How to Make Pancakes that are Both Healthy and Decadent

Besides using barley as a base for healthy and delicious pancakes, you can also use its other products, beer and whiskey, to take your favorite pancake recipes to another level. Have you ever tried adding alcoholic beverages to your pancake batter? If you haven’t, you’re missing a real treat. But, we’ll get to it later. Now let’s see what barley itself has to offer.


Benefits of Barley in Pancakes

Barley is one of the oldest grains in the world. It has been consumed by European, African, and Middle Eastern nations for thousands of years.

Barley is a rich source of vitamins and minerals: dietary fiber, B vitamins, selenium, copper, chromium, magnesium, phosphorus, niacin, and more. It is lower in fat and calories compared to other grains, even the very popular quinoa!

Fiber gives you a sense of satiety and reduces your cravings. Fiber also regulates the digestive system and boosts your metabolism, which can help you lose weight more easily. Other benefits from barley include:

  • Lowering sugar levels
  • Lowering cholesterol levels
  • Improved heart health
  • Cancer prevention
  • Improved brain function

How to Use Barley in Pancakes

It is best to use barley in pancakes in the form of flour, also called barley meal. To get the most benefits from barley, it is best to soak and sprout hulled uncooked barley grains, or buy sprouted barley flour. “Sprouting whole grains helps to unleash their nutrients so that the body can actually absorb and use the various vitamins and minerals found in the grain.” The grains are soaked for 8-12 hours and then sprouted for about 3 days.

It has a rich, nutty flavor and a dense texture. For best results, mix barley flour with another type of flour in the pancake batter, preferably oatmeal, in a 50-50 ratio. Other flour options you can mix it with whole wheat, coconut flour, almond flour or soy flour.

If you decide to use a lighter flour, such as coconut flour, then you can mix it with cooked and mashed barley to add some texture to the pancakes. When buying barley, choose 100% whole grain hulled or dehulled barley, but not pearled barley. Pearled barley is refined, and loses many of its nutrients in the process.

Other Barley Products to Use in Pancakes


Syrup. Sprouted barley is naturally high in maltose, which is used to make malt syrups that serve as natural sweeteners. Use this syrup to replace white refined sugar in the pancake batter. Other healthier sweetening options are honey, molasses, agave syrup, maple syrup, or stevia. Barley syrup can also be used as a topping.

Alcoholic beverages. Barley is a key ingredient in beer and whiskey production. Beer is added to the pancake batter to contribute extra fluffiness. This is due to the carbonation bubbles in fizzy beverages. Beer pancakes are also called mancakes, and are perfectly safe for your kids because most of the alcohol evaporates during cooking.

Same counts for whiskey. As long as you keep the amount of whiskey moderate (max. 1/4 cups), the pancake recipe will be perfectly safe for the kids. If you are adding the booze inside the batter, 1-3 tablespoons will probably suffice. In that case, add some raspberries, peaches, dried apricots, or nuts as well. You can also prepare a sauce to top the pancakes with, using 1-1/2 cup heavy cream, 5 tablespoons pure maple syrup, 3 tablespoons light corn syrup and 3 tablespoons whiskey.

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