Happy Easter weekend my friends! I love carrot cake, it is heavily made and enjoyed in my Brazilian culture and growing up. We enjoy carrot cake with a chocolate sauce in Brazil, totally differently than in America.
Here in the U.S. we enjoy it with cream cheese frosting and nuts, so here is a stack of carrot pancakes topped with nuts with a generous pour of maple cream cheese sauce! Is this healthy? The answer is yes, at least our pancake batter is packed with nutrients and flavor and has no need for added oil.
To cut down fats and “calories” you can choose to leave out the topping here, but do you really want to? It’s Easter, so I say, let’s enjoy this healthier version of carrot cake made into pancakes!
CARROT CAKE PANCAKES WITH MAPLE CREAM CHEESE TOPPING
- 1 cup of flour of choice: I used 1/2 cup rye flour and 1/2 cup almond flour
- 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons packed brown or coconut sugar
- 3/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
- 1/4-1/2 milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups finely grated carrots (about 6 big or 16-20 baby carrots)
- Butter, for making pancakes on the griddle
- 1/2 cup cream cheese or mascarpone, softened
- 2-3 tablespoons real maple syrup
- 2-3 tablespoons milk
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Dash of ground cinnamon
- 1/4 of Pecan pieces for sprinkling
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit so you can keep the pancakes warm before serving or if you have an electric stove, keep one of the tops warm and place a plate on top of it to keep the pancakes toasty.
- Spoon the cream cheese into a bowl and leave it out at room temperature to soften. Grate carrots.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour(s), baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
- In a smaller bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients: egg, brown sugar, Greek yogurt, milk and vanilla. The Greek yogurt and milk mixture here may be substituted by 1 cup of low fat buttermilk if you have it.
- Stir in the carrots, then dump the wet mixture into the dry mixture all at once. Stir just until incorporated. May add a bit more milk to reach desired consistency but it will be a thick batter. Let the mixture rest while preheating the griddle/skillet.
- Whisk the cream cheese/mascarpone in a small bowl until it is uniformly soft and pliable, with no lumps. If the cream cheese is not a room temperature, heat it up in the microwave for a few seconds at a time until consistency is reached. Whisk in the maple syrup, milk, vanilla and cinnamon. Add more or less syrup until desired sweetness is achieved. Set aside, and if desired, heat it up slightly just before pouring over the pancakes.
- Over medium heat, melt butter or coconut oil in a griddle. Pour about ¼ cup batter onto griddle, and pat the batter down with measuring cup or back of spatula to “flatten out” the pancake since the batter is so think. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side, flipping once, until the pancakes are golden on both sides.
- Place pancakes on an oven safe plate and keep in the oven while you cook the remaining pancakes, or over an electric stove top until you’re done. Remember to add more butter to the pan as needed. Top with the warm maple cream cream cheese and serve with chopped pecans for added texture and crunch!
These were absolutely delicious, especially if you are a carrot cake lover. If you know a carrot cake lover, you must share with them or they won’t forgive you. Amazing for weekend brunch but even more perfect for Easter of course. I hope you try it and enjoy! Winecoach and I were in heaven! Let me know if you remake them.
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