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Baked Oat Pancake

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Baked Oat Pancake

In comparison to a bowl of spartan fruit and yogurt or a kid-friendly bowl of cereal, pancakes are usually a pretty decadent breakfast. Rich with butter and doused with maple syrup, they can be an indulgent start to the day. They can also be time-consuming between making the batter, ladling out the individual cakes, and babysitting them in the skillet. Pancakes are an endeavor.

What about a good-and-good-for-you pancake made with whole grains that don’t take all morning to make. What about a weekday pancake? Wait, what? My Baked Oat Pancake is a great fiber-rich, healthy start to any day! It’s gluten-free, sugar-free, and made the food processor or blender. Best yet? It is absolutely delicious! Read on!

Pandemic and Banana Bread

Remember last year when everyone was making Banana Bread? Forever the pandemic will be linked foodwise to Banana Bread, Sourdough starters, and No-Knead Skillet Focaccia. I made banana bread a few times, but was quickly intrigued about using overripe bananas as a form of sugar replacement. One of the favorite recipes I developed last year were these GF Pear Almond Banana Cakes, (seen above) absolutely delicious with tea or coffee. (I will go on record by saying that an egg blended with a banana is not a pancake. Although it lit the internet on fire, I am not a fan and thought the combination tasted like sweet scrambled eggs.)

Baked Oat Pancake

Eating after a Workout

Recently, I accidentally left a bunch of bananas in a grocery bag so was immediately faced with a batch of spotty bananas. Yikes. I can’t stand food waste and so I decided I needed a recipe development project! I wanted the occasional pancake breakfast, but not one that would take too much time or be too high in fat, calories, carbs, and WW smartpoints.

In the morning, before I walk I generally have a coffee and a piece of fruit in the car. I save my bigger meal for after exercise. The right foods before and after exercise can help boost your results. Like a car uses gas, your body burns carbohydrates for fuel, giving you the energy to power through that walk or fitness class. Eating after a workout is important. When you’re finished, refueling with a combination of protein and carbs can help you rebuild muscle.

All that is great, but my drive is always TASTE. It has to taste good. I would rather eat a full-fat, gluten-packed buttery pancake than something that tastes like deprivation and sadness. I didn’t want to simply create a lighter, makeover pancake recipe, I wanted to re-engineer it.

Baked Oat Pancake

Are Oats Good for Lowering Cholesterol?

I decided I wanted an oat-based pancake instead using all-purpose wheat flour, gluten-free flour, or nut flour. Oats are one of the top foods to improve your cholesterol. Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which reduces your low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol.  Soluble fiber can reduce the absorption of cholesterol into your bloodstream. In the winter months, I eat oatmeal and Cheerios are a go-to, as well. A Baked Oat Pancake would help mix things up for menu options.

However, oats do not contain gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). It is the protein that is the “glue” for wheat-based dough.  The result is that this gluten-free Baked Oat Pancake is delicate and tender. It also means that needs a binder in the form of an egg.  In other words, it needs some “glue.” There’s no need for sugar as the overripe banana provides the sweetness. The three ingredients are whizzed together and poured into a skillet. (The addition of the oats makes all the difference in flavor and texture and leaves not even a hint of sweet scrambled eggs flavor.)

That’s it! A smidgen of salt and baking soda are added for lift. The chia is more of a healthy garnish, a means to amp up the nutrition and give it some crunch, not as a structural part of the recipe. Baking fruit into the oat banana pancake makes it more filling and higher in fiber. It also gives the pancake natural sweetness. Berries melt into saucy balloons ready to burst with fruit juices. Firmer fruits like thinly sliced apples or pears provide warm, toothsome texture. It’s fantastic.

Baked Oat Pancake

Flipping Tired

At the beginning of testing, I was making pancakes and flipping them. Between the tender dough and the high sugar content (due to the banana) causing them to brown too quickly, it was far more trouble than a quick breakfast needs to be. Baking it was the answer! Wow. What a time saver! Another great reason for baking is that everything is done at once, you don’t need to serve pancakes in shifts or worry about keeping the first batch warm while you griddle the rest.

Admittedly, this recipe is not great for a crowd. It makes one 8-inch skillet to serve 1-2 people. As you can see in the photos it’s the equivalent of 4 smallish pancakes. It could also easily be doubled and baked in a larger skillet to serve 2-4. You could also use multiple skillets. The key is having the batter be about 1/4-inch thick.

Baked Oat Pancake

Point it Out

If you follow WW, a whole pancake is only 3 blue smart points, plus the points for the topping. It’s great of course, served with real maple syrup ( I love Zoar Tapatree!) or Peanut Sauce, protein-rich peanut powder thinned out with water until it’s the right consistency. That’s a real success! Yay! This Baked Oat Pancake is a welcome addition to the breakfast rotation. It’s super important to keep meals mixed up so you don’t get bored. Boredom often leads to less healthy choices.

