Today, IHOP named Rayaan, 8, of Orange County, Calif. as the 2021 IHOP Kid Chef Champion. The third-annual Kid Chef contest invited pediatric patients ages 6-16 from any Children’s Miracle Network Hospital to unleash their culinary creativity and concoct a new pancake recipe. Rayaan earned the 2021 chef’s coat with his Caramel Apple a la Mode pancake recipe: two fluffy buttermilk pancakes topped with warm, cinnamon-spiced apples, drizzled with caramel sauce, and crowned with one scoop of premium vanilla ice cream.
“My mom makes the best apple pie ever!” says Rayaan. The Caramel Apple a la Mode creation pairs his apple pie affinity with pancakes, an unexpected favorite tool in his treatment journey. Diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disorder, resultant in coma and life support, Rayaan ultimately relearned how to chew, eat, and swallow on his own using pancakes as his practice food.
To celebrate his journey, IHOP is featuring these special pancakes on menus for guests to enjoy nationwide for a good cause where $1 from every Caramel Apple a la Mode pancake full stack or combo ordered benefits Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals or The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Donations from pancake sales fund critical life-saving treatments and healthcare services, along with innovative research, vital pediatric medical equipment, and child life services that put kids and families’ minds at ease during difficult hospital stays. Rayaan’s winning pancake stack is available for dine-in only at participating IHOP restaurants from September 13-October 31, 2021.
“We are thrilled to crown Rayaan with this year’s coveted Kid Chef title and welcome guests to sample his pancake masterpiece,” says Jay Johns, President of IHOP. “For more than 60 years, IHOP has committed to serve its communities in fun, engaging ways that bring joy and smiles to guests of all ages.”
“Our local children’s hospitals need help now more than ever,” says Teri Nestel, president and CEO of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. “IHOP’s pancake-stack fundraising campaign with Kid Chef Rayaan makes it easy for everyone to give back, while enjoying a delicious treat created by a kid. When added together, these funds provide major support for our local children’s hospitals to improve treatments and facilities, advance pioneering research and provide patient services now and what’s ahead. When we change kids’ health, we change the future – for all of us.”
Over the past 15 years, IHOP has raised more than $30 million for its portfolio of charity partners, including Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, helping support children and families across the U.S.