Peanut Butter and Jelly Pancakes

Now that I have both feet planted firmly in my mid-thirties, it’s hard to imagine that there once was a time when I had the unbelievably irritating problem of needing to put on weight. Nowadays, thanks to a complete lack of any system of musculature, the physical results of a large meal can be directly observed somewhere on my body soon after eating, where the extra pudge stays for weeks or even months. The only cure for this seems to be getting the flu, since “being bedridden” seems to be my most successful method of weight control, somewhere between “eating nothing” and “eating nothing but bacon.”

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pancakes

Back then, in an effort to augment my terribly unbalanced twentysomething diet which consisted mostly of drinking, smoking, and drinking while smoking, I would often tack a late-night peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a tall glass of cold milk onto the end of every day, in an effort to nudge my total caloric intake upward. It wasn’t just a filling and satisfying snack; it was a wonderful comfort, a wholesome bit of childhood sensory memory that made me feel like someone was taking care of me, even as I rattled around in a strange city by myself.

Since today is “National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day,” (and because we’re certainly not going to let such a national observance go by unnoticed) we wanted to pay homage to this timeless combination of flavors a little differently. After skipping them at the breakfast table for most of my life, I’ve been on a real pancake bender lately, and the flavors of a classic PB & J sandwich translate perfectly:

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pancakes
Makes about 12 pancakes


For the pancakes:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons melted or very soft butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup milk

For the strawberry syrup:

  • 2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water


For the pancakes:

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Stir until ingredients are well combined, peanut butter is incorporated fully, and batter is smooth.

Heat a nonstick skillet or griddle over medium-high heat. Working in batches, drop pancakes onto pan in scoops measuring about a quarter of a cup. Cook until brown on one side (about a minute), then flip and cook a minute more. Serve with plenty of butter and strawberry syrup.

For the strawberry syrup:

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Cook, stirring often and reducing heat as needed to prevent overflow, until strawberries are soft and liquid has reduced, about twenty minutes. Strain, if desired.

Variant: Bisquick users, substitute 1 cup of Bisquick for the first three ingredients. You’re adding trans fats into the mix, but I won’t judge you. I’ve got a life to live and P90x to not do or even order.


Malcolm Bedell is co-author of the critically acclaimed "Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road." He currently owns and operates the Ancho Honey restaurant in Maine.

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