I’m going to let you in on a little secret of mine (Mom’s this is for you). Pancakes in general don’t have very much nutritional value to them but everyone loves them, hell it made a nationwide business out of IHOP and Denny’s. Kids love them too and you can make a lot of them and feed an army, which is pretty much what I have.

Power Pancakes

I really try to have my kids bulk up on protein in the morning, especially if they have some physical activity they are going to do that day. So, I fortify the pancakes with protein powder. That’s right! There are many brands to choose from and you can now get them in most grocery stores or GNC stores.My favorite is Nature’s Plus Vanilla SPIRU-TEIN Shake Mix, now its not the highest in protein but it packs in 14 grams per scoop and it has all kinds of other goodies with it like 100% daily allowance of Vitamin’s A,C,D,E, B6, B12, niacin, zinc, folic acid and others.

For all you purists out there you may want to stop here because I do use a pancake mix, well actually two of them. The main mix is Krusteaz Buttermilk Pancake Mix and Coach’s Oats Multigrain Pancake Mix; both of which can be bought at Costco. I make 4 cups (dry ingredients); 2 cups of the Krusteaz, 1 cup of the multigrain and two scoops of the SPIRU-TEIN. I then add a pinch of sea salt, a teaspoon or so of cinnamon, and a 1/2 teaspoon of allspice. Mix all the dry ingredients and then add 3 1/2 cups of water that has a tablespoon of vanilla extract in it. Mix it together and try to get most of the lumps out.

Traditional pancakes you should mix lightly but not these. The SPIRU-TEIN powder sucks up the water, so you will have to add more till you get the right consistency. The pancake batter should be able to pour but not so thin that you’re making crepes and not so thick that you’re making crumpets. Now these are for my kids, so as usual chocolate chip pancakes are usually requested but when blueberries are in season I like to use them. My technique for doing either one is this: I first pour 2-3 pancakes in a large cast iron skillet coated with a little vegetable oil. I will then drop 3-4 chocolate chips or blueberries on each one and then with my finger, swirl the batter lightly over the chips/berries and then flip. This keeps the chips/berries from falling out and burning. They are a huge hit with the kids and Linda and I are happy they are getting some protein and vitamins in their breakfast.

High Octane French Toast

Now the same goes for French Toast, the kids love to eat this but again I wanted them to have some extra protein and vitamins with their breakfast, so I add SPIRU-TEIN to this too. Here’s how I do it: I put one scoop of Vanilla SPIRU-TEIN Shake Mix in a large bowl. I then add Vanilla Silk Organic Soy Milk to it (about a 1/3 of a cup) and with a fork I whisk the two together till it forms a loose paste (you may have to add more milk). I then crack open two eggs and whisk them in with the paste. A pinch of sea salt, a few dashes of cinnamon and a dash of allspice are added last. The bread choice is up to you, but I like using slices of honey wheat bread. I dredge the bread slices on both sides (It may look a little strange with the powder paste but once you cook it in a skillet it will turn a golden brown. Now here’s the key, I cook it in Spectrum peanut oil, it gives the whole dish another dimension and the kids the extra calories they need. I top the French toast off with a little Maple Valley Maple Syrup (agave syrup works well too) and my kids just eat ‘em up. This recipe makes6-7 slice of toast.