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Feel-Good Seedy Oat Pancakes

March 11, 2023

A plate of pancakes with bacon, butter, and syrup on the side.

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My family loves traditions (especially traditions that revolve around food!) so this is the first of many recipes that I will classify as a Fam Fave. This recipe is super nostalgic for me and I make these pancakes all the time. I also love them as a great make ahead for a road trip - let 'em soak up some butter and maple syrup while warm and they are a perfect way to fuel traveling bodies.

The Story

The story of these pancakes is simple - when I was young, my dad would make brunch every Sunday morning. 100% of the time, the menu was pancakes and bacon, and 95% of the time, it was a THESE pancakes, and about 75% of the time, the smoke alarm would go off. Now, these pancakes are not your typical, fluffy, and sweet pancake. That kind of pancake to me is like eating cake batter that was griddled instead of baked. According to the cookbook I have adapted from, "These pancakes have an interesting texture, and they are hearty!" The cookbook in question is a 1976 vegetarian cookbook for hippies called Recipes for a Small Planet, and this page had my mom's handwritten notes changing the amounts and adding a few things.

I have further elaborated and changed a few more things beyond my parents' adjustments, but the gist remains the same. Because these pancakes are just mildly sweet on their own, they make a delicious foil for classic butter and maple syrup, as well as other tasty things like apple compote, chocolate chips, bananas or blueberries.

I fully believe that some days call for having cake for breakfast, but on the days you want the comfort of a pancake without the sugar crash (and with more fiber and protein!), may I suggest these?

All the ingredients in bowls on a counter.

Ingredient Notes

Milk - Growing up, my family used soy milk for this. Every milk I have tried since then, both dairy and non, have worked great. Buttermilk is especially delicious!
Hearty Inclusions - Heartier inclusions (chopped apple, raisins or chipped dried fruit, coconut flakes, chocolate chips, etc) can be gently mixed in during step 3.
Delicate Inclusions - For delicate inclusions, such as sliced strawberries, banana, or whole blueberries, you can lay them on top of the cooking pancake before flipping in step 5. You may need to wash the pan between batches if the fruit releases a lot of juice.
Salt: Salinity to volume varies by brand. I almost always use Diamond Crystal Kosher. If you use Morton's Kosher or regular table salt, use half the amount by volume, or the same by weight.

A plate of three pancakes

The Recipe

makes 9-10 medium pancakes


  • 1 cup (125 grams) flour
  • 1 1/2 cup (135 grams) rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon (14 grams) baking powder
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons (7 grams) Diamond Crystal kosher salt (see note above if using different salt)
  • 1/4 cup (33 grams) unsalted raw sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon (13 grams) neutral oil + more for frying
  • 1 tablespoon (21 grams) honey
  • 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) milk
  • For Serving - maple syrup, butter, or any other toppings of your choice

1. Mix the Dries

Whisk the dry ingredients (1 cup (125 grams) flour, 1 1/2 cup (135 grams) rolled oats, 1 tablespoon (14 grams) baking powder, 1 3/4 teaspoons (7 grams) Diamond Crystal kosher salt, 1/4 cup (33 grams) sunflower seeds and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon) together in a large bowl.

A bowl of dry ingredients.

2. Mix the Wets

In a separate medium bowl, beat the 1 large egg well on its own first before adding 1 tablespoon (13 grams) neutral oil, 1 tablespoon (21 grams) honey, and 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) milk. Do your best to actually mix in the honey, but it won't mix in totally.

Pouring milk into a bowl with a whisk.

3. Mix the Dries and Wets Together

Pour the wets into the dries, (scrape out every last bit of that honey!) and use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to gently mix together just until no dry spots remain. You can use the batter right away, but for fluffier pancakes, let the batter sit for about 10 minutes.

A bowl of pancake batter.

4. Heat the Griddle

I find that warming the pan well helps avoid the curse of the bad first pancake. Heat a griddle or pan over medium heat until quite warm. This will take a few moments if you are using cast iron. (Do not pre-heat a non-stick pan!)

Pancake batter being scooped onto an oiled griddle.

5. Cook 'Em Up

Generously drizzle neutral oil the griddle or pan, and lower the heat to medium-low. Scoop the batter onto the griddle or pan by the 1/4 cup, and fry until the bottom side is golden, about 3 minutes. You will know the pancakes are ready to flip when the outside edges become slightly matte, and there are little bubbles forming on the surface of the pancake. Flip, and then let cook for another 3 minutes until golden on the second side, adding more oil as needed if the pan starts to look dry. You want the pancakes to fry, not toast!

4 pancakes on a griddle.

6. Eat 'Em Up

Keep your pancakes warm on a sheet tray in a low oven or even on a plate in an off microwave (it's just an insulated box!) until ready to serve. Enjoy with butter, maple syrup, and/or any other delicious toppings of your choice! And bacon, of course. :)

A plate of pancakes with bacon, butter, and syrup on the side.

I hope you make and enjoy this recipe!

Thank you for being here!
šŸ’–, Katrina



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