Cookbooks with Virginia

A quick note to let you know about Cookbooks with Virginia. SO many great guests this fall including Dorie Greenspan, Rose Levy Berenbaum, Cassy Joy Garcia, Ali Rosen, Carrie Bailey Morey, Rebecca Lang, Bobby Shealy, Kevin Mitchell, David Shields, Kevin Belton, Elizabeth Heiskell, Belinda Smith Sullivan, Anne Solenne Hatt, Francisco Migoyo, and Erin Jeanne McDowell.

It airs (with a few date exceptions) every Friday at 11:30 am EST on my Facebook page and YouTube Channel. We also have a weekly giveaway on Instagram. It’s a ton of fun! You get to ask the authors questions and enter to win a free book! For more information, please visit my website.

Thanks for reading! Please let me know what you think if you give my Baked Oat Pancake a try!

Bon Appétit, Y’all

Virginia Willis

Baked Oat Pancake


Baked Oat Pancake

My Baked Oat Pancake is a great fiber-rich, healthy start to any day! It’s gluten-free, sugar-free, and made the food processor or blender. Best yet? It is absolutely delicious! 
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Breakfast, brunch, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten free pancake, healthy pancake, pancake, virginia willis, workout breakfast
Servings: 2
Author: Virginia Willis


  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 overripe banana
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • Nonstick spray
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • 1 cup berries or thinly sliced apple or pears
  • Peanut Sauce for serving


  • Heat the oven to 350F. Combine the oats, egg, banana, salt, and baking soda in the bowl of a food processor or the jar of a blender. Puree until smooth. Mist an 8-inch nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Pour batter in and tilt the skillet to evenly disperse the batter. Top with chia seeds and fruit. Transfer to the oven and bake until brown and set, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately with Peanut Sauce.

If you try this recipe, please let me know! Please leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #virginiawillis on Instagram.

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The fine print 😉 

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links and I may make a commission if you use my affiliate link to buy the product.

Heads up! I am not a doctor, RD, or health professional nor am I an official WW ambassador or representative. I am simply sharing what works for me. Thanks for reading!

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links.

Virginia Willis

Georgia-born French-trained Chef Virginia Willis’ biography includes making chocolate chip cookies with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, foraging for berries in the Alaskan wilderness, harvesting capers in the shadow of a smoldering volcano in Sicily, and hunting for truffles in France. She is talent and chef-instructor for the digital streaming platform Food Network Kitchen. Her segments feature authentic and innovative Southern cooking. She was the celebrity chef at the Mansion at Churchill Downs for the 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby. Virginia has spoken at SXSW, cooked for the James Beard Foundation, and beguiled celebrities such as Bill Clinton, Morgan Freeman, and Jane Fonda with her cooking — but it all started in her grandmother’s country kitchen. Recently, her work has been inspired by her weight loss success story, Virginia has lost 65# and kept it off for over 2 1/2 years! “If a French-trained, Southern chef can do it, you can, too.” She is the author of Fresh Start; Secrets of the Southern Table; Lighten Up, Y’all; Bon Appétit, Y’all; Basic to Brilliant, Y’all; Okra; and Grits. Lighten Up, Y’all won a James Beard Foundation Award of Excellence in the Focus on Health Category. Lighten Up, Y’all as well as her first cookbook, Bon Appétit, Y’all, were finalists in the Best American Cookbook for the International Association of Cookbook Awards and were also named by the Georgia Center of the Book as “Books Georgians Should Read.” She is the former TV kitchen director for Martha Stewart Living, Bobby Flay, and Nathalie Dupree; has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants; and traveled the world producing food stories – from making cheese in California to escargot farming in France. She has appeared on Food Network’s Chopped, CBS This Morning, Fox Family and Friends, Martha Stewart Living, and as a judge on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. She’s been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, People Magazine, Eater, and Food52 and has contributed to Eating Well, GRLSQUASH, Culture, Garden & Gun, and Bon Appétit, and more. The Chicago Tribune praised her as one of “Seven Food Writers You Need to Know.” Her legion of fans loves her down-to-earth attitude, approachable spirit, and traveling exploits. Her culinary consulting company, Virginia Willis Culinary Enterprises, Inc specializes in content creation, recipe development, culinary editorial and production services, cookbook writing, media training, spokesperson and brand representation, and public speaking. Virginia is on the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Blue Ribbon Task Force, the Atlanta Community Food Bank Advisory Board, as well as the Community Farmers Market Advisory Board. She is a food and hunger advocate for No Kid Hungry and a premier member of the No Kid Hungry Atlanta Society. She a member of The James Beard Foundation, Chef’s Collaborative, Georgia Organics, and Southern Foodways Alliance.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. This looks terrific! Wondering if I could make the batter the night before to save a small step for a busy morning….

    1. You know, I think you probably could. I would hold off on the baking soda — that would be the only thing. And, it might turn a bit darker, but I don’t think it would affect the taste. Thanks so much for reading! Best VA

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