These spiced sweet potato pancakes are inspired by the sugar cleanse I did last year. Going 6 weeks without any sugar, including fruit, was quite a challenge and made me take an honest look at exactly how much sugar I was eating. Lunch and dinner weren’t too hard, but breakfast definitely required some creativity!
Before I cut the sugar, my breakfasts often consisted of gluten free cereal, fresh fruit and coconut yoghurt, sometimes paleo toast with avocado and almond butter, sometimes eggs (but mostly in the weekend), and sometimes pancakes!
If you’ve been following swoon for a while you’ll know I love a good pancake. This is largely a result of discovering you can make a pretty decent pancake with bananas (or any type of stewed fruit), eggs and ground almond or coconut. This was revolutionary for me because I hadn’t been able to eat pancakes for years while eating dairy and gluten free.
Fast forward to my 6 week sugar detox which required me to cut out fruit (just for the 6 weeks), I realised my beloved pancake recipes would need a sugar free makeover too.
The first completely sugar free pancake recipe I created was these pumpkin pancakes which have a lovely caramel quality to them. But pumpkins, or rather butternut squash, aren’t always in season unlike sweet potato. Not to mention sweet potato has an even sweeter flavour that lends itself to pancakes particularly well.
For this sweet potato pancake recipe I separated the eggs in order to achieve a lighter pancake. Often pancakes using fruit or vegetables as a base can be quite heavy, and raising agents alone don’t always create a fluffy texture. I’ve also added a few spices because when you’re not using any sweetener, sweet spices like cinnamon and ginger help lift the sweet flavour of the sweet potato.
You do have to plan ahead a little for this recipe and bake the sweet potato in the oven for about 45 minutes beforehand. But this can easily be done ahead of time and stored in the fridge or even freezer if you’re being super prepared.
These pancakes are best eaten piping hot, piled high with a dollop of coconut yoghurt and fresh fruit in season. I used kiwi berries and blueberries in these pictures which are great choices if you’re watching your fructose intake, along with a sprinkle of beetroot powder. Enjoy!
Spiced Sweet Potato Pancakes
Makes: 10 pancakes, enough for 2
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 20 minutes + 50 minutes for the sweet potatoes
150g cooked orange sweet potato (1 large)
2 eggs, separated
1/4 cup almond milk
1/4 cup ground almonds
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cardamon
pinch pink Himalayan salt
coconut oil for cooking
To cook the sweet potato, preheat the oven to 200ºC fan bake. Wash the sweet potato to remove any surface dirt, prick a few times with a fork and place on a lined oven tray in the centre of the oven. Bake for approximately 30-45 minutes depending on size. When you can easily slide a knife into the centre, it’s done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. The skin will literally steam itself loose and when cool enough to handle you should be able to easily peel it off.
Once the skin is removed, measure 150g of sweet potato into a bowl and add the yolks, almond milk, ground almonds, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, cardamon and salt. Stir with a whisk to combine.
Place the egg whites in a small bowl and whisk to soft peaks with an electric mixer.
Carefully fold the egg whites into the sweet potato mixture with a flat spatula, to ensure you keep as much air in the mixture as possible.
Heat a tablespoon of coconut oil in a fry pan over medium heat. When hot, add spoonfuls of pancake mix, shaping into round pancakes. Cook each pancake for a couple of minutes until you can see the bottom edges starting to colour, then flip them over to cook the other side.
Serve the pancakes hot with coconut yoghurt, a sprinkle of cinnamon, fresh fruit and (if you’re not on a sugar detox) a drizzle of pure maple syrup.