< Southern Basics

5 Tasty Pancake Toppers (That Aren't Maple Syrup)

A tall stack of tender pancakes topped with maple syrup is a classic for good reason—really, what's not to love? But sometimes even the classics need freshening up. Could your family's weekend breakfast routine use a little inspiration? You don't need anything fancy to have some fun. Here are five places to start:

1. Cinnamon Sugar

Sometimes simple really is best. Mix together a jar of cinnamon-sugar (or for fall flavor, sugar and pumpkin pie spice!) and sprinkle it generously over a pile of well-buttered pancakes for a treat that’s low of effort but big on comfort.

2. Strawberries and Cream

Who says syrup has to be maple? Make a simple strawberry version (or whatever flavor you like) by adding a cupful of jam to a saucepan along with a splash or two of water. Warm the mixture over medium heat, stirring it until it's smooth. Drizzle over pancakes and top with a cloud of whipped cream.

3. Honey Pecan

Does your family go nuts for nuts? Chop up a handful of fresh pecans, toast them in a hot pan until they're warm and golden, and toss them with a little bit of salt. Stir in a few tablespoons of runny honey until the mixture is slick and sticky, then spread between stacked pancakes before drizzling a little more honey over the top.

4. Apple à la mode

Dark, jammy apple butter tastes like autumn by the spoonful. Smear it generously over a pile of warm pancakes - and top the stack off with a scoopful of vanilla ice cream. Mom's apple pie may suddenly have some serious competition!

5. Nutella (or Hot Fudge) and Banana

For a real treat, give your pancakes the sundae treatment. Warm-up a cupful of chocolate-hazelnut spread (like Nutella) or good old fashioned Hot Fudge until its smooth and pourable. Spoon it over pancakes along with thinly sliced bananas. And if you want to add sprinkles, we won't tell!