Light and fluffy ricotta pancakes are the perfect morning breakfast treat! Made with citrus flavors and a delicious homemade blueberry compote to pour on top.
There is nothing better than waking up on the weekend to the smell of flapjacks sizzling on the griddle. My fondest memories as a child were tip-toeing down the stairs in the morning, still sleepy-eyed, and waking up immediately when I saw my mom cooking a huge stack of homemade pancakes.
Now that I’ve got my hungry family, plus a pancake devouring toddler I needed to step up my morning meal game. These gluten-free ricotta pancakes are super light and fluffy and packed with citrus flavor. Once you pour on the warm blueberry compote on top, I promise there won’t be a single crumb left on your plate!
I have grown up a little from Bisquick mix and Log Cabin syrup, but I still wouldn’t mind getting a Mickey Mouse pancake once in a while! I now crave pancakes from my favorite breakfast spot in Newport Beach, CA, Haute Cakes Caffe.
I decided to re-create my favorite pancake, citrus ricotta pancakes topped with fresh homemade blueberry compote. I’ll warn you. These fluffy golden cakes are addicting!
How to make ricotta pancakes
When making pancakes that include a mild and creamy cheese, you have to find a way to make the pancakes fluffy and tender. Here are some tricks that I used to achieve mile high ricotta pancakes.
- Flour: I use a gluten-free flour by Cup 4 Cup for my batter, and the taste/texture is comparable to all-purpose wheat flour. You only use a small amount of flour compared to traditional pancake batters, so the pancakes aren’t tough and rubbery.
- Cheese: The creamy ricotta cheese is incorporated into the pancake batter which keeps the pancakes moist and tender, and adds a custard-like middle. Plus extra protein!
- Whip it!: Some pancake recipes I have made in the past have been a little too dense. For this citrus ricotta pancakes recipe, I used an egg foaming technique. I whipped the egg whites until medium-firm peaks are formed and then gently folded it into the batter, similar to making a mousse or meringue. This method made the pancakes incredibly light and fluffy with a golden brown exterior.
I’m a big fan of Ben’s Sugar Shack Pure Maple Syrup on my pancakes, but whenever blueberries are in season I enjoy making my own quick and simple homemade compote sauce!
How to make blueberry compote
Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and reduce to a rich purple color. Any of your favorite stone fruits or berries can be added with the blueberry or switched out, like strawberries, blackberries, peaches, or nectarines. It’s a simple reduction of blueberries, citrus juices, honey, and mint. The mixture is simmered on the stove top until the blueberries become tender, burst and create a lightly thickened sauce. It only takes about 20 minutes, and you’ve got a tasty sauce that you’ll be licking from the spoon!
To complement the blueberry compote I used the zest and juice from orange and lemon to help add depth to the flavor. Infusing some fresh mint leaves when cooking down the blueberry sauce can also add a simply incredible freshness. The light, fluffy and aromatic pancakes topped with fresh sweet blueberry compote is a winning combination!
The trick to light and fluffy pancakes
You need to be careful not to over mix the batter, which can create tough, rubbery and flat pancakes. Also try incorporating a leavening agent (ingredient to help the pancakes rise when cooked), like baking powder. This citrus ricotta pancake recipe uses egg whites that have been whipped to incorporate more air bubbles into the batter, creating fluffy pancakes when cooked.
Ricotta Pancakes with Blueberry Compote
- 2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 16 mint leaves, whole
- pinch kosher salt
- 3 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoons lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 4 large eggs, (whites and yolks separated)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup gluten-free flour, all-purpose flour may be substituted
- In a medium saucepan, combine orange zest and juice, lemon zest and juice, honey, and mint. Heat over medium-high heat, until boiling, for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. The syrup should be slightly thickened and reduced to about ½ cup. Turn off the heat and add a pinch of salt, stir to combine. Carefully remove and discard the mint leaves.
- Add 3 cups of blueberry, and stir to coat with the syrup. Over medium heat, cook the blueberries until a dark purple thickened sauce has formed about 12 to 15 minutes. Make sure to keep a close eye on the compote, stirring as needed to make sure the sides and bottom of the pan do not burn. The blueberries will pop, and large pieces will remain in the compote. Cook the compote longer if you want a thicker jam type sauce. If the sauce gets too thick, add a little bit of water until you achieve the right consistency. Meanwhile, make the pancakes.
- Keep warm to use as a topping for the pancakes. Makes 1 cup of compote and can be refrigerated for up to 1 day.
- In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the honey, orange and lemon zest, egg yolks, ricotta cheese, and salt. Add the flour, whisk until combined.
- Using an electric mixer, place the egg whites in a bowl, and whisk on medium-high speed until medium-firm peaks are formed, approximately 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add about 1/3 of the beaten egg white into the batter, gently folding until blended. Fold the remaining whites 1/3 at a time, ensuring not to deflate the batter. The batter should be light and airy.
- Lightly grease a nonstick pan or griddle with cooking spray or oil. Set the pan over medium heat until hot. Add about ¼ cup of batter on the griddle, 2 inches apart. Cook each pancake for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until the bottoms are golden brown and the edges are set. The cakes are done when they spring back when lightly touched. Lightly grease the griddle between batches as needed. Serve pancakes with warm blueberry compote
- Blueberry compote sauce can stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat before serving.