Today is not only Shrove Tuesday but also Carnival Day in Portugal so we are celebrating with Gluten Free oat pancakes for breakfast. Hubby makes me pancakes a lot and he often makes them into different shapes like bunnies or hearts which is cute.

Shrove Tuesday is the last day before the long fast for the Lent period in many Christian churches. The day is the day before Ash Wednesday. It has many names, including Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, the Tuesday of Carnival, and Pancake Day. Today sadly there will be no colourful masks, fancy costumes, parades or large crowds, just pancakes al fresco for us.

These were the Carnival Tuesday costumes I saw in the shop this time last year. I think I would have looked like a mature lady goddess in the sparkly outfit with my muffin top and hubby was so thrilled about wearing the fake boobies. Actually I think he would look better in the glitter feather costume and the fake boobies look a lot bigger and perkier than my current ‘Bristol Cities’ (titties) ha ha.

This is my own adapted recipe, it’s part BBC, part Slimming World and part Helen. I prefer the super fluffy American style pancakes hubby makes using GF white flour but these oat pancakes are a healthier choice and so tasty with a dollop of jam, lemon and sweetener. I grew up eating my mum’s thin rolled up or folded in half pancakes that resemble crepes but I much prefer the American style pancakes. I ate Denny’s pancakes everyday whilst in Las Vegas which is probably why I gained 10lb’s in 10 days! The Denny’s buttermilk, peanut butter and banana pancakes are incredible but so very bad for my nutrition and waistline. One day the waiter delivered my order of pancakes and said with a smile “Enjoy your diabetes on a plate”. A bit out of order to be honest but it did make us laugh.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 100g/3½oz Gluten free oats
  • 1/4 tsp Sea salt
  • 1 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Gluten free baking powder
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract (Hubby actually forgot to add this ha ha)
  • 100ml/3½fl oz milk (You can use any type of milk e.g. almond or oat and also 0% fat free Greek yoghurt instead of milk if you like.
  • 1 large egg
  • Oil (I use a small amount of olive oil)


  1. Place the dry ingredients: oats, cinnamon, baking powder and salt in a blender and whiz until a fine powder and looks like flour. Make sure the lid is on!
  2. Whisk together the wet ingredients: milk, egg and vanilla extract and stir into the dry ingredients. You can add more milk if too thick. Whisk again and do not leave it to stand as it will become too thick.
  3. Heat a nonstick frying pan with oil.
  4. Pour in the batter and wait until pancakes bubble.
  5. Flip and cook reverse of pancake.
  6. Serve with a range of toppings. I’m a basic girl so love jam, lemon and sugar/sweetener. Mixed berries, honey and yoghurt is also tasty. Banana and peanut butter is also good but probably not as healthy as it sounds.

Final thoughts (about pancakes ha ha)

It’s a shame there will be no Carnival celebrations this year in Portugal. This is why we like to make an effort and celebrate these special days and it’s a good excuse to stuff our faces with pancakes (ha ha). We enjoyed our Shrove Tuesday Carnival breakfast pancakes al fresco. It’s great to be able to pick fresh lemons straight from our tree to use in the recipe. I love eating outdoors amongst nature and the table is much nicer than our old big ass dining table inside. We inherited the huge table when we purchased the house and I hate it with a passion. It’s perfect for social distancing and we sit at either end like a king and queen of the Casa Valhal manor (ha ha).

Compliments to our top chef (Adrian) for the epic pancakes which were scrummy, yummy in my tummy!