Life saving pancakes that are gluten free, egg free and vegan truly are just that: A Life Saver. These pancakes are food allergy friendly; free of the top 8 food allergens. Pancakes are the most basic gluten free staple that could help you learn to bake and cook allergen free.
Pancakes made without dairy, egg, soy or wheat were my first attempt at creating ‘real’ food for my son after his devastating initial diagnosis of over 55+ food allergies at only 1 year of age.
To say I was a little lost at what to feed him would be a gross understatement. Food allergies are tough. Ask any parent (or sufferer) out there and they’ll agree, adjusting to a new diet is just plain DIFFICULT.
It’s overwhelming. It’s frustrating. It’s maddening. Virtually everything you knew how to cook or bake could now be considered forbidden.
I feel enough time has passed and I can finally share some real food allergy tips to help you, starting with what most parents go through those first difficult days:
What can I feed my child?
Sandwich bread, Bagel, muffin – Wheat, egg, soy, dairy… Scrambled eggs for breakfast?- Deadly-egg Lasagna/Spaghetti/Pasta – wheat, egg, soy… Crackers/ graham crackers/ cookies– wheat, soy, egg, dairy Peanut butter and jelly kid staple?- Double deadly- peanuts and cross contamination of objects (more on that in a bit)
If you’re managing food allergies you will find out (if you haven’t already), other families are suffering too. WE are suffering right along with you.
It’s important to not let all those negative obstacles get you down on a day-to-day basis. Things can and will get better. And quicker than you may think.
Below are some basic survival tips for newly diagnosed families to help ease the transition of food allergies. And of course you’ll find the Life Saving Pancake recipe. I am not exaggerating when naming them Life Saving Pancakes. Not only were these free of the top 8 food allergens, but this gave me the confidence to attempt allergy free cooking and baking instead of only feeding my son broccoli and plain chicken. Gluten free egg free breads are such a difficult thing to make and takes years to master… but these pancake thankfully do not.
FOOD ALLERGY SURVIVAL TIPS
BASIC IS BEST
In the beginning you’ll need to read every label for everything. Some products have a chapter of ingredients and others just have 1 ingredient. Less is sooo much more with food allergies! Whenever you can, ditch labels and go basic with fruits and vegetables. Frozen broccoli and fresh apples are some of our basic staples. Easy snacks like raisins, dried fruit and homemade popcorn consist of our quick grab snacks.
Seems simple enough, right? It’s difficult to admit but spontaneity will a thing of the past and planning needs to occur around events with food. This can include special days at school when treats are known to be brought in or even attempting to eat out at a restaurant.
We very recently started eating out again. And when I say us, I mean everyone except Mr. Naughty. There are only 3 places we have tried and all have been wonderful. Instead of trusting them with is 15+ list of existing allergies, I called them and ask if we could bring food for him. It takes the stress of worrying about a reaction due to a mistake in the kitchen OR due to cross contamination.
A few minutes of calling around before (and not during peak busy hours) can save you (and the restaurant staff) so much stress.
Now, this is not the ultimate solution to safely eating out, but it will give you a sense of ‘normalcy’ just knowing you can go out again. My son is only 3 and realizes he does not get to eat the same food the rest of the family orders. Some might say this is unfair (which it is) but:
1. We don’t eat out often.
2. There are social situations where he’ll need to bring safe food, e.g. parties, potluck etc.
3. Eating out teaches social skills of being patience and being in a public place.
MAKE AND FREEZE
This is part of the whole planning ahead. Bake and cook when you have time and freeze the excess. If I make pancakes, I’m always making a double batch. Undoubtedly, pancakes freeze extremely well. And they are the only bread you need to make.
Ideas for using pancakes:
-Cake (add some sugar to the batter, layer with frosting. Why not?)
START BASIC IN BAKING
I have a few gluten free mixes I love using. I created these since the pre-mixed flours were too expensive and often lead to failures. BUT- I used the ready mixes at the beginning as my crutch. Everyone needs to start somewhere right? Well, a ready mix can do that. Just open the box and try a recipe you find through Pinterest or the internet.
Gluten free flours are not like wheat flours. More than 1 flour is used to help create the correct texture. The usual mix contains grains (rice flour, brown rice, sorghum) and starches (tapioca, arrowroot, potato starch). Starches make things stick and form bonds. In addition to starches, a type of gum is used. Xanthan gum and Guar gum are the usual suspects here although fruit pectin, psyllium husks and chia seeds are becoming very popular too.
Bottom line- try a mix if you’re just starting to bake gluten free until you’re comfortable. It will save you time (which is also money, right?)
REPEAT, REPEAT, REPEAT…
Eat the same thing if it works for you! The first month, all I ate was: plain chicken, steamed broccoli, white rice and rice chex cereal. I was nursing my son at the time and needed to avoid all the things he was allergic to. I ate the same thing until I was able gather up the courage to re-learn everything in the kitchen. Once I figured out pancakes, my confident rose! And now here I am with a food allergy recipe blog sharing the other things our family can enjoy.
