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Low-Calorie Pancake Ideas

Pancakes are one of the staples in the breakfast menu. Even if we go for low-calorie variations, it does not have to be boring. Here are some ideas on “trimmed down” pancakes:

For those of us who are watching our weight and counting calories, we do not have to miss out on the fun of eating—especially breakfast, which is the most important meal of the day. Pancakes are one of the staples in the breakfast menu. Even if we go for low-calorie variations, it does not have to be boring. Here are some ideas on “trimmed down” pancakes:

I normally make my pancakes, or crepes with plain flour and skimmed milk mixture. It’s more versatile and it serves a more suitable base for any topping. But if you should go for pancake mixes because of its convenience, here are some facts you should know:

  • In the health-food area of the supermarket, look for high-protein soy flour pancake mix. It has close to 14 percent protein.
  • Buckwheat pancake mix is a good choice when it comes to calories and protein. One ounce of dry mix is 93 calories and 10.5 percent protein – compared to 101 calories and 8.6 percent protein for most packaged plain buttermilk pancake mixes.

To achieve a lower calorie variation, follow these tips:

  • Avoid adding oil or fat to the mixture—or the skillet. Butter, margarine, shortening, bacon, grease, or vegetable oil range between 100 and 125 calories.
  • Use a non-stick skillet or griddle, such as Teflon or an old fashioned and properly seasoned cast iron pan.
  • Make sure that your griddle or pan is whistle-clean. If you make pancakes often, reserve a nonstick skillet or pan for this purpose.
  • Don’t allow your griddle to overheat. Once the surface reaches the dancing-water stage, lower the heat to prevent sticking and to keep the pan from smoking.
  • You may use one of the convenient spray-on or wipe-on lecithin coatings for fat-free frying. Lecithin is a natural food product that adds no flavor or calories yet permits you to cook fried food without the fat.
  • Avoid making too large pancakes. They will be troublesome to turn. Besides, four small ones are psychologically more satisfying than two big ones.
  • Top your pancakes with unsugared fruit such as mangoes, bananas, blueberries, apple slices, pineapple tidbits, etc. Fruit adds more bulk than calories.

flickr image by weasello

Here are some good substitutes for those sugar-packed toppings:

Dietetic Maple Syrup – Buy the lesser-calorie version when you go to the grocery or supermarket. You will be getting only six to 12 calories instead of 60 or so for conventional pancake syrups.

Half-and-Half – Mix up your own low-sugar blend. Combine equal parts of diet maple syrup with the real maple syrup for a topping that’s only half as fattening as most syrups.

Quick Fruit Syrups – Make you own from sugarless or low-sugar jams and jellies: Simply combine with equal amounts of water and simmer; stir over low heat until melted and simmering. You will only get 5 to 15 calories per tablespoon.

Fresh Fruit --Serve sliced or crushed peaches, strawberries, bananas, mangoes, blueberries, or your type or fruit in season. You may serve them slightly sugared or use the unsweetened canned or frozen fruit, served with your own version of fruit syrup.

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Comments (7)


Great suggestions on the half and half syrup and making crepes instead of pancakes would save on calories too.


Yummy! I agree with Rana Sinha

Looks good!

Helpful ideas for reducing the calories, thank you

i love pancakes! even more, guilt-free pancakes!

Yum! yum! So good that there's still the syrup included, thanks.