes. If you’re vegan or allergic, flax eggs (a mixture of 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed and 2.5 tablespoons of water = 1 egg) can be a suitable replacement.
Any milk will do, but for a Whole30 compliant option, opt for unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk. Both add a creamy texture without the added sugars.
This is the star of the show! Ensure you’re using pure pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, which contains added sugars. If you’re feeling adventurous, making your own pumpkin puree from roasting or steaming fresh pumpkins (or a leftover pumpkin from Halloween) is a delightful option. If it’s not pumpkin season, mashed sweet potato or butternut squash is a great alternative!
Bananas naturally sweeten the pancakes without the need for added sugars. If you’re not a fan, sweet potato puree can be a good substitute, offering a similar sweetness and texture.
Apple Cider Vinegar
This ingredient reacts with the baking soda to make the pancakes fluffy. If you don’t have it on hand, lemon juice can be used as a substitute.
While optional, vanilla extract adds an extra layer of flavor. If you’re out, you can omit it or use almond extract for a different taste.
Cooking Spray, Chopped Walnuts, and Coconut Whipped Cream
These are primarily for cooking and garnishing. Feel free to get creative with your favorite toppings like chocolate chips (not Whole30), almond butter, or fresh fruit to make the pancakes your own.
🥣 How to Make Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes
Crafting the perfect pancake might seem daunting, but with this lovely recipe, you’re just a few steps away from a plate of fluffy, pumpkin-flavored goodness. Let’s walk through the process together.
1. Preparing the Dry and Wet Mixtures
Start by whisking together your gluten-free flour ingredients: almond flour, tapioca flour, coconut flour, plus pumpkin spice, cinnamon, baking soda, and a pinch of salt. This ensures an even distribution of the ingredients, which is crucial for the perfect pancake consistency.
In a separate bowl, you’ll want to blend the pumpkin puree and banana. This combination not only adds moisture but also a natural sweetness to the batter. Once that’s smooth, add it to your dry ingredients, and then whisk your eggs in the same bowl you blended the pumpkin and banana in. Eggs act as the binding agent, holding everything together. Finally, add in your dairy-free milk of choice, apple cider vinegar, and a splash of vanilla extract. The apple cider vinegar might seem like an odd addition, but trust me, it’s the secret to getting those perfectly light and fluffy pancakes.
2. Combining and Cooking
Once you have your wet and dry mixtures ready, mix everything until just combined. Remember, overmixing can lead to dense pancakes, so a gentle hand is key.
Now, heat up your skillet or frying pan over medium-low heat. I like to use a cast-iron skillet for this, however, a non-stick pan works well too. A little tip: to test if it’s ready, sprinkle a few drops of water onto the pan. If they dance around and evaporate, you’re good to go. Lightly grease the pan with coconut oil or cooking spray to ensure easy flipping. Pour in 2-3 tablespoons of the pancake batter for each pancake, spread it out slightly, and place a lid on the skillet. Cook for about 2-3 minutes on the first side, then flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes with the lid on until golden brown.
3. Serving Suggestions
Once cooked, stack your pancakes high and garnish with coconut whipped cream and chopped walnuts. If you’re not strictly following Whole30, a drizzle of pure maple syrup or honey can elevate these gluten-free pumpkin pancakes even further. Enjoy your scrumptious pumpkin pancakes while they’re still warm!
🪄 Recipe Notes & Tips
Creating the perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes is a breeze, especially when you’re armed with some handy tips and tricks. Here are a few pointers to ensure your pancake-making experience is smooth and delightful.
Consistency is Key
The batter’s consistency can make or break your pancakes. If it’s too thick, you might end up with pancakes that are undercooked in the middle. If it’s too runny, they won’t hold their shape. Aim for a batter that’s thick yet pourable. If you find your batter is on the thicker side, you can add a little more milk. Conversely, if it’s too runny, a touch more almond or coconut flour can help thicken it up.
Perfecting the Flip
Flipping pancakes can be a bit of an art form. Using a wide spatula can help ensure the pancake doesn’t break apart. When I flip, if I slide the spatula under and the pancake moves with the spatula, I carefully remove the spatula from underneath, pop the lid back on, and wait another minute. And remember, the first pancake is often a test run (and a treat for the chef!).
