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Gingerbread Pancakes with Sauteed Cinnamon Bananas

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If you are looking for something festive for your holiday brunch or Christmas morning, look no further. These delectable gingerbread pancakes are just the thing! The combination of warming spices with deep dark molasses is perfect on a cold day. And the flavor of gingerbread is so festive.

Bananas might seem like an unusual topping for gingerbread, but I can assure you it is simply divine! My family gobbled these up so quickly, I almost didn’t have time to snap a picture! I’m guessing this recipe will remain in rotation in our home for a long time to come.

I hope you enjoy them as much as we do! Next time I am planning to make waffles with the batter. Yummy!

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  • 1 ½ cups Lillabee Perfect Pancake Mix
  • 1 tsp dried ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground clove
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup of milk (rice, almond, cow, etc.)
  • 1 Tb mild flavored oil (grapeseed, canola, etc.)
  • 1 Tb vanilla bean paste (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
  • 2 Tb molasses
  • 2 Tb honey
  • 2 Tb brown sugar

In a large bowl, mix together Lillabee Pancake / Waffle mix with spices. In a medium bowl, mix together eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Using a whisk, mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients until combined. Next whisk in molasses, honey and brown sugar until well combined. Let batter stand for 5-10 min. Follow box directions to make pancakes. If your batter is too runny, just add 1 Tb pancake mix at a time until desired consistency is achieved.  If batter is too thick, add a splash of milk.

For Sautéed Cinnamon Bananas: After you have finished cooking your pancakes, add  1 Tb oil or butter and a sliced banana to your hot pan or skillet. Mix around with wooden spoon or spatula for 1-2 min. until soft and slightly golden brown. Finish in the pan with 1 Tb vanilla bean paste and a dash of cinnamon. Pour straight from pan onto your stack of pancakes and enjoy!

Happy Holidays & Happy Baking!

Your friends at the Lillabee Hive

Santa’s Hat Brownie Bites

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With Christmas just around the corner, I have been baking nonstop for weeks! Family gatherings, neighborhood secret Santa, company party, school celebrations and the list goes on and on. So many parties and so much fun all squeezed into one month. December rules!

Last week I was looking for some fun Christmas baking inspiration and came across this idea. Oh, I wish I could take full credit for these adorable festive treats.  They are simply the cutest! The original recipe is completely off my safe eating list, as they contain gluten, dairy and soy… my top 3 allergies. So, I gave them an allergy friendly make over and voila! Gluten free, dairy free, soy free Lillabee Santa’s Hat Brownie Bites were born!

These mini sweets are so much fun for kiddos and the perfect little treat to bring to any Christmas party. And for the record they are also nut free and can easily be prepared vegan by following the vegan substitution for Lillabee Fudgy Brownies at .

So here ya go! The perfect bite sized holiday treat! And I bet Santa himself wouldn’t mind nibbling a few of them too.

Happy Holidays! And happy baking!


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Lillabee Fudgy Brownies Bites:

  • 1 box Lillabee Fudgy Brownie Mix
  • 1/3 cup butter / margarine
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs (vegan substitutions @

Grease mini muffin tin well and set aside. Follow box directions to mix batter. Portion brownie batter into muffin tins and fill to the top. Bake for 15-20 min, or until brownies are set up on top and toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs. (For really fudgy brownies  remove from oven when the tops and sides are set and center is a little underdone. Let cool completely in pans to set up.) Make frosting while brownies are cooling.


Allergy Friendly White Frosting:

  • 1 cup non-hydrogenated shortening
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2-4 Tb milk (rice, almond, cow, etc.)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract (optional: this may slightly discolor the frosting)

In a standing mixer, use paddle attachment to mix shortening until smooth. Add powdered sugar ½ cup at a time along with 1 Tb milk and blend. Continue this process as many times as needed until you reach the desired consistency and sweetness. For Santa’s Hat Brownie Bites, frosting should be thick and stiff to hold shape and set up. If too runny /soft, mix in more powdered sugar 1 Tb at a time.


To Assemble Santa’s Hat Brownie Bites:

  • Lillabee fudgy brownie bites (cooled completely)
  • Strawberries (pull stems off)
  • Allergy Friendly Frosting (recipe above)
  • Pastry bag and large round tip: Wilton 1A*
  • 2 Tb sugar for decorating (optional)

Pull stems off of strawberries (do not cut stems off or they will lose juices and make brownies sticky). Insert tip into pastry bag and fill with stiff consistency white frosting. Pipe a thick ring around the outside edge of brownie bite. Immediately place strawberry in the center and top with a small dollop of frosting. Sprinkle with sugar if desired. Assemble one at a time. Store in refrigerator for 1-2 days in an airtight container.

