Hot Pink Blender Pancakes (with beets!)

Princess pancakes! A teeny girl in our house was pretty excited about the sound of this.

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I on the other hand wasn’t so sure. I am the biggest believer in kids and their ability to eat all different kinds of foods (even those with complex flavors) but beets are just so…beet-y. I wasn’t sure if their, uhm, earthy? flavor would blend well with the sugary vanilla pancakes that the kids and I love.

But the color! You can add the tiniest sliver of beet to a smoothie and end up with the most vibrant shade of pink you’ve ever seen. So it was my desperation for hot pink pancakes that drove me try it out. Oh, and the fact that earlier this season we had approximately 400 lbs of beets ripe for the picking (I exaggerate, you should know that about me).

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On the first go round, I wasn’t sure if the kids were going to be able to get past that good ‘ole beet flavor but they were totally sold. And so was I! These are going to become Ruthie’s birthday breakfast staple (with some sprinkles added into the batter and sprinkled on top).

This pancake recipe is one of our favorites - A classic modified from the Magnolia Table cookbook. You only need one beet to turn the batter to a shade some may refer to as violently pink. You could probably add even less and get a fairly bright shade of magenta. I hope you’ll give them a shot!

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Quinoa Oat Blender Pancakes

I’m obsessed with making weird things out of quinoa.  

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Not that pancakes are weird (you are definitely not weird my sweet little pancakes). 

I love gluten but when you have a tight grocery budget (or hell, when you’re feeding kids and want them to like you) it’s easy to find yourself eating bread/crackers/pasta/ pancakes like, all the time. I’ve been testing out new breakfast recipes that don't rely so heavily on flour to make room for some good stuff. 

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My thought process: if quinoa can be brownies, it can TOTALLY be pancakes (right?). Well it worked. They are super filling and have that delicious waffle-cone-at-six-flags vanilla flava. If you are a fan of the ole oat-egg-nana pancakes, you will LOVE these. They are closer in texture to this recipes, though more pancakey and not at all banana-eggy.

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Austin loves stereotypical pancakes. They better be fluffy, white as the driven snow with not a flick of flax or oat, melt in your mouth little puffs of processed air. He still liked these but told me I better make it known that they are more dense than traditional pancakes. I took that as a positive because typical pancakes are SUPER DELICIOUS but sometimes make me feel groggy and blah followed by OMG I’M HUNGRY AGAIN. 

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 You can whip these up in a food processor or blender. Even though my blender always smells like it’s on fire, I actually choose it for these so I could easily pour them into the pan. 

Quinoa Oat Pancake

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Sweet Potato Breakfast Crisp

This is not just a variation of sweet potato casserole. 

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Ok this is pretty much a variation of sweet potato casserole, but it's for breakfast! Or any time. But I am always looking for new breakfast ideas so IT'S FOR BREAKFAST. 

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Whyyy is breakfast such a struggle?

I used to just eat cereal. my mom bought all of the good kinds (PB crunch, Rice Krispie Treats, Cocoa Pebbles, Honey Bunches of Oats, ECETERA) and we always had like 7 different boxes open at once. MAN, remember Rice Krispie Treats? They still make them in case you're curious. Rice Krispie treats cereal carried me through two babies worth of morning sickness. 

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Breakfast used to be easy. Cereal ALWAYS sounded good. And I thought I was doing myself a favor and eating something incredibly wholesome 🙏🏻. 

Since leaving college, breakfast all of a sudden is this big ole hassle. I quickly realized that cereal is usually pretty devoid of good for you stuff, and it somehow makes me bottomless-pit hungry by 10 AM. So I ditched that habit and found out that NOTHING else sounded good. 

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The only thing I feel like eating is a nice lil chubby donut or a stocky lil friendly muffin. Having kids has changed things a bit in that I now make a substantial breakfast for them every morning (oatmeal, cheesy eggs, egg sandwiches, pancakes, French toast) but I still pretty much have to make myself eat at the unearthly hour of their waking. 

SO since I'm stressed out abut breakfast enough to write 5 paragraphs, I decided I needed to make some sort of bakery dessert-healthy veggie packed breakfast FUSION and call it breakfast crisp. 

