June 24th, 2014
So, technically, these aren’t red velvet pancakes as much as they are red pancakes. The important thing, though, is that they are good pancakes. Great, even, thanks to an easy trick that will turn any old pancakes into fluffy diner-style pancakes. (Watch for my secret!) Tasty, pillowy, and a pretty red hue that comes from an all natural source, these pancakes make an awesome July 4th breakfast topped with strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream.
Red, white and blue pancakes for breakfast?
It doesn’t get more patriotic than that, people.
I use beets to give these pancakes their color. While I normally insist on roasted beets, you want to use steamed or boiled beets in this case. You’ll get a more neutral flavor that keeps these sweet breakfast pancakes from turning into savory cakes.
I know what you’re thinking: steaming beets just to make pancakes red? Why not for a little holiday fun! And, psst, most grocery stores now carry packaged pre-cooked beets. If you can get your hands on some, these take barely any extra effort.
Watch to see how I use beets in this fun recipe. And also watch for my super special secret to impossibly fluffy pancakes. It works on any pancake recipe, red or not.
All-Natural Red “Velvet” Pancakes
(Can be shared with kids 8+ mos)*
2 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup beet puree (made from 2 small-medium beet pureed with 1-2 tablespoon water)
2 eggs, separated
4 tablespoons melted butter, cooled
4 tablespoons sugar
1-2 teaspoons vegetable oil
Whipped cream, for serving (optional)
Fresh strawberries, for serving (optional)
Fresh blueberries, for serving (optional)
1. If you’d like to keep pancakes warm as you cook, start by adjusting the oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 200 degrees. Spray a wire rack set inside rimmed baking sheet with vegetable oil spray and place in oven. Whisk flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together in large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk buttermilk, beet puree, egg yolks, and melted butter until combined.
2. Using a stand mixer fitted with a whisk (Note: I used an electric hand mixer), whip egg whites on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-high and whip whites to soft, billowy mounds, about 1 minute. Gradually add sugar and whip until glossy, still peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes.
3. Whisk buttermilk mixture into flour mixture until batter has thickened and no lumps remain, about 1 minute. Gently fold in whipped egg whites until just combined and few streaks remain.
4. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering, 3 to 5 minutes. Using paper towels, carefully wipe out oil, leaving a thin film of oil on bottom and sides of pan. Using 1/4 cup batter per pancake, portion batter into skillet and cook until bottoms of pancakes are brown and top surfaces start to bubble, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip pancakes and cook until the second side has browned, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Serve immediately or transfer pancakes to wire rack in preheated oven. Repeat with remaining batter, using remaining oil as needed.
*Note: While there is nothing in these pancakes that is unsafe for younger eaters, these are best served to kids 8+ months safely managing soft finger foods. Be sure to cut into age appropriate bite sizes and consider skipping the syrup and/or whipped cream. These pancakes may be sweet enough on their own for little ones.