Ring in the New Year with Chocolate Peanut Butter Pancakes

Yes, you heard me. Chocolate. Peanut Butter. Pancakes.

100_4450Better yet, the peanut butter and chocolate are STUFFED into the pancake.

Winter and cold weather is ultimate comfort food time, and to me, comfort food usually involves gorging myself on carbs. So this recipe is NOT for the diet friendly resolutions you might have made for January 1st. But, if it’s January 2nd and you’ve already given up, then read on, otherwise, pin it for later. 😉 I do intend on posting some healthified recipes though, this just isn’t one of them.

I love being inspired and getting a recipe right on the first try. It’s a magical feeling and I get to eat the reward rather than trash it (I’m a stickler for no food waste so I hate having to toss a batch of something because it didn’t work).

I had Double Chocolate Pancakes a few weeks ago at Bob Evans (basically chocolate chip pancakes served with chocolate syrup and a cup of table syrup). They were awesome, but definitely not worth running to a Bob Evans when the craving strikes and I was in a peanut buttery kind of mood too.

I searched the web for peanut butter cup pancakes and found a few options, but mostly just pictures. The Minimalist Baker (whom I’ve shared a recipe from before) has a delicious looking vegan and gluten-free option but I didn’t have access to those ingredients- but I do wish to try theirs someday! I was inspired by their Peanut Butter Cup Pancakes (<–click there for that recipe!) but I wanted to go a different route. And I didn’t have a lot of time, so I went for the short cut as well. Here goes:

Ingredients:
1 small (5.1oz) container of Bisquick Shanke ‘n Pour Buttermilk Pancake Mix
2/3 cup plus 2 TBSP Water
3 tsp cocoa powder (I used dutch processed)
Squirt of agave (optional, but gives the pancake added sweetness to counteract the cocoa)
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips (divided)
2-4 TBSP Creamy Peanut Butter (divided) OR peanut butter chips
Oil for skillet
Chocolate Syrup, Butter, Maple Syrup, Powdered Sugar, Cocoa Powder, and/or Whipped Cream for topping (Optional)

Directions:
1- Preheat your skillet to medium-high.
2- Open the Shake ‘n Pour, add cocoa powder. Replace lid and shake to combine.
3- Remove lid and add liquid ingredients (water and agave). Replace lid and shake to combine.
4- Add oil to your hot pan and let heat for about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
5- Pour in some of the cocoa pancake mix. (I made large pancakes, but you can make sand dollar ones if you wish.)
6- While the first side cooks, dollop some peanut butter in the middle of the pancake. You can make several small dollops or melt the peanut butter in the microwave and pour some onto the pancake.
7- After the peanut butter is on, top with some of the mini chocolate chips (the 1/4 cup in the recipe is for all pancakes so it will depend on how many pancakes you want to make).
8- Top with a little more of the batter to cover the peanut butter (otherwise it will burn in the skillet).
9- When the first side is done (time depends on the size, but you’ll see bubbles forming around the edges and middle of the uncooked side of the pancake.) Flip and cook until the other side is done (Will be quicker than the first side, but time depends on the size for large ones it was about 5 minutes for the first side and 3 for the second- but mine were large AND thick).
10- Remove to a plate (or if making a large batch, place a cookie sheet covered with foil in the oven on low to keep warm until ready to serve).
11- Repeat with remaining batter. It made 2 and a half large ones for me (which was fine since it was just me) which is probably 8-10 of the smaller sand dollar size, again, depending on thickness).
12- Serve topped with your choice of toppings.

*some variations*
You can easily mix up the combinations per your tastes. Try any of the following, or create your own!
*Keep the buttermilk base, fill the middle with jelly and peanut butter for tasty pb&j cakes.
*Keep the buttermilk base, fill the middle with a few teaspoons of pie filling for a fruity cake.
*Keep the buttermilk base, fill the middle with dollops of cream cheese and a few teaspoons of pie filling for cheesecake pancakes.
*Keep the buttermilk base or use the cocoa added base and fill with any variety of chocolate chips (white, milk, semi-sweet) and create a double or triple chocolate cake.
*Add a few drops of red food coloring to the cocoa base and fill with dollops of cream cheese for a red velvet cake

Of course, you can add a variety of items to the pancake base, including (and not limited to!) chocolate chips, fruit, sprinkles, any food coloring to match the occasion.
I love the idea of having the filled pancakes but an old fashioned plain buttermilk pancake with butter and syrup can easily hit the spot too. But, if a plain pancake bores you, use your imagination or take some of my suggestions and create a more exciting combination. Particularly if there isn’t a fancy pancake themed restaurant nearby.

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