Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
5 Dec

Almond Banana Pancakes

Try as we might, many of us find the temptation of pancakes too hard to resist. Maybe it’s the sweet, buttery aroma of the batter on the griddle or the soft doughy texture, or that eating something with the word “cake” in it for breakfast just feels so deliciously naughty. But it doesn’t have to be. There are decent Primal substitutes. Pancakes made with almond meal or coconut flour are a good option, but can be pretty heavy and, for some, overly filling. And then there’s this dish sent in by Jack Etherington for the Primal Cookbook Challenge. His Almond Banana Pancakes contain just three ingredients: banana, egg and almond butter. You can whip up a batch in five minutes flat and top the pancakes with a pat of butter, a scoop of nut butter, or fresh berries.

Almond Banana Pancakes are slightly delicate so you’ll want to keep the size fairly small and wait until the edges are nicely browned before flipping them. This shouldn’t deter you from trying the recipe – the delicate texture of Almond Banana Pancakes is the very thing that makes them so irresistible. If you’ve tried pancakes made from almond or coconut flour and find them slightly grainy, you’ll really love the silky, airy texture of these cakes. The flavor is sinfully close to banana bread; add a little vanilla and cinnamon to the batter if you really want to get decadent.

As is evident from the comment board of last week’s recipe, this (very similar) recipe may be too carb-centric for some of you. For those that are no-carbers or are restricting carbs for weight loss purposes this recipe might not fit into your personal Primal plans. For others it might be part of your 20%. And for others that are extra active or have already achieved your preferred body composition this recipe might be a perfect fit. In any case, remember that the Primal Blueprint is primarily about guiding principles. It’s up to each of us to adapt recipes and fitness choices within the context of the PB as it relates to our personal goals and circumstances. Enjoy!



Mash the bananas, add the egg and mix well.

Stir in the almond butter, adding more than a tablespoon if you want a more pancake-like texture.

Warm butter in a pan and pour batter into small cakes.

Brown on each side and serve warm.

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. i dont have any almond butter at the moment but can i substitute it with crunchy peanut butter?

    Greg wrote on November 4th, 2010
    • You could if you wanted to I guess but it’s not going to be as healthy as peanuts are legumes and legumes are apparently not good for you (not primal/paleo). Too many anti nutrients in them.

      Michael wrote on November 4th, 2010
  2. Tried these this morning after downloading the free user-created cookbook. OH MY GOD these are perfect! fluffy and delicious just as they are, and so naturally sweet they don’t need anything on top of them. Thanks!!

    Sam wrote on November 11th, 2010
  3. This is a great combo -now one of my favorite breakfast foods! It actually works well just with one banana/two eggs/two Tbsp almond butter. Try adding a bit of shredded coconut, too, and a bit of fruit preserve on top…yum! This food keeps me going for half a day without getting hungry.

    Gloria wrote on December 3rd, 2010
  4. I think these things are great! I tried something similar replacing the bananas with avocados… yeah, that didn’t work.

    Cole wrote on December 26th, 2010
  5. My husband and I just recently went “primal” this week (bought the book and cookbook last year) and I’ve been trying out the recipes from the down-loadable cookbook. These. Were. Awesome. Really pain in the rear to flip, but totally worth the effort. My husband thought they tasted like banana oatmeal and I thought they tasted like banana bread. I topped them with a teeny bit of the SWEET AND SALTY
    PRIMAL TRAIL MIX from the same .pdf.

    Blue Buddha wrote on January 5th, 2011
  6. Delicious!! Used only 1 1/2 bananas, 2 tblsp of flax meal and a little bit of almond meal. And yes the key is to cook them slow on low heat.
    Thanks for the recipe!

    Jenn, Gluten Free Connoisseur wrote on January 6th, 2011
  7. With sincerity, I love the passion you have. It is inspiring. I just started to reduce my carbs and sites like these are helpful with ideas.

    Carissa wrote on January 9th, 2011
  8. These look really sumptuous. Can’t wait to prepare them for Sunday’s breakfast special at cctv hardware.

    tomz wrote on January 10th, 2011
    • I think you’ve mistaken these for SPAM pancakes.

      Grok wrote on January 10th, 2011
  9. Made these for lunch today post morning workout. Added, Coconut flour, and coconut butter. Fried in Pastured butter – no topping. Very tasty. Unfortunately I had trouble keeping the heat down on my oven and ended up with a pancake scramble. However, it was still extremely tasty, and kind of like the contrast between some of the underdone and overdone pieces. Hope for better luck on the next attempt.

