- Food and Cooking
Kids’ Pancakes With Chia Seed “Sprinkles” and Other Healthy Additions
One of my kids’ favorite breakfasts is pancakes. Of course, we realized early on that if we added a few chocolate chips, they would gobble them up and we wouldn’t have to plead with them to "eat a few more bites" before heading off to school. Then, they demanded sprinkles, and before we knew it, we had a sugar laden dessert-like breakfast for them.
In a stroke of genius, one day my husband asked them, “Do you want boring kid sprinkles, or do you want daddy sprinkles?” The vote was unanimous, and before we knew it, rainbow jimmies had been replaced with chia seeds. Now they ask for “sprinkles” every time we make pancakes. We get to add a lot of fiber and other nutrients to their breakfast, and they love it!
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
Native to Mexico and Guatemala, chia seeds are small, black, and oval-shaped. They are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to decrease risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease and are packed with fiber, protein, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc. Chia seeds are commonly touted as helping people feel full longer by reducing food cravings, for increasing hydration, and being easy to digest.
Chia seeds add practically no flavor, which means they can be added to almost anything without being noticed. They can easily be added to baked goods or shakes or to the breading for chicken, or sprinkled on top of yogurt or salads.
Pancake mix can be bought at the store, but making them from scratch is almost as easy. We make a quadruple batch of the dry ingredients that we store away for when we need it. Then, we just need to add the milk, egg, oil, and chia seeds, and we’re good to go!
Homemade Pancake Mix
Mix all the dry ingredients below and store away for when you need them. Double, triple, or quadruple, based on the size of your storage container.
- 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 heaping cup of Homemade Pancake Mix (see above)
- 1 medium egg
- 3/4 cup milk (any type will do)
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2-3 tablespoons chia seeds
- Mix all the pancake ingredients together.
- Heat griddle or pan over medium heat.
- Melt a slice of butter on the griddle or pan.
- Ladle about 1/3 cup of batter into the pan.
- When bubbles begin to form, flip the pancakes.
- Cook until done.
Other Healthy Additions
- Replace some or all of the flour with whole wheat flour or buckwheat flour
- Add 1-2 tablespoons flax seed, wheat germ, or protein powder
- Add fresh or frozen blueberries, strawberries, or bananas (on top or right in the mix)
Fun shapes are always a hit!
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