Soft fluffy ricotta filled pancakes, topped with sliced bananas, sweet coconut cream and a decadent drizzle of salted caramel sauce. Your weekend mornings just got a whole lot better!
We love an American style pancake in this household and I've made them quite a few times in the past (admittedly my husband, Anthony is the king of pancakes). Yet, I'd never tried ricotta in them before. Always looking to try new things, I set about making these banana and coconut ricotta pancakes. Some recipes call for four eggs and with my first batch I tried this amount but I found it just a little bit eggy in taste. I then tested out the recipe with 3 eggs and a teaspoon of vanilla extract which gave them the perfect amount of sweetness. The ricotta adds a beautiful creaminess and lightness to the pancake which is divine.
How to get such light and fluffy pancakes
When following my method, you’ll be asked to whip the egg whites in a separate bowl until soft peaks form ... just like when making a meringue.
This is a really important step as it will impact the texture of the pancakes at the end.
So when folding in the egg whites into the ricotta mixture, you have to be really careful not to knock out all the air. Use a metal spoon and instead of stirring the mixture you want to fold the egg whites and ricotta mixture together. Rotate the bowl a little every time you do a fold and gradually the eggs whites will incorporate into the egg mixture.
Using this technique is what ultimately makes the pancakes so light and airy. You’ll notice when cooking that the pancake puffs up a bit and looks SO fluffy but when taken out the pan it does reduce slightly which is totally normal. They still retain their light, fluffy, spongy texture which is damn good.
Whipped coconut cream?
Yes. that’s right, instead of whipping up some standard cream I stumbled across whipped coconut cream from the Minimalist Baker and I’ve been looking for a recipe to try it.
This a great dairy-free, vegan friendly alternative to heavy whipping cream. To be honest, I didn’t want to try it for this reason, I just liked the flavour combination of the coconut and banana together. It works. It’s just one of those flavour pairings that taste great together.
So here are the things that you need to know when it comes to whipped coconut cream.
- Selecting the brand of coconut cream. Choose a good quality brand of coconut cream that has a high percentage of coconut extract (you can see this on the ingredients list on the label). For some reason this allows the cream and the water to separate better after time in the fridge. Don’t worry - you need this separation to happen. More on that in the next step. I’ve only used coconut cream and not milk when creating this recipe, so I can’t comment on whether milk will whip as well.
- Refrigerate the can overnight. You need to place your can of coconut cream in the fridge for a couple of hours but I recommend overnight. The cream hardens and during this process it separates from the coconut water. You can then easily scoop out the hardened cream at the top and reserve the water at the bottom (great in smoothies or porridge!)
- Whipping the cream. Using an electric beater or whipping by hand, you can whip the cream until it’s light and fluffy and soft peaks form. It will resemble the same consistency and texture as standard whipped cream
- Flavouring. I add some powdered icing sugar and vanilla extract in my recipe to sweeten the cream, but you can leave these out if you prefer. Or you can add melted chocolate for a chocolate coconut cream as another alternative.
- To serve. Dollop straight away on your pancakes. Other ways to use coconut whipped cream couple be on your chocolate brownie, served with fresh fruit, dolloped onto hot chocolate or coffee or used to fill a sponge cake. So many great ways.
- To store. You can store the whipped cream in a sealed air tight container for up to a week in the fridge. It will probably harden again and need whipping if you want it to go light and fluffy.
Banana Ricotta Pancakes with Salted Caramel Sauce
I chose to use freshly sliced banana but a great alternative could be to caramelise it. You can do this by heating a knob of butter in a small frypan and when it starts to sizzle add the sliced banana and a sprinkle of sugar. Turn over once golden brown and caramelised and repeat until the other side is caramelised.
As I mentioned before, banana and coconut work brilliantly together in a dessert. I finished off the pancakes with a sprinkle of coconut flakes to firstly add a lovely texture but also to bring more coconut taste to the dish. These flavours taste just like summer!
To me, the perfect pancake breakfast has to have a sauce or syrup, whether that’s maple syrup, a blueberry sauce, a chocolate sauce or like here a salted caramel sauce. This addition really does take the standard pancake stack to the next level.
So when thinking about banana and coconut together I wanted to use a sauce that complimented these two flavours and caramel sauce was my answer. It’s a beautiful addition to your breakfast. Trust me!
Banana Ricotta Pancakes with Salted Caramel
- Hand-held electric beaters
- Mixing bowl 2L
- 250 g ricotta
- 180 ml whole milk
- 3 large eggs, separated
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 150 g plain flour (all-purpose)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- 30 g unsalted butter
- 400 ml coconut cream, place in fridge the day before use
- 120 g powdered icing sugar (confectioners’ sugar), sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- For the Salted Caramel Sauce
Salted Caramel Sauce
- Store bought or please refer to my Salted Caramel Sauce Recipe found here
- 2 bananas, sliced, just before serving
- 35 g coconut flakes (toasted in a dry frypan)
- In a medium bowl, add the ricotta, milk, egg yolks and vanilla extract and mix with a rubber spatular until combined. Sift in the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and mix until just combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk with hand-held electric beaters, the egg whites until soft peaks form. Then add to the ricotta mixture and fold in the whites gently.
- Heat a large frying pan over medium heat. Melt, small knobs of butter in the pan, just enough to coat the surface. Use a ½ cup measure to pour the batter into the pan. Cook pancakes until bubbles start to pop through the batter and the underneath is golden brown (approx 3-4 mins). Now flip and cook the other side for 2-3 mins. Repeat with the remaining batter. Best served warm.
- In a medium bowl, scoop the cream from the can of coconut cream (leaving behind the water if it has separated). Using electric beaters, whisk until smooth (30 seconds), add powdered icing sugar and vanilla extract and continue to whisk for another minute. Use straight away or refrigerate until it is needed.
Salted caramel sauce
- Please refer to my delicious Salted Caramel Sauce found here.Prior to serving, microwave caramel sauce for 15 seconds and then stir. Repeat this process until the sauce is warmed through and runny.
- Scoop a dollop of coconut cream onto the warm pancake, add a third of a banana sliced, then drizzle warm salted caramel sauce and then scatter some coconut flakes over the top and tuck in!
All recipes are developed and tested in Metric grams. I strongly recommend that you bake using digital scales for a more accurate result. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.