    Jonathan wrote on January 15th, 2011
  10. Had a huge craving for pancakes today, and found this to be the most delicious and easy recipe I’ve had so far.

    Damon wrote on February 13th, 2011
  11. I absolutely LOVE this recipe. Not having Pancakes would almost be a deal breaker for the Paleo/primal lifestyle that I have embraced for over a year. My wonderfully, brilliant wife suggested tweaking this recipe, with great results: 1. Like the recipe instructs, mash the banana first. 2. Then separate the egg. add the yolk to the banana and blend in. Whip the white until slightly stiff. Set aside. Add the almond butter to the mix, blend well, then fold in the whites. The cakes come out fluffy and spongy, just like regular pancakes.

    dmos wrote on March 26th, 2011
  12. Great recipe! Really liked these. However, as an absolute pancake/waffle lover, it still wasn’t quite what I’ve been looking for. So, I tinkered with this one and came up with something fantastic (I think). Here’s what I did:

    Used 1 banana instead of 2
    Used 2 eggs instead of 1—I used duck eggs, which had very large yolks, so perhaps 3 are in order here if you’re using smaller chicken eggs.
    1 T almond butter

    Now, the rest I didn’t measure out, but these are approximations. I was just trying to achieve the viscosity of a typical batter, but a little runnier.

    1-2 T whole milk (I’m sure coconut milk would be a fine substitute if you don’t do dairy)
    3 T coconut flour, sifted
    2 T almond meal
    1 T ground flax
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 tsp vanilla
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 tsp honey
    1 T melted butter

    They’re not too fragile, so you can cook them 4″+ in diameter and are not difficult to flip. Cooked them in butter on a nonstick pan and had no problems.

    The recipe makes about 8 pancakes. All together, the recipe is about 725 calories, 44 g fat, 28 g protein, 15 g fiber, 46 g carbs, which per pancake is 90 cal/5.5 fat/3.5 prot/2 g fib/6g carbs. Not bad for how tasty these are.

    JP wrote on April 9th, 2011
    • JP,
      Thanks for your suggestions! This worked much better than the first time I made them. The only things I did different from your post was:

      added more cinnamon and a little nutmeg
      used grape-seed flour instead of coconut flour (I don’t do well with coconut)
      used pear concentrate instead of honey
      used only 1 tablespoon of almond milk

      These cooked up perfect with some blueberries thrown into the batter. Much easier to flip and I topped it off with warmed mixed berry sauce. My husband just devoured them! Good stuff.

      Jenn, Gluten Free Connoisseur wrote on April 13th, 2011
    • Just wanted to say thanks so much for your FANTASTIC recipe here. I am diabetic, and with the changes to the basic recipe that you added, my sugars don’t even budge more than a point or two. I added 1 T of milk, and left out the honey and butter. These babies are VERY filling! The original recipe spiked my sugars a little. Now the whole family gets to eat pancakes, and they make a very nice change from coconut pancakes.

      Wildgeraniums wrote on January 15th, 2013
  13. I just made these for my kiddos, big pancake lovers. I used 2 yellow bananas, 2 eggs and 2 T of almond butter. I used coconut oil to grease up my pan. Cooked them on low heat and made small cakes and had no problems keeping them together. The kids are dining on them now.

    Jackie wrote on April 28th, 2011
  14. Love the taste – But how do you get these to not stick, not burn and actually cook?

    CalButtercup1969 wrote on May 14th, 2011
  15. Just made these and they are Yummy!!

    Nicola wrote on May 15th, 2011
  16. I just made these and boy are they Yummy!!

    Nicola wrote on May 15th, 2011
  17. I’m eating them right now…Yummy

    Nicola wrote on May 15th, 2011
  18. These are my favourite. I have them for breakfast, sometimes a snack and even for dessert.

    Rocofit wrote on May 21st, 2011
  19. Just made these, and they were super tasty, but way, way delicate. Low heat all the way, and a thin spatula kept things from falling apart.

    Steph wrote on July 30th, 2011
  20. been primal for two weeks now and just tried these as the saturday morning breakfast with black cherries just fantastic!

    jason fisher wrote on August 20th, 2011
  21. I’ve tried many of the suggestions here, but the perfect way to make these pancakes more cake like is simply to add some almond meal and a pinch of baking powder to make them rise. Simply better than any flour-based pancake and will not make your blood sugar crash. For an extra treat, add blueberries to the batter or raspberries on top!

    Susan wrote on August 26th, 2011
  22. Thank you for posting these. I was looking for grain free pancakes and found this… A new favorite!

    Amber wrote on August 28th, 2011

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