Mini carrot cake pancakes with maple mascarpone for Easter brunch or a spring party dessert. Edible flowers optional!
My urge to play around with edible flowers started a few weeks ago. I can’t remember if it was 70 and sunny or 15 and gusty. Either way, between the flowers and fruit smoothies, it’s obvious I’ve been searching for signs of spring. When I came across this mix of dried rose bud, lily, forget-me-not, and peony, I couldn’t resist.
Necessary? Not at all. But I’m loving the color and botanical flavor flowers add to food and drinks. They’re surprisingly versatile. I’ve been tossing a few in my afternoon tea. And I’m so making colorful ice cubes next time we have a party. (Or maybe just because it’s Thursday.) If you’re crafty, you can also use them in candles, soaps, and bath bombs, which I’d love to try if I have some extra time between work, travel, and taking care of the puppy.
My favorite use so far, though, is piling them on top mini carrot cake pancake stacks for spring.
This month’s theme for The Recipe Redux is to share a family-friendly recipe for springtime celebrations. Easter brunch is coming up, so I felt inspired to update my pumpkin pancakes for spring. Instead of pumpkin puree, I used finely grated carrots. I also topped these pancakes with the most amazing maple mascarpone drizzle, which is kind of like the cream cheese frosting on traditional carrot cake (but better). Then, of course, there’s the edible flower garnish, which is totally optional, but basically everything I’m loving about spring cooking right now.
These carrot cake pancakes are mini—about a quarter the size of regular flapjacks—perfect if you plan on serving a big spread for Easter brunch or have kids at the table. I’d love to see them alongside avocado toast, banana pecan muffins, or golden milk granola parfaits. They also work for dessert. I mean, there’s no bad time for carrot cake pancakes, right?
If you’ve never made pancakes before, the process is really simple. Mix the batter, spoon it onto a hot griddle or skillet, and wait for the tops to bubble. The bubbles are your cue to flip and cook the other side. As long as you don’t have the heat turned up too high, there’s no need to check or worry that the pancakes are burning until you see the bubbles. Works every time!
Another reason I love these carrot cake pancakes is that you can make the whole recipe ahead of time. Just keep the pancakes and mascarpone separate in the fridge until you’re ready to warm them up and serve. We’ve also been snacking on them cold, right out of the fridge. These carrot cake pancakes are that good. Go try them!
Mini carrot cake pancakes with maple mascarpone are the perfect addition to your Easter brunch menu—or serve them for dessert at your next spring party!
- 8 ounces melted mascarpone cheese (1 container, see note)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 cup finely grated carrot (about 3 medium)
- 2 beaten eggs (large, see note)
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- chopped nuts (such as walnuts or pecans)
- edible flowers (see note)
Add mascarpone, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt to blender container. Cover and blend until smooth. Set aside until ready to serve. (Sauce will thicken as it cools.)
Stir together flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk together milk, carrot, eggs, maple syrup, vanilla, and ginger in a separate bowl. Gradually pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients while stirring with a wooden spoon or spatula until the batter is consistent and smooth.
Heat a griddle or large cast iron skillet on low-medium. Pour a tablespoon of batter onto the griddle (I used a melon baller to scoop the batter). Spread the batter into a thin, round layer on the griddle, and cook 3-4 minutes, or until the top of the batter begins to bubble. Once bubbles are visible, use a spatula to flip, and cook an additional 2-3 minutes, or until pancake is golden brown and cooked through the center. Remove pancake from heat and cool on a plate until ready to serve. Repeat with remaining batter until all 28 mini pancakes are cooked.
Stack pancakes 3-4 high on a serving platter (stick a pick through the center of each stack if desired). Drizzle with maple mascarpone, and garnish with chopped nuts and edible flowers if desired.
Heat mascarpone in the microwave (1 minute) or over the stovetop until it melts and is pourable.
To make regular-sized pancakes, use 1/4 cup batter for each cake.
I used a variety of edible flowers for garnish, including rose bud, lily, forget-me-not, and peony. The flowers came dry, but I rehydrated petals in a bowl of water and patted dry with a paper towel before using them.
To make this recipe vegan, use flax eggs (see below) instead of chicken eggs, and use dairy-free cream cheese or yogurt instead of mascarpone.
To make one flax egg: Whisk together 1 tablespoon ground flax and 2 1/2 tablespoons water. Allow mixture to thicken to the consistency of a beaten egg before using.
Refrigerate pancakes and maple mascarpone separately in airtight containers. Reheat and enjoy within 3-5 days.
Did you make these mini carrot cake pancakes with maple mascarpone?
Rate this recipe and leave a comment below, or snap a photo and tag me (@gratefulgrazer) on Instagram. I love seeing your creations!