Healthy Apple Pancakes
Published Aug 16, 2023, Updated Sep 20, 2023
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Healthy apple pancakes made with oats and cottage cheese. They taste decadent, but are packed with protein and fiber. Great for meal prep!
To celebrate apple week I’m sharing an oldie, but such a goodie that recently got a much needed upgrade. These apple pancakes are the ultimate fall breakfast and sooo good! I can’t wait for you to try them.
They’re sweet, comforting and feel indulgent even though they are 100% healthy in my book…they’re loaded with protein and fiber. One serving (4 pancakes) has 15 grams of fiber and 18 grams of protein. Boom, the perfect way to start your day!
Added bonus: the batter is made in the blender, which makes it super easy to whip up and easy to pour directly from your blender into the skillet for cooking.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Jam-packed with healthy ingredients and have 18 grams of protein per serving!
- Family-friendly! Both adults and kiddos will love these pancakes.
- Easy to make directly in your blender. Yay for less dishes!
- The cinnamon apple topping is chef’s kiss! Don’t skip this step.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- old fashioned rolled oats – rolled oats are the base of this recipe. Once blended, the oats turn into oat flour! I like using Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Whole Grain Rolled Oats, but quick oats will work as well. Oats are naturally gluten-free but are often cross-contaminated, so make sure you grab certified gluten-free if needed!
- egg whites – acts as a binding ingredient, keeps the pancakes light and fluffy and really amps up the protein! I usually use liquid egg whites (from a container) so I don’t have to crack eggs and waste the yolks. If you prefer, you can also use 2 full eggs in place of the egg whites.
- cottage cheese – another protein booster, cottage cheese also helps to keep these pancakes moist. I typically use full-fat cottage cheese, but 2% cottage cheese will also work. I haven’t tried it, but Greek yogurt would probably be a good substitute for cottage cheese. Cottage cheese typically has plenty of sodium, which is why we don’t need any added salt in this recipe, so if you do use Greek yogurt you might want to add a pinch of salt!
- applesauce – make your own homemade applesauce or use store-bought. Just make sure it’s unsweetened if you go that route.
- baking powder – a leavening agent.
- cinnamon – a must for apple pancakes!
- apples – you’ll need about 1-2 apples for both the pancakes and the topping, peeled and finely chopped into pieces. I prefer to use Honeycrisp, Pink Lady or Fuji apples, but any variety will work.
- maple syrup – this is my favorite natural sweetener. We’re using maple syrup to make the cinnamon apples and for an additional drizzle on top.
How to Make
Blend: Add your oats, egg whites, cottage cheese, applesauce, baking powder and cinnamon into a high-powered blender and process until the mixture is relatively smooth with a thick consistency. Stir in diced apples.
Cook pancakes: Heat a large skillet or griddle to low-medium heat and spray with non-stick spray or oil. Once hot, scoop out about a quarter cup of batter at a time and pour onto your pan. Cook until little bubbles form and the edges of the pancakes are solid enough to put a spatula underneath. Flip the pancakes and cook for one to two additional minutes. You want both sides of the pancake to be golden brown, but not too dark!
Make topping: While pancakes are cooking, prep the cinnamon apples by adding diced apples, maple syrup and cinnamon to a microwave-safe bowl. Stir to combine and microwave for 30-60 seconds or until apples are soft and look similar to baked apples. Alternatively, you can cook your cinnamon apples on the stove in a small saucepan until the apples have softened. This will just take longer, so I recommend starting the process before you make your pancake batter!
Serve: For serving, place four pancakes on each plate, top with warm cinnamon apples and drizzle with maple syrup and/or nut butter.
Cinnamon Apple Topping
The cinnamon apple topping is legit the best part of this recipe (in my opinion). It’s an extra step but 100% worth it! For the cinnamon apples, I use the same quick microwave method that I use for my apple overnight oats and it works like a charm. It makes instant baked apples! Here’s what you do:
- Chop up your apples into bite-sized pieces.
- Mix the apple pieces, maple syrup and cinnamon in a small microwave-safe bowl. Stir together to coat the apples.
- Heat in the microwave for 30-60 seconds or until the apples have softened a bit and look like baked apples.
Can I Make The Cinnamon Apples on The Stove?
Definitely! If you don’t want to microwave your apples you can cook them on the stovetop. Just add your apples, cinnamon and maple syrup to a small saucepan over low-medium heat and cook for about 10-15 minutes, until the apples have softened. Make sure to stir the apples occasionally to avoid them sticking or burning to the bottom of the pan.
What to Serve With Apple Pancakes
We often eat these pancakes on their own for breakfast, but if you’re hosting a brunch or want a more filling meal, here’s what I recommend serving with pancakes:
- Quiche – get your savory fix with this dairy-free spinach quiche or this kale and feta crustless quiche.
- Meat – some sort of breakfast sausage and/or bacon would be delish paired with these pancakes.
- Fruit salad – I love this fruit salad with mint or this simple fruit salad.
- Coffee – make this pumpkin spice latte for the ultimate fall experience.
- Fun drink – make these apple cider mimosas or keep it healthy with this apple pie apple cider vinegar drink.
How to Store Leftovers
These pancakes store super well which also makes them great for meal prep! If I make these pancakes on a Sunday, I like doubling the recipe so we have leftovers for the week. Let your pancakes cool before putting them in an airtight container or ziplock bag (I like using my Stasher bags). Store in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
To reheat, I like to pop them in the toaster oven so they get a little crispy, but you can also reheat them in the microwave. If serving with the apples, I’ll make more cinnamon apples the morning of. I also like eating the pancakes cold, straight out of the fridge. I’m weird like that!
Popular Apple Recipes to Try
- Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal
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- Baked Apple Cider Donuts
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- Apple Dutch Baby
- 30+ Healthy Apple Recipes
More Pancake Recipes
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- Overnight Oatmeal Pancakes
Healthy Apple Pancakes
- Add oats, egg whites, cottage cheese, applesauce, baking powder and cinnamon into a blender and process until the batter is relatively smooth with a thick consistency.
- Gently, fold in diced apples.
- Heat pan or griddle to low-medium heat and spray with non-stick spray. Once hot, scoop out about a quarter cup of batter at a time and pour onto pan. You should be able to make about 8 small pancakes. Cook until little bubbles form and the edges of the pancakes are solid enough to put a spatula underneath. Flip the pancakes and cook for one to two additional minutes.
- While pancakes are cooking, prep cinnamon apples by adding diced apples, maple syrup and cinnamon in a microwave safe bowl. Stir to combine and microwave for 30-60 seconds or until apples are soft and look similar to baked apples.
- For serving, place four pancakes on each plate, top with warm cinnamon apples and drizzle with maple syrup and/or nut butter.
- Egg whites: You can use 2 whole eggs in place of the egg whites if needed.
- Cottage cheese: I haven’t tried it, but Greek yogurt would probably be a good substitute for the cottage cheese.
- For meal prep pancakes: Make pancakes as instructed in the recipe. You can also prep the cinnamon apples, but store those in a separate container. Let pancakes cool and place in a sealed storage container in the fridge for up to 5 days. When ready to eat, eat cold with toppings of choice OR reheat the pancakes until warm in the microwave (should only take 30 seconds or so), in a toaster oven or on the stovetop.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.