*LILLAtip: If you do not have a pastry bag and tip, try filling a sandwich baggie with frosting. Squeeze all frosting to one corner and twist the bag above the frosting. Cut a very small tip off of the corner of the bag and squeeze frosting out while keeping  the twist in the baggie to maintain pressure. You can adjust the size of the hole by cutting more off the corner if necessary. See it done on you tube:

Oatmeal Macadamia Nut Pancakes

Oatmeal macadamia nut pancakesConsidering it is Sunday, it’s probably not surprising that I’ve posted a pancake recipe today.   I love pancakes, but during the week I don’t always have time to make them.  With this being said, Sundays are my pancake days.  Sometimes I make extras and freeze them for later in the week or even save them for a snack later on in the day. 

I recently met a man in Whole Foods Colfax while sampling some of our tasty Lillabee treats.  He was from Aspen and also loves pancakes.  I began telling him about our wonderful and nutritious pancake mix, but he was not sold on the product.  He told me that the only pancakes he eats are from a cafe in the heart of Aspen called Poppycock’s.  He orders the same pancake every time he goes, which is quite frequent, and never tires of them.  I asked him what flavor they were and why they were so great.  The way he described the hot cakes literally tempted me enough to drive to Aspen just to try the Oatmeal Macadamia Nut Pancakes.  The pancakes were delicious and entirely worth the drive, as they melted in my mouth.

Today, I am sharing a recipe that recreates these tasty buttermilk pancakes without the gluten or dairy. I used gluten free oats and a touch of vinegar to give it that true buttermilk flavor.  I liked these Oatmeal Macadamia Nut Pancakes so much that after I finished eating them, I made another batch and froze them for this coming week!  I hope I run into the gentleman who told me about these pancakes in the future so I can share with him the Lillabee version of his favorite hot cake.  Happy Sunday and Happy Baking!

  • 1 Cup Lillabee Perfect Pancake/Waffle Mix
  • 1 Tbls Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Gluten Free Oats
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1  Cup Milk (Rice, Almond, Cow)
  • 2 tsp White Wine or Apple Cider Vinegar (adds buttermilk flavor)
  • 1 Tbls Canola Oil
  • 1 Egg (simply omit egg to make vegan)
  • 1/3 Cup Chopped Macadamia Nuts + more to top the pancakes


Heat a large pancake skillet over medium heat and brush or spray it with oil.


In a large bowl, mix together the pancake mix, sugar and oats.  In a separate bowl, combine the milk with the vinegar to make a “buttermilk.” Once the milk has thickened, put it in a large mixing bowl and add the egg, vanilla and oil and whisk to combine.  Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and whisk to combine.  The batter should be smooth after mixing.  Fold the macadamia nuts into the batter with a spatula.  Let the pancake batter rest for about 5 minutes to thicken. 

Once the batter has thickened, form each pancake by dropping 1/3 cup of batter onto the prepared skillet.  Cook until the edges begin to brown and small bubbles appear throughout the pancake.  Flip the pancake, and continue to cook for a few more minutes on the other side.  Repeat with the remaining batter.  This recipe should make between 4 and 6 medium pancakes.

Top the pancakes with additional macadamia nuts and syrup!  Enjoy!

Apple Cinnamon Raisin Waffles with Coconut Maple Emulsion

apple waffle w text 2What are you making for brunch this weekend? Here’s what I’m serving Sunday morning. These apple cinnamon raisin waffles are nutritious and unbelievable delicious. Can you imagine anything more delightful on a chilly fall morning than biting in to a crispy waffle to find a warm sliver of  tart apple and a sweet note of raisin?  I think not.

As if this recipe wasn’t yummy enough, I am sharing another favorite family recipe for coconut maple emulsion to top it off. Don’t worry, the emulsion sounds fancy, but it is so easy! All you need is a whisk and three ingredients. It literally takes less than a minute and has much less sugar than pure maple syrup, but is equally decadent and satisfying. Trust me on this one. You will be hooked!

Have a lovely weekend and happy baking!


Apple Cinnamon Raisin Waffles: makes two or three 7″ waffles

  • 1 cup Lillabee Perfect Pancake / Waffle Mix
  • 1 egg (for vegan waffles, simply omit the egg and add an extra splash of rice milk)
  • 2/3 cup of milk (rice, almond, cow, etc)
  • 1 Tb oil (canola, grapeseed, coconut)
  •  1 Tb vanilla bean paste (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
  • 2 Tb ground flax meal (optional)
  • 1 apple sliced thin 
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Whisk together all wet ingredients. Next add apples, raisins and cinnamon. Stir in Lillabee Perfect Pancake / Waffle Mix and let batter stand for 2-5 minutes while heating waffle iron. When waffle iron is hot, use a ladle to pour batter into the center of the waffle maker. Fill until the batter is about 1″ from the edge. Close waffle iron and let cook until most of the steam has escaped and the waffle is golden brown.


coconut maple emulsion with graphics

Coconut Maple Emulsion: An emulsion is a combination of two liquids that typically would not mix, like oil and vinegar. When the ingredients are whisked together, droplets of one liquid becomes suspended in the other. Oh so delightful! This recipe is all about Mama ingenuity.  One morning my daughter was asking for maple syrup with her breakfast. I am always reluctant to let her start her day with a lot of sugar. So, I whipped up this combo and it  has been a staple at our breakfast table ever since.

