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Breakfast Ideas for Kids - Secrets for Homemade Pancakes

Updated on December 2, 2014
Photo is copyright aha-creative, New Mexico.
Photo is copyright aha-creative, New Mexico.

Secrets for Kid Friendly Homemade Pancakes,Feeding Fighter Pilots & Entertaining a 7 Year-old at Breakfast

This is my nephew Wes. He's a fighter pilot and aviation expert.

Wes loves his Auntie M's homemade pancakes, especially when she makes them in his favorite shape...airplanes.

And he likes it when I make them round and stackable with peanut butter and bananas, real maple syrup and sometimes he likes them with homemade whipped cream and fresh strawberries.

The thing that impresses Wes the most? The perfect shapes Auntie M can make with the pancake ingredients. We won't tell him exactly how I do that, at least not just yet! A fighter pilot should always believe their co-pilot is "magic".

I made this lens for everyone out there looking for ways to entertain and inspire the imagination of their favorite fighter pilot.

My Homemade Pancake Secrets

Secret #1

I try my best to make my homemade pancake breakfast a healthy event..not always easy when sugar is involved.


I always use 100% Grade B Maple syrup as a topper. It is not as refined as Grade A and that means it retains its vitamins and minerals, an added bonus. It isn't as sweet as Grade A which bothers some people but that means all the other flavors can be tasted and aren't covered with sugar. Here's a link to Grade B Maple Syrup brands - I favor the Spring Tree Organic brand but Coombs Family Farms and NOW produce a good syrup too.

Tip About Syrup

Trying to limit sugars in your kids diet?

Try using a honey butter instead of syrup. It's got some sweet but not too much.

My Pancake Secret #2


Instead of butter I use a flavored, creamy yogurt like Wallaby's. Vanilla always works but strawberry is good and so is blueberry. Place several spoonfuls of yogurt in the center of the pancake and use the back of the spoon to spread the yogurt around. You can place a layer of yogurt between each pancake too.

Tip About Yogurt

Too much yogurt is overkill.

When adding fruit toppings, stick with a plain or vanilla flavored yogurt so the yogurt doesn't overpower the zing of the batter, fruit and syrup already being used.

Photo courtesy of Vjeran2001
Photo courtesy of Vjeran2001

My Pancake Secret #3


Use chopped, sliced and diced fruit to make smiley faces, spell out words or make art on your pancakes.

I use a dab of yogurt to hold the fruit in place--blueberries work well for eyes, strawberries and bananas can be sliced up and used as needed for the nose, mouth and ears.

Pancake Molds, Griddles and Pans

Entertain them with shapes.

Use several types of shapes to tell a story...animal shapes are always an easy entry to a story.

My Pancake Secret #4


Add a bit of wheat germ or bran to the recipe for good fiber content, a tablespoon works best. Wheat germ has a nutty taste and oat bran has a slightly sweet taste. Kretschmer and Bob's Red Mill make excellent wheat germ. Adjust the amount after you see how the body responds--it does clean out the system!

Tip About Bran and Wheat Germ

Sprinkle the bran or wheat germ over the pancakes as a topping instead of mixing it into the batter. Both ways work, one is just crunchier than the other.

Pancakes or Waffles?

What makes the best "special" breakfast, pancakes of waffles?

Gotta be pancakes with lots of toppings.

Gotta be pancakes with lots of toppings.

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    • Johanna Eisler 5 years ago

      Waffles are nice once in a while, but pancakes are my favorite.

    • casquid 5 years ago

      I love 'em both. Why are you making me choose? OK, today I'll say pancakes with strawberries and whipped cream at I-Hop.

    • anonymous 5 years ago

      After reading all this, I want some pancakes!

    Definitely waffles with lots of crunch.

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      • MaryQuinlin 5 years ago

        So hard to decide, because it's a tossup. But this moment, I'm going to say waffles.

      • knitter82 5 years ago

        I love waffles, but I don't have a waffle iron at the moment. My three year old loves pancakes and I recently started making my grandma's recipe for Norwegian pancakes, a very thin, flat one that's rolled up and dusted with sugar. I skip that with him...but once in a while I top it with strawberry jam or chocolate chips. Like your idea of using yogurt in the recipe.

      • MBradley McCauley 5 years ago


      • spritequeen lm 6 years ago

        I would have to say waffles, as my family does tend to eat a lot of pancakes, and not so many waffles. That's more of a treat around here.

      Tip for Creative Pancakes

      Save plastic figurines, toys and cake decorations to use on special occasions. They can brighten up a kids day from the start.

      Photo courtesy of Ayla87
      Photo courtesy of Ayla87

      My Pancake Secret #5

      SECRET #5

      Let the fighter pilot help, especially when it's time to decorate the pancakes. WANT A REAL CHALLENGE? Ask the fighter pilot for a theme and then decorate and get creative from the direction they give you. Of course, you can always resort to the pancake molds (lots of links to pancake molds included below) but generally, this is when fruit gets used very creatively!

      I've even used tiny toys (washed first, of course) to successfully complete a requested theme.

      Got Pancake Secrets? - Let readers know.

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        • Lee Hansen profile image

          Lee Hansen 6 years ago from Vermont

          Yummy pancakes in the tummy - healthful, too!

        • PNWtravels profile image

          Vicki Green 6 years ago from Wandering the Pacific Northwest USA

          Thanks for sharing your great pancake secrets. Blessed by a SquidAngel and featured on my angel lens.

        • kimark421 profile image

          kimark421 6 years ago

          Great lens. I love pancakes, especially on a cold winter morning. Thanks for the info!

        • spritequeen lm profile image

          spritequeen lm 6 years ago

          Great tips! We eat a lot of pancakes, so new ideas are always fun to try. Thanks for sharing!

        • profile image

          anonymous 5 years ago

          Our biggest pancake treat was adding fresh wild blueberries that we picked ourselves or using the heated blueberry sauce my Mom would can.

          What a unique way to do a recipe lens, I love the "fighter pilot and aviation expert" lead in!

          You have it going on with your pancake shapes, sweet!

        • kersean16 profile image

          kersean16 5 years ago

          Yummy, very nice information thanks for sharing :)

        • ViJuvenate profile image

          ViJuvenate 5 years ago

          I have a couple of them. I make German pancakes mostly now. They are heavy on the egg and baked, so they don't absorb tons of syrup like regular American pancakes do. I also have a secret recipe for syrup that is thick and caramel-like. So good!

        • ViJuvenate profile image

          ViJuvenate 5 years ago

          @anonymous: That's such a great point. Use fruit, slightly boiled down into syrup as well. It ads moisture and flavor, but in a healthier way.

        • vidiku profile image

          vidiku 5 years ago

          Interesting lens! I always make pancakes for the family so I'll have to try these ideas!

        • casquid profile image

          casquid 5 years ago

          When forced to use a boxed mix, add a few drops of vanilla extract. It takes out the box mix flavor.

        • Johanna Eisler profile image

          Johanna Eisler 5 years ago

          I never heard of pancake molds - they sound like fun!

          My friend is going to give me her mom's special buckwheat pancake recipe - I can hardly wait!

          Congratulations on making the front page!

        • TheHealthCabin profile image

          TheHealthCabin 5 years ago

          Great ideas, my children are going to love you! Thank you.

        • profile image

          careermom 5 years ago

          I do a pancake "bar" of sorts. I have batter then an assortment of choices: bananas, blueberries, strawberries, nuts, chocolate chips, etc. The kids can choose what they want added to their own pancakes.

        • profile image

          cleanyoucar 5 years ago

          Don't have a kid yet, but personally i love pancakes, I have them at least once a week

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