Weekend Project: Making Plantain Pancakes

I loveee plantains. But I’d never really considered cooking with them before I started the paleo autoimmune protocol & became a frequent reader of The Paleo Mom’s blog. She does a lot of experimenting with plantains & after discovering the Plantain Pancake recipe she posted I figured I’d give it a shot. My roommates love pancakes & are always down to try my paleo versions of anything (discovered last night that I’ve successfully converted them over from mashed potatoes to mashed cauliflower!) so I was excited about a pancake recipe that we could all eat together (the majority of other paleo pancake recipes require eggs and/or nut flour both of which I am still excluding from my diet). Also the bonus of this recipe is that it only one ingredient – plantains – which are easy to find at most grocery stores & doesn’t require me going on amazon to purchase some obscure or expensive ingredient.

The only thing about this recipe is that the plantain needs to be super ripe, as in black, so waiting for the plantain to transform from green to black takes a bit of time. I wasn’t too worried about this because I wasn’t in any hurry to make the pancakes but if you want to make these for a special day or occasion I suggest planning ahead a little & buying your plantain(s) early so that the plantains are fully ripened for when you need them.

Anyway, the recipe is very simple. I only used one plantain because I wanted to try them out before feeding them to my friends but if you’re making them for multiple people I suggest using at least two plantains, maybe three, or four. The decision is yours. Once the plantain is almost entirely black you simply peel it, slice it into small pieces & mash it up in a bowl with a knife/fork. Then add your spices – I just added cinnamon a little sea salt but other sweet/nutty spices such as allspice or nutmeg would be good too. Maybe even a little cayenne pepper if you’re feeling adventurous/into the whole my-mouth-is-on-fire-while-I’m-trying-to-enjoy-my-food thing.

After the plantain is all mashed up with your spices, add a few a spoonful or two of fat (I used & suggest coconut oil) to a skillet & once the fat is melted add the plantain mash to the skillet. I just used a spoon to plop a bit of plantain on the skillet & then used the back of the spoon to smooth it down into a pancake formation. You can make these as big or as small as you like. Cook on one side for about 5-8 minutes (depending on the size of the pancake) & then flip over & cook on the other side for a similar amount of time. Cooking them on a lower heating will ensure that they are cooked through & will produce a firmer more consistent pancake while cooking them on a higher heat will allow the edges to crisp up nicely & produce a pancake with a gooey-er (yea that’s wrong, but you get it) middle. So choose whatever suits you. Again, the decision is yours. 

Once these are done they will keep good in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days. For a sweeter version, eat them alone topped with some honey, nuts, coconut, dark chocolate chips, etc. And for a more savory version, eat them along side of some meat & veggies. I’ve eaten them two days in a row & found that they pair well with both chicken and beef. Would probably also serve as a nice compliment to something out of the crock-pot, like some beef stew or crock-pot pulled pork.. Just fantasizing..  

Here’s how I enjoyed mine over the weekend:

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On top of some brussels sprouts cooked in bacon fat, some bacon, & some chicken.

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Underneath some ground beef with sauteed onions, broccoli, & kale. All topped with sea salt & cinnamon. 

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