Pancake Toppings Beyond Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is the standard for pancake toppings, but if you're tired of the same old thing or if (like me) you never liked maple in the first place, here are some new pancake toppings to try. And you'll find some of these options are healthier pancake toppings than maple syrup anyways. Everybody wins!
1. Lemon juice and powdered sugar. The light sweetness of the sugar balances the lemon, making your pancakes a bright, refreshing treat. Since you control the ratio of lemon to sugar, this can be as sweet or as tart as you like. Putting the lemon on first soaks into your pancake much like syrup, but putting the sugar first turns the pancake toppings into sort of a glaze. Both are delicious. If you don't trust your kids with a bowl of powdered sugar on the table, pick up a jar of lemon curd instead. It's smoother than jam--imagine the center of a lemon meringue pie. Scrumptious.
2. Pumpkin butter. There is no actual butter involved. Much like apple butter, pumpkin butter has a smooth texture and a bit of spice. You'll immediately think of the taste of pumpkin pie, (Why yes, I love pie. Why do you ask?), but the butter is a bit softer so it's easier to spread. Perfect for autumn, but delicious any time of year.
3. Yogurt and fruit. Wow, that sounds healthy, you think as you immediately skip to the next entry. But hear me out. These are great pancake toppings. Vanilla yogurt, in many cases, is a good substitute for whipped cream. It's a little creamier, heavier, tangier, and yes, healthier. Pair it with fresh strawberries, blueberries, or peaches on a crisp waffle. Enjoy your breakfast in bliss, and feel smug about it the rest of the morning.
4. Cinnamon and sugar. You’ve eaten them on toast, but have you tried them as pancake toppings? Be sure to put on enough butter first, so they will stick properly. Keep some in a salt shaker so it’s easy and quick to use. When I was a kid, I had cinnamon and sugar every time I ate pancakes. If you put on enough, the sugar will crunch in your teeth. Don’t worry about using too much sugar. It takes a lot of sugar to equal what you'd get in maple syrup!
5. Jam! Jam jam jam! There are so many wonderful flavors of jam available. Strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, peach, blueberry, apricot-pineapple...and that's just on one shelf! Look a bit higher or lower and you might find apricot-almond or strawberry-rhubarb or sweet cherry. Made with sugar, made with honey, made with fruit juice, with chunks (preserves), without chunks, store-bought, homemade--step away from the clear grape jelly and explore the possibilities! Jam on pancakes is best if you spread the butter first, let it melt, and then spread the jam once the butter has soaked in.
So next time you’re in front of a plate of pancakes, don’t just reach for the maple syrup. Try one of these pancake toppings. Maybe you’ll try a different one on each pancake. Maybe you’ll find yourself eating pancakes for lunch and dinner too. The world is too full of delicious pancake toppings to fall into the maple syrup rut. Enjoy!
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