There was one day last week (or maybe the week before) when I stole 15 minutes and started to soak some grains and make yogurt in preparation for the days coming ahead.
When it was all said and done, four different recipes were going at the same time. Since they need to sit unbothered for a day or so, I put them all on the same counter and pushed them to the back, declaring the area off-limits to little reaching hands and curious eyes.
I distinctly remember the first time I tried soaking something (the wrong way, might I add) and Mr. Crumbs asked me, “What are you growing?” He’s stopped asking so many questions about what I’m growing or sprouts or soaking nowadays, but I thought it would be fun to give the area its own little moniker. You know, ’cause I’m kinda nerdy like that.
Allow me to introduce, “Fermentation Station!”
You’ll see the cooling yogurt on the stove, kefir in the quart mason jar with coffee filter, the container with the green lid has wheat soaking for pancakes and my Kitchen Aid mixer bowl is holding soaking flour for yeasted buttermilk bread (both the pancakes and bread are Nourishing Traditions recipes, by the way).
The full Fermentation Station is set-up at least once a week, with a partial station going on ’round the clock. The bowl of wheat for pancakes could easily be porridge (which is what is soaking as I write this post) and my next attempt at bread will be a soaked version of Rosemary Olive Oil – the one that is ALWAYS requested by Mr. Crumbs.
The neat thing about soaking grains is that the longer they soak, the better. You can read more about soaking grains HERE. Knowing that the soaking time isn’t really an exact science offers a HUGE relief when you’ve got unexpected appointments (or laundry) that seem to take over the day. I think that batch of pancakes may have soaked for closer to 36 hours instead of the average 24.
I mentioned that these overnight soaked whole grain pancakes were from Nourishing Traditions, and I’m sharing that recipe with you today. So far it’s the most satisfying recipe I’ve made from the book. The kids and I each ate two and I wasn’t hungry for well past lunch. We served them with grass-fed butter and honey. You could use maple syrup instead or even homemade fruit butter.
In fact, it would be wise to make a double batch of these because not only will you enjoy them immensely for breakfast, but top with a thin layer of nut butter and sliced bananas and you’ve got a “lunch pizza,” just like this week’s real food menu suggests. Or freeze the extras so you have an easy breakfast later on.
adapted from Nourishing Traditions (dairy-free and vegan options below)
- Prep Time: 12 hours, 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minutes
- Total Time: 12 hours 27 minutes
- Yield: 8 pancakes 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Skillet
- Cuisine: American
- 2 cups freshly ground spelt, kamut or whole wheat flour (I used pre-ground flour since I’m not quite ready to grind my own just yet)
- 2 cups yogurt, kefir or buttermilk**
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 2 Tbsp melted butter
- Combine flour and yogurt/kefir/butter in a large bowl and cover. Leave in a warm place overnight, at least 12 hours, up to 24 (or 36 😉 ).
- Add remaining ingredients and combine well. (Note: you may lightly beat the eggs beforehand to help with the mixing, or you can just toss those in with un-melted butter like I did).
- If the batter is too thick, you may thin with water (I thought the batter to be fine).
- On a pre-heated griddle or oiled cast-iron skillet, pour 1/4 cup of batter and cook the pancakes until bubbles appear on cooked edges. Flip and continue to cook for another few minutes.
- These pancakes take longer to cook than traditional pancakes, maybe 5-7 minutes or so on the first side and an additional 4-5 on the second. Stay in the kitchen the first time you make them to get your bearings on the cooking time.
** Many individuals who are lactose intolerant are able to successfully digest homemade yogurt that has been cultured for 24 hours. Those with severe allergies to dairy products can substitute lemon juice or apple cider vinegar using 2 Tbsp of acid medium and scant 2 cups of water.
- Calories: 186
Keywords: Soaked Whole Grain Pancakes
Recipe Tips & Variations
- We made this recipe with homemade buttermilk, but it would be just as good with either yogurt or kefir (depending what you had in the fridge).
- You can add whatever fruit or vegetables you’d like to this recipe. Just add them when you add the eggs and butter after soaking.
