My kids love pancakes and waffles, and my gluten-free wife also enjoys them so going GF for everyone makes sense. The problem is that I have yet to try a GF pancake mix that I enjoyed, they are overdone and complicated with the result being pancakes that are flat and stiff.
Pamela’s Baking and Pancake Mix is pretty good but I find it to be a little gritty. I want pancakes that are fluffy and moist but easy to make on a school day. After giving this some thought I settled on the conclusion that I would have to make my own mix and GF bread flour was a good place to start.
Bread flour has more protein and expands more than all-purpose flour. This is useful in a loaf of bread and I thought it might work well for pancakes. My first attempt at this was successful, the pancakes were fluffy but unfortantely they expanded so much that the centers did not cook. Bread is baked, not cooked on griddle. Bread flour wouldn’t work but it did have a key characteristic that I wanted so back to the drawing board.
Baking powder contains baking soda along with some other things that make it a leavening agent. Basically, it’s a combination of baking soda and an acid that when activated with moisture creates gas that gets trapped in the pores of the batter. You are using chemistry to blow up your batter like a balloon. I use some extra baking soda to get the necessary lift.
There is some sugar in this mix and that simply makes the pancakes taste better. You can choose to omit it but sugar really does add a finishing touch to this mix.
Enough with the suspense, the solution to my expansive pancake problem was to cut the bread flour with all-purpose flour. The result is a pancake or waffle that has lift and a bite that is exactly like a traditional buttermilk pancake, and cooks easily to a golden brown color.
I make this mix 6 cups at a time because the math is easy to work (1 tbs. = 3 tsp.) and store it in a plastic container.
3 cups gluten-free bread flour
3 cups gluten-free all purpose flour (or Pamela’s Baking and Pancake Mix)
4 tbs. granulated sugar
1 tbs. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
Add all the ingredients to a plastic container, put the top on and shake vigorously to mix together. That’s it!
For pancakes and waffles (I use the same batter) go with this:
1 cup pancake mix
1 cup water
1 tbs. canola oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Mix together and let rest for 10 minutes. This is important because the flour will absorb the moisture and tighten up. You may want to add an additional tbs or 2 of water at this point to make the batter pourable. Pour 1/3 cup per pancake on a griddle and prepare as your normally would.
PS- the featured image is of chocolate chip pancakes, a weekend treat.