Apple-Cinnamon Whole Wheat Pancakes

Apple-Cinnamon Whole Wheat Pancakes

I’ve had a hankering for pancakes. And so, it seems, has my son—he asked for them at least three times this week, but my freezer stash was depleted so a weekday pancake-fest wasn’t in the cards. Sunday morning, on the other hand… especially a Sunday morning when my darling child wakes me at 5:45? Plenty of time for pancake-making.

This isn’t your normal, everyday pancake, my friends. First, it’s made with whole wheat flour, so it’s, y’know, healthy and stuff. I used whole wheat pastry flour for a lighter-than-usual touch. And it’s got shredded apples built right in, so it’s sweet all by itself—you really don’t need to drown these in syrup. The cinnamon gives just a hint of spice, and the buttermilk adds some tang. Texturally, they’re a bit different, too: They’re thin, almost crepe-like, with lovely ruffly edges.

The original recipe is Ellie Krieger’s. I’m a big fan; that woman’s got quite a knack for creating healthy recipes that are still packed with flavor. A few years ago I was lucky enough to interview Ellie for an article, and she’s every bit as down-to-earth as she seems on the Food Network. And since my version is based on Ellie’s recipe, it’s completely Weight Watchers-friendly. Her recipe is meant to serve 4, but after my tweaks I wound up with a whopping 28 pancakes. They’re thin, but they’re still plenty filling—four would make a fine meal, for only 2 points. (But I’ll admit: By the time we had breakfast, I’d been up for almost three hours and I was hungry. I ate six, and I loved every second of it.)

Apple-Cinnamon Whole Wheat Pancakes
Inspired by Ellie Krieger
Makes 28 thin pancakes
Weight Watchers members: 4 pancakes equals 2 points; pure maple syrup is 1 point per tablespoon

1 medium apple (I used a Granny Smith), peeled and shredded
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 egg whites
1 cup lowfat buttermilk OR 4 tablespoons buttermilk powder + 1 cup water OR 1 cup milk + 1 tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice that’s been set aside for 10 minutes
1/2 cup lowfat milk
2 teaspoons honey
Cooking spray
A bit of butter
Maple syrup

Put the shredded apple in a bowl and microwave on high for one minute, then set aside to cool. Set the oven to “warm” or 250°.

In a large bowl, whisk the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and buttermilk powder (if you’re using it). In a smaller bowl, whisk together the egg whites, your buttermilk/water/curdled milk, the plain milk, and the honey. Slowly whisk the wet mixture into the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined. The batter should be fairly thin—if it’s not, add a bit more milk. Gently stir in the apple.

Coat a large non-stick griddle with cooking spray, add the teeniest bit of butter—just enough to get some buttery flavor—and heat over medium heat. When the griddle is hot, use a small ladle or a 1/4 cup dry measure to scoop batter and pour carefully onto the griddle—be sure to include some apples in each scoop. Flip when the batter looks dry and is speckled with small holes, then cook on the other side until the pancakes are golden brown. Transfer to an oven-safe plate, and keep in the oven while you make the remaining pancakes.

Serve with maple syrup.