Thick and fluffy Carrot Cake Pancakes are loaded with strong spice flavours, and are topped with a silky cream cheese glaze and chopped pecans. Enjoy your carrot cake for Easter morning breakfast!
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I’ve created a few carrot recipes on here, from the classic carrot cake to a cupcake and cheesecake version. Today I’m straying away from the desserts to give you a stack of buttery and fluffy carrot pancakes that tastes just like carrot cake!
Ingredients in Carrot Pancakes
The two most important elements in a carrot cake is the flavour and the moisture. So as the base of this recipe, I used my blueberry pancake recipe and added the key ingredients from my carrot cake to give these pancakes the best texture AND flavour!
Basic Ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt. Yes you need 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon (aka. 4 teaspoons) of baking powder along with a touch of baking soda. This will make the pancakes extra fluffy!
Spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves. These are the main spices that gives carrot cake its deep and warm flavours. Without these spices, you’ll just have a stack of vegetable pancakes instead of carrot cake flavoured pancakes!
Moisture: buttermilk, dark brown sugar, eggs, melted butter, unsweetened applesauce, vanilla. Buttermilk, buttermilk, buttermilk! Everyone loves buttermilk pancakes, right? It makes the pancakes super light and fluffy because it helps activate the baking powder/soda. Buttermilk is also the key to moist, tender and soft pancakes. The molasses in the dark brown sugar adds extra flavour and moisture, as does the apple sauce!
Carrots: the easiest way to shred carrots is in a food processor using the shredding blade. If you don’t have a food processor, you’ll have to use a grater. Though this is a longer method, don’t let that encourage you to go buy pre-shredded carrots. Pre-shredded carrots are as hard and dry as whole carrots, but freshly grated carrots are nice and soft which means they’ll blend into the batter a whole lot easier and you won’t have to deal with unpleasant chunks of crunchy carrot in your pancake.
How to Make Carrot Cake Pancakes
I’m not gonna explain how to make the actual pancake batter, as it’s pretty straightforward. Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately, then mix them together. Remember not to overmix, the batter should be lumpy.
Tips & Tricks
Now one problem I used to have when making pancakes is that they always came out misshapen, burnt and dry. Over the years of making from-scratch pancakes, I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks on how to cook the perfect pancakes.
- Wipe off the grease: grease your pan or griddle with butter, oil or nonstick spray. Then use a paper towel to spread it around and wipe off the excess. The paper towel can be used to spread on more grease after you cook a few batches.
This method gives your pancakes that smooth perfect appearance on top rather than the two-toned splotches.
- Use a measuring cup or ice cream scoop to pour the batter: let’s be real, you’re not gonna end up with perfectly shaped pancakes if you dollop on the batter with a spoon. I used to use a ¼ measuring cup, but I’ve recently started using a medium ice cream scoop because it’s easier to release.
Use the back of the measuring cup or ice cream scoop to spread the batter out, starting from the middle and moving in circular motions. Perfect circle pancakes!
Silky Cream Cheese Glaze
It’s a well known fact that the perfect carrot cake frosting is cream cheese frosting. So instead of the usual maple syrup, I drenched these carrot pancakes in a smooth, tangy and silky cream cheese glaze!
The recipe is similar to the cream cheese icing I use on my cinnamon roll recipes, except a lot thinner. You only need 5 ingredients: butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and milk. Make sure the butter and cream cheese are softened to room temperature so it mixes easily.
You can leave out the milk if you want a thick cream cheese frosting to spread on top and between the stacks of pancakes. Or if you want the glaze to be thin enough to pour, keep adding milk a tablespoon at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
These pancakes were made as an Easter recipe, but honestly, they’re a great breakfast to enjoy anytime of the year! So grab some carrots and make a tall fluffy stack of semi-healthy irresistible carrot pancakes!
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Let’s get baking!
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 and ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ⅛ tsp ground cloves
- 2 cups buttermilk, room temperature
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar, packed
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce, room temperature
- 1 and ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups shredded carrots (3-4 large carrots)
- Optional add-ins: ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts
Cream Cheese Glaze:
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 4 oz. package cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 5-6 Tbsp milk
- Chopped pecans, for topping (optional)
For the Carrot Cake Pancakes:
- In a large bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves. Whisk to combine.
- In a separate bowl, add the buttermilk, brown sugar, eggs, melted butter, apple sauce and vanilla and whisk to combine.
- Create a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients in the centre. Whisk in the beginning until just combined, then use a rubber spatula to fold the batter until no streaks of flour remain. Do not overmix. Batter will be lumpy. Fold in shredded carrots.
- Allow batter to rest. Meanwhile, preheat a griddle or a skillet over medium-low heat.
- Use a tablespoon of butter to grease the pan or spray with cooking spray. Use a paper towel to wipe off the butter. Pour ¼ or ⅓ cup of batter (depending on how big you want your pancakes) into the pan and gently spread into a circle shape using the measuring cup.
- Cook until bubbles form on the top and the edges look dry, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.
For the Cream Cheese Glaze:
- In a medium mixing bowl using a handheld mixer, beat beat butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes.
- Add powdered sugar and mix on low until combined. Add vanilla and milk and beat until combined and smooth. If you want a thicker consistency, add less milk, if you want a thinner glaze, add more.
- Pour glaze over pancakes and garnish with chopped pecans, if desired. Enjoy!
- Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can substitute by adding 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice and vinegar to 2 cups of milk. Stir and let it sit for 5 minutes before using.
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Lodge LPGI3 Pro-Grid Cast Iron Reversible 20" x 10" Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles 10" x 20"
DI ORO Chef Series Premium Standard Turner Silicone Spatula - The Best Egg, Pancake, and Flipper Silicone Spatula - Versatile 600ºF Heat Resistant Rubber Turner Spatula to Meet All Your Kitchen Needs
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 382Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 66mgSodium: 318mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 3gSugar: 17gProtein: 8g
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