5 Ingredient Grain-free Pancakes (with NO sugar or sweeteners)

Candida Pancakes (57)

I managed to attract many a sleaze bucket back in the day. But Kevin? He was a gentleman from the very beginning with a charming swagger and hunger for life that I just couldn’t not fall in love with.

We courted. Like, really courted. For months. I got flowers, real dates – tickets to shows, fancy dinners and trips to the mountains, spa days even.

One of my favorite memories of our first few months together were the Sunday breakfasts we had. He’d come over to my house bright and early Sunday morning with a bag of fresh fruit, two extra large coffees (back then I was a heavy smoker and coffee drinker, couldn’t get started without it) and a hungry belly.

He’d sit at my kitchen table chatting away with me while I made us pancakes. Always pancakes. He had 3, I had 2. He had loads of maple syrup on his, I had almond butter and jam.

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I wrote the recipe on a little sticky note that very first day that he came over for breakfast all those 5 years ago and stuck it to the inside of the pantry door. Since then, the sticky note has traveled with us from our condo in downtown Calgary, to the home we built out of the city, to the little duplex we now call home in Montreal. Still stuck to the inside of the pantry door, still followed every Sunday, still 5 pancakes, maple syrup, almond butter and jam.

This is that recipe… I hope you enjoy it as much as we have over the years!

Candida Pancakes (56)

To view, print or text this recipe, click here.

4.3 from 7 reviews
5 Ingredient Grain-free Pancakes
Recipe type: Vegan (option), Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Sugar-free, Yeast-free, Corn-free, Grain-free, Nut-free, Egg-free (option)
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
A 5 ingredient grain-free pancake recipe with a crazy amount of protein and fiber and 0 sugars or sweeteners.
  1. Place a small non-stick frying pan on the stove and set stove top to medium-high heat.
  2. Add flour, cinnamon and baking powder to a medium-sized bowl and whisk with a fork to break up the clumps.
  3. Add water, eggs and vanilla. Whisk to combine. Allow to sit for 2 minutes.
  4. Drop ¼ cup of the batter (if using crepe-like water measurement) or ⅓ cup of the batter (if using thicker pancake water measurement) into the preheated pan. Allow to cook until bubbles form, about 2 minutes.
  5. Reduce heat to medium, flip, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove pancake from the pan and return the pan back to the burner. Crank heat back up to medium-high, wait 30 seconds, then add another round of batter.
  6. Repeat until all pancakes are complete.
  7. Makes 5-6 pancakes
I have tried to make these vegan before by adding 2 flax eggs - 2 tablespoons of freshly ground flax seed with 6 tablespoons of warm water, allowed to sit for 5 minutes. It worked out okay when using the ½ cup water measurement, but using eggs yields a better result.
I use a gluten-free baking powder (linked in the recipe) that requires DOUBLE the amount than what you would use if you were baking with regular baking powder. Be sure to adjust recipe if you're not using Ener-G gluten-free baking powder.
You can make these pancakes ahead of time, cool and place in the freezer. When ready to eat, just add them to the toaster for 1 minute or so (on low heat) and you're good to go!

View nutrition information (once on page, scroll down)


This is what the top of the pancake should look like before you flip it, and then this is what it should look like after it’s flipped.

If you oil the pan slightly, there will be bubbles on the top of the pancake, as you see below. If you do not oil the pan, there will be no bubbles (as you see with the main pictures of the recipe).


The reason I made this recipe with 0 sugars, sweeteners or unrefined sugars was so that Kevin and I could add our own flavors on top of our personal stack of pancakes. Often times we pour sugar on top of pancakes anyways – in the form of maple syrup, jams, butters, that I figured the sugar in the actual pancake wouldn’t be missed at all.

If you’re following a sugar-free diet, these babies are great with melted coconut butter and coconut oil on top. The coconut adds a lot of natural sweetness!

Candida Pancakes (43)

Or you could just add a bunch of maple syrup… as Kevin does.

