Cinnamon Bun Pancakes

Last week I was fighting a cold and dealing with jet lag, and this week I’m focusing on catching up and getting back on track.  No evening meetings, no nerve-wracking procedures lined up – just a regular week with normal meals, plenty of trips to the gym, and hopefully a boatload of productivity.  And what better way to celebrate this return to normalcy than a batch of cinnamon bun pancakes??  This upcoming weekend is one of those perfect pancake weekends – no travel plans, a fiance’s birthday, and plenty of time lounging around the apartment.  It’s been gratifying checking things off my to-do list this week, and I’m looking forward to following it up with a no-fuss weekend that might just have to include another batch of these ridiculously delicious and indulgent pancakes!

I only have one other pancake recipe up on the blog, and those Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Buttermilk Pancakes are a fantastic go-to recipe, but this one today takes a standard pancake to a whole different level.  Such a different level that these probably no longer belong in the breakfast category, but this isn’t something you’ll make every day!  That brings me to another point – pancakes for breakfast.  I love going out to breakfast or brunch, and every single time I want to order one of the sweet choices like french toast, pancakes, or waffles, but I suppress my urges and choose something savory since they tend to be healthier.  Only recently did I realize that when my friends order savory dishes , they’re doing so because they prefer that, not because they’re just attempting to ignore their sweet tooth.   Well, this blog is aptly named because turns out I’m obsessed with sweets and would choose them for every meal if I could!

This really is a fun recipe and I’m very thankful to Lori of Recipe Girl for providing great instructions to help yield such beautiful results.  I was practically giddy with excitement when I flipped over the pancake to see such a perfect swirl flowing with cinnamony goodness.  You can use your favorite pancake recipe as a base (I actually used a mix picked up from a local farm stand) and the cinnamon swirl is added as the pancakes are cooking.  The secret seems to be getting the cinnamon swirl mixture the perfect consistency so it oozes nicely out of the bag but stays in place once you pipe it on.   There’s no need for much syrup with these, but I did whip up a little cream cheese glaze to put them completely over the top.  It might be too much of a sugar overload for some first thing in the morning (like Ryan per se), but it was a perfect Sunday meal for me!

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Cinnamon Bun Pancakes

Recipe adapted from Recipe Girl

Ingredients:

for the cinnamon swirl:
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp light brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

for the cream cheese glaze:
4 tbsp unsalted butter
2 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

for the pancakes: (or use boxed if you're in a rush!)
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2-1/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly

Directions:

for the cinnamon filling:
- In a medium bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Transfer the mixture to a piping or ziploc bag and set aside.

for the cream cheese glaze:
- In a small pan, heat the butter on low until melted. Once melted, whisk the cream cheese into the butter until smooth. Sift the powdered sugar into the pan and stir. Add vanilla extract and set aside.

for the pancake batter:
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- In a separate medium bowl, combine buttermilk, sour cream, eggs, and melted/cooled butter.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet. GENTLY combine the ingredients until just combined. Allow batter to sit for 10 minutes before cooking.
- Heat 1 tsp of vegetable oil over medium heat until shimmering. Using a paper towel, carefully wipe out oil, leaving a thin film of oil.
- Using a 1/4 cup measure, portion batter into pan and reduce oil to medium low. Make sure the cinnamon mixture is ready by using your hands to re-incorporate the butter into the sugar. Snip the corner of the cinnamon mixture bag and when the pancake begins to form bubbles, add the filling. Start at the center of the pancake and form a swirl.
- Cook the pancake 2-3 minutes more until the bubbles being popping and it's golden brown on the other side.
- Use a large metal spatula to slip underneath the pancake and carefully but quickly flip it over. Cook an additional 2-3 minutes. When you flip the pancake onto a plate, you'll see the beautiful cinnamon swirl that's melted itself into the batter.
- Wipe the pan with a paper towel to clean it a bit, and repeat with remaining pancake batter and cinnamon filling. Rewarm the glaze briefly if needed and drizzle lightly over plates of pancakes.