If you have a safe recipe or food, use it whenever you can. I have to say we ate pancakes in some form or another at almost every meal for MONTHS. If it works, use it!
Ahh… failure in gluten free baking. This will happen to you and does with even the most experienced gluten free bakers out there. They say baking is a science. Gluten free baking is a PRECISE science. If the water ratio is off a little, it will show. Too much water, gummy gross inedible things happen. No eggs can= crumbly fall apart mess.
Same with a failure in life, you learn something new each time. This is how future failures will become less frequent and will ultimately give you confidence in gluten free allergy free baking.
CONNECT WITH OTHERS
Last and not least, find a support group. And when I say group I don’t necessary mean a ‘meeting’ or person to person encounter. Facebook has some groups with just gluten free recipes, peanut free support, etc. Find an outlet you connect with.
My outlet are other blogs that have similar struggles with food allergies and diet restrictions. Here’s just a few I read a regular basis:
Allergy Free Alaska– gluten free, pale-ish, dairy free
Fork & Beans– gluten free dairy free egg free Vegan
Jeanette’s Healthy Living– gluten free, natural, healthy
Oatmeal with a Fork– gluten free, mostly egg free, Vegan-ish, healthy
The Pretty Bee- gluten free, egg free, nut free (transition at the moment), Vegan
Fearless Dining– gluten free recipes, restaurant review database
Once you have gotten the basics down, you’ll be cruising along sooner than you know. Don’t forget, you can always ask me for help or advice too. 😀
- 1 cup gluten free basic white flour mix
- ¾ cup brown rice flour
- 1½ cups + 2 Tbsp water or milk of choice
- 2 T oil + more for cooking
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp guar gum or xanthan gum
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- Heat skillet with oil.
- Scoop gluten free flours with a spoon into a measuring cup, do not pack flour.
- Combine all dry ingredients and mix well.
- Add wet ingredient and stir mixed well eliminating lumps.
- Pour onto a hot skillet with oil. Cook for 2 minutes and bubble start to form in the batter. Flip and cook an additional 1-2 minutes.
- Repeat with remaining batter.
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Some other things you may like:
Gluten Free Panwiches (Pancake Sandwiches)
Gluten Free Flour Mixes- 3 mixes to get you started
Gluten Free Vegan Cranberry Orange Bread- free of top 8
The BEST Gluten Free Pizza Crust- egg free Vegan
Fudgy Brownies- Gluten Free egg free dairy free bean free
Gluten Free Vegan Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
The BEST Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies- dairy free egg free Vegan
Kacey @ The Cookie Writer says
Laura, you are amazing! I wouldn’t even know where to start in your situation. The recipes you have come up with are amazing! These pancakes look like real pancakes and I am sure my mother-in-law will enjoy them much more than her boxed gluten-free mix.
Thank you Kacey! It’s so difficult at the beginning of a food allergy diagnosis… But things eventually become ‘normal’ again. 🙂 I think your MIL will love them!
Julie @ Julie's Eats & Treats says
You amaze me! I don’t know where I would start if I had this happen to my child, actually I do thanks to you! What a wonderful and delicious treat for anyone with allergies!
Deb @ Cooking on the Front Burner says
Our granddaughter has peanut allergies and it has been a struggle sometimes…
The pancakes look so good – you did a great job! I’m sure it is not always easy but a support group is a good idea.
Food allergies can be very stressful but I hope your granddaughter stays safe! Thank you so much!
Serene @ House of Yumm says
Laura, you constantly amaze me at everything you do for your kids. What a great post you wrote!! Plus those pancakes look seriously amazing!
Aww, thanks so much Serene! Moms will do anything for their children, right?
Mariah @ Mariah's Pleasing Plates says
I feel your pain on the food allergies (my mom has major food allergies)! I know so many people are grateful for your amazing recipes! These pancakes look awesome!
You know first hand how frustrating they can be! Thank you so much Mariah!
Ashlyn @ Belle of the Kitchen says
How delicious do these pancakes look?! And your tips are so helpful, Laura. You are making a difference in the lives of so many families that face food allergy challenges. Be proud of that, my friend!
I love this post and all the ideas you have for these pancakes….which, by the way, look fabulous!
Thank you Cathy!
Kelly - Life Made Sweeter says
You are such an inspiration with all that you share, Laura! The recipes you come up with are so amazing! Love these pancakes, they look incredible!
I have been looking for a pancake recipe everywhere!! My daughter has allergies to egg, soy & dairy but is okay with gluten.
