A Year in the Kitchen: A Giant Self-Cooking Pancake

Stephanie is a mom of two, psychologist, and was born and raised in the Hudson Valley. She uses her knowledge of nutrition, healthy eating, and love of cooking to make dinner healthier, faster, and more adventurous.

Recently, I woke up at 3 am and couldn’t fall back to sleep.  Overachiever that I am, I decided to get up and get some things crossed off my to-do list.  I threw in a load of laundry, emptied the dishwasher, and suddenly the words “crockpot pancake” popped into my head.  A while back I’d seen a recipe for making a giant pancake in the crockpot, and I’d stored it away in my memory for a morning when I was up early enough to give it the time to cook, or some afternoon when I was planning breakfast for dinner.  It takes two hours to cook, but since it was 4 am at that point, it seemed perfect. It was.

A giant crockpot pancake

The idea comes from my favorite crockpot site, and the pancake recipe comes from a great gluten-free cookbook.  The crockpot directions state you can use an 18 oz. pancake mix (and the corresponding ingredients it would require, such as eggs, oil, milk) or your own ingredients.  I had a recipe for gluten-free pancakes, so I doubled it, assuming that’d be about the right amount.  I’ll share the recipe here, or feel free to use a mix or your favorite recipe.  Of course, this can be gluten-free, even dairy-free, or neither, depending on your needs.  The beauty of this one was that it literally cooked itself, and I was free to go on my merry way and fold socks.  At 5 am.  I know, I need help.

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ½ c. flour (brown rice flour if you’re gluten-free)
  • 2 T. baking powder
  • ½ c. oil
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 4 T. sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp, xanthan gum (omit if using regular flour)
  • 1 tsp, vanilla
  • 2 c. milk (dairy-free, if you desire)
  • 1 c. blueberries (I added this; you can swap in another fruit for sure)

This is the doubled recipe- halve it if you’re just using it to make pancakes.  Combine, mixing well.  Pour into greased crockpot.  Cook on high for two hours.  Edges will be slightly browned, and middle will be firm. Do not overcook.

When my family finally rolled out of bed at 6:30 am (lazy-bones!), they were excited to find a beautiful “slice” of pancake ready to eat.  It came out thick, fluffy, and had the perfect texture.  The clean-up was minimal, and it tasted really good.  We’ll definitely make this again.

To see what’s happening in our kitchen, or to share what’s going on in yours, please stop by, or become a fan on Facebook.  Happy (gluten-free) cooking!

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A Year in the Kitchen: Coconut Chicken

Jun 24, 2011

Recipes are not always family friendly, and I’ve grown comfortable adjusting them to the likes and dislikes of my crew.  Especially when cooking for children, certain spices or vegetables might require substitutions in order to ensure your kids will eat the meal you’ve just worked so har...

A Year in the Kitchen: Teddy Bear Burgers

Jun 21, 2011

I haven’t made this recipe in a while, but it’s part of one of my favorite fun family dinners.  One of the most creative chefs I’ve found, Annabel Karmel, has myriad of cookbooks, ranging from baby foods to kids’ cooking to family meals.  This dinner is so cute, it’s im...

A Year in the Kitchen: Let’s Talk Tacos

Jun 17, 2011

I was grinning like the Cheshire cat as my family ate dinner the other night.  Why?  I was watching them eat a meal filled with foods that normally might have required some cajoling, but instead it was being gobbled bite after bite.  We had tacos, which doesn’t sound spectacular, I know.  What...

A Year in the Kitchen: Chicken-spinach pie

Jun 14, 2011

I love finding dinner recipes that sound fun, and “chicken spinach pie with mashed-potato crust” was one of them.  Although the ingredients themselves aren’t so unique– chicken, spinach, carrots, ricotta, and potatoes– the assembly and presentation are cute, and results...

A Year in the Kitchen: Black Bean Burgers

Jun 10, 2011

I can never seem to have enough recipes for main dish vegetarian entrées, as variety seems key in meatless cooking.  As I’ve said before, vegetarian eating benefits not just your health, but your wallet and the planet as well.  Twice a week is our personal goal for non-meat meals, and I am alw...

A Year in the Kitchen: Chicken Marsala

Jun 6, 2011

Growing up, chicken marsala was one of my favorite dishes.  I always ate it in a local Italian place, and couldn’t get enough of that rich sauce covering my chicken and noodles.  Since it was a “restaurant” dish, I was initially hesitant to make it at home, as I feared it could nev...

A Year in the Kitchen: Oatmeal

Jun 3, 2011

It’s getting warm, but on a cool morning you can still serve oatmeal for breakfast.  More affordable, healthier, and versatile than most cold cereals, oatmeal is a great breakfast option.  Not only is it a whole grain, but a bowl of oatmeal is a fantastic opportunity to get in well-rounded nut...

