Tips & Recipes

Team recipe: healthy banana sourdough pancakes

Every morning at the Tour de France, chef Owen Blandy makes these nutritious pancakes for our team

July 13, 2023

A cycling team races on its stomach.

Here at the Tour de France, our riders burn 5,000 to 7,000 calories a day, every day for three weeks straight. Keeping well fuelled is vital. If our riders start to run low on energy, they will soon lose power, no matter how fit they are. To compete with the best in the Tour, they have to keep their tanks topped up with healthy, nutritious fuel.

That starts at breakfast. Three hours before the start of every stage, our riders eat the meal that will power them through the day.

Our team chef Owen Blandy works with our team’s nutritionist Will Girling to make sure that the food we serve our riders meets the extreme demands of the race. Owen makes sure that every dish on the table is healthy, nutritious, and tasty, so our riders keep their appetites. Eating enough food to race the Tour de France is hard. Using fresh, quality ingredients is crucial.

Owen rotates the foods he serves throughout the race, so riders don’t get tired of eating the same thing every day. Some of our riders’ favorites are always on the table though, like Owen’s banana sourdough pancakes.

Rich in carbohydrates, with a moderate amount of protein, and little fat, they are easy to digest and contain lots of energy—which is exactly what cyclists need before a hard stage of the Tour de France, or a training ride for that matter. Our riders eat them with their morning rice.

Owen’s recipe is easy to make, and you do most of the prep the night before, so you can still eat pancakes in the morning if you’ve got an early start.

This is how to make our racers’ favorite pancakes at home.

Ingredients (serves one)

 Fresh, bubbly, and lively sourdough starter

Two tablespoons

(You can replace the sourdough starter with two teaspoons of baking soda if you don’t have your own sourdough starter yet)

Plant milk of your choice

One cup


One teaspoon


One teaspoon


One teaspoon


To taste

Mixed white and wholemeal flour or any wheat flour you like (spelt, rye, etc.)

One cup





Add plant milk to your sourdough starter

Add cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and your squeeze of honey

Top up with flour and give it a good mix until it is fully blended together and quite thick. Put a lid on your container and leave it to ferment overnight in the fridge

* If you are using baking soda instead of sourdough starter, omit the baking soda the night before and add it to your batter in the morning


Mash a banana into the bubbly batter

Cook in a little oil in your best non-stick or cast-iron frying pan on low/medium heat

Serve with greek yogurt, fresh berries, and your choice of sweetener

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