GAPS diet pancakes–grain free and fluffy

This grain-free pancake recipe is just one of a million paleo pancake recipes out there.  I've tried lots of them--enjoying some, and begrudgingly tossing others. Most I made had been far from the taste and texture of traditional pancakes. They were just kind of dry and flat. Sorry, everyone;)

But since dry, flat pancakes is just something I refuse to live with for the rest of my life, I've been working on a GAPS-friendly pancake that holds together well and is easy to flip, while still being soft, moist, and fluffy.

And I'll tell ya--that's pretty hard to achieve without gluten.

gaps diet pancakes

(it took me a while to get to taking these pictures, so they had cooled quite a bit... and all pancakes go kinda flat when they cool. So don't be fooled. These pancakes really are super fluffy--just look at the other pictures. You'll see. Go, go. Go see.)

The Problem With Gluten

Gluten is a glue-like protein that gives wheat products their elasticity and chewiness. Some people can handle the proteins just fine. But for some, these proteins wreck havoc in the body. The problem with gluten is that people with a damaged gut cannot fully digest these proteins. Partially digested proteins are absorbed into the blood stream, causing a myriad of health problems. 

The tough part is that just removing gluten from the diet doesn't really solve the problem. Often those with gluten sensitivities have a deeper underlying issue. The gut is damaged. Toxins are running rampant through the blood stream, undigested food is causing inflammatory reactions, hormones are getting thrown all out of wack, enzymes are being inhibited by foreign particles, the list goes on.  In order to really address a gluten sensitivity, one has to look at the big picture--gut health. The gut simply needs to be healed. 

Healing the Gut

All the processed grains, sugars, and starches that the American culture eats on a regular basis destroys gut health. Bad bacteria love feeding on that stuff and when bad bacteria start growing like crazy, the whole body suffers.  

In order to heal the gut, the first step is removing foods that are damaging it. That means pretty much all processed foods. I know, sad, but true. But if you think about it... it's not really food anyways. Boxed and canned foods are dead chemicals that people are relying on to somehow run a human body. Healing the gut requires opting for real food--as fresh from the source as possible, when it's full of active enzymes and nutrients that the body can use.

The second step is restoring healthy bacteria. This requires a lot of work because pathogenic bacterial colonies have outgrown healthy bacteria and it's just tough rebalancing the flora. Supplementing with probiotic rich food is simply not enough to rebalance the flora by itself. It also takes removing foods that feed pathogenic bacteria. And what is that? Sugars, grains, and starches. These are high carbohydrate foods that pathogenic bacteria feast on. So for a period of time, they've got to be out of the diet.

GAPS recipes

The GAPS diet is aimed at healing the gut and cleaning up the body after years of toxic build up. It entails incorporating traditional, healing foods into the diet and removing removing grains, sugars, and starches that have been feeding bad bacteria. 

Here's the thing, though. Just because we are healing the gut doesn't mean we can't enjoy pancakes. GAPS recipes are allowed to be fun and modern. But they are founded on traditional practices and optimizing nutrition. 

So to be a GAPS pancake, you've got to be a few things. You've got to have no processed flours. You've got to have no refined sugars. You've got to be made of real food. 

Oh, and fluffy. 

You've got to be fluffy. 

You can get really pretty fluffy pancakes by using homemade yogurt or cultured cream (homemade cultured cream is SO GOOD IN THIS!!) but some people on GAPS have to be off of dairy for a while. I still wanted a fluffy pancake without dairy and so I simply added an extra step of whipping the whites before adding them in. When you do add them in, try your best to fold them into the batter lightly so that it stays light. But you do want to make sure to fully incorporate it. 

If you can tolerate dairy, go ahead with yogurt or cultured cream (and you can probably skip whipping the egg whites). That's the recipe I used for the pictures with the applesauce. Both are wonderfully tasty and honestly, I prefer these over normal pancakes now. The wonderful thing about cooking basic foods is that you never get headaches after eating... hmm, imagine that;)


gaps diet pancakes grain free pancakes

GAPS diet Pancakes
Author: Amy MoffatPrep time:7 minCook time:10 minsServings:about 8-10 medium pancakes

1 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 Tbsp raw honey
4 eggs, separated
3/4 c blanched almond flour
3 Tbsp fine coconut flour
1/2 c full fat coconut milk (no guar gum)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
dash salt


In a large mixing bowl, combine honey and butter and blend until smooth.
Crack the egg whites into a separate bowl and add the egg yolks to the honey and butter.
Add the almond flour, coconut flour, coconut milk, baking soda, vanilla, and salt.
Beat until combined.
With clean, dry beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form (about 3-4 minutes).
As best as you can, fold the egg whites into the pancake mixture until combined.
Pour 1/4 c batter onto a heated skillet and cook until lots of little bubbles appear.
Flip and cook until golden brown.
Repeat until finished!
Top with berries, butter, and honey and serve while warm!

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