Adjusting the Heat
While the recipe calls for medium-low heat, stovetops can vary. If you notice your pancakes are browning too quickly but are still raw in the middle, turn down the heat a notch. On the other hand, if they’re taking too long to brown, you might need to increase the heat slightly.
Customizing Your Toppings
While this pumpkin pancake recipe suggests coconut whipped cream and chopped walnuts, the beauty of these fluffy pumpkin pancakes is their versatility. Feel free to get creative! Fresh fruit, a sprinkle of coconut sugar (if you’re doing paleo), chopped pecans, or even a homemade pumpkin pie spice blend can add a unique twist to your breakfast. Remember, if you’re strictly following Whole30, ensure your toppings are compliant.
How to Store Leftover Healthy Pumpkin Pancakes
So you’ve whipped up a batch of these delectable Whole30 Pumpkin Pancakes, but you’ve got some leftovers? No problem! Here’s how to store them to enjoy another day.
Cooling Before Storing
Before storing, make sure your pancakes have cooled down completely. Storing warm pancakes can lead to condensation, making them soggy. Lay them out on a baking sheet or a plate so they’re not stacked or overlapping, and let them cool to room temperature.
Refrigerating Your Pancakes
For short-term storage, place your cooled pancakes in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper to prevent sticking. They’ll stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. When you’re ready to enjoy them again, you can reheat them in a skillet over medium heat or pop them in the toaster for a quick warm-up.
Freezing for Longer Storage
If you’ve made a larger batch and want to enjoy your pancakes over a longer period, freezing is a fantastic option. Place the cooled pancakes on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for about an hour. This method, known as flash freezing, ensures the pancakes don’t stick together. Once they’re frozen, transfer them to a zip-top freezer bag or an airtight container, again separating layers with parchment paper. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to eat, there’s no need to thaw—just reheat directly from the freezer.
For the best results, reheat your pancakes in a toaster or skillet until they’re warmed through. This method helps them retain their crisp edges. If you’re in a hurry, microwaving is an option, but they might be a bit softer. Either way, they’ll still be delicious, especially paired with your favorite toppings!
🍽️ What to Serve with Whole30 Pumpkin Pancakes
While these Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes are undoubtedly the star of the show, pairing them with complementary sides can elevate your breakfast or brunch to new heights. Here are some delightful accompaniments to consider.
Bacon or Sausage: If you’re craving a bit of savory to balance out the sweetness of the pancakes, crispy bacon, a side of Whole30 Sausage Patties, baked sausage links, or air fryer sausage is a classic choice. Just ensure they’re Whole30 compliant, as many store-bought versions contain added sugars or non-compliant ingredients.
Eggs: Whether you like them scrambled, fried, or poached, eggs are a protein-packed addition that pairs beautifully with the rich flavors of the pancakes.
Breakfast Casserole: If you’re making a feast, be sure to try our Whole30 Breakfast Casserole recipe. It’s loaded with eggs, sweet potatoes, and bacon, and tastes amazing!
Berries: Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, or blackberries can add a burst of freshness and a touch of tartness, creating a delightful contrast with the warm spices of the pancakes.
Sliced Bananas: Given that the pancakes already contain banana, adding some fresh slices on top can enhance that natural sweetness.
Coffee or Tea: A hot cup of your favorite brew is the perfect accompaniment to these pancakes. If you’re on Whole30, remember to skip the sugar and opt for compliant creamers like coconut milk. Try our Almond Milk Latte, French Press Espresso, or Sumac Tea for a caffeine-free pick-me-up!
Smoothies: A refreshing fruit smoothie can be a great way to add more nutrients to your breakfast. Blend together some greens, Whole30 compliant fruits, and unsweetened almond milk for a tasty treat.
Nut Butter: Nut butters are creamy, slightly sweet, and a light spread melts beautifully over warm pancakes, adding a layer of richness. We love coconut butter, almond butter, and hazelnut butter.
Homemade Fruit Compote: A simple compote made from simmering berries or apples with a touch of cinnamon can be a delicious, sugar-free topping that complements the pumpkin flavor.
Remember, the beauty of these delicious pancakes is their versatility. Whether you’re serving them as part of a lavish brunch spread or a simple weekday breakfast, there are countless ways to make them your own. Enjoy experimenting with different combinations to find your perfect plate!
