I was at a culinary crossroads the other day. My fiancé wanted me to make my mom’s sticky pecan cinnamon rolls for breakfast, but I knew that request would take a few hours by the time I had a chance to make the dough, let it rise, add the filling, let the buns proof in the pan, and bake. Instead, I decided to channel my inner Pancake Princess and make cinnamon roll pancakes, a mashup of our two favorite breakfast foods.
These pancakes do include a few steps, but are a really fun way to get the kids involved in the kitchen. Who knows? If the kids are old enough, by the time quarantine is over, maybe they’ll be cooking for you! I can’t wait to have friends over for brunch when life gets back to normal, and these will definitely be on my menu. I love the crunchy texture the cinnamon-brown sugar swirl adds to these pancakes, and I’m willing to bet that chopped nuts would be a great addition to these too, if that’s your style. I also love that this recipe uses pantry staples, so it should prove easy to make without special trips to the grocery store during quarantine.
The perfect pairing for these pancakes is the newest coffee craze that has been sweeping through quarantine homes (and the Internet) everywhere. It’s called Dalgona coffee, and it credited with coming from South Korea. It is very similar to phenti hui coffee, which is an Indian version of whipped coffee where the milk is poured on top of the whipped coffee, but Dalgona coffee has the whipped coffee sit on top of the milk. I think this might make a coffee lover out of anyone!
From what I’ve read, ground coffee beans will not work in this recipe, as it is the instant coffee, and the way the granules are dried that helps create the whipped texture in this recipe. Essentially, you whip equal parts instant coffee, sugar, and hot water until it’s thick and creamy. You serve the whipped coffee over warm or iced milk, but I’m enjoying the iced version most right now. If you’re wondering if this works without sugar, it does, but the mixture won’t be as thick and will deflate quickly because the sugar actually provides structure to the mixture, but I fully support as much experimenting as you feel is necessary!
Cinnamon Roll Pancakes
Scroll down for a printable version of this recipe
For the swirl:
2/3 cup brown sugar
5 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
For the pancakes:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon TCB fine salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
1 1/4 cups milk
3 Tablespoons vinegar
3 Tablespoons melted unsalted butter
For the icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
4 Tablespoons melted unsalted butter
3 Tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1/4 teaspoon TCB fine salt
1. In a small bowl (or use a small saucepan to heat on the stove), mix together ingredients for the swirl: brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Microwave for 30-60 seconds until smooth and combined. It will be the consistency of a thick syrup. Place the mixture into a squeeze bottle or a Ziploc bag.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients for the pancakes: flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
3. In a small bowl, mix together the wet ingredients for the pancakes: vanilla bean paste, eggs, milk, vinegar, and melted butter.
4. Whisk wet ingredients into dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Some lumps are okay!
5. In a small bowl, mix together icing ingredients: powdered sugar, butter, milk, vanilla bean paste, and salt until combined and smooth.
6. Heat an electric skillet to 350 degrees, or a non-stick pan over medium heat, add enough butter to coat the surface of the skillet or pan when melted.
7. Ladle pancake mixture onto skillet, let the pancake cook for 1 minute so that it starts to bubble.
8. Take the bottle or bag (snip the corner of the bag) with the swirl mixture and create a swirl on top of the pancake.
9. Let cook for another minute and flip.
10. Cook the pancake another 2 minutes, or until done, on the other side.
11. Serve the pancakes swirl side up and drizzle with icing! You can serve with maple syrup if you wish, but I found them to be sweet enough with the icing.
Makes 2 servings
2 Tablespoons instant coffee
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons hot water
1. Add all three ingredients to your stand mixer (this can also be done with a hand mixer, or by hand – but it will take significantly longer, and may count as your arm work out for the day!).
2. Start your mixer on low speed, and gradually increase to high.
3. Whip for 5-7 minutes, until you have a thick, creamy texture like whipped cream.
After 2 minutes: you can see the color of the mixture has lighted significantly, but it’s not thick enough to form peaks.
After 6 minutes: you can see the color has lightened even more and stiff peaks are formed!
4. Serve over milk (iced or warm, however you like!).
These pancakes and coffee are the perfect combo to start any day and are bound to bring smiles all around, even during quarantine!
You know what else is really making me smile these days? Our virtual cooking classes! We’re offering both demonstrations and Cook Along classes, and they are a great way to learn something new. Our first Cook Along class is this evening at 5pm CST. The Chopping Block's Owner/Chef Shelley Young will be teaching you how to make Cacio e Pepe, a delicious pasta dish. Enrollment is limited to 20 guests to provide one-on-one time with the chef!
While we can’t wait to see you in our kitchens once it’s safe to do so, this is a great way to cook with your friends near and far so be sure and sign up. We can’t wait to “see” you!