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Acorn Pancakes | Adeline Panamaroff

Acorn Pancakes | Adeline Panamaroff

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Feeling a need for plant protein?

Are mainstream nuts too pricey to even consider purchasing? Why not try a free local replacement for your protein needs? The humble acorn is overlooked so often that many do not even consider it a food item. Historically many cultures have eaten acorns, so why not you?

Oak trees are not native to the western Prairies, yet they have been planted here in Edmonton and have habituated quite nicely. They are a common and sturdy presence in many urban parks and green spaces.

In mid-September, they are easy to find, even if you are not tuned into looking for them. Simply by walking under an oak tree, you can not miss the knobby acorns that you will walk over as they fall from above.

You can either gather acorns as they turn brown on the tree or, if you are too late for that, pick this protein-filled treasure out of the grass below. I have done both while squirrels, blue jays (Grrrr… Blue jays love acorns.), and rabbits complain about my violation of their territory. With my sack filled, I usually make several trips to the same tree till either my need is satisfied or the tree has no more acorns to give.

This recipe is gluten-free so that both my husband and I can enjoy it.



  • collecting bag

  • sieve

  • dish towel

  • small hammer

  • bowl

  • blender or food processor

  • measuring cup

  • measuring spoons

  • griddle or frying pan

  • spatula

  • whisk or fork




  • 2 cup crushed acorns

  • 2/3 cup gluten free flour

  • 3 tsp baking powder

  • 1 1/2 tsp salt

  • 2 ½ cup sour milk

  • 2 eggs

  • 6 tbsp butter




  1. Gather the acorns into your bag. Discard any that are cracked or have bits taken out of them.

  2. Wash them in a sieve and lay them out on a dish towel to air dry.

  3. Crack them open with a small hammer. I usually do this outside on the wooden deck of my home.

  4. Put your shelled acorns into a blender or food processor to crush the acorns until they are the consistency of corn meal.

  5. Measure out as much acorn meal as you need for the pancakes.

  6. Set up your milk, if you need to make sour milk add 2 tbsp vinegar to every cup of milk and let sit till cruddled.

  7. Combine the flour, salt and baking powder with the acorn meal.

  8. Add in the egg, oil, and sour milk. Mix with the whisk till you have a thick batter, adding in small amounts of flour as needed to thicken.

  9. In a preheated frying pan or electric grill set to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, spread a thin film of oil on the bottom, then pour out ¼ cups of the batter to make small pancakes.

  10. Flip the pancake when the edges are cooked, and let cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.

  11. Remove from heat and repeat till the batter is all gone.

  12. Enjoy with maple syrup, rose petal syrup, seed butter, chokecherry jelly, or honey.


If you are lucky enough to get an excess of acorns, you can freeze the meal for a year in reused yogurt containers. Just label and date for easy identification. I have added acorn meal to pesto, cooked cereal and anything else that asks for nuts, using acorns as a replacement.

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