Basic Healthful Pancakes + Maple Syrup = Sunday Morning Ahhhhh

Marlene's Healthful Pancakes  |© Urban Cottage 2011-2016

There’s nothing like a lazy Sunday morning, sleeping in and then dreamily mixing up some pancakes while music is playing and the coffee maker is gurgling and scenting the kitchen.

I make the pancakes one at a time, flipping them once bubbles have broken through the tops, then keeping them warm on the stovetop while the rest are being cooked. I’m pleased by the colour and shape of the finished pancakes, the lacy design of the fried edges and their sweet aroma. They’re served on warm plates, with butter melting on top and gently heated maple syrup lusciously flowing over and pooling on the plate.

Best accompanied by desultory conversation about how we’re going to spend the rest of the day, and, as we gradually become more energized by the meal, breaks to dance about the kitchen to the music. A great way to start the day, and something to look forward to every weekend.

Marlene's Healthful Pancakes  |© Urban Cottage 2011-2016

I’m proud of this recipe, which I developed close to 20 years ago when my children were very young. (I have warm memories of them all messy-haired and snuggly in their pyjamas, taking a break from watching cartoons to pile into the kitchen for pancakes. One of the great things about memories is that they conveniently exclude all the squabbling that no doubt occurred during these idyllic breakfasts, but I digress.)

The kids all liked pancakes, but I wanted a healthier version than the recipe I’d been using. There were a few tweaks over the years, until it morphed into the version I’m sharing with you today. It’s also handily adaptable. For instance, I’ve discovered that almond milk substitutes very well for the regular milk. My children love these with yogourt, syrup and sliced strawberries (preferably from their Metje’s farm garden), but I usually just top them with a bit of butter and maple syrup. Not just any maple syrup, but the genuine Canadian product (cue Oh, Canada!). Mmmm, enjoy!

Marlene's Healthful Pancakes  |© Urban Cottage 2011-2016


Basic Healthful Pancakes

Basic Healthful Pancakes

© Marlene Cornelis/Urban Cottage 2011-2016Marlene's Healthful Pancakes  |© Urban Cottage 2011-2016

  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp oat bran or wheat bran
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1-1/3 cup milk (skim or 2%, or substitute almond milk)

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the oil, egg and milk, then stir together until the batter is smooth. I like to let it sit out for 10 or 15 minutes before using, but if you just can’t wait that’s not necessary. For six pancakes I use about 1/4 cup of batter for each (but really, if you want them bigger or smaller who am I to object?). I use about 1 tbsp oil to get the non-stick pan started, and don’t add any more to cook the rest of the batch. Cook over medium high heat, flipping the cakes when bubbles break through the surface, and just enough to lightly brown the other side. I have a warming burner on my stove, where I stack the pancakes on a heated plate until all six have been made.

Best served to someone you love.

First Published 2011 10 11
Updated 2020 05 08


  1. I love these pancakes. So simple and tasty. I think I’ve been making them myself since I was eight or nine!

    • This is a great recipe to help teach a child to cook. Easy to put together, and quick to cook – no waiting around forever waiting to see how it turned out. Plus the thrill and suspense of flipping – will it land in the pan? On the stove? On the floor? Maybe next time I visit you can whip up a batch for me!

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