A healthier flapjack recipe – just as tasty, but with no dairy, wheat, gluten or refined sugar! Although not as nutritious as a piece of fruit, there are worse things you could eat!
Flapjacks; although kind in appearance and reminiscent of school lunch boxes and picnics, they are generally not a healthy treat with so much butter and sugar. Yes, they may be oat-y, but trust me, normally, the bad definitely outweighs the good!
This version contains no dairy (would you expect anything else?!), wheat, gluten, or refined sugars. But I’m not going to pretend that these are ‘healthy’… they do still contain good amounts of fats and sugars, but here it is about recognising that you can make a bad or a better choice in those categories. This is a great recipe when you feel you want a treat; but particularly at this time of the year when our diets tend to go out of the window slightly with the copious amounts of sweet treats and drinks, it’s good to have a choice.
I’m a big maple syrup fan – and combined with pecan nuts, it’s flavour is intense enough not to need help from a long list of ingredients. I like to use quite a strong maple syrup – a 2 or 3 on the strength scale – which does help the flavour pack a punch, but you can of course use a lighter flavour version.
By using just maple syrup in the recipe, we’ve avoided having any refined sugar in the recipe. Of course maple syrup is still sugar – you can’t get away from that fact – but as it contains more than just sugars in it’s make up, you eat less true sugars per gram. That doesn’t give you free reign to eat as much as you want, but again it’s about understanding how to make the better choice.
I’m praising myself slightly too much here for making these gluten and wheat free. As most flapjacks are oat based – and oats are not wheat – most will be gluten and wheat free, technically. The important thing is if you are making this for someone with a gluten intolerance, make sure you buy gluten free oats. Most oats are produced in wheat factories, so there is a very high level of contamination. So you have been warned!
- 70g dairy free butter (you could also use coconut oil)
- Zest of 1 orange
- Juice of 1/2 an orange
- 125ml maple syrup
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 170g jumbo rolled oats,
- 130g oatmeal (Tip: This can be made using more jumbo rolled oats and a food processor. See ‘step 1’)
- 50g pecans, roughly chopped
- 1 apple, peeled and grated OR 80g chopped, dried apple
- If you need to make the oatmeal: Weight out the jumbo rolled oats and process in a food processor until they resemble coarse crumbs.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (160 degrees fan) and line a 20x20cm tin with greaseproof paper.
- Melt the butter and then mix in the orange zest and juice, maple syrup and cinnamon.
- Mix the oats, pecans and apple into the butter-syrup, and then pour the mixture into your lined tin.
- Using the back of a spoon, firmly push the mixture down and into the corners.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 20 – 25 minutes until golden brown and dry to the touch in the centre. Leave to cool in the tin, and slice into 16.
- Will keep in an airtight container for up to 4 days.