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Okay, now it’s your turn – I want to hear about YOUR love stories…

What’s the craziest date you’ve ever been on? It can be crazy good, crazy bad, crazy romantic… whatever!

Breakfast in bed – do you dig it?

Leave your gushy, lovestruck missive in the comments below!

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

    • Awe, thanks Erica! I’ve missed you… hope things are going well :)

  1. Absolutely adorable story….and exquisite looking pancake perfection…Question…Would there be a way of making these slightly LESS caloric?…Is the serving size for one pancake?!…Thanks so much…and I just happen to have my handy dandy cinnamon supply as well as chickpea flour in the cupboard!

    • Thanks Donna! The recipe makes 2 servings, about 5-6 pancakes. So you can divvy them up serving wise however you’d like!

  2. Love the story! My best date ever was my first real date with my husband. We worked together, so had hung out for a months before we started dating, but our first actual date, we stopped at a 7-11, got a six pack and sandwiches and sat on the edge of Boston Harbor (where we live) and ate, drank and talked for HOURS! It was so simple and yet, so perfectly what I wanted from a date.

    The pancakes look great – one question… could I use garbanzo/fava flour blend? I happen to have that in the cupboard and want to know if I need to go shopping before making these! My kiddos (and husband) LOVE pancakes and I make them most weekends for a lazy family breakfast. Always looking for a good, simple recipe to replace a mix.

    I’ve been loving your blog – ventured over here from your post on Skinnytaste and been visiting ever since. We are a gluten-free, dairy-free family, so your recipes are perfect!

    • Hi Candice – wow, that is SO cool. So simple, but perfect and real. Real dates are good. Yes, for the pancakes – I’ve used a bean flour blend tons of times and it works great. So happy that you’ve stuck around and that you’re enjoying the blog. That means so much to me. Have a fabulous day, Candice :)

  3. Ok, these look SO perfect! Like they belong on a restaurant menu or something. I’m totally going to try them, and I LOVE the story about you and Kevin having pancake breakfasts. Remind me to tell you my crazy sushi date story next time we chat!

  4. Pancakes… Gotta love ‘em!

    My love story is one that really blew my mind – I hadn’t seen a whole lot of marriages succeed (almost EVERYONE in my immediate family had been divorced at least once) and couldn’t figure out what the point was. I was happily making plans to be a single parent (my mom had done it quite well) and was unhappily contemplating “settling” for a less-than-ideal romantic relationship (not perfect, mind you, I know better than to think perfection exists). I dated a lot – a LOT – and so, when my husband-to-be first entered my life, I did what seemed totally natural at the time: I ignored him.

    Then, after a few months, something about him caught my attention. I still wasn’t sure what it was, exactly, but he was different. A little time went by when we just sort of hovered near one another, but didn’t really do anything about it. Until one day, he said, in a deep, low, quiet voice, “Do you wanna come over to the house?” I remember looking him straight in the eyes and replying, just as seriously, “Do you really want me to?” He admitted later that he almost choked and changed his mind, but he replied in the affirmative. Three days later, after spending almost every waking moment together, he said, “If we were married…” I didn’t hear the rest of his sentence because I had a real life, honest to goodness vision of our wedding day that turned out to be spot on.

    The thirteenth anniversary of that day is rapidly approaching and I adore him far more now than I did then (though I could scarcely have believed at the time that that could be possible). He blew my heart open and it still catches in my throat some days that he’s mine after almost eleven years of marriage.

  5. Hi Leanne! These look delicious!!! I know what I am making this weekend!:). Just wondering what type of non stic pan you use? I had switched over to stainless a while back and BOY do things stick!! I have been checking out cast iron but they seem pretty pricy. Any ideas? I love your frugality yet your passion for quality!! Thanks!! I so fromlook forward to reading your blog every day to see what creative new thing you have come up with!!:)

    • Hey Melanie – I use the bad for your health, totally not approved or safe non-stick pans for our pancakes. I haven’t been able to find anything that I can cook with, without tons of oil that doesn’t stick like crazy, as you mentioned! I figure if it’s the only thing I ever cook in the thing, I think it’s okay. Other than that, I use cast iron for everything!

