To make the apple butter, all you need is three ingredients and just a little bit of time. The result? An über-sweet and delectable spread that’s fantastic on these pancakes, and even some cinnamon toast with a dollop of coconut yogurt.
For apple butter:
1 jar (24 ounces) unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
For pumpkin spiced pancakes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cup plain pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
4 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
1. To make apple butter, whisk all ingredients together in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring every 20 minutes, until reduced to 1 cup, about 1 1/2 hours. Cool to room temperature before transferring to a plastic container or glass bottle and refrigerating for at least 1 hour before serving. (Apple butter can be made and refrigerated for up to 3 weeks ahead of using, or double the recipe and use some this weekend and save the rest for another time.)
2. To make pancakes, heat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and pumpkin pie spices together in a large bowl. Whisk pumpkin purée, eggs, applesauce, and almond milk together in a medium bowl.
3. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients using a rubber spatula to stir gently until just combined. Batter will be thick.
4. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Coat pan with nonstick cooking spray. Using 1/3 cup of batter for each pancake, cook until outer edges firm up and bottom is golden-brown, about 1 1/2 minutes. Flip and cook other side until golden-brown, about another 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer pancakes to a rimmed baking sheet and set aside. Continue cooking remaining batter, moving pancakes to the baking sheet once they’re browned (if you run out of space, you can stack them, or use a separate baking sheet for fluffier pancakes).
5. Pop baking sheets in the oven and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Serve with a schmear of apple butter.
Tip: Use a clean turkey baster to easily and cleanly transfer the pancake batter from the bowl to the skillet. Sounds silly, but it totally works.