Zucchini Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce
ancakes are delicious. Pancakes also tend to be lower on the nutritional value scale. Let’s change that, and make some pancakes that are good for you while still being delicious. These pancakes are super summery as they are made with some of summer’s finest produce, blueberries and zucchini. Don’t worry; you really can’t taste the zucchini at all. If you like zucchini bread, you will like these pancakes.
The average American only consumes 57% of the recommended daily amount of vegetables, with only 6% of Americans actually meeting their veggie recommendations. This is clearly an issue as vegetables are hugely beneficial for health and disease prevention. Working with people on their diets, I have found that breakfast is usually the most difficult meal in which to incorporate vegetables. The most common suggestion I make is to add peppers, tomatoes, or greens into eggs for breakfast to increase vegetable intake. These pancakes are a sweeter alternative to getting some veggies into your breakfast. Shredded zucchini is almost undetectable in these and helps start your day strong with a lil veg action.
These zuc pancakes are made with all whole wheat flour. Whole wheat flour contains wheat bran and germ which bring fiber, protein, and phytochemicals to the foods made with the flour. Whole grains like whole wheat have tons of health benefits like supporting gut health, decreasing cholesterol levels, and helping to maintain a steady blood sugar. Whole grain consumption has been linked to decreased risk of certain cancers, diabetes, and heart disease. In regular wheat or white flour the bran and germ are removed, and so are the health benefits that come along with whole grain items. It is therefore recommended to get at least half of daily grains as whole grains.
ther things that make these pancakes healthier than traditional pancakes: There are only 3 tbs. sugar in the entire recipe. There are about 9 grams of protein per serving coming mostly from 3 eggs and ½ cup of Greek yogurt in the batter. A blueberry compote accompanies these pancakes as a fruity, lighter alternative to the usual butter and syrup. A compote is a sauce made by cooking fruit in syrup. Here fresh blueberries are quickly simmered in a little water and honey to make a summery and nutritious pancake topping.
hese pancakes aren’t super sweet like those you have had in the past. But, while the sweet factor is slightly less here, flavor is still big from vanilla, warm spices, and the blueberries. This recipe is also a great example of how whole wheat baking/cooking can be easy and delicious. Try these with a side of eggs or Greek yogurt for a bit more protein to round out a breakfast with a little summer fruit and veggies baked right in.
Zucchini Pancakes with Blueberry Compote
Makes about 12 pancakes (4 servings of 3 pancakes)
1 cup blueberries
1 tbs. water
1 tbs. honey
small pinch salt
squeeze fresh lemon juice
½ cup Greek yogurt
1 cup finely shredded zucchini
2 tbs. sugar
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
¾ cup whole wheat flour
1 tbs. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
½ tsp. coarse/kosher salt
butter or cooking spray
In a small saucepan, combine the blueberries, water, honey and salt. Heat on low and bring to a slow simmer. Squish some of the berries and cook for about 5 minutes, or until saucy. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice to brighten up the compote. You can let the sauce cook while you make the pancakes to have it nice and warm to serve.
To make the pancakes, add the eggs to a medium bowl and whisk well. Then add in the yogurt, zucchini, sugar, and vanilla. Mix well until evenly combined. In another medium/small bowl, combine the remaining (dry) ingredients. Mix well with a whisk or fork. Add the dry into the wet mixture in two batches. Mix until just combined. Over mixing can result in gluten development = tough cakes.
Heat a large pan on medium-low heat. When hot, add in a slice of butter or spray with cooking spray. (Spray will result in less calories added, but butter will obviously add more flavor, so you decide) Measure out each pancake by using a ¼ cup measuring cup to add batter to the pan. You can cook as many pancakes at a time that your pan will allow without the pancakes touching. Cook the pancakes for about 2 minutes, or until bubbles form through the batter. Then gently flip over and cook for about 1 more minute, or until cooked through.
Serve the pancakes nice and hot with some of the blueberry compote!