  6. OMG–this recipe is so timely! I was looking thru my collection of alternative flours and found a bag of garbanzo flour and thought–“how am I going to use this?” I have a bunch of flour leftover from the days of trying gluten free cooking for my autistic son. One question for you…. I have stored these bags of flour in the fridge since day one of getting them but they have not been used in a very long time–over two years. Do you think they are still good? I have garbanzo flour, black bean flour and quinoa flour. Thanks for any help. I am new to your blog and while we don’t have any food allergies per se, I love the recipes. I am a super healthy eater/home cook so thanks for this website : )

    • Kathi,

      Your flours should be fine to use. Bean flours aren’t like grain flours; they don’t have the fats in them that make grain flours go rancid. Besides, you’ve kept them refrigerated. As long as they were well-sealed to prevent flavor contamination, you’re good to go. :)

    • Hi Kathi! So great to hear from you. Two years… hmm. Generally I’d say that you could just taste test the flour – if it’s bitter then it’s no good. But chickpea flour is naturally really bitter. I like to keep everything about a year before chucking it. But since you had it in the fridge it should last a little longer. I’d say 2 years may be a bit too long though!

  7. This is so tasty sounding! I love making breakfast for my boyfriend too! He works midnights on the weekend ( :( ) so when he comes home he just wants to sleep, but not before I make him something tasty! I will make these soon for him! We generally go a waffle route, but pancakes will be great!

  8. Let me start by saying that I am not young any more. I had may share of serious relationships and marrriages. (yes, more than one) I always said I would settle down if my High School Sweetheart found me. Thanks to facebook a few years back, we are now together. He courted me for awhile and I gave up my dream job to move to where he is. Love is where I knew it belonged all along. Why did I let him go the first time sparks flew? Retirement with this man will be sublime!
    I enjoy your healthy deserts, we both have a sweet tooth and neither of us needs the sugar!

  9. Mmmmm, pancakes…..with almond butter and strawberry jam! Lovely story and a perfect way to begin the day with a sweet love story!
    I was ready to be single forever, had a slew of bad relationships and was done. I had two great jobs and a wonderful group of friends. I was living on the east coast and loved my life! I flew to CO to visit my younger brother and sister and help my brother celebrate his birthday. My sister was dying to set me up on a blind date. We all know how those things are right? Well meaning but most of the time truly awkward for the participants! I held her off with lots of excuses. Finally the night of brothers big party arrived! Around 22 of us were renting a limo and heading downtown to have some fun. Who shows up on my brothers doorstep a couple of minutes before we are about to leave? My blind date. Oh, Nelly! Wow, was one word to describe him but after many years of ‘wow’ essentially turning into arrogant, insensitive jerks, I kept my distance! Little did I know that my sister had tricked him into coming and he was just as unhappy as I was! With that many people it was pretty easy to stay a safe distance away until the entire party decided to leave us alone. Hmmm, he actually SEEMS nice…..was my first thought. By the end of the evening I found a new respect for the opposite sex. I kissed his cheek and told him what a pleasure it had been to meet him. That was that right? I lived half a continent away.
    I received an email a week later. The emails were fast and furious and eventually led to phone calls, then a planned visit. After four such planned visits I was engaged and moving to CO. Nine months later I was married! He still never ceases to amaze me and I still get fluttery butterflies when I see him! We are celebrating our 10 year anniversary this June. :)

  10. Hi,
    Thanks for the pancake recipe…. will try it on the weekend.
    Love??? story:
    I was at work (small company). I was alone at work. This guy comes in and he immediately starts swooning over me. He left when he found that the boss was not in. A few hours later he calls the office and starts flirting again. It was Friday and he asked me out. Then explained that I would have to pick him up because he didn’t have a car. Ok I said. So that evening I drove to his house and he informs me that we were going to the dog track (yuck) He paid the entry fee and then went to the betting office, turned to me and asked me to loan him some money. I smartly told him I didn’t have any cash on me. We then walked away and we found seats. He excused himself … and I knew he went to buy bets. After two hrs of being patient I said to him lets go home. (he took that wrong) I dropped him off and he tried to get me into his place… but used my dtr as an excuse. Never heard from him again. Thank God.