Let me also say a few words about vanilla bean paste. I have been a little obsessed with this amazing product ever since I discovered it. It provides the aroma and gourmet experience of baking with vanilla beans, without the work. I use it in everything! It is an equal substitute for vanilla extract, so you can use in any baked good. And its so yummy, you can almost eat it off of the spoon. I make home made granola with it and stir it into oatmeal. I also have a fantastic recipe for coconut vanilla bean caramel coming you way soon. I always buy the Nelson Massey brand because it is all natural and certified gluten free and allergen free. You can purchase it here, as well as Whole Foods and other specialty food stores.

When I prepare this luscious topping at home I double or triple the recipe, pour it into a glass jar and place it in the refrigerator. Every 10 minutes I give it a whisk as it is cooling so that the maple syrup and vanilla beans stay suspended. We use this delicious topping on pancakes, crepes, french toast and so much more! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do at the hive!

After warming the coconut oil until it is liquid, measure and pour into a small bowl. Add  the vanilla bean paste and maple syrup. Whisk vigorously until the ingredients are mostly combined. Serve immediately. If ingredients separate, simply whisk again. You can play around with getting it cool enough to stay suspended, but not so cold it is solid.

Apple Spice Skillet Cake


square skillet cake for madeI absolutely love the fall! The crisp sunny autumn days in Colorado showcase the breathtaking golden aspen leaves as they pop against an evergreen background. This time of year I live for apples! I love trips to apple orchards, and the farmers market for the season’s best apples in all of their glory. Honey Crisp, Granny Smith, McIntosh… I love them all!  This particular recipe was made with empire apples from my husband’s family’s farm in central New York. A special thanks to Paul & Roz for sending us such a wonderful fall care package. 


Empire apples w larger thank youAnother thing I love about this time of year is baking, of course! In my mind October marks the beginning, of what I like to call, “baking season”. Preheat your oven and dust off your mixer! I’ve got some great recipes coming your way this fall.


As a new featured maker on Made Collection, I was inspired by the fabulous Lodge cast iron skillets they offer as a part of their collection. Confession: My kitchen cupboards are filled with expensive stainless steel pots and pans, but the truth is I rarely use them. I do nearly all of my stove top cooking in cast iron. From pancakes in the morning, grilled sandwiches for lunch and seared salmon for dinner, my cast iron pan is my go to. I even cook with it on my grill! So, its no wonder I was inspired to create this delicious apple spice skillet cake for my friends at Made Collection. And speaking of Made Collection, visit their sight to shop for Lillabee online!!


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Although this apple spice skillet cake is a simple recipe, the warming flavors of cinnamon and spice and the pop of tart apples are really spectacular. And baking in a skillet gives it a ton of rustic charm! The best part of this recipe is that you can make it any time of the year. It’s delicious served warm on a cold day for breakfast and equally appropriate to bring to a summer picnic and serve with ice cream.

Enjoy the season and happy baking!

Lillabee Apple Spice Skillet Cake:

  • One box of Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix
  • ¾ cup of milk (cow, rice, almond, etc)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 Tb ground pumpkin pie spice blend (cinnamon,clove, nutmeg, ginger)
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup + 1 Tb sugar
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • ¼ cup butter or non-dairy butter substitute
  • 2 large eggs (vegan substitutions here)
  • 2-3 tart apples (granny smith, Cortland, empire, etc.)
  • 10¼” Lodge cast iron skillet


Place rack in center of oven and preheat oven 350º F.

Lightly grease cast iron skillet and set aside. Mix ¼ cup sugar with 2 tsp cinnamon and set aside. Sift Lillabee flour pack with 1 Tb pumpkin pie spice blend.

Mix cake batter as directed on the back of the Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix. Once batter is mixed, measure out ¼ cup and mix with 1 Tb pumpkin pie spice blend and 1 Tb sugar. Set aside. Pour half of the remaining batter into the greased skillet. Top with dollops of the spiced batter mixture, then pour remaining batter over top. Use a knife to draw zig-zag lines through then entire skillet contents to create the swirl. Do not overmix.

Next, core and slice apples thin. Arrange on top of cake batter and generously top with the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Place skillet in the oven and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Use caution, as the skillet handle will be hot. Let cool, slice and enjoy!

Happy Baking!

PS- Now you can buy Lillabee online! Visit Made Collection to shop Lillabee.