A Welcome Break…fast

Last night was rough. Next Saturday is the “ethics” portion of the Bar exam: the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (“MPRE”). And yes, it’s as bad as it sounds. After my 2-hour seminar last night, Shaun and I sat through a review lecture that basically involved filling in the blanks on a 40-page handout with the words “informed consent” and “malpractice” over and over and over. The next week and a half is going to be rough: balancing papers and reading with preparing for the MPRE. I decided to “reward” us with an out-of-the-ordinary breakfast to savor one of the only quiet moments we’ll get until November 5th: pumpkin “pancakes.”

So, they’re not quite pancakes, as the dough is oatmeal-based rather than flour-based, and there’s no butter, buttermilk, or oil. Plus, each serving has 300 calories, 30 grams of protein, 8 grams of fiber, and is sugar-free (but feel free to add sugar if you please). It’s a diner meal done right. I perused a ton of recipes before choosing one at Dashing Dish to start with. I drooled over Katie’s photos!

It’s really hard to believe that these are just protein powder, oats, and egg whites, basically. They were thick, creamy, and the pumpkin really stood out! I topped them with sliced banana, carob, chia, and this sugar-free syrup we found that has 15 calories per quarter cup. Brilliance.

no flash.

no flash 2.

with flash.

with flash 2... literally cannot win.

I think my next project should be taking all the recipes on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and making healthier versions to satisfy my constant diner food cravings [omelettes, anyone?].

Pumpkin, Oat & Protein “Pancakes” (Vegetarian)

Modified (a teeny tiny bit) from the Pumpkin Spice Protein Pancakes at Dashing Dish, but this recipe is all Katie. Go there for the original (and beautiful photos)!

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Serves: 2 (makes 8 mini pancakes)


  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 & 2 tbsp cup water
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • Sprinkle of ginger, nutmeg, and cloves
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp splenda
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

Garnishes (optional):

  • Sliced banana
  • 1/2 tbsp carob chips
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • Syrup
  • Granola


1. Put everything into the food processor. Blend until it’s smooth. I had to add a tad bit more water.

2. Spoon batter onto a non-stick pan in batches the size of the rim of a pint glass. This will make 8 pancakes. Flip when the batter lifts easily from the pan.

3. Put four pancakes on each plate – garnish, and enjoy.


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Categories: Recipes


Courtney grew up in Reading, PA, and has lived in New York City (where she earned a bachelor's degree at NYU), Prague, Philadelphia, and Charlottesville (where she received a J.D. from UVa Law). Courtney and her new husband will settle in Philadelphia following a six-week Euro-trip extravaganza in September of 2012. Courtney's interests include music, writing, criticism, fitness, travel, cooking, and sports. Please enjoy the blog. LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/courtney-marello/1a/375/b30 Tumblr: http://abarrelofoddsandends.tumblr.com/


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3 Comments on “A Welcome Break…fast”

  1. Tony
    October 27, 2011 at 12:17 pm #

    I feel your pain! We eat (awesome) stuff like this after I write 20+ page papers on applied anthropology and “what is means to be human in the 1500’s” (gotta love social science) and after my wife works vigorously on her dissertation. We sweep away the mountain of books and papers for a moment to check what day it is, enjoy a culinary comfort, and rehang the coffee I.V. bags. Good Luck!

    • October 27, 2011 at 12:33 pm #

      Coffee IVs…. you’re on to something!!! And thanks 🙂 What’s your wife’s dissertation on?


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    […] hands. This morning’s pumpkin oatmeal finished off the last of the pumpkin in the can [after pancakes, stew, pizzas, savory cakes, and burger toppings] so we’ll have to move on to another […]

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