  11. Would these work for a diabetic who is able to control his sugar by maintaining a low glycemic diet?

    • Hi Diana – it depends on what protocol he’s following. If he’s counting carbohydrates, and there’s room in his day for these, yes. Chickpea flour has a glycemic index of 27 I believe. Hope that helps!

  12. Oh my… I am loving the sound of grain free and no sweeteners!!! I completely agree, it’s all about the toppings. I’ve been cutting grains way back lately so this is perfect. Still on the fence with eggs these days though, I may try it with chia or flax egg.

  13. I love pancakes!! Pancakes were the first meal I shared with Marty, so they mean something special to me as well. :) Will definitely have to try these grain-free/sugar-free versions. I love putting maple syrup on my pancakes as well, so they don’t need much (or any) sweetener in there to begin with.

    As far as our love story goes, Marty and I were literally brought together by divine intervention. I hardly ever left my house and wondered how I would ever meet somebody. Marty was only back in Calgary for one night, planning to move to Victoria the very next morning. We met at a party that had been organized by one of our mutual friends. This friend was hosting the party at Marty’s house, so Marty had to be there, but I ended up being the only real ‘guest’ to show up. We talked for HOURS that first night. I ended up staying over because we literally couldn’t stop talking until the wee hours of the next morning, and after a few hours of sleep, we woke up and Marty made us pancakes with homemade raspberry syrup from his backyard garden. We met on a Saturday, moved in together the following Monday, said the L-word to each other on Wednesday, and have never looked back. We’ll be celebrating 10 years together this year. :)

  14. Craziest date, hands down, was my senior prom date. And crazy is crazy BAD here. After purchasing my prom gown and then breaking up with my boyfriend of over a year, this guy I had a HUGE crush on asked me to prom. I was ecstatic! We agreed to a double date; his not-from-our-school friend would take my friend and we’d have a great time. His friend was cute, so my friend agreed and it was on!

    Days passed, no plans were surfacing. Were we going to dinner? Where? What color was his tux? What about flowers? Who was driving? Were prom tickets purchased? Oh the agony! My guy kept telling me he was wearing sneakers to prom. I didn’t believe him, but lo-and-behold, he showed up in sneakers, as did his friend. Us girls?? Devastated. They picked us up in his friend’s car, full of everything from fast food wrappers to dirty sports uniforms and equipment. It smelled awful and we had to drag our expensive dresses over all of it so we could sit in the back seat of a two-door once-was-a-sports-car. Yep, the guys got the front. We had to stop by their place of employment so they could show off their tuxes. We had to stay in the car. They took us to dinner where our biggest rival school had planned for their pre-prom dinner. Awkward. They knew it. They liked it that way. Making a scene, making sure everyone noticed them. We ordered dinner and ate. Waitress asked if we wanted dessert, the guys said no because we needed to get going. So my friend and I went to the ladies room to freshen up before leaving, only to come back to table to discover the guys eating dessert. UGH!

    Once we got to the prom, they ditched us. Not for other girls, but to goof off and hang out with another group of their friends. All of the “ditched” girlfriends found a table of our own and actually ended up having a good time without the guys. The last dance rolled around and my date finally came to ask me to dance. I believe it was the first time since walking through the door to the dance that he spoke to me. Reluctantly, I agreed. As if it was planned, one of my best guy friends cut in just after the song started, citing that we hadn’t danced all night, and I quickly obliged! Prom date was dumb-founded. Couldn’t have been a sweeter end to a miserable date!

