Carrot Cake Pancakes

These Carrot Cake Pancakes might become a new morning mainstay in your kitchen for special occasions.

Carrot Cake Pancakes
Photo: Micah A. Leal
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
25 mins

Not particularly sweet, these Carrot Cake Pancakes are the kind of special breakfast you can feel good about serving your family. The batter is made by whisking flour with aromatic spices typically found in a carrot cake—spices like cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg. But to give these pancakes the characteristic fluffiness of a fat and crisp pancake, the recipe also uses buttermilk for both flavor and rise. To sweeten the batter, dissolve a modest amount of honey into the liquid ingredients. This lends the syrupy rich quality unique to honey that cane sugar cannot offer. After the dry and wet ingredients have been combined to form a smooth batter, fold in shredded carrot and shredded unsweetened coconut. As the pancakes fry in the pan, the batter lifts considerably, making an airy inside strewn with chewy-tender bites of carrot and coconut. The spices perfuming the batter are unmistakably reminiscent of carrot cake, but the savory quality of the pancakes makes them easy to cover in either maple syrup or (if you're feeling decadent) cream cheese frosting.


  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves

  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil

  • 2 teaspoons honey

  • 1 egg

  • 3/4 cup shredded carrot

  • 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (optional)

  • Oil, for pan frying

  • Maple syrup or cream cheese frosting, for serving


  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt until well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk, vanilla, vegetable oil, honey, and egg. Add wet ingredient mixture to dry ingredients and whisk until no dry pockets of flour remain. Fold in shredded carrot and coconut.

  2. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat. Add just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Cooking no more than three at a time, measure out 1/4 cupfuls of pancake mixture into the hot oil and use the back of a spoon to spread each mound into a shallow circle. Use a spatula to flip each pancake once the bottom has become lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Continue frying until pancakes are cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat frying process with remaining batter and more oil if necessary.

  3. Serve pancakes warm with maple syrup or cream cheese frosting.

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