Put Iron in Your Legs With Teff Pancakes

Found a great pancake recipe featuring teff, the grain that puts the mojo in the elite Ethiopian runners’ legs.

Teff contains a ton of iron, calcium, and protein, is easily digested, and tastes great in a variety of dishes.

See The Iron-Rich Diet Secret of Ethiopian Runners, at Competitor.com.

I love this pancake recipe because it’s simple (no exotic, tiresome-to-prepare ingredients), tastes terrific, and doesn’t dilute the teff nutritional powerhouse with other flours. Also, it makes 25 pancakes, and hey, isn’t that why we run?

Peripherally, after eating a shamefully large first batch of teff-cakes, I had no post-carb sleepiness.

Okay, here’s a recipe It’s from the Teff Company. You can read their story at this link. They’re located in Idaho’s Snake River Valley, which they realized while working Ethiopia, features a climate and terrain that’s very similar to the East African Rift. They focus on growing highest-quality teff mainly for the Ethiopian and Eritrean expatriate communities in the US.

After enjoying these panqueques, I’m pretty sure you’ll be tempted to cruise the site for other recipes. If you’re curious about injera, the traditional Ethiopian flatbread mentioned in the Competitor article, you can find a recipe here. Warning: it involves starter, so can take five days if you’re starting from scratch.


Makes 25 small pancakes

(I’ll insert my notes in brackets.)


Serves 4-6 (1-3 runners)

2 tablespoons flax seeds (okay to omit)

2 ripe bananas

1 1/2 cups vanilla soy milk (vanilla Almond Breeze works well)

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 tablespoon honey (I used agave nectar, worked great)

1 1/2 teaspoons oil (I used coconut oil, worked fine)

1 egg. Pancakes created with the original recipe are a bit dense. Adding an egg gives them just the right fluff.

1 1/2 cups teff flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

  1. Grind flax seeds in a blender until powdery. Add banana, vanilla soymilk, vanilla, honey, and 1/2 teaspoon oil. Blend well.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, put teff flour, baking powder, sea salt, and cinnamon. Stir in banana soymilk mixture.
  3. Place the griddle or skillet over medium heat. After a minute or 2, brush on one teaspoon of oil. Using a tablespoon, scoop up the batter and pour it on the hot griddle, one heaping tablespoon for each pancake.
  4. Cook pancakes for 3-4 minutes on the first side, or until you see tiny holes on the top of the pancakes. Flip them over and cook for another minute or two.
  5. Serve plain or dipped into yogurt. (You must be joking. Get outta the way, here comes the Magic Maple Syrup Flood.)
  6. While cooking, sprinkle with pecan parts from Trader Joe’s.

4 Responses to Put Iron in Your Legs With Teff Pancakes

  1. Pat October 25, 2015 at 12:14 pm #

    The pancakes were a hit! I could taste cinnamon and banana and as an added bonus the magic Maple syrup flood was the topping on the pancakes so to speak. Yummy…. the way pancakes should be :).

  2. George Beinhorn October 25, 2015 at 3:48 pm #

    Hi Pat! They are pretty yummy! Like all good things, they come with a caveat. Teff banana pecan pancakes are the world’s most fattening food. Maybe best saved for after long runs. If you’re looking for an alternative source of iron, see http://www.joyfulathlete.com/2015/07/28/the-joyful-athlete-secret-cure-for-jock-itch-and-low-energy/. Nature’s Plus Hema-Plex is great stuff, without the calories. – George

  3. Andtea November 13, 2017 at 11:24 am #

    Thanks for the recipe!! I added pumpkin and persimmon to my mixture. Tasty and filling

  4. George Beinhorn November 13, 2017 at 11:32 am #

    Hi Andtea! Gosh, now you’re gonna have to run a half-marathon before carb depletion sets in. (But it’ll be worth it.) Enjoy! – gb

Leave a Reply