Did y’all hear about IHOP’s Horton Hears a Who-themed pancakes a few years ago? If you missed it, google “Who-Cakes” and prepare to have your mind blown (as well as witness some upper-tier food blogging). Apparently, this limited-time monstrosity consisted of a pile of pancakes bathed in pink and blue food coloring, sprinkled with candy, and impaled with a lollipop. These are the kinds of stories that some day we’ll tell our kids* and they’ll roll their eyes and be like “yeah yeah, ‘uphill both ways,’ #%^in’ whatever.”

Unfortunately, Who-Cakes weren’t just an indigestion-inspired nightmare, and echoes of the same twisted nutritional logic can be found in IHOP’s breakfast menu year-round. Take, for example, IHOP’s “cheesecake pancakes,” lovingly “loaded with rich cheesecake pieces.” That shit should be illegal, but instead, it makes me mourn for a time when things were simpler. You know: the innocent, crunchy days of my youth, when kids’ pancakes were merely adorned with whipped cream and chocolate chips and maraschino cherries. Witness, my friends, the comparatively lesser glory that is the “Funny Face” pancake.

How do dishes like this even come into existence? Who teaches their kids that eating whipped cream and maraschino cherries for breakfast is a totally legitimate lifestyle choice? I certainly have no dang clue, but I do know that the “Funny Face” was the only meal I ate at IHOP as a kid.

This post goes out to all those glucose studies I did where they told me it would take years and years of intensely focused effort for me to ever develop Type 2 diabetes. I’m working on it, okay?!

Vegan Funny Face Pancake
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
 
Ingredients
  • 1 15 oz can coconut milk (full-fat, not light), refrigerated at least 12 hours
  • 2 c flour
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 scant tsp salt
  • ¼ c chilled coconut oil or vegan butter
  • 1¾ c plain, unsweetened vegan milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • ¾ c chocolate chips
  • maraschino cherries
Instructions
  1. First, prepare the whipped cream. Remove coconut milk can from refrigerator; do not shake.
  2. Open can and spoon out only the thick white cream at the top, leaving the more translucent coconut water at the bottom of the can.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat coconut cream on high 2-5 minutes, until fluffy peaks form.
  4. Transfer whipped cream to a pastry bag fitted with a star or flower tip and refrigerate until pancakes are cooked.
  5. Next, make the pancakes. In a large bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  6. With a pastry cutter or two knives, cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse meal.
  7. Add milk and vanilla and whisk until mixture is relatively smooth.
  8. Fold in chocolate chips.
  9. Heat an ungreased, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. It's hot enough when a drop of water flicked across the surface immediately sizzles.
  10. Pour ½ cup of batter into the center of the pan. Cook until the edges start to look dry and visible air bubbles have just started to form near the center of the pancake.
  11. Flip and cook the other side until golden.
  12. Remove from pan and place on a serving plate, covered with a cloth to keep the heat in.
  13. Repeat until remaining batter is used up.
  14. Make a face on each pancake. Plot out eyes, a nose, and a mouth with whipped cream. Use maraschino cherries for eyeballs and chocolate chips for teeth.

*j/k!