Lemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free}

SonjaBrunch, Popular25 Comments

Lemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free} | A Couple Cooks

Lemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free} | A Couple CooksLemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free} | A Couple Cooks

In the nearly four years that we’ve written this blog, we have never made a pancake recipe (shocking, I know!). But actually, we’re simple breakfast people: me with my whole grain English muffin and PB, and Alex with his wait-until-I-get-hungry-then-eat-massive-amounts-of-yogurt-and-granola.

One of my complaints about pancakes has always been that they are not filling enough: when I do eat them, I carbo-load and then go into a sugar-induced coma, after which I crash, hungry just a few hours later. So, my goal with this recipe was to create a hearty pancake: filling, yet still light and fluffy, as well as gluten-free, since it is the most versatile way to cover a variety of dietary needs.

8 to 10 trial runs later, here’s the recipe! (We’re not sure whether it was 8 or 10, we lost count after a while…) Like this bean burger, we went into major trial and error mode: first the pancakes were too thin, then too thick, then not lemony enough, then not sweet enough. We found the trick is using oat flour (which you can make yourself using a food processor) and combining it with just a bit of gluten-free flour (or wheat flour, if you’re not gluten-free) to keep the cakes light and fluffy.

These cakes would be lovely for a special brunch (especially in mini-version, if serving for a crowd). In fact, we developed the recipe in honor of Fair Trade USA, who is celebrating Mother’s Day this year by hosting brunch recipe contest. If you’re so inclined, would you navigate over to the Fair Trade Brunch Pinboard and vote for our recipe by pinning it? The voting period is May 1-11; only re-pins from Fair Trade’s board will be counted. Thank you so much!

This recipe uses two Fair Trade ingredients: Nutiva Coconut Oil and India Tree Dark Muscovado Sugar. Check out our giveaway with these ingredients and many more from Fair Trade USA!    

Lemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free}
Serves: 8 large pancakes, 16 small pancakes
What You Need
  • 1½ cups old-fashioned oats or oat flour
  • ½ cup gluten-free flour (or whole wheat flour)
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar (or 2½ tablespoons maple syrup)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 large lemon (zest + 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice)
  • 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil (or butter)
  • 1 cup milk
What To Do
  1. If using oats, make oat flour by placing 1½ cup oats in a food processor and processing until finely ground.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients: 1½ cups oat flour, ½ cup gluten-free or whole-wheat flour, ¼ cup cornstarch, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 2 tablespoons poppy seeds, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and 2 tablespoons sugar (if using maple syrup, omit sugar and add 2 ½ tablespoons maple syrup with the eggs in the next step).
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 2 teaspoons vanilla, 3 tablespoons lemon juice and the zest of one lemon. Pour into the dry ingredients, then add 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil. Pour in 1 cup milk (¾ cup if using maple syrup instead of sugar), and stir everything to combine. The batter should be thick but just pourable. If not pourable, add a small bit of milk to lighten the batter and stir to combine.
  4. Lightly grease a skillet and wipe off extra grease with a paper towel. Heat the skillet to medium heat. Pour the batter into small circles and fry the pancakes until the bubbles pop on the top. Then flip them and cook until done.
  5. Serve the pancakes warm with maple syrup.

25 Comments on “Lemon Poppy Seed Oat Pancakes {Gluten-Free}”

  1. Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness

    4 years and no pancake recipe?! WHOA! Well, you totally made up for it with these amazing one…Pancakes are totally mt breakfast life, so I am loving all up on these! Plus, I love that you used Fair Trade ingredients – I LOVE Nutiva Coconut Oil! Pinned!

  2. molly yeh

    just a few days ago, my man was like, “why don’t you ever make pancakes?” and i was like, “because you’re gluten free, sillyhead” but now i have no excuse. and i must admit, i’ve been craving a pancake.

  3. Allie

    I had poppy seed pancakes at brunch this past weekend and have been craving them ever since. This recipe came at the perfect time, I’m trying it out tonight!

  4. Katie @ Whole Nourishment

    What a great combo for pancakes! Ironically enough I was also recently scheming/pondering a more “whole” take on pancakes. My fav pancakes from childhood were made with buttermilk which made them tangy, so I know I’ll love the lemon in these. I laughed at your description of Alex’s approach to breakfast. ;-)

  5. tigalilee

    Question – what purpose does the cornstarch serve in this recipe? Thanks. I use it only as a sauce thickener and homemade fries crisp-en-er. Yeah that’s a word.

  6. Lanette

    I can’t wait to try these. Of course I love pancakes (I think it’s on the list of questions one answers to even be allowed to immigrate to the US) but also don’t love the after effect of sugar-hard-crash-there-goes-the-rest-of-the-day feeling.
    Also, I think you guys are just wonderful for trying and trying again, thank you for doing that!!

  7. Christine

    I saw the drizzle, then the pancakes, then the lemons, oh my! My family devours pancakes, which I try to make delicious with whole wheat, oatmeal and fruit. But these look even better! Hello, Saturday? Pancakes calling!

  8. Eileen

    I love lemon cake, lemon bread, but lemon pancakes?!! Wow, never would have thought of that! I would devour these! This is why I love coming to your site. There’s so much creativity!

  9. Sabrina - A Spoonful of Photography

    What a lovely combo! They look so super fluffy and absolutely delicious! And I’m absolutely in love with your photography and use of light – just a short glance at the yellow lemons on tastespotting was enough to leave me craving these pancakes ;-)

  10. Kyla L.G

    Oh my, how delicious! I’m going to have to make them… I absolutely LOVE lemon and poppyseed… and pancakes, of course! They look amazing, great job, guys!

  11. Susan

    Hello! I just wanted to let you know that these are our absolute FAVORITE gluten-free pancakes!! I’ve made them several times and they are always so good – next day they’re still so delicious … though, to be honest, there usually isn’t a next day! ;)

    Just thought I should ask though … in case I’ve been making them incorrectly all along!? … does GF Flour mean an All-Purpose GF Flour Blend or just any GF Flour – like Brown Rice, Almond, Teff, Sorghum, etc?

    Thanks again for the wonderful recipe – much appreciated!!

  12. Michele

    These are delicious! I made a couple of changes for our not-gluten free family (used regular flour), and because I was too lazy to make oat flour. I just used quick oats and reduced the milk a bit, then let them soak to thicken up for 5-10 minutes before cooking.

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