This Healthy Flapjack Recipe is a tempting, satisfying and altogether healthier alternative to traditional flapjacks. Its secret? No sugar added and no golden syrup. Instead, natural sugars from bananas and dates give this traybake its delicious sweetness.
What is a healthy flapjack recipe, anyway?
A healthy flapjack recipe? My instant reaction when asked if I could create such a thing was that this was going to be a tough call! However, I quickly decided that the key is to understand what ‘healthy’ might mean in this instance.
In actual fact, a flapjack in all its traditional glory is an energy-boosting snack with a high oat content. Those oats give slow-release energy, meaning you are fuelled for longer. Sounds like a positive health benefit to me!
No added sugar
When I asked around as to what other people considered to be a healthier flapjack recipe, the overall response was a no sugar added, no golden syrup alternative. Given that the basic ingredients of a traditional flapjack in the UK are oats, golden syrup and melted butter, this could be tricky, but fear not!
After lots of mouth-watering online research and playing with some ideas (oh, that was one wonderful day of deliciousness, I can tell you now!), I found that if I replaced the syrup and refined sugar with bananas and dates, this gave me a base for a really good, healthier flapjack.
I hope you will agree, the result is tempting, delicious and satisfying, just like its naughtier (although also very nice) traybake rival!
How to make a healthy flapjack recipe even healthier
Let’s talk about butter. I’m a fan. As anyone who has followed my journey here will know, I have suffered for many years with a lactose intolerance and I used to rule out all dairy. However, I was delighted to discover more recently that I can still enjoy eating butter (and I do!) without a negative impact on my digestive system.
For this recipe, I decided not to cut out the butter completely. Instead, I’ve gone for reduced butter content – in fact, it’s almost half of the amount of butter compared to my most popular ‘Best Flapjack recipe ever’.
Another important step towards my healthier flapjack.
Flapjack with bananas and dates
Why did I decide to use bananas and dates in this recipe?
Bananas and dates contain natural sugars which give this flapjack its signature sweetness. In addition, mashing up the banana will give you the wet stickiness which will be missing due to removing the golden syrup. The mixture will all come together as a result.
At the same time, those little chunky, scrummy bites of dates in the flapjack lends an added chewiness.
I love this sweet, oaty, chewy, sticky combo!
Healthy snacks for kids – and grown ups!
Flapjacks have always been a great option as healthy snacks for kids; this healthy flapjack recipe takes that one step further! They are brilliant for packed lunches. And because they are homemade, you know exactly what’s gone into them. As many schools have a no-nuts policy due to allergies, this nut-free recipe ticks that box too.
Let’s not give them all to the children though. They make for a delicious healthy snack in any grown-up’s packed lunch box too! ;)
With everyone in the house loving this tasty treat, you’ll soon be ready to make your next batch.
The really great news is that if you really enjoy them, you can freeze flapjacks. So either store them in an airtight container (they will last for a week or two) or make a big batch and freeze.
What does a healthy flapjack recipe look like to you?
Does this work for you? Do you like the idea of trying a healthier flapjack or will you stick to a more traditional recipe?
Have you found any other replacements for ingredients which have supercharged your flapjacks to make them healthier? I quite like the idea of playing with adding carrot, for example. That could lend sweetness and reduce down the natural sugar content if it replaces some of the fruit in the recipe. I will keep you posted on any success I have with that one!
For now though, do let me know if you give this recipe a go. I would love to hear from you.
Healthy Flapjack Recipe
- 3 large bananas
- 175 g dates chopped
- 180 g oats
- 75 g butter melted
- 1 tsp ground mixed spice
- 1 pinch salt
Preheat oven to 180c/Gas 4
Mash bananas in a bowl (get your hands in there, it's strangely satisfying)
Stir in everything else, mix it up and let it stand for 15 minutes
In the meantime, grease an 8" square baking tray
Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown on top
Take out of the oven, let cool and then enjoy a little piece of damn healthy heaven!