If I were to use a normal flour, is the Xantham Gum there to help with emitting the egg as well or just because of the gluten free flour? I’m new to the use of Xantham Gum…
Hi Jen, with any gluten free recipe to be converted to wheat, you may always sub the flours cup for cup and omit any gums or pectins listed. The gums used in gluten free baking are help with binding (especially if the recipe is eggless). Regular wheat will create gluten strands to hold things together just fine without any eggs or extra gums.
We have a 20mth old who (as of 2 weeks ago) is now gluten, dairy, egg and nut free. And to make matters worse, he’s a terrible eater! The main things he did eat have been taken away so now I feel so overwhelmed and am struggling in getting some good food into him 🙁 won’t touch veges or fruit.. Sometimes will eat a banana.. Ugh this sucks 🙁
Oh Ebony! This takes me back to when we just started our journey. Hang in there. Going back to the basics like fruits (and yess veggies) will become better. My kids still are not great at eating veggies but do eat some. This might not work for you guys but gluten free Chex was our only packaged snack or homemade popcorn when he’s older. Plain chicken breasts with just salt and no oil was a staple for me (nursing at the time of dx) along with steamed veggies. There are plenty of gluten free egg free pastas out there from brands like Barilla, Jovial, and Trader Joe’s brand.
The beginning of managing food allergies is difficult but I promise it will become second nature to you sooner than you think. You are stronger than you know and take comfort in knowing there are so many other families that manage food allergies. I’ve found wonderful support and friends within the Food Allergy Community. Some blogs to browse through for multiple allergy friendly ideas are AllergyFreeAlaska.com Forksandbeans.com Oatmealwithafork.com Hope this helps a little!
Thanks! Going to try these as soon as possible. We have dairy and gluten issues over here, but I can’t wait to share your blog with my sister whose son has multiple allergies, as well.
I absolutely love your blog Laura ! It has helped me adjust to my new diet quite comfortably. Last month I found out I had thyroid disease (hypothyroidism), hashimotos, and adrenal fatigue. I ended up being allergy tested and I found out I was allergic to meat, gluten, dairy, vanilla, garlic, and many other things. I had to stop eating these and go on a ton of medication to keep myself from getting even sicker. Until I found your blog I had been so depressed. Only 17 and fixing to leave for college and having no idea how I was going to survive on my diet. Your recipes make eating and cooking something I look forward too again and not just eating some random food to keep myself from starving. Thank you so much for sharing your recipes !
As a very lactose-intolerant celiac with an extreme egg allergy, I’ve tried to invent pancakes I can eat so many times. I’m beyond pumped to make pancakes that will actually work! Thank you!
I cannot have rice so would another flour do ok? Like coconut or fava bean? I’m searching and searching and get discouraged BC everything seems to have arrowroot, potato starch, oat or rice flour- all of which I can’t have. Thank you for your blog and recipes! And thanks for helping and sharing. It’s a learning adventure for sure!
These pancakes are pretty forgiving… Gluten free flours like sorghum, buckwheat, or amaranth flour would all make great white/brown rice flour substitutes if you can tolerate those. My son is allergic to beans, so I have never used Fava bean flour but I think that should work too. I haven’t worked much with coconut flour since it absorbs too much liquid and can leave things crumbly unless a lot of eggs are used. This recipe did not start like this but only through time and trials did I learn enough to make changes. Buying a GF rice free flour could be your crutch to start with and eventually move on to making your own gluten free rice free flour blend. I did a quick search and found the Brand Maninis has a few rice free gluten free flour blends. Hopefully one of them will work for you- http://www.maninis.com/products/multi-purpose-flour/
These were amazing. They taste like the real deal. Soft, fluffy and melt in your mouth. My daughter has many Ana allergies, and these are the best pancakes I’ve ever made for her. Thank you!!!
Hi Kathy! It makes me so happy to hear your daughter can eat these and loves them!
thanks for sharing. my 9 months old is allergic to egg, all nuts, soy and dairy. Meal planning is super challenging. I’m so glad j stumbled upon your page it Gives me so much inspirations and hope.
Thanks for sharing and you have given me the courage to try homemade baking. We can’t have apple cider vinegar and I’m wondering if I can substitute with plain white vinegar in your pancake recipe.
I’m so glad I’ve encouraged you to try allergy baking! To answer your question, any vinegar you have or can tolerate would be fine. The acid works with the baking soda and salt to add leavening. Good luck and keep on baking!
I’m dying to try these. I need a recipe like this. I have had so many gluten free vegan pancake fails lately and bread… forget about it!! My only issue is my daughter has a problem with potatoes as well as wheat, eggs and dairy. I’m thinking the potato starch is going to be a problem for her. ? Any suggestions for something I could substitute?
You could try substituting arrowroot or more tapioca starch for the potato starch in my gluten free white flour mix.
I really hope your daughter can have these!
Thank you so much! We are dealing with a lot of food restrictions with my son right now and I have been completely overwhelmed! Reading your blog makes me feel so much better. I cannot wait to make some of these pancakes.