    This made for a quite a story over the years and somehow grew funnier and funnier each time it was told. I didn’t see the guy again once we graduated until our 20th reunion. He bee-lined over to me and spent most of the night apologizing for that awful night. Apologized for every single detail, especially his more-than-macho attitude. We had a chance to laugh about it and move on. Sadly, only a few months after that, he passed away. At the funeral home I stopped to talk to his mother. When she saw me, she hugged me and said, “I remember you – you were that poor girl my son took to the prom in sneakers. I’m so sorry honey!” We laughed and hugged. Looks like the story became quite the conversation piece during family gatherings for both of us!

    • Sam – in brackets is option and below in notes she put flax egg option. I made these this morning but being vegan I switched out the eggs for 1/4c of unsweetened applesauce and did not change anything else. Can I just say, WOW. Gotta try it. They were thin, cooked perfect and with a spread of almond butter I rolled up and ate 2,. Can’t wait for tomorrow tho have the other 2 Thanks Leanne

      • I’m so happy that you liked them, Stefania!

    • Hi Sam – thanks for catching that! It should have had a “option” behind the word vegan as I’ve included a vegan option in the notes of the recipe. Thanks again!

  15. In the egg r=free version, can you replace half or all of the garbanzo bean flour with protein powder?


    • Hi Chris – I haven’t tried that… ever! But if you do, let me know! I’m sure we would all benefit from it!

    • Hi Saniel – I explain this in the notes of the recipe with instructions and all :)

  16. aww! That is the best story! I want to make these pancakes sure. They look delicious, but that story is my favourite thing today :) Thanks for sharing the recipe and story.

  17. Here is a funny storey. My hubby and I had been dating for six years when I read an article about how to really shock your man. So with that article in mind I decided to really step outside my comfort zone and wear no panties on our next date. I was so nervous and a bit excited to see what his reaction would be. I squirmed through dinner sure that everyone knew I was being naughty. Then half way through the movie I leaned over and whispered in his ear “I am not wearing any panties”. His reaction was priceless. “Neither am I, be quiet and watch the movie”. He assumed that I needed to do some laundry, which was the reason he was going commando. Although I didn’t get the reaction I was hoping for, we are still laughing about it 16 years later. That is love.
    Thanks for the pancake recipe. I will be trying it very soon!

    • GREAT story – Love it!! I’m totally cracking up – sounds like something that would happen between me and my hubby. :D

  18. I forgot to tell my food/love story: At hubby and I’s first day we went to a restaurant and he walked into the door after he opened it for me. He felt so stupid but I thought it was sweet that he was too busy looking at me. He thought that I was cute for holding up my little pinky when I drank water and that I ate so slowly, when I felt like he thought I must be trying to be prim and proper when that really is a habit I don’t even realize I do with my finger and I have chewed my food 30+ times since I learned that you should when I was a teenager.
    For dinner he ordered spaghetti and made slurping noises and a little bit of a mess when he was eating. Getting some on his shirt and all over his mouth and chin. He later told me he felt he had screwed up being a pig and walking into the door. I told him I thought he was adorable and funny. I loved it!!! It made me laugh and feel comfortable instead of self conscious.
    Now, our girls love hearing this story over and over :)

  19. What a sweet story! I’ll have to give these pancakes a try!

    I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made those vegan parmesan cheese crisps! I would have made some last night, but I didn’t have any lemons ;-P


  20. First it was chocolate pudding, now pancakes….Yet another post where you and I created similar deliciousness! I posted pancakes just a couple of weeks ago! Sugar free as well! Crazy! Also crazy – that you used to be a heavy smoker! I would not have gathered that from reading your blog.

