10 Healthy and Low-Carb Pancake Toppings

Article posted in: Nutrition
high protein pancake mix breakfasts with blueberries and a variety of nuts

Saturday mornings and pancakes seem to go hand in hand. However, the standard stack of pancakes from your local diner are typically packed with carbs and added sugar. That’s not ideal when you’re trying to follow a low-carb diet to lose weight. So what’s a dieter to do when the rest of your family clamors for some fluffy flapjacks? Say yes. Whip up a batch for them and then find a healthy pancake recipe just for you!

Lucky for you, we have some healthy and low-carb pancake recipes for you right here on The Palm! Our Almond Flour Pancake recipe is perfect for your weekend brunch plans, while our Peanut Butter Pancakes recipe packs in the protein and fiber. Now, let’s talk toppings!

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Here are 10 toppings to try on our High Protein Pancake Mix:

1. Butter

Pieces of butter in the bowl

Most diets will tell you to eliminate butter from your weight loss plan. However, here at The South Beach Diet, we do things a little differently. Butter and all other full-fat dairy products are considered Healthy Fats on our meal plan. In moderation, they are great way to add flavor and nutrition to your menu. The problem with dairy is the richness of the fat and our tendency to overeat cheese, ice cream and, of course, butter. Stick to one tablespoon of butter on your pancakes and count it as one Healthy Fat serving for the day.

2. Sugar-Free Syrup

sugar-free maple syrup in a glass bottle on a wooden table for pancake topping

While maple syrup, corn syrup and cane sugar manufacturers would love to convince you otherwise, sugar is sugar. It sweetens foods and adds calories but offers virtually no nutritional benefits. Plus, sugar can be addictive and is easily hidden in many products. We recommend three sugar-free, zero-calorie sweeteners on The South Beach Diet: erythritol, monk fruit and stevia. Find sugar-free syrup made with one of these ingredients and you can happily top your pancakes with it.

Read more about our favorite low-carb sweeteners here! >

3. Berries

Mixed berries on a plate for pancake topping

There are some fruits that are higher in sugar than others, which is why only some fruits are recommended on the South Beach Diet. Berries (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries) are lower in sugar than many other options. They’re also loaded with antioxidants, high in fiber and last but not least, taste terrific alone or atop pancakes. Berries are considered an Extra on the South Beach Diet meal plan. Check out our Grocery Guide for recommended serving sizes! >

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4. Homemade Whipped Cream

homemade whipped cream in a bowl

Whipped cream isn’t off limits on your low-carb diet! Our 3-Ingredient Homemade Whipped Cream recipe is ideal for fancy pancake brunch. Just be grateful for erythritol-based confectioners sugar, one of three ingredients in this heavenly treat. There’s no substitute for the heavy cream. Remember: Dairy fat is healthy fat. Just watch your serving size and allocate three Extras in your South Beach Diet meal plan, as whipped cream is quite rich.

5. Nuts & Seeds

Various Nuts and seeds in bowls for pancake topping

If you’ve never had nuts or seeds in your pancakes, you’re in for a crunchy, buttery treat. Drop them into your pancakes while they’re cooking or sprinkle them on top before eating. Add a few fresh berries and you’ll feel like you’re at a five-star restaurant. Strawberry-almond pancakes are delicious. Add a little pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice (and a little less water) to your pancake batter and you can make pumpkin pancakes. Top with walnuts or pecans. Toast the nuts if you’d like.

6. Nut Butter

peanut paste in an open jar and peanuts in the peel scattered on the table

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine pancakes without butter and syrup. But you must try pancakes topped with two tablespoons of tasty almond, peanut, walnut or hazelnut butter. The flavor is savory, a little sweet and you’ll feel totally satisfied, thanks to keep-you-full protein and healthy fats. Make sure the nut butter you buy is free of added sugars and hydrogenated oils (trans fats). We won’t tell if you make these pancakes for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

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7. Coconut Flakes

grated coconut flakes in a natural shell for pancake topping

Coconut flakes are naturally sweet and get a decadent flavor and texture when toasted for a short time. Try adding coconut flakes to the batter so the heat of the pan can add crunchy, buttery, delicious depth to your pancakes. Be careful not to buy sweetened flaked coconut at the store. Add a sprinkle of sugar-free powdered sugar and some blueberries for extra sweetness.

8. Chocolate Chips

Chocolate chips or morsels in a bowl for pancake topping

Yes, you can have chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast. Just use chocolate chips that are “sweetened” with erythritol, monk fruit or stevia. Mini chocolate chips melt more quickly, making for a gooey chocolate pancake. The larger chips will make chocolate pockets in your pancake. Both options sound pretty darn awesome. If you like nuts in your desserts, the combination would be even sweeter.

Can’t find sugar-free chocolate chips? Try making our 4-Ingredient Sugar-Free Chocolate Sauce! > It features cocoa powder, coconut oil, sweetener and a bit of water. 

9. Greek Yogurt

Greek Yogurt in a bowl with berries

Creamy and dreamy with buttery smoothness, Greek yogurt is another out-of-the-box topping you’ll want to put on your must-try list. Stir in cinnamon and a little vanilla extract for a “sweet” without the sugar flavor. You can also add some fresh fruit over the yogurt to make a pancake parfait. Stick to a half-cup of plain, whole milk Greek yogurt and allocate one Healthy Fat on your meal plan.

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10. Bacon & Eggs

bacon and eggs on a pan for pancake topping

You’ve seen pancake breakfast sandwiches before—why not make one at home? Nestle a slice or two of bacon, an egg and maybe some cheese inside two pancakes. You’ll have a breakfast treat to fuel you through a busy day. Why not go for a bike ride or hike through the forest? It’s the weekend, after all.