Cheesy Masa Pancakes with Pico de Gallo–A Lovely Mexican Appetizer

We had these recently at a local Mexican restaurant and they were delightful!  So I went home and looked up the recipe.  Meade it gluten-free because it was so easy and now I have a new favorite for family or for entertaining.  Making the Pico de Gallo was easy.  It is such that you can (and probably should) make it ahead of time, even up to a day ahead.  The longer it sits, the more the flavors mingle.

The pancakes are only about tow inches in diameter and a couple with the salsa and some cheese makes just enough for a side dish or appetizer.  We have Masa in our pantry.  My husband uses it to thicken his chili, but that was all we used it for before this recipe.  Now, he’d better watch out!  There might not be any by the time he’s cooking chili this fall!

This is a fun, easy recipe to add to your menu planning.  Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

Cheesy Masa Pancakes with Pico de Gallo
Pico de Gallo
  • 3 plum tomatoes, quartered
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup chopped white onion
  • 1 green onion (trimmed and quartered)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
Masa pancakes
  • 1 cup masa harina (gf cornmeal in baking aisle of grocers)
  • ⅓ cup Baking Free™ glutne-free All purpose Flour (for best results, weigh flour; ⅓ cup = 42g)
  • ¾ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ cup grated queso fresco
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil (divided)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 8 teaspoons crema Mexicana
Pico de Gallo
  1. Place tomatoes in a food processor, pulse 2 or 3 times. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add cilantro, white onion, and green onion to food processor, pulse 3 times or until finely chopped. Transfer to bowl with tomatoes, Stir in lime juice and ⅛ teaspoon salt. Cover and refrigerate.
Masa Pancakes
  1. Combine masa harina, flour, baking powder, queso fresco and remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt in food processor. Drizzle 1 tablespoon oil and process 1 or 2 times. Gradually add 1 cup of warm water while processor is running until dough forms. Divide dough into 16 balls, flatten to form 2 inch pancakes.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil. Place 8 pancakes in pan and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown. Brush tops with oil and flip pancakes to cook and additional 3 minutes or so. Repeat with remaining pancakes and oil.
  1. Top pancakes with Pico de Gallo and crema. Serves 8. Each serving is 2 pancakes, 2 tablespoons Pico de Gallo, 1 tablespoon crema.