A Year in the Kitchen: Orzo Salad

May 31, 2011

Orzo is one of my favorite quick, universal pastas that is good warm or cold; as a light meal or side dish; and almost always a kid-pleaser.  This particular recipe comes together in just minutes, and can be shaped to meet the likes (and dislikes) of your family. A simple orzo salad To make orzo sa...

A Year in the Kitchen: Ice Pops

May 27, 2011

The weather forecast calls for 80+ degrees for the next week or so, and make-your-own ice pops seems like a perfect topic for parents everywhere.  This recipe comes from a magazine published by BJ’s Wholesale Club. They’re fun to make with your kids, and as they are little more than pure...

A Year in the Kitchen: Grilling

May 23, 2011

Barbecue season has arrived, and is a great opportunity to do some outdoor prep and cooking, leaving your kitchen clean.  My husband is always itching to BBQ, so on a recent night I sent him outside with a package of chicken breasts, fresh veggies, and some skewers.  Zucchini and yellow squash are ...

A Year in the Kitchen: A Day in the Life

May 16, 2011

Sometimes my time is the kitchen is short, whereas on other days I find myself making three meals in a row. Recently I had a day during which I was cooking more than not, but it was lots of fun, as most of it was done with my daughters.  For a full version of everything that came out of the kitchen ...

A Year in the Kitchen: A Simple Supper

May 13, 2011

All the rage are “five ingredient cookbooks,” and I can see why.  A meal consisting of five ingredients or less is likely to be quick and uncomplicated to assemble, and inexpensive.  Who can resist the allure? Fresh basil is peeking out our garden (if you aren’t growing any, you mu...

A Year in the Kitchen: Smoothies

May 9, 2011

Everyone knows that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but how many days in a row can one eat cold cereal?  On the other hand, what busy mom has the time to make a full, hot meal every morning? The smoothie is a great intermediary.  The possibilities are endless, it comes together supe...

A Year in the Kitchen: Lunch

May 6, 2011

I don’t know about you, but a lot of times I’m stumped with what to make for lunch.  Cooking a full meal is usually too much in the middle of a busy day, but I don’t like giving my kids the same old, same old.  Yogurt, cottage cheese, or a hard boiled egg with fruit, veggies, and s...

A Year in the Kitchen: Fish night

May 2, 2011

I’m not a big fan of fish, personally, but I include it in our meal rotation in order to reap the health benefits.  The newest dietary guidelines recommend eating fish twice a week, which means we need get creative, or it’s going to get boring.  A while back, I happened upon a tilapia re...

A Year in the Kitchen: Breakfast for dinner

Apr 29, 2011

Breakfast for dinner (aka “brinner”) is one of my family’s favorites, and a great way to plan a vegetarian meal into the week.  We keep the formula pretty consistent, but vary the details a bit.  Breakfast for dinner is always a starch (waffles, pancakes, toast, or a quick bread li...

A Year in the Kitchen: The nine lives of produce

Apr 25, 2011

It can be tricky to use up produce before it becomes past its prime, and heaven knows most children (and plenty of adults) won’t eat a bruised piece of fruit, or less-than-crisp vegetable.  What’s a girl to do? Less than desirable produce has a few options in our kitchen.  Vegetables get...

A Year in the Kitchen: Quiche

Apr 22, 2011

Quiche is a dish I’ve been making for years.  One reason I love it, similar to why I love so many recipes, is that you can really change it up with quiche.  I have a tried and true version (spinach and cheddar) but whenever I have different veggies or cheeses to use up, this is an easy way to ...

A Year in the Kitchen: A New Favorite

Apr 19, 2011

My friend Julie emailed me a link to a recipe with which she’s recently fallen in love, and I think perhaps it is to be a new favorite here as well.  What’s great about this recipe is that it’s very versatile- it can accommodate almost any protein and/or vegetables, and served as a main dish despite...

A Year in the Kitchen: Artistry in the Kitchen

Apr 11, 2011

This weekend’s visit to an avant-garde art museum has my family talking about what constitutes art, and how art is created.  After looking at a pile of broken glass that was artfully displayed as an exhibit, I concluded that something is considered art when it is prudently constructed, and pro...

A Year in the Kitchen: Getting Inspired

Apr 5, 2011

I have to admit, I’ve been feeling uninspired in the kitchen lately.  Looking back at the past few weeks, I’ve been cooking less, and we’ve been eating lots of leftovers.  Spring seems stuck in hibernation, and we face another gloomy, chilly Monday.  I’m gathering up the ener...

