Anyone who knows me well knows I have the biggest sweet tooth. If it was healthy and at all possible, I would happily sustain my existence with an exclusive diet of ice cream and candy. Unfortunately, your typical sweet isn’t exactly synonymous with health. While I firmly believe in enjoying everything in moderation, sometimes moderation isn’t frequent enough (true sugar mavens know what I mean).
Over the past several years in which I’ve refocused my attention to living a more balanced and healthy lifestyle, I’ve discovered (along with most of the fitness community by now – thank god!) some healthy alternative “hacks” to some of my favorite treats. One of my favorites is protein pancakes.
It’s so great that these have caught on with the mass public because it is now SO easy to make. To make these a few years ago it would’ve required a few failed attempts at combining bananas, oatmeal, and eggs to see any small resemblance to an old-fashioned pancake.
Today, there are several brands that make protein pancake mixes which make them quick, easy and accessible to almost everyone. I love making these on the weekend – the act of sitting down and eating pancakes in my pajamas feels indulgent even though, positively, the macronutrient ratio doesn’t classify these as a “treat” or “cheat meal” at all.
The brand I use most often is Birchbenders. Their mixes are really easy to use (“just add water”) and come in a lot of great flavors and recipes, like pumpkin spice and paleo, that I admittedly can’t resist.
The best, and arguably the most important, part of making these is adding creative ingredients that make them feel truly luxurious.
To be sure, you can eat these plain and as-is. To really pack some flavor and satisfy your sweet-tooth cravings though, I recommend trying out any of the following:
In your pancake mix, add:
- Raisins & Cinnamon Sugar (as pictured above)
- Chocolate Chips and Thinly-Sliced Bananas
- Sliced Almonds, or other nuts
- Diced apple and caramel chips
- Any sort of candy “chip”, really
Top off your pancakes with:
- Sugar-Free Maple Syrup (pictured above)
- Cool-Whip, Whip Cream, Etc. (pictured above)
- Crushed Graham Cracker, or other cereal (graham crackers pictured above)
- Chocolate Chips
- Sliced Fruit
- Honey and Cinnamon
- Melted Nut Butter – just heat in small bowl for 30 seconds. Add a hint of butter if you like.
- “Frosting” (Mix plain greek yogurt with your choice of sugar-free pudding mix…trust me on this one! I like plain vanilla or cheesecake best)
- Halo Top Ice Cream
The combinations are endless and can be made as wholesome or desert-like as you wish. Try it out! Post a picture of your cakes on Instagram and tag me @hayley.reissfelder – I’ll repost them on my account!