Autumn Weekend Blueberry Pancakes

Don’t you just love this time of year, where ‘cozy time’ is weekly household occurrence?  Sheffield sure has its kicks for getting out on the weekend, whether you’re a night owl or an early bird, but no matter what your plans are for spending quality time with friends and family, there is always time for pancakes!

While I was not dismayed to learn that English pancakes are in fact, just crepes – often made savory, or sweetened with granules of sugar and lemon; surely delicious in their own way – there is something sensational about home cooked sweet breakfasts like American pancakes.  One of my all time favorites (see what I did there? In keeping with the US theme) will always be the cherished Blueberry Pancake.

Now, I’m not even sure I should bestow this recipe to you, as there have been versions that come and go, and I really think this one’s a keeper.  But first, let me regale you with my fondness for the blueberry pancake.

Back in the day on Long Island, when I was growing up, the weekends were all about going to the Diner.  After church, families would pack it in for brunch, and as teenagers, my friends and I would wake up late and make our way to some of the best: Triple Crown Diner on Jamaica Ave., the New Hyde Park Diner on Hillside, sometimes I’d be out with my dad getting ready for a day of odd jobs, so we’d stop into the Mineola Diner which epitomizes the imagery of classic old fashioned diner - with fixed train wheels and all.

Despite the selection, I have always had only a handful of favorites that I would test out at these digs to make sure they knew what they were doing.  Besides years of grilled cheese sandwiches with a pickle and coleslaw, milkshakes with cheese fries, I absolutely adored breakfasts like Challah Bread French Toast dusted with icing sugar, and my dear Blueberry Pancakes with an orange juice to start and coffee on the side. 

Now, the main thing was: even then, if I were to get blueberries in my ‘cakes, they’d better be REAL!  It ain’t about that blueberry sauce or flavored syrup you get at IHOP, we’re talking about proper food here.  Anyway, when these bad girls came out, they were stacked about three high, as wide as the plate, served with a scoop of butter and sugar syrup.  I’d put some butter in between each of them to let it melt away and slather loads of syrup all over before digging in.  Each fork cut burst those beauteous blueberries so that dark purple juice went into the mixture of sugary bliss.

Well, here we are now.  I’m a bit older, somewhat wiser, and surely more in tune with my body, my relation to other sentient beings and the environment.  So, even though I won’t actually eat anything in a diner anymore – not risking the fries or hash browns either, although those are literally the only vegan item in diners to this day.  I have always had time in my own world to whip up the occasional, but often strong, cravings from the past. 

Without further adieu, here is my recipe for Vegan/Gluten Free Blueberry Pancakes.   I have added polenta/cornmeal here to really give the home cooked ‘mouthfeel’ of a crispy edge, and homeliness can hardly be achieved without cinnamon.  These will satisfy the craving for cozy and even help you justify the complimentary (decaf) coffee on the side.   Be sure to head out for a walk in the Peaks after these, or get settled for a film.

Autumn Weekend Blueberry Pancakes
(American Style)

Vegan & Gluten Free

½ cup oats (gluten free)
½ cup polenta (fine)
1 cup any non-dairy milk
1 apple (blended)
1 tsp chia seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder (gluten free)
1 cup blueberries

Coconut oil
Maple syrup


1. First, make oat flour from the oats – putting them in a dry blender or processor.  You can use oat flour if you have already. 

2. Combine the oat flour and rest of the dry ingredients (polenta, cinnamon, baking powder) together in a mixing bowl.

3. Next, take the apple (cored), chia seeds, and the milk alternative, and blend those together. 

4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and mix them to create a batter.  If you need more liquid, you can add more milk or a dash of water to keep it runny yet thick.  When these are combined fully, fold in the blueberries.

5. Heat up the ‘griddle’ and use the coconut oil for cooking. 

6. A thin layer per batch will be sufficient.  Pour about 3 pancakes into the pan and let them cook until the edges become slightly crispy, check beneath to see if they are golden brown.  When they are, flip them over. 

7. Repeat this until you’ve made all of the batter into pancakes.  You can keep them warm in the oven while you cook so you can present them all at once. 

This recipe makes approximately 7 pancakes.

To serve, add three pancakes per plate, drizzle with maple syrup and garnish with cut apple slices and more blueberries on top.