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This could easily be made with butternut squash or pumpkin. I wanted to pack in the protein by adding greek yog and I also wanted it to have as many oats as a bowl of oatmeal. It's basically like a crisp with massive amounts of crumb topping. Austin refused to believe it was breakfast and ate pretty much the whole thing after dinner all three times that I made it.

This could totally be used as a non-marshmallow containing version of sweet potatoes casserole for your thanksgiving spread but I LOVE the marshmallow version so I'll be having this one for breakfast instead. 

Breakfast Sweet Potato Crisp

Cranberry Orange Butternut Squash Bread

Christmas is coming. 

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Ruthie whispers to me from time to time. I posted something to my stories about how Ruthie likes to say this and a teacher friend told me she and her fellow teachers whisper "Christmas is coming" to each other on rough days.

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My parents watched our kiddos overnight last weekend and Ruthie stayed up until 2 AM. TWO AM. How is it possible to function on such little sleep? Bobby was the star grandchild because he went to sleep and 10 and then woke up every two hours all night long. 

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I do most of my blogging after bedtime and it is a struggle almost every single time not to just do the dishes instead. I love blogging so far and I hate dishes, but the thought of using this time to make the kitchen sparkle has strong appeal. What a thrilling life I lead. (BUT I LOVE IT).

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On some blog writing nights, I put Bobby to sleep and then sneak into the kitchen while Austin gets Ruthie ready for bed. Their conversations are hilarious "Dad, can you go upstairs and leave me alone with Sammy? He's a nice guy, and he's happy about me" (Sam is our cat). "Can I have a big brown ice cream cone?" "Where is my long, white gown?" (Ruthie is very into the use of many adjectives and wearing my clothes) "Will you fluff bunny's big pink nose?" And then in a matter of seconds...snoring (Austin, not Ruthie). 

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This is my very first Christmas tasting recipe. Orange + cranberry = Christmas, all the science books say so. I kind of surprised myself with how delicious this turned out. I always eat a pretty good chunk of whatever I'm photographing, but I ate a SERIOUS chunk of this guy. It made the house smell like heaven and made me wanna snuggle a cup of coffee like Buddy does in the mailroom on elf. 

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The following links are affiliate links to awesome products that can be hard to find in stores (check your local Aldi for the unsweetened coconut!). That means, I receive a small chunk of anything purchased through the link.

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The Crispiest Sweet Potato Fries You've Ever Had + Kalamata Ailoi

Raise your hand if you have sweet potato fries at least once a week.

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Raise your hand if they kind of make you angry because they're always floppy unless you forget about them for 3 hours and burn them into cinders.

If a restaurant has sweet potato fries, they're mine. (side note: I don't think I have ever spelled restaurant correctly in my life. If there were no spell check, I would be arrested for trying to have a blog because of how often restaurant was spelled wrong). Do you ever wish you had a deep fryer? I don't think I'm supposed to say that out loud. But my all time fave food is french fries of the sweet or regular variety.

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Making them at home is generally pretty disappointing. First, you have to wash and chop and season and oil and get a sheet pan REALLY dirty and then let the sheet pan sit on the counter or hide it in the oven for days. Second, they are crispy on one side at best. Turns out, there are like 10 steps you need to complete before getting really deliciously crispy fries and it is WORTH IT. I copied and tweaked this adorable sweet potato fry infographic.

Nordstrom Cafe has french fries that keep me awake at night. Everyone lays (lies?) awake and thinks of food until they become so ravenous they're driven downstairs to eat cereal, right? The fries are SO crispy and thin but still sort of rustic, ya get a chunk of skin now and then. And they're covered with fresh parsley and maybe some parmesan too? THEN they are served with kalamata olive aioli. I remember my first tango with this ailoi like it was yesterday: started off unsure, ended up with my tongue in the tiny little serving dish when my grandma wasn't looking.

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Follow this method whenever you have sweet potato fries on the menu. I have made them this way about 5 times now and they still turn out a little differently each time, but they're always crispier than they have been before. If you don't have time to soak, just using the corn starch made a small improvement on its own. Make sure to let me know how they turn out!

The Crispiest Sweet Potato Fries

 

 

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