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Pumpkin Pancakes

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October 23, 2012 | Issue 423

Edible Jack O’ Lanterns

Pumpkin Jack O'Lantern Pancakes

Let’s be honest, Halloween candy displays have been up since August, and temptation hasn’t been easy. If your diet needs a little pick-me up, but the kids still want a fun holiday treat, look no further than our pumpkin pancakes. This recipe is simple and fun to make with your kids. While they’re stirring, you can let them know that pumpkin is a very good source of fiber and protective beta-carotene, an antioxidant that may help fend off cancer and heart disease while protecting your vision, immune system and skin.

Makes 6 servings.

Per serving (pancakes and syrup): 273 calories, 7 g fat (2 g sat fat), 48 g carbohydrates,
7 g protein, 3 g fiber, 211 mg sodium.


  • 1/2 cup white whole-wheat flour (or whole-wheat pastry flour)
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp. firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1½ cups light (1½ percent) buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp. apple cider
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for the griddle
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin

Maple Cider Syrup

  • 2 cups fresh apple cider
  • 4-inch cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup

For Garnish:
Raisins, dried cranberries, dried currants,
dried blueberries, dried cherries, red apple,
mini chocolate chips



  1. In medium bowl, combine flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, whisking to blend.
  2. In another bowl, beat eggs. Add buttermilk, cider, melted butter and oil. Pour liquid ingredients into dry, mixing just to blend – better to leave some lumps than to over mix. Gently mix in pumpkin, leaving mixture slightly streaky to avoid over mixing.
  3. Heat heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until drops of water flicked onto surface ball and dance. Using paper towel, lightly rub surface with just enough butter to make it glisten. Pour 3 tablespoons batter into skillet, then lift pan and swirl to make a 3- to 4-inch disk. Repeat, leaving 1? inches between pancakes. Cook until surface looks dull and peppered with tiny holes, about 2 minutes. Gently push dried fruit or pieces of apple into place to make eyes, nose and mouth. When pancakes are medium-dark on bottom, 2 to 3 minutes, carefully turn using wide pancake turner. Cook for 2 minutes. Flip pancakes back to first side to get firmer on the bottom. Transfer to warm platter. Repeat, making 12 pancakes.

Note: If using chocolate chips, set them in place after turning the pancakes back face-side up


In heavy, medium saucepan, combine cider, cinnamon and cloves. Boil until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 20 minutes. Remove cinnamon and cloves; add maple syrup. Pour warm syrup into serving pitcher to pass with pancakes, waffles, French toast or bread pudding. Cooled, it is also good over oatmeal or Greek yogurt.

Grocery list

White whole-wheat flour (or whole-wheat pastry flour)
Unbleached all-purpose flour
Brown sugar
Baking powder
Baking soda
Light buttermilk
Apple cider
Unsalted butter
Canola oil
Canned pumpkin
Raisins or dried fruit, mini chocolate chips (for garnish)
Cinnamon stick
Maple syrup

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