I am not sure I have any business calling anything made with coconut flour “light and fluffy”. Really, have you ever worked with the stuff? If you are used to wheat flour, you will find coconut flour to be very odd stuff indeed. You’ve never seen the like, I can assure you. Oh sure, it looks like flour, all powdery and off-white. And when you open the bag and inhale that coconutty goodness, you will think it divine. And then you set about trying to develop a recipe, and you begin to wonder what you’ve gotten yourself into. If you’re smart, you don’t delve in without referencing some other coconut flour recipes first. Because this isn’t like wheat flour. Oh no, coconut flour is a different beast altogether and will take you for a wild ride if you try to treat it like regular flour. It will soak up all your liquids and oils and stay as thick as porridge. If you add more liquid, you might finally get what seems like a typical batter, but it will fall to pieces when you cook it or bake it or fry it. It will resist you, simply out of pure spite that you thought it was in any way similar to wheat flour. Think again, my friend, it taunts you…think again.
Yes, apparently I like to anthropomorphize my ingredients. Weird. Moving on…
One of the tricks to working with coconut flour is that you must use a lot of eggs. It can be shocking to see a muffin recipe that takes 6 times the typical amount of eggs. Yes, it’s true, you can often use up a whole dozen eggs when working with coconut flour. And unlike some low carb, gluten free recipes that rely on a lot of eggs, your end result won’t be rubbery at all. Coconut flour is like a sponge when it comes to eggs and other liquids, it just keeps on soaking them up. If you add just oil or milk or water, you might get something that resembles a typical batter, but it won’t hold together at all. But add more eggs and you might just get something that works.
I’ve made coconut flour pancakes before and they were rather ho-hum. I wanted to attempt them again and make them better, simply as a gluten free breakfast option for my kids. I am not a huge pancake fan, but my kids adore them. So I consulted a number of different recipes, and then went with my gut. I know the basics of working with coconut flour, so when my batter turned out too thick and porridge-y, I made sure to add more eggs along with more liquid. Still, I added them to the pan with some trepidation, wondering if they would hold together well enough to flip over, always a risk with gluten free pancakes.
The Results: Thankfully, they held together perfectly, although I did keep them on the small side (no more than 3 to 4 inches in diameter). I was also impressed with how well they browned and how they rose a little during cooking. They ended up having a lightness in texture that surprised me. They are still dense and filling as pancakes go, because coconut flour is mostly fiber and, as such, fills you up quickly. But they were really good and my kids didn’t distinguish them at all from regular pancakes. And I enjoyed them quite a bit too, with some butter and sugar free syrup. I will tell you, this pancake recipe is a keeper.