Chocolate Brownie Spelt Vegan Pancakes

 This post was created in partnership with One Degree Organic Foods. All opinions are our own. 

When I was young and idealistic, I used to be anti-business. Like anti all business. News about large corporations having unethical labor practices made my teenage self decide that all businesses were decidedly evil. On top of that, businesses tried to sell you things you didn’t want. Again, bad. What I didn’t realize was that business can be a force for good and an agent of positive change. Just like individual people, businesses can have morals and ethics. They can provide valuable products that people want and need, and care about their producers and suppliers. Businesses can be mission-driven.

Working in the food industry, Alex and I get the pleasure of interacting with a new wave of businesses that are mission-driven, working to positive change in the food system. One Degree Organics is one of those companies. From the first time I spoke with Sondra, the daughter of the founders, I could see that this was a business based on mission and values. She’s a new mom and at the time our son Larson was just a few months old, so we chatted about the joy of being mamas to little boys.

Sondra shared about her family’s business, and how their goal is to bring food straight from a farm to your table so there’s only one degree of separation between you and person who grew your food (like a farmer’s market). You also can learn the story of the family farmers who grow every ingredient in every product through a QR code on the package. All of One Degree’s products are sprouted, traceable, organic, and non-GMO project verified. An incredible amount of care goes into all of their products (sprouted grain flours, cereals, breads, and granolas), and it was easy to see the passion that drives this company forward.

In looking through their product offerings, I was drawn to the sprouted spelt flour. Why bake with spelt flour? Alex and I love baking and cooking with whole grains. However, we’ve found using whole wheat flour can make things very dense and almost bitter tasting. We did a little research on spelt flour and found that it’s a great alternative for whole grain baking. Here’s what we found:

  • Spelt flour is a whole grain flour that has a sweet, nutty flavor versus the bitterness of whole wheat flour
  • Spelt flour keeps the texture of your baked goods fluffy and soft and won’t weigh them down
  • Since spelt flour has a fair amount of gluten-forming proteins, it works well as an all-purpose flour substitute in baking. You can use up to 100% in less-structured baked goods like these pancakes (and 50% in muffins and breads). Compare this to the substitution ratio for whole wheat flour, which is typically 25%.
  • The spelt flour we worked with here is a sprouted spelt flour. Sprouted flours are less processed than the typical flour, have increased nutritional benefits, and are more easily digestible.

And now, the recipe. To use this whole grain flour, we worked up a healthy pancake recipe: vegan pancakes made with 100% spelt flour. I wanted these vegan pancakes to be something special, so I settled on a chocolate flavor. They’re lightly sweet, made with maple syrup and cocoa powder. The resulting pancakes were so chewy and fugdy that we settled on the name “chocolate brownie”, though beware: they’re not nearly as sweet as a brownie, since who wants a sugar bomb for breakfast? (Maybe some of you reading, but not me.) Make sure to drizzle with maple syrup, since it adds a final twinge of sweetness. And the spelt flour? It adds a subtle, nutty flavor that we’ll continue to use in recipes to come. It’s fantastic for baking with whole grains since it can be subbed 50% to 100%, and has added nutritional value.

For the topping, another specialty: coconut bacon. It’s simple to whip up directly before the pancakes, or make it a few days before and store it in the freezer. The smoky, salty, crunchy topping against the chewy pancakes is spot-on: but they’re nearly as good simply dotted with fresh raspberries and drizzled with maple syrup.

So that’s mission-based business at it’s finest. You can look for One Degree Organics products in a store near you. Also, they’ve got lovely, creative Instagram feed.

Looking for a healthy pancake recipe?

If you’re looking for a healthy pancake recipe, here are a few more to options:

Did you make this recipe?

If you make these chocolate brownie spelt vegan pancakes, we’d love to hear how they turned out. Leave a comment below or share a picture on Instagram and mention @acouplecooks and @onedegreeorganics.

This recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, naturally sweet, and refined sugar-free. For gluten-free, see some of the gluten-free options above under “More healthy pancake recipes”.

This chocolate brownie spelt vegan pancakes recipe is sponsored by the One Degree Organic Foods. Product opinions are our own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors of A Couple Cooks!

Chocolate Brownie Spelt Vegan Pancakes
by: a Couple Cooks
Serves: 8 to 10 large pancakes
What You Need
  • For the pancakes
  • 1½ cups One Degree organic sprouted spelt flour
  • ½ cup Dutch process powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1½ cups almond milk
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil, for cooking
  • For the topping
  • Maple syrup, for drizzling
  • ½ recipe coconut bacon
  • 6 ounces raspberries
What To Do
  1. If using, make the coconut bacon.
  2. Whisk together the spelt flour, baking powder, cocoa powder, cinnamon and kosher salt together in a large bowl until combined. Add the almond milk, maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla. Mix with a wooden spoon until just combined.
  3. Heat a large griddle over medium-low heat and coat it with a bit of vegetable oil. Drop ¼ cup measures of the batter into the pan. After a few minutes when bubbles start to appear and the underside is crisp, flip the pancakes over very carefully. Take extra care when flipping since the batter is slightly less elastic than a typical pancake. Cook the other side until crisp, then remove from the pan and place on a plate covered with a towel. Repeat with the remainder of the batter, adding a splash of almond milk if it becomes too thick (we’ve had to do this consistently when making the recipe).
  4. Serve with a drizzle of maple syrup, and coconut bacon and raspberries if desired.
Notes
Inspired by The First Mess

A Couple Cooks – Recipes for Healthy & Whole Living

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