Carrot Cake Pancakes with Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese Frosting

I would be delighted to serve you cake for breakfast.

Carrot-Cake-Pancakes-Recipe

I won’t bother with silly euphemisms like “muffin”, “coffee cake”, or “lemon bread.” We’ll slice ourselves two big hunks of straight-up frosted chocolate goodness and giggle about how naughty we are. After all, one of the few perks of being a grown up is that no one scolds you for eating brownies at the breakfast table.

{For the record: Though I’m happy to join you at the table, my preferred AM-brownie munching location is 4 inches directly above my kitchen sink.}

Since I’ve sworn off delicate wording, I will insist that Carrot Cake Pancakes are just that: pancakes. In the science of breakfast taxonomy, that classifies Carrot Cake Pancakes into the common genius flapjack, but don’t be fooled—this is no ordinary species.

Carrot-Cake-Pancakes-Recipe

I just typed the words “breakfast taxonomy” and “genius flapjack.” NERD ALERT!

As their sweet name suggests, these lovely orange pancakes were inspired by one of my favorite springtime desserts, carrot cake. Loaded with the wonderful flavors essential to true carrot cake identify—warm cinnamon, earthy nutmeg, toasty walnuts, and plump raisins—Carrot Cake Pancakes bring a classic Easter dessert to the breakfast table, but in a nourishing way.

We are going far beyond simply eating last night’s cake in place of this morning’s oatmeal. With whole wheat flour and two full cups of carrots, Carrot Cake Pancakes provide both the fun of Easter sweets and the essential components of a balanced breakfast.

Carrot-Cake-Pancakes-Recipe

Speaking of essential components, I would be a disgrace to offer you a carrot-cake inspired dish without the sweet elixir that is cream cheese frosting.

Carrot-Cake-Pancakes-RecipeTo complete our springy Easter breakfast, I created a less-sweet version of traditional cream cheese frosting. Friends, we should conspire to devour this Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese Frosting with a spoon, judgment-free. We can always make more for the Carrot Cake Pancakes. This spoon-licking, pancake-loving topping is a union of fluffy cream cheese, thick Greek yogurt, a puff of powdered sugar, and a sprinkling of cinnamon. The result is tangy, slightly sweet and sings in perfect Carrot Cake Pancake harmony.

Cream Cheese Topping

Ben, a buttermilk pancake purist, was initially skeptical of these Carrot Cake Pancakes and had Cornflakes on standby. Carrots? In pancakes? Yes my friends, yes. Before 10 minutes had passed, a once-reluctant Ben had demolished 3/4 of the batch and requested a repeat performance. Let’s all be believers.

Carrot Cake Pancakes: Inspired by cake; actually a pancake; slathered with cream-cheese-Greek-yogurt-bliss. Happy Easter!Carrot-Cake-Pancakes-Recipe

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Carrot Cake Pancakes

Inspired by the classic flavors of carrot cake—warm cinnamon, nutmeg, walnuts, and raisins—Carrot Cake Pancakes are a sweet, healthy breakfast. Top with smooth, tangy Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese frosting for Carrot Cake breakfast bliss.

Yield: 12, 3-to-4 inch pancakes

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

For the Pancakes

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 white whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons raisins
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk*
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups finely grated carrots (from about a 3/4 pound bundle whole carrots)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, for griddle

Cream Cheese Topping

  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) light cream cheese (Neufchatel), at room temperature
  • 1/4 plain non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Dash ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon milk (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place the rack in the upper third of your oven and preheat to 200°F. (As you fry the pancakes in batches, keep them warm in the oven until you are ready to serve.)
  2. To make the pancakes: In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, walnuts, and raisins. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, brown sugar, buttermilk, and vanilla. Stir in carrots. Stir carrot mixture into dry ingredients, mixing by hand until just Incorporated. Let rest batter for five minutes.
  3. To make the cream cheese topping: In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese until fluffy and lump-free. Whisk in the Greek yogurt, powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. If you’d like the mixture thinner, add a bit of milk. (I did not.)
  4. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a cast-iron skillet or griddle pan. Spoon 2 tablespoons batter into the hot pan per pancake. When bubbles begin to form on top and pancakes are slightly dry at the edges, flip once, until pancakes are golden on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer finished pancakes to a sheet pan and keep warm in the in the oven. Repeat with the remaining batter, adding more butter as needed. Serve warm with cream cheese topping.
  • Be sure to grate the carrots very finely so that they disperse well throughout the batter and melt into sweet carrot-cake deliciousness. Grating by hand will do the trick, but if you prefer the ease of a food processor (ahem, yours truly), first run the carrots through the grating attachment, then switch the to regular blade and pulse a few additional times to break the carrots into tiny pieces.
  • Though 2 tablespoons of batter per pancake may seem small, resist the urge to make them larger as the batter will become difficult to flip

Adapted from Joy the Baker Cookbook by Joy Wilson

// All images and text ©/Well Plated.

About Erin Clarke

I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, lover of bourbon, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN...

29 comments

  1. Great idea! I love carrot cake but these might help to not feel guilty about eating it. They sound great!

  2. This is my kind of pancake! What a great recipe :) The greek yogurt cream cheese frosting sounds super delicious.

  3. carrot cake will always be one of my favorite flavors to play around with – it’s my dad’s favorite cake and we have it each year for his birthday. :) Now I have to make him pancakes!

  4. I love carrot cake. Carrot cake pancakes? Even better! I love the idea of sneaking some veggies into a sweet breakfast, best of both worlds

  5. These look delicious, Erin. We love carrot cake (we served it at our wedding), and I can think of no better way to start the day! Thank you for sharing the recipe and your lovely photographs/words. I hope you are having a good Monday!

    • Thanks so much for your kind words Monet! I love that you had carrot cake at your wedding. We did fun flavors too, and I wouldn’t have it any other way! Hope that you enjoy the pancakes and a very happy Monday to you :)

  6. I would like to request these for my next trip to Madison! :)

  7. I love carrot cake in all its forms. These look delicious!!

  8. my hubby would be going in with 2 forks…he loves carrot cake…and cream cheese frosting there will be no stopping him!

  9. I could live off carrot cake and die a happy women so these pancakes have to be made. Im thinking this saturday with a cup of coffee? Yes please.

    • Sounds like the perfect Saturday morning to me Nicole! Also, if we live off of carrot cake, that still counts as getting our 5 a day, right?

  10. Oh, these look yummy! I will need to be trying these as well :)

  11. Carrot cake pancakes? My dream come true!

  12. Yum, yum, yum! I love anything and everything involving carrot cake. And for breakfast? Yes, please!

  13. Pingback: Peach Crisp | Healthy Crisp for Breakfast |

  14. Help! I can’t see the recipe or a link to it and I really want to make these! Could you please email it to me?

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