4 ancient grains pancakes for pancake day

4 pancake recipes that showcase ancient grains

by Great British Chefs 17 February 2020

Want to make your next stack of pancakes a little different? Rye, spelt and khorasan flours are a simple way to give your pancakes extra flavour. Take a look at these four simple recipes to learn more.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

Pancakes come in many shapes, sizes and flavours, but if you don’t fancy a classic crêpe, don’t fret – you have lots of other options; American pancakes, Scotch pancakes, banana pancakes, buckwheat pancakes, buttermilk pancakes. Norwegian surmilkslapper! We could go on.

Most of us reach for the white or self-raising flour when we start making our batter, but why not try something different? White flour is fantastically versatile as a baking product, but other flours unlock a world of different flavours and textures in your cooking. If you want your pancake fix but are hankering after the nutrition and nutty, earthy flavours of a more traditional grain, why not switch out the white flour for something like rye, spelt or khorasan? These ancient grain varieties have remained unchanged for thousands of years, so not only do you get the extra health benefits attached – they also bring much more to the flavour party too. The recipes below are made using Doves Farm's organic ancient grain flours, which are ideal for exploring how the likes of rye, spelt and khorasan can benefit your cooking.

There are a few tricks to making a really good pancake batter – add the liquid to the flour slowly to keep the batter nice and smooth; always rest the batter for twenty minutes before you use it to allow the starches to swell, and always let the pan come back to a good temperature in between pancakes!

We’ve whipped up a few pancake ideas using ancient grains that make the most of their unique flavour. Give them a try, or, why not use an ancient grain to make your own favourite pancake recipe? You can find out more about each grain in our ancient grains guide.

Spelt and sweetcorn pancakes with avocado and salsa

This is a quick and easy savoury option that uses a few easy-to-find vegetables and some pantry staples. White spelt flour has a nuttiness that goes beautifully with the sweetcorn, half of which is blended into the pancake batter along with eggs, milk and other dry ingredients. We think these are great with a simple guacamole and cherry tomato salsa, but this is a versatile recipe that goes with all sorts of things – try it with your favourite savoury toppings!

Khorasan pancakes with maple and hazelnuts

This is a great starting point if you’re just dipping your toes into the world of ancient grains – khorasan has a mild, buttery flavour that goes nicely with sweet or savoury options. You can’t go wrong with a toasty hazelnut butter drizzled over the top, and the addition of sweet, smoky maple syrup combines perfectly to make an incredibly simple but delicious pancake. If you fancy something savoury, ham and cheese or maple syrup and bacon would also work well.

Rye and banana pancakes

Banana pancakes are right up there with classics options like crêpes Suzette, sugar with lemon and buttermilk pancakes, but adding nutty rye flour to the equation takes this all-time favourite to another level. They couldn’t be easier to make either – take a couple of bananas (the riper the better) and mash them into your batter until the mixture is smooth. Cook as normal in a hot pan and eat with your choice of toppings.

Rye pancakes

Rye has always been popular in colder European climates, as it is much hardier than many other wheat varieties. This recipe is a nod to Scandinavia, where rye flour is used extensively in baking. We’ve combined rye and plain flour to give the pancake a nice nutty flavour and tender texture. The result is very versatile – it goes just as well with sweet or savoury. Try eating them with a bit of lingonberry jam, or smoked salmon, dill and cream cheese.