Maple syrup season only happens once a year, so why not take advantage! Although we don’t make our own syrup, we are lucky to be surrounded by amazing friends and family that do. I believe we have 4 different kinds of maple syrup in our fridge right now, so of course I am coming up with all sorts of healthy (ish) ways to use it (by the way this is my shout out to all those amazing people who supplied us with their tasty syrup 🙂 My top 5 favourite foods to top with maple syrup include: 1. steel cut oats, cooked or soaked overnight (I also love to add blueberries, hemp seeds & ground flax to my oatmeal), 2. french toast (made with homemade sourdough bread – I’ll aim to make this recipe a future post), 3. salad dressings (it’s my secret ingredient in a lot of my delicious homemade dressings), 4. coffee (I’m not a daily coffee drinker, but as a treat I love to add a drizzle of maple syrup, unsweetened almond milk & a dash of cinnamon to my coffee) and 5. pancakes (especially my oatmeal apple cinnamon pancakes which I’ve included the recipe for below)
The benefits of Maple Syrup:
When used in moderation, maple syrup is not only delicious but actually has real health benefits including: 1. contains antioxidants which can help protect our cells from inflammation and chronic disease (note: dark, grade B syrups typically contain more antioxidants than the lighter syrups), 2. has a lower score on the glycemic index than refined sugars (however keep in mind consuming to much sugar from any source is not recommended, so always be mindful of the amount of maple syrup you’re using and please never use “table syrup” which contains high fructose corn syrup!), and 3. contains important vitamins & minerals such as zinc, manganese, calcium and potassium.
Oatmeal Apple Cinnamon Pancakes Recipe:
- 1 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk
- 1.5 cups unsweetened apple sauce
- 3 cups whole rolled oats
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp baking powder
- 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1.5 tbsp ground flax
- cold pressed, extra virgin coconut oil (for cooking)
- Optional toppings: sunbutter (unsweetened), coconut yogurt, maple syrup
Combine all ingredients above (liquid ingredients first) in a Vitamix blender (or any high powered blender) and blend until smooth. Heat a pan or griddle to medium, coat with coconut oil and add batter to make desired size of pancakes. Pancakes take approximately 2-3 minutes per side to cook through. Continue cooking pancakes until all the batter is used up.
Now for the toppings: my favourite way to eat these pancakes is to top them with sunbutter (unsweetened sunflower seed butter), coconut yogurt & of course fresh maple syrup. It may sound odd, but I promise you it’s delicious and you should definitely give it a try! If you do, please let me know what you think 🙂