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Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

banana chocolate chip pancakes

These super scrumpdidlyicious healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes are made from only seven ingredients. That includes the coconut oil in which you sauté them. The base of these pancakes (one of my super easy breakfast recipes) is cashews –that’s right, no flour, not even almond flour.

Replacing high-carb wheat flour with lower-carb cashews is fantastic for those watching their blood sugar. Cashews also work well in baking (see my Cashew Bread recipe) for folks who are gluten-free, which is another reason I use them. I was diagnosed with celiac disease in 1998, the dark ages of gluten-free, and went on a gluten-free diet upon receiving that diagnosis. I went grain-free only a couple of years later in 2001, and have adhered to a strict grain-free diet ever since.

I don’t even occasionally indulge in grains because they cause me severe digestive distress. Nut-based foods on the other hand work very well for me, I digest them quite easily. Of course, we are all biochemical individuals so what works best for me may not work at all for you.

While these quick and easy pancakes are a fantastic breakfast on a weekend morning, I also like to serve them along with an egg dish on Sunday nights for dinner. Breakfast for dinner is a family favorite in our house, and the boys especially appreciate the change in routine.

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

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  1. In a food processor, pulse cashews until finely ground
  2. Pulse in baking soda, then pulse in eggs, banana, and vanilla until very smooth
  3. Stir in chocolate chips by hand
  4. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat
  5. Spoon batter 1 tablespoon at a time onto skillet
  6. Flip pancakes when bubbles form
  7. Cook for about a minute on second side
  8. Serve with maple syrup or fruit sauce

I have a couple of quick notes regarding this grain-free pancake recipe. First, do not be alarmed if when you grind the cashews in the food processor they start to form a paste; this happened to me with a couple of batches and the recipe still turned out wonderfully. Next, please note that although I use coconut oil to cook the pancakes you may wish to experiment with using your own favorite oil. Finally, for newer readers, I do use one tablespoon of vanilla in this recipe –that is not a typo. I love vanilla and find this larger amount typically adds extra sweetness and flavor to my recipes.

For those of you wondering about substitutions, I tried replacing the cashews with almond flour in this Banana Chocolate  Chip Pancake recipe and it did not work. If you decide to experiment with this pancake recipe, please let us know how it goes. As always, I don’t know if a substitution will turn out well unless I try it myself. The comment section below is a great place to chat and share knowledge with other readers about your substitution trials and tribulations.

If you are looking for a pancake recipe made with almond flour, try the Paleo Pancakes in my latest book Paleo Cooking from Elana’s Pantry. And if you’re a beginner cook or a busy parent wondering how to make homemade pancakes either the aforementioned Paleo Pancake recipe or this Banana Chocolate Chip Pancake recipe is a great place to start!

One afternoon when I was testing these flourless pancakes my older son brought home most of the Boulder High School freshman baseball team and they devoured ‘em topped with maple syrup before they headed off to practice. I guess you could say that Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes are not only teen approved, they are baseball team approved.

I hope you enjoy these gluten-free, Paleo Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes as much as those nine boys did!


posted on March 1, 2014, 62 comments

  1. Dee

    I need a sub for bananas. My sweet lil girl is allergic. Anyone have any ideas. Please!

  2. anne

    Re: sub for cashews… We do one banana, one egg, big scoop of sun butter & vanilla & cinnamon. I sprinkle EL mini chips on when cooking. Awesome!

  3. Kate

    I am allergic to all nuts and am looking to replace flour for ingredients…..I especially love pancakes.

    • michelle

      Kate, I love pancakes too. Hemp butter or tahini may work, using hemp seeds or sesame seeds instead of cashews. I have made variations of this pancake recipe for a long time now and usually mix tahini in with my nut butters. I don’t remember the last time I made a “flour” based pancake.

      I also prefer pumpkin (or butternut squash) over banana, w/some cinnamon and nutmeg, but that might just be me.

    • Tara

      If allergic to nuts, try The Paleo Mom’s plantain based pancakes. They are great.

    • Tara

      If allergic to nuts, try The Paleo Mom’s plantain based pancakes. They are great. But, I’m excited to try these for a change of pace too.

  4. “baseball team approved” — I love it!!! :-)

  5. Brittney

    Amazing, D-liiiish!

  6. Beth

    I have a question about Elana’s over-the-top yummy Shepherd’s Pie. Every time I make it, everyone eating raves over it and my husband wants it at least once a week. Here’s my question. The first time I made it there was a rich gravy. I haven’t been able to repeat that. I know it comes in from adding the chicken broth. The recipe says to reduce the liquid by 60%. I am very confused by that. I don’t remember what I did the first time as I have not been able to repeat it. Tonight I simmered it for 10 minutes but it still didn’t yield that yummy gravy.
    Anyone have any suggestions? By the way, if you haven’t tried this recipe, don’t wait any longer! : )

  7. Marian Hearn

    I need a replacement for baking soda. I have gluten free, salt free baking powder and wonder how much to use?

  8. Karen

    Two questions: 1.) just dump it all in the blender at once? 2.) soak the cashews or not. Every time I don’t soak mine are horrible and don’t break down. I have a Blendtec so it’s not the blender. Love the comments to see what others have done.

  9. Karen

    Ok. It is very late and I am too tired. Just found the step by step under the ingredients list. Why did I not see that before? Too tired I guess. Still wondering about soaking the cashews though.