- You may have to add water to the batter depending on what fruits or vegetables you add. I folded in chopped apple without the need of added liquid, but using pureed pumpkin would surely require a few tablespoons of water.
- Are you short on time? Try making this recipe in a sheet pan in the oven! Yes, it really works!
Dairy Free / Vegan Option: Substitute flaxseed & water for eggs, melted coconut oil for butter and use lemon juice or vinegar for soaking.
I mentioned this when sharing the breakfast porridge recipe, but using fresh fruit or vegetables will naturally sweeten the pancake instead of using costly honey or maple syrup. A mashed banana, diced strawberries and melted butter would be delicious all on their own. This is a great way to stretch the budget and like you’ll find in Grocery Budget Bootcamp.
Could you use almond milk to soak the flour? Would you just add 2T of vinegar to the almond milk and flour and leave on the counter overnight?
Brittany @ Team Crumbs
Great question! I wouldn’t recommend leaving almond milk out at room temperature. The reason that we can leave cultured buttermilk, yogurt, or kefir out is because they are cultured.
Oh, I was thinking of using homemade Cashew milk (made by blending 2 ingredients water/cashews) and 2 Tbsp Apple Cider vinegar as a substitute for the buttermilk. You don’t recommend this?
Hi Wendy! You can definitely use your cashew milk with ACV. We were just thinking LONG term. 🙂
Thank you for sharing this recipe! My children really enjoyed (more like devoured) these! I used grassfed greek yogurt and whole wheat flour. I do have one question: last night when I put it together it was not in liquid form, it was a dry-ish doughy sort of blob – this morning, in addition to the rest of the ingredients, I added water to it until it got to the consistency I liked, but should I have added water, or butter milk or something else last night when it was “soaking” or was it supposed to just be in a dough-like blob? Did it get the same benefits? I kept thinking I was doing something wrong . . .
Kyare - Team Crumbs
Hey, glad to hear your family enjoyed the pancakes! if the dough is to thick it is best to thin with water the morning you cook them, just like you did.
Best pancakes I ever made! They turned out so soft and fluffy just the way I like them. I used milk kefir and added some mapel syrup. I love that its lite and easy on stomach too.
I figured I’ve made this enough that I should probably comment. This is a favorite at our house and I must have made it at least 30 times, probably more. It has never failed me and it is so easy! I make it so often that I keep a link to it on my phone homepage and almost always make it as a sheet pancake (also found on here) which is so much faster. 😋 Thanks for making this mom life so much easier! 😍
Karen @ Team Crumbs
That is so great to hear! We’re so happy that you and your family love it!
Could you in the near future make a video tutorial on this recipe since there’s not much info on the subject. I have been giving it a go on homemade kefir using raw milk so any extra tips would be awesome! Thanks
Wonderful recipe!!!! Just tried it today! It makes beautiful, light, fluffy pancakes! This is now my go-to recipe! 👍👍👍
I’m so glad you enjoyed it Destiny!
Can you use yogurt whey to soak?
Silly question: How do you get the UN-melted butter to mix into the batter or even get it to combine with the eggs? Should that have been melted butter?
Just a friendly heads up that you might need to change the amount of baking soda, as 1/2 t. of salt and 2 t. baking soda would make for way too much sodium (and alkaline taste) for only 2 cups of flour. The Nourishing Traditions recipe actually only calls for 1 t. of baking soda. Anyhow, keep up the good recipes and topics!
They were amazing! And fluffy! I topped them with honey, quark and pomegranate and it was really lovely. I am counting calories, so I omit the butter, but they were still perfect and the batter was great without adding any water. The only thing I somewhat question is the amount of baking soda – I can almost taste it in the pancake, I will use less next time.
I just soaked for for about 36 hours and they came out with a slightly fermented taste. Can anything be done to cover that up?
Not really Kate, that’s a natural smell from the bacteria. You can help off-set the flavor though, with foods that are slightly sweet like cinnamon and banana. If you go super sweet, it’ll just come out weird. Your best best is to treat it like a sourdough pancake, or buttermilk pancake with that slight sour taste.