Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Mesquite Pancakes

Featured Ingredient: Mesquite Powder

One of the great things about having a blog dedicated to the muffin tin is all the great up-can-coming flours and powders I get to experiment with. Enter mesquite powder.

Ground from the edible bean-like pods of the mesquite tree, mesquite powder has a very distinct smoky and sweet flavor unlike any other flour on the market. Thriving in unforgiving environments, Native Americans in parched regions have long relied on mesquite to meet nutritional needs when a Wal-Mart wasn’t around the corner.

It’s most impressive nutritional attribute is crazy amounts of dietary fiber. A mere tablespoon dishes out 3 grams of this fat-fighter. A recent study in the prestigious Archives of Internal Medicine reported that the highest intakes of fiber – equivalent to about 30 grams per day for men and 25 grams for women – were associated with a reduced risk of dying from cardiovascular, infectious, and respiratory diseases of up to 60 percent. Suddenly, bran never tasted so good!

Mesquite flour isn’t exactly cheap, but fortunately the old saw applies here: “A little goes a long way.” The one I used for this recipe is from the always reliable Navitus Naturals. I’m hoping mesquite flour starts popping up at more natural food stores.

In baked good applications, you’ll want to use gluten-free mesquite to replace about 25 percent of another flour a recipe calls for. All on it’s own the flavor would likely be too overpowering. It would also probably be a killer addition to smoothies and something I plan on trying.

The best thing about taking your pancake batter and plopping it into mini muffin molds is that it eliminates any need for flipping the flapjacks and all eaters get to chow down at the same time as opposed to the need to make pancakes in batches. Of course, if you can’t find mesquite these work well with straight up whole wheat flour.

Mesquite Pancake Puffs

2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup mesquite powder
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 large egg
2/3 cup low-fat milk of choice
2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine flour, mesquite powder, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, lightly beat egg and stir in milk and butter. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix gently. Fold in walnuts and divide batter among 20 greased mini muffin cups. Bake for 12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a pancakes comes out clean. Serve with maple syrup. 


  1. Very cool. I'm going to look for this at my local co-op. The flavor sounds fantastic and I will try any flour once, especially to make some tasty muffins!

  2. I love mesquite. I have been having it with plain greek yogurt and lots of cinnamon. mmm :)


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