While we were thinking up ideas for a special Mother’s Day treat, we couldn’t help but be inspired by one of the most well-known Italian desserts: Cannoli.
If your mom loves the crunch of cannoli shells and the sweetened ricotta filling flavored with orange and cinnamon, consider serving up cannoli pancakes for brunch or breakfast in bed.
Here are some tips for getting your cannoli pancakes just right
Choose Your Pancake Style
Crepes are a great option for holding the cannoli cream like a traditional cannoli shell. Image licensed by Shutterstock.
Remember this treat is for mom, so pay attention to what style of pancakes she likes. You can adapt the concept of cannoli pancakes to suit her taste. If she likes crepes, try this simple recipe from Nigella Lawson. This thin, flexible style of pancake is perfect for filling with cannoli cream and rolling them up.
For an almost custardy pancake, we love these lemon ricotta pancakes from Delish because it gives you a chance to play with the traditional flavors of cannoli. The pancakes already include ricotta, but instead of using lemon zest like the recipe calls for, you can use orange zest and add a dash of cinnamon and chocolate chips. These pancakes are so moist, you might not even need syrup. If that’s the case for you, a light dusting of powdered sugar will finish off the dish.
You may not want to make everything from scratch. Don’t be shy about using a boxed pancake mix. You’ll still get all credit for cooking when everyone digs in. You can layer the cannoli cream between each pancake or top it off a stack with a generous dollop.
If you’re not sure how much everyone wants, serve up a hot stack of pancakes with cannoli cream, syrup and other toppings on the side so they can decide what amount works for them. Dust the entire plate with cinnamon and powdered sugar for a finished look.
Pro Tip: Have Your Cannoli Cream (and Other Toppings) Ready
You don’t want hot pancakes waiting around and getting cold while you make the toppings. So, preparing the cannoli cream before starting the pancakes is definitely the way to go.
In 2018, we shared the recipe for Doris’s Own Cannoli Cream so you can make it anytime you want. But you can also stop by your local Doris Market and pick up a container of fresh, ready-to-go cannoli cream with chocolate chips.
It’s also a good idea to have any other desired toppings, like bananas or strawberries, washed and sliced before making the pancakes.