❓ Frequently Asked Questions
It’s best to use pure pumpkin puree for this recipe. Pumpkin pie filling contains added sugars and spices, which may not be Whole30 compliant.
While apple cider vinegar helps make the pancakes fluffy, you can substitute it with lemon juice for a similar effect.
Absolutely! Their natural sweetness and fluffy texture make them a hit with kids. My toddler LOVES them! Just be mindful of toppings and ensure they’re age-appropriate.
Yes, you can substitute eggs with flax eggs (a mixture of ground flaxseed and water) to make the recipe vegan.
Combine cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves in equal parts to make your own pumpkin pie spice blend. Adjust to taste, and store in an airtight container.
If you’re not strictly following Whole30 or are looking for a treat, you can add chocolate chips to your paleo pancakes.
It’s not recommended, not only because it’s a different ingredient, but also because it contains cornstarch which is not Whole30-approved.
😋 More Pumpkin Recipes You Will Love
- Mini Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites
- Pumpkin Fluff
- Vegan Vegetable Stew
- Air Fryer Pumpkin Seeds
- Healthy Pumpkin Smoothie
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Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes
- 1/2 cup Almond flour
- 1/3 cup Tapioca starch
- 1/4 cup Coconut flour
- 2 teaspoons Pumpkin spice
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon Baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 3 large Eggs
- 1 cup Unsweetened almond milk
- 1/2 cup Pumpkin puree
- 1 medium Banana ripe
- 1 teaspoon Apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- Cooking spray, olive oil, or coconut oil to grease the pan
- Chopped walnuts optional garnish
- Coconut whipped cream optional garnish
- Place a skillet on the stove over medium-low heat.
- Spray the skillet with oil or add a little olive oil or coconut oil to the skillet.
- Whisk dry ingredients together (Almond flour, Tapioca flour, Coconut flour, Pumpkin spice, Cinnamon, Baking soda, Salt).
- In a separate bowl, mash or blend pumpkin puree and banana together.
- In a separate bowl, whisk eggs together.
- Add pumpkin puree and banana, eggs, milk, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla to dry ingredients and mix well.
- When the oil is hot (to test, drip a drop of water in and see if it sizzles), add pumpkin pancake batter to the skillet. Use 2-3 tablespoons per pancake, spreading it out a little into a circle.
- Place the lid over the skillet and cook for 2 minutes on each side, carefully flipping in between. Make sure you put the lid back on after flipping!
- Garnish with coconut whipped cream and chopped walnuts, and enjoy!
- Serving size: The nutrition calculation is per pancake. This recipe yields 12 pancakes, making 4 servings of 3 pancakes each.
- Consistency: Aim for a batter that’s thick yet pourable. If you find your batter is on the thicker side, you can add a little more milk. Conversely, if it’s too runny, a touch more almond or coconut flour can help thicken it up.
- Perfecting the Flip: Flipping pancakes can be a bit of an art form. Using a wide spatula can help ensure the pancake doesn’t break apart. When I flip, if I slide the spatula under and the pancake moves with the spatula, I carefully remove the spatula from underneath, pop the lid back on, and wait another minute.
- Adjusting the Heat: If you notice your pancakes are browning too quickly but are still raw in the middle, turn down the heat a notch. On the other hand, if they’re taking too long to brown, you might need to increase the heat slightly.
- Customizing Your Toppings: While this pumpkin pancake recipe suggests coconut whipped cream and chopped walnuts, the beauty of these fluffy pumpkin pancakes is their versatility. Feel free to get creative! Fresh fruit, a sprinkle of coconut sugar (if you’re doing paleo), chopped pecans, or even a homemade pumpkin pie spice blend can add a unique twist to your breakfast. Remember, if you’re strictly following Whole30, ensure your toppings are compliant.
- Storage: Place your cooled pancakes in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper to prevent sticking. They’ll stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Freezing: Place the cooled pancakes on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for about an hour. Once they’re frozen, transfer them to a zip-top freezer bag or an airtight container, again separating layers with parchment paper. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to eat, there’s no need to thaw—just reheat directly from the freezer.
- Reheating Tips: For the best results, reheat your pancakes in a toaster or skillet until they’re warmed through. This method helps them retain their crisp edges. If you’re in a hurry, microwaving is an option, but they might be a bit softer.