Can I tell you a secret?
You should really make your own pumpkin for pies, cakes and breads. It's super easy (I'll be posting a step-by-step tutorial soon, but I wanted to catch your attention first!) and it gives you bragging rights. But more than that, there is one critical reason why you should make your own pumpkin puree:
Pumpkin Spiced Syrup.
If you love pumpkin, you simply haven't lived until you've tried this syrup and the only way to get it is to make your own pumpkin puree...unless you can find pumpkin "juice" elsewhere, but it seems unlikely. I can't say as I've ever looked. Of course, sometimes I really need to pay better attention.
Take, for example, the aforementioned pumpkin "juice." It is a by-product of making pumpkin puree. And I have probably tossed gallons of it down my sink drain. How sad....
I've always felt a little twinge when I poured it down. Every. Single. Time. I felt wasteful and knew there had to be some use for it that I was missing. But I couldn't figure out what to do with it. I tried making "pumpkin juice" a la Harry Potter a couple of years ago. I was not impressed. I do hope that should I ever try Butterbeer, it lives up to all the hype. Pumpkin juice was a thorough disappointment. Bummer.
As I was watching my first batch of pumpkin puree drain yesterday, the inspiration I've been longing for the juice pool came. "Make syrup out of it. It would be great on pancakes." Genius! I set out to find a recipe that would make use of this flavor-packed juice that I was collecting.
And, I found NOTHING! Really?! How can this be?
Oh, I found a couple of pumpkin syrup recipes but nothing like I was envisioning....nothing that used my precious juice. So I did what any pumpkin loving girl would do - I made up my own recipe with a little help from another recipe for apple cider syrup.
At the end of my pumpkin packing project, I had 1/2 cup of pumpkin puree to find a use for. I didn't want to freeze a small portion like that and so I remembered that the syrup recipe had an applesauce pancake recipe with it. Perfect. And so I converted that to pumpkin, too....and I made it gluten free because that's just how I roll.
And here they are.....
Who's your new best friend? That's right. Me. That stack o' pancakes tasted just as good (if not better!) than it looks. Heaven on a plate, friends...that's the best way to describe it. What a wonderful breakfast for supper experience....but leave it to the little red head to one up me.
He requested cream cheese on his pancakes. This kid is brilliant (obviously he got some of my smart genes)!!! Talk about kicking things up a notch. Best. Idea. Ever. It was like eating pumpkin cheesecake pancakes. I have the best sous chef EVER.
So, do yourself a favor and grab a pumpkin and prepare yourself for the joy of this wonderful treat! Sharing is optional....unless you truly love your family like I love my little red head. Then you probably should share...it's just the right thing to do.
If you try this or any other recipe you find here, please post pictures on Facebook so we can cheer for you! If you're not yet of fan of that page, hop on over and click "like."
(with gluten and dairy free options)
adapted from Applesauce Pancakes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (GF: Substitute 2 cups Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Gluten Free Flour + 1 1/2 tsp. xantham gum)
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, beaten (GF: 3 eggs)
- 1 cup milk (Dairy Free: substitute coconut milk. Omit xantham gum for GF version
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (tutorial coming soon or substitute canned pumpkin, if you must!)
- 1/4 cup canola oil
Preheat griddle or frying pan and lightly grease with oil or butter.
Combine the dry ingredients (flour through salt) in large bowl. Make a well in the dry ingredients and add wet ingredients. Mix until well combined.
Pour batter onto pre-heated pan or griddle. Turn when bubbles that form on top begin to pop and edges begin to look done. Cook until second side is golden brown. Keep warm in a pan in your oven set at 150F while making the remaining pancakes.
Serves 6 to 8.
Pumpkin Spice Syrup
adapted from Apple Cider Syrup
- 2 cups pumpkin juice
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
Combine all ingredients in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced by half (approximately 15 minutes). The syrup will thicken as it cools. Serve with pancakes. Refrigerate any unused portion and use within two months.