    I love your story about the post-it pancakes and how Kevin and you would make them every Sunday. So sweet. I met my husband when we were training to be opera singers at University and one night, suddenly due to the death of the conductor’s mother, rehearsal was cancelled. He offered several women a ride home that night, along with me who happened to be in the room at the time (probably felt guilty to leave me out). He did not know my name and dropped the other girls off. As he was driving me home he said casually “Too bad rehearsal was cancelled, it’s Tuesday night and it would be nice to go to a movie” and I replied “Ok, let’s go!” (as if it was an invitation…..). We spent the entire night together and he still did not know my name – ended up asking another cast member at rehearsal the next night because he wanted to call me again. The rest is history – 11 years later and still creating love stories together!

  21. Leanne, I LOVE it when you share stories about you and Kevin. You two seem SO adorable together, and I am SUCH a romantic. I absolutely cannot resist hearing tales like this. You absolutely MUST follow it up with another one. And pictures of the two of you in your earlier years! (I canNOT believe you used to be a “HEAVY smoker”. Just can’t imagine it!)

  22. I love recipes that come with a story – and what a great story this was one! This sounds like such a simple and delicious recipe, I love that that postit has travelled so far both in time and in location to be posted on your site today. Yum!

  23. I’ve always loved the idea of breakfast in bed, but never actually liked it! I think I’m too much of a clean freak. Crumbs on the sheets, no thank you! These pancakes look so yummy and I love that they’re grain free.

  24. I love these sorts of posts! adorable story, Leanne! And I will definitely try this recipe! Thank you!

  25. These are brilliant, Leanne! Love how simple they are, and you are so right – why put sugars into our pancakes when we always end up putting more on top in some way, shape, or form anyways?! Making these soon for sure! I have a bag of chickpea flour to use up! :)

    • So happy that you like them, Andrea! Have an awesome weekend!

  26. Hello

    These pancakes look amazing but I was wondering if the chickpea/garbanzo bean flour
    could be substituted for coconut flour or Almond flour?

  27. I want to try this soon, but don’t have the chickpea flour. I will have to get on that soon.

    The first time my husband and I met in person, he was flying in and I was supposed to pick him up at the airport. My sister happened to be in town that weekend and I had told her I was meeting up with him and had called her right before I left for the airport. I didn’t have a cell phone at the time, just a landline. I got to the airport and I of course I was too excited to meet him in person and I didn’t write down the airline he was flying in on. I only had his flight number. I thought he was flying American. So I waited and waited and waited. He never showed up. It was 2 hours later when I asked some random person if I could use their phone (since I also forgot my wallet). Thankfully she said yes. I called him and he asked where I was. I told him at the airport trying to find you. He said he was there waiting for me for 2 hours. He flew in on United and thought I had ditched him. But thankfully he had called my sister and she told him I had left. He still teases me to this day about it.

    • I sure have… and with a bit of cocoa powder. So, soooo goood!

  28. So funny: I make chickpea pancakes all the time. But I eat them as a side with dinner (great with chicken shawarma for example) It never crossed my mind to make them sweet. Well, I know what I am having for breakfast tomorrow.

  29. Made these for dinner last night. Super yummy! Thanks for the delicious recipe :)

  30. Thank you for another awsome recipe. Made this today, but used soymilk with vanilla instead, since I do not have the extract. My boyfriend dosen’t like my banana pancakes, but these where a hit with him :)

  31. I’d just like to point out that there is no special need for “gluten-free” baking powder. *All* baking powders are gluten-free as they are sodium bicarbonate. Likewise for baking soda. Save yourself the wasted money on the bandwagon label.

  32. Lovely story! Just made my day :) I used to have a period with eating pancakes on sundays too… Will grab your recipe and start over.

  33. I just need to say that I love this recipe, it is so simple and turns out perfectly. I make it all the time,a nd have used to for savory meals, too! YUM

  34. I was hesitant to make these because it called for chickpea flour (the aftertaste isn’t always pleasant) and I usually use brown rice flour or coconut flour in pancakes. But these turned out delicious when I substituted the eggs with flax eggs! I feel like it actually made the pancakes much more “fluffy”. I also substituted the water with homemade unsweetened almond milk and added a teaspoon of raw apple cider vinegar to create a vegan buttermilk.

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