Cottage Cheese Pancakes
These Cottage Cheese Pancakes are super tender and have a lovely subtle tang from the cheese, are packed full of nutritious protein, and with minimal flour (and a grain-free variation), you can feel good about fueling your family with them to conquer the day.
Let me start by telling you that I am not a huge pancake eater. My family looooooves them, but I’ve never really been a fan. One pancake and I’m usually done. Too much of the carbs on carbs on carbs, and my tummy always feels unsettled starting my day like that. I’ll gladly take an omelette or miso soup and rice any day. And then there are the “healthy” pancakes. I’ve tried many of them, only to be sorely disappointed. Often they would turn out really bouncy and rubbery or unnaturally mushy and wet, no matter how long I cooked them. None of these pancakes were my friends. But, my dears, these are different.
I was first introduced to them when I stayed the night at my bestie Laura’s house a while back. We, of course, stayed up way too late talking about everything and nothing and loved every minute of it. And as I groggily came upstairs for breakfast the next morning, she was making these lovelies. They seemed simple enough, and she has a fantastic palate, so even with my pancake prejudice, I was excited to try.
And boy did they impress.
They kind of have that irresistible eggy-ness like German Pancakes and crepes, with smaller and super awesomely tender. Cottage cheese is so mild that they aren’t savory, but there’s just the hint of cheesiness which makes them the perfect backdrop for roasted apples or applesauce. Or jam. Or berries. Or peaches. Or fruit, just any kind of fruit. And don’t forget a good slathering of grassfed butter to go along with it. I mean, what pancake is complete without a good dose of butter on top?
Keep in mind these call for a lot of eggs. With my crazy, growing kids, I sometimes make a triple, even quadruple batch, so we go through eggs quickly. But as far as high-quality protein goes, eggs are inexpensive. I can get a dozen local, free range eggs for $3, and organic, grass-fed cottage cheese for $3/tub. That’s under $10 for a quadruple batch, including the other ingredients. And that’s a LOT of pancakes.
I like to use a 3-tablespoon cookie scoop for consistent sized pancakes, and I can get 10~12 pancakes per batch. They’re fairly small. And though they were perfect how Laura made them, I think the Japanese in me just can’t make a pancake without the warm fragrance of vanilla, so I added a splash to the recipe.
You have two options on how to make them, the blender and whisking by hand, and I love both equally. The blender results in a smoother pancake (like in these photographs), which is reminicient of a tranditonal pancake. Whisking by hand is also spectacular because you get little pockets of melted and caramelized cheese, but it’s not savory enough to detract from the sweet toppings. It’s really a matter of personal preference, but I urge you to try both before deciding which you prefer, because you might not be able to decide. I alternate between both methods.
Now, you might want to add cottage cheese and an extra dozen eggs to your grocery list this week.
- 3 large eggs, preferably local and free range
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk cottage cheese
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- unsalted butter for cooking
- roasted apples
- apple sauce
- stone fruit
- whipped cream
- coconut milk
- Add all ingredients into a blender pitcher. Turn on and blend until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl until thoroughly mixed.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat and melt 1 tablespoon of butter, swirling to coat. Using a 3 tablespoon cookie scoop, pour the batter into the skillet. (I usually try to fit 3 into a 12-inch skillet) It should sizzle slightly. Cook until small bubbles form on the surface, then carefully flip. Cook on the second side until lightly browned and cooked through. Repeat with remaining batter.
- Serve immediately with desired toppings.
- Grain-free variation: Sub 2 tablespoons almond flour and 2 tablespoons tapioca starch for the flour, and cook according to directions.
- Lemon-ricotta variation: Add the zest of 1/2 lemon to the batter and replace cottage cheese with ricotta cheese. Serve with fresh lemon juice and honey