A Year in the Kitchen: Waffles

Mar 28, 2011

Cooking for a weekend breakfast is one of my favorite things about a Saturday or Sunday morning.  Over time, I’ve collected a number of breakfast recipes that are delicious but sure to get the day started off right, and this waffle recipe always brings rave reviews.  It has a number of ingredi...

A Year in the Kitchen: No-cook dinners

Mar 21, 2011

In planning family dinners, it is easy to feel that meal is not a ”real meal” if it isn’t, a) hot and b) involve lots of raw ingredients, measuring spoons, and at least a few pots and pans.  I’m the first to admit that I don’t always make my life easier, and often ignor...

A Year in the Kitchen: The never-ending turkey

Mar 14, 2011

One of the greatest meals I recently cooked was a seven lb. turkey breast.  The reason it was so great was because we ate from it on and off for the next five days!  Every time I thought we’d finish it, there was more for the next meal.  Enjoying leftovers makes a cook’s job worth it: it...

A Year in the Kitchen: Cooking Ahead

Mar 7, 2011

One kitchen time-saver that I’ve relied on heavily since having children is cooking ahead.  There are many cookbooks that are suited to this method, two of my favorites being, “Fix Freeze Feast,” and “Dinners in the Freezer.”  Beyond these cookbooks, I often cook ahead ...

A Year in the Kitchen: A Versatile Meal

Feb 28, 2011

Every chef (moms especially) needs a go-to recipe that everyone loves, is quick and easy to make, and doesn’t require a trip to the grocery store.  In our house, that has become a garden vegetable soup that can stand in as a lunch or dinner, and range from a vegetarian dish to a balanced and h...

A Year in the Kitchen: Enhancing recipes

Feb 21, 2011

It’s not uncommon to come across a new recipe and decide it looks enticing, until taking a second look.  Despite the knowledge that whole grains are healthier than refined grains, eating more produce lowers your risk of many health problems, and less sugar is better than more, many cookbooks a...

A Year in the Kitchen: Quick, healthy pasta sauce

Feb 18, 2011

As a follow-up to my post from earlier in the week, I’ve been asked by a few folks to share an easy, quick pasta sauce recipe (or as it is called by my Italian family, “gravy”).  The recipe I make for a Sunday pasta dinner takes four hours from start to finish, and is one that has ...

A Year in the Kitchen: Italian Roots

Feb 14, 2011

We visited my grandparents this evening, and while helping my grandma wash and dry the dinner dishes, we came across something that has really touched me.  It’s a simple waistline apron, handmade many, many years ago by my Italian seamstress great-grandmother.  The apron is beautiful and flora...

A Year in the Kitchen: Healthy desserts

Feb 7, 2011

Desserts can be a real challenge for any family trying to eat healthy.  Open any cookbook and find recipes for cakes, cookies, pies, and everything sweet… recipes loaded with perhaps your day’s worth of calories, fat, or sugar.  Everything in moderation, yes; but why not take a step back...

A Year in the Kitchen: Vegetarian Night

Jan 31, 2011

On average, I try to cook two vegetarian meals a week.  I have a few reasons for this: our health, our wallets, and the environment.  In other words, vegetarian meals are often healthier (no artery-clogging animal fats), usually more affordable than buying beef/chicken/etc., and there is less energy...

A Year in the Kitchen: Whole grains

Jan 24, 2011

Lately we’ve been attempting to lower our overall bread/pasta/carb intake as a whole.  I’m by no means endorsing a carb-free lifestyle– I think balance is essential for the majority of folks– but to focus more on fruit/vegetables, dairy, and protein rather than making carbs t...

A Year in the Life of a Kitchen

Jan 17, 2011

This was a busy week in our house, with lots of cooking due to being home on snow days and chilly afternoons.  We’ve been focusing even more on healthy eating, specifically more fruits and veggies with every meal, and I hope that’s reflected in what you’ll find here.  ??My daughter was delighted to ...

A Year in the Kitchen: Cooking essentials

Jan 10, 2011

A good friend of mine recently inspired me to look at cooking in a brand-new way.  As I mentioned last week, I grew up cooking alongside my mom (and grandma), and making healthy food for both myself and my family has always been second nature.  After a conversation with a friend, I was reminded that...

A Year in the Kitchen

Jan 4, 2011

101 days ago, I decided to begin a food blog. I’m Stephanie,  a psychologist born and raised in the Hudson Valley. I use my knowledge of nutrition, healthy eating, and creativity to make dinner healthier, faster, and more adventurous. As a busy mom of two, I’m constantly trying to stay creativ...