Pumpkin is one of the most popular fall ingredients, and the versatile squash can be put in anything from soup to pie to pancakes. The batter for these breakfast cakes comes together easily: Just whisk the dry ingredients (including flour and warm spices of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves), then fold them into the wet mixture of pumpkin, milk, butter, and eggs. For extra fall flavor, we stir in some toasted pecans. Griddle your pancakes, and drizzle them with plenty of maple syrup; if you want, get fancy with some molasses-clove butter to melt on top.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 teaspoonvanilla extract
1/2 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
3 to 4 teaspoonsvegetable oil
Butter, for serving
Maple syrup, for serving
Heat the oven to 200°F and place a baking sheet on one of the racks.
Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves in a medium bowl until evenly combined; set aside.
Whisk the milk, pumpkin, butter, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl until evenly combined. Add the flour mixture and pecans and stir until just mixed and moistened (the batter will be lumpy), about 30 strokes. Set the batter aside to rest while the pan or griddle heats.
Heat a large, seasoned cast iron skillet, nonstick frying pan, or griddle over medium heat. Test to see if the pan is hot enough by sprinkling a couple of drops of cold water in it: If the water bounces and sputters, the pan is ready to use; if it evaporates instantly, the pan is too hot.
Once the pan is ready, add 1 teaspoon of the oil and tilt the pan to coat. Ladle the batter into the pan in 1/3-cup portions. Cook until golden brown on the bottom, about 3 to 5 minutes. Using a flat spatula, flip the pancakes and cook until the second side is golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove to the baking sheet in the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining batter, adding 1 teaspoon of oil to the pan between batches. Serve immediately with butter and maple syrup.