Happily Whole

Living well from the inside out

Pumpkin Pancakes/Waffles~and a Recipe for Redemption

Last night after doing a devotion with my sweet husband, we started a conversation about stress. You know, the kind of stress you can’t quite put your finger on yet you also aren’t able to overcome. For me, I gain awareness of this inconspicuous stress as my shoulders subconsciously tighten and my voice inadvertently heightens. My sleep ever-so-slightly loses its restfulness, my patience snaps under less pressure and that nagging knot behind my shoulder blade sends subtle yet self-sabotaging messages straight into my soul.

Yeah, it’s the daily stress sabotaging the condition of my soul.

During our conversation we observed how during the toughest, most traumatizing times in our lives, it was sheer desperation along with God’s wisdom and life-saving strength helping us step up and conquer the depths of stress that would otherwise suffocate us.

(Because, you know, stress can suffocate our souls like wearing an impermeable mask and a straight jacket of self-defeat.)

You see, before we’d ever met Matt and I had both walked in muddy waters and made it through, marked and molded into more of who HE made us to be. We know making it through those milestone tough times with success was only by the grace of God as we leaned hard on Him realizing we would’ve never made it out alone. While we both bear battle wounds, our Savior used major stress to bring us through our messes more blessed!

Ironically, though, it’s in the everyday battles where we so easily get caught in a downward spiral of mounting simpler stresses. It all builds up until we’re broken, beating us down with what was never meant to bring us to our knees. It’s the inconspicuous stress sinking us! It’s the day to day messes that really matter most!

It reminds me of one day recently when I sat immersed in my writing. The article was just ten minutes from done. Suddenly, in a flash of some still unknown glitch, I lost it all due to technical difficulties! I was devastated, feeling disproportionally defeated. I could barely think about what to do next. Outside I admit I cried but inside that one day’s stress nearly drove me crazy! (Or maybe my loss was the last link on a chain of building stress and I finally broke.)

How is it that, after overcoming much bigger deals, these simpler daily stressors nearly sabotage me?

Because it’s in the mundane where I forget to reach for God’s guidance! Is it true for you, too? During the real, once-in-a-lifetime struggles, we stretch high and hard for His hand? Then the day-to-day duties and simple stressors we deem as our own, attempting to be in control, instead of giving each one over to Him.

Now, let's look back to my lost article, my personal little lost work of art. After lamenting over my loss, I came to my senses and surrendered the situation to God. I survived the aggravation knowing He had a lesson in those lost words (huh..maybe I’m actually learning it NOW). Perhaps those words weren’t what God wanted me to write that day. Either way, I was going to be okay!

That’s why I’m preaching to myself (and maybe to some of you!) when I say, He even uses life’s daily stressors to mold us when we’re wise enough to reach for our Maker in the mundane!

Those every day moments of surrender offer opportunities to build character, endurance, dependence on Him and independence from our own self-defeating downward spirals. Daily inconspicuous stress will either suffocate our souls or send us closer to the character of our Savior. Remember, Jesus lived with everyday maddening matters just the way we do…and He’s the model we want our mold to match.

But here’s the other thing. God is our great redeemer! So when daily stress drowns us, He redeems us! I’ve seen it in my own life over and over again. When I give it to Him, He carries it with care and rewards me with His redemption through lessons or redirection.

As for the conclusion of my conversation with my husband…What makes our experience of stress more satisfying is in our reactions and whether we truly give each matter to our great God. Stress can’t drown us when He’s the one grounding us. He doesn’t promise we won’t ever swim upstream but He’s our life vest who keeping our heads above water. 

The lost article? I never rewrote it. Because sometimes it's better to start fresh. So, instead I decided to conquer my stress in the kitchen, turning my small disaster into a seasonal recipe success! Seems simplistic and perhaps like a bit of a stretch, but for me it’s a reminder that God serves up His recipe for redemption when I simply surrender.  So here you have it—inconspicuous stress transformed into a redeeming recipe! Pumpkin Pancakes/Waffles...and the girls are gobbling them up. 

Here's a few more pumpkin recipes if you're looking for more seasonal treats:

Pumpkin French Toast

Pumpkin Seed Salad

Pumpkin Donuts (a MAJOR WINNER)


So, you may think of pumpkin as a sweet seasonal treat for your taste buds, but their nutritional profile make pumpkin much more than that! Overloaded with vitamin A, more fiber than most fruits to help keep you full and cancer fighting beta carotene overflow in this large orange gourde. That’s why this versatile pancake/waffle recipe make the mark for me, a mom who wants to tempt taste buds yet send the kids to school with a nutrition packed breakfast on board. 


  • 3 whole eggs (I choose organic eggs from pasture raised chickies as often as possible)
  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat pastry flour*see notes*
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves
  • ½ teaspoon salt (I choose Celtic Sea or Pink Himalayan)
  • ½ cup plain (unsweetened) almond milk*see notes**
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling, which has added sugars)
  • 4 tablespoons pure honey (I use local as often as possible)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pure maple syrup for serving

Recipe Instructions

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, spices, baking powder and soda). 
  • In another bowl, whisk the wet ingredients (whisk the eggs well first and then add the pumpkin, milk honey and vanilla--whisk well again). 
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients are combined. 
  • Heat your pan/griddle/waffle iron. Use butter to coat if necessary. And scoop about ¼ of the batter on to your heated surface. Allow to cook through and flip if you are making pancakes. Once cooked, remove from heat and serve with pure maple syrup. 
  • If you are freezing some, allow each to cool completely on a cooling rack before putting them in a freezer container. I like to freeze with parchment or wax paper between the layers to prevent sticking. 
  • Enjoy!! (and let me know what you think!)

Recipe Notes

Hint: I doubled this recipe straight away! I wanted to have waffles and pancakes in the freezer for rushed, weekday morning breakfasts. 

*Whole wheat pastry flour is a whole wheat flour with a finer texture, resulting in a bit softer and fluffier baked products. You can also use a gluten free flour mix (I like Bob's Red Mill's gluten free blend) or you can use straight whole wheat flour. 

**You can substitute any milk of your choice. When I am using almond milk, I choose Silk brand because it lacks carrageen, a processed and unhealthy emulsifier. 

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