  10. Clever Girl Reviews @ clevergirlreviews.com

    Those look so tasty, I wish I wasn’t allergic to eggs!

    • Mary

      I’m about to try this recipe with a flax seed replacement for the eggs, as I am also allergic to eggs. Will let you know how it goes!

      • Mary

        So, I made them with ground flax seed egg replacement (2 Tbsp ground flax, 6 Tbsp very hot water). The batter was VERY thick, so I ended up adding some water. Most of the pancakes were, let’s say, overdone. But there are none left. I will try them with eggs for my son for comparison sake and then see what I can do to make them more like that without eggs.

  11. Gabriella Kortsch @ gabriellakortsch.com

    Has anyone tried it with macadamia nuts instead of cashews?

  12. Peggy

    My son and I thought these were the best pancakes we have ever had. FYI- I soaked my cashews first and they still turned out perfect! Thank you!!!

  13. Stephanie

    Just FYI, I didn’t have enough cashews so I tried walnuts instead and they did not turn out. I am heading to the store and will try again tomorrow!

  14. Cyndi

    I wanted a little more fiber in these so I used 1/3c cashew meal, 1/3c almond meal, and 1/3c flax meal. They were perfect!

  15. nicolle

    Next time I will half the baking soda, too much of that flavor. Think they’ll still rise?

  16. Faith

    Made these last night as soon as I saw the recipe — turned out perfectly!!!

    I started it in the food processor, and then finished the batter in the Blendtec (to remove the grainy texture). Did not soak the cashews ahead of time (was too hungry to wait for that!).

    They were delicious!

  17. Elizabeth

    I have a bag of cashew flour from Trader Joe’s – I wonder if I could use some, but how much?

  18. Hi,
    Does the alcohol from the vanilla extract stay in the pancake or is it removed when cooked?
    Thanks so much!

  19. Annie

    These were great! I just dumped all the ingredients in my Vitamix – fastest pancake prep every! I used cacao nibs to avoid the sugar in chocolate chips. Thanks for the great recipe :)

  20. Katie

    I made these Sunday morning. They were delicious and the whole family loved them. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

    I was nervous about using cashews as I have tried coconut flour and almond flour and don’t like the texture in pancakes, but these were wonderful. :)

  21. Caroline

    These Are PERFECTION!

  22. Tawnya

    I just made these pancakes and followed the instructions exactly as written except I substituted blueberries for the chocolate chips. They turned out perfect and were absolutely delicious!

  23. Miriam

    I am making these pancakes, eating, and commenting.lol. They are delicious, but I am burning every single one. I guess I need practice.

  24. Monica

    Can you substitute raw cashews for almond butter? I don’t have a food processor and LOVE almond butter.

  25. Lisa Basset @ vtightgel.us

    Wonderful recipe, seems like I’ gonna try this out this weekend

  26. Healanyone @ healanyone.com

    I guess I really love pancakes and my mom usually make them for me.

  27. Kim

    Has anyone tried cashew butter instead of raw cashews? Thx.

  28. Jeannie

    As part of the low fodmap diet I was asked to try, I tried macadamia it’s as cashew mix as I am not suppose to have cashews. It was a bit grainy and more watery. When I used cashews only the batter was thick. The pancakes were a little grainy so I could have blended it up more. I liked it better with cashews. I might try the sunbutter option. Is making sun butter like making nut butters?

  29. Jane

    I made these this morning with hazelnut flour instead of cashews, and I mixed everything at once with a hand mixer instead of in a blender. Turned out great!

  30. Alecia

    just made these for a snack. So quick and easy! Instead of grinding up cashews, I bought cashew meal from Trader Joe’s. Just used a hand mixer and added some cinnamon. Brunch anyone?!

  31. Alecia

    I just put this batter in my waffle iron, works wonderfully!!

  32. Irena K

    My kids love these pancakes. If they could they’d have them every morning! Btw- Thsnk you for the amazing VitaMix giveaway. :)

  33. Barbara

    I was so excited when I found this I made them right away.. I substituted the eggs with ground chia seeds mixed with water. They came out awesome.. Hubby lived them too.

  34. Spencer @ Moo-Lolly-Bar @ moolollybar.com.au/blog

    Looks absolutely delicious! My kids would love them and I dare say I would too!

  35. Marianna

    I made these with pumpkin puree instead of mashed banana, I also added a tablespoon of maple syrup, and 1/3 cup coconut crystals. I skipped the chocolate chips. I made waffles and pancakes and they turned out great! Thanks so much for the recipe Elana! =)

  36. Sara

    Oh my god! I just made these, with some changes, and they are fabulous!

    I subbed half of the cashews with organic sunflower seed butter and all of the banana with applesauce. I added 1/4 tsp stevia and did 3/4 vanilla and 1/4 cinnamon extract. Yum! They are just sweet enough, nutty and creamy! I think with jam or apple butter they would taste like PB & Js from our younger days. So good!
    I am such a fan of your site btw, I have so many things I want to try.
    Thank you for all the hard work you put into this site and sharing so much with all of us. :-)

  37. Meg

    Do you have a suggestion for what to top pancakes with other than maple syrup? My son can’t handle sugar ….

  38. sabrina

    Any idea on how many this recipe makes or approximate serving # {ie 4-6 people}? thanks

  39. Rudy

    For those who used trader joes cashew meal, how much did you use?

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