Super Healthy Flapjacks – no butter or sugar

It can be frustratingly difficult to find a healthy flapjack recipe that isn’t loaded with butter, sugar or syrup. If you would rather not load up on these ingredients, here is an alternative recipe to try.

Here’s why they are so great:

  • Super quick to prepare the mixture
  • No sugar, syrup or butter.
  • Ripe bananas and raisins add the sweetness.
  • If you feel the need for some extra sweetness, you can some honey, but you really don’t need too much.
  • Oats provide soluble fibre to keep you feeling full up, reduce cholesterol, keep your digestive system healthy and blood sugar levels steady.
  • Berries/Raisins are choca-block full of antioxidants and fabulous phytochemicals
  • Seeds/peanut butter are full of protein and healthy fats.


Top tip 1 For a seriously healthy and delicious Bircher Muesli breakfast, keep a few tablespoons of the pre cooked mixture in a bowl overnight in the fridge. In the morning, loosen with more milk.


Top tip 2 Did you know that the chunkier the oat the slower it is digested and will keep you full up for longer?


Basic Flapjack Ingredients  (makes about 9): each provides 90 calories, 1.5g fat, 15g carbohydrate, 3g protein

150ml milk – or a milk alternative e.g. soya, almond, rice milk etc.

2 mashed bananas – the riper the better as sweeter and easier to mash

150g porridge oats (about 2 handfuls)


Ideas for optional extras:

  • a handful of whole/chopped/ground up sunflower or pumpkin seeds
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of cinnamon
  • a tablespoon of cocoa powder
  • a handful raisins or cranberries
  • a few tablespoons of dessicated coconut
  • 1 cup frozen berries (defrosted)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed with a little extra milk (very good for constipation!)
  • For extra protein e.g. as post exercise snack, you can add a scoop of protein powder


Mix all the ingredients together. Put in to cake tin lined with greaseproof paper, or silicone bun cases. You can also make them in to cookies by placing the mixture in cookie shaped blobs on the greaseproof paper.

It can sometimes be a bit tricky to peel the greaseproof paper off, so you can grease the paper first with some oil.

Bake for about 40 minutes at 170 degrees C. Or until they are browning and you can smell the lovely aroma……..this is my method to check for readiness as I usually forget to look at the time I put them in! Enjoy playing around with variations of ingredients 🙂

 If you like these, you’ll also LOVE Seriously Healthy Pancakes (2 ingredients), and Low Sugar Biscuits


71 thoughts on “Super Healthy Flapjacks – no butter or sugar

  1. Amie says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe. My son (5yrs) has been having school dinners for the last three weeks and has begged me for a packed lunch instead as the food is over processed and full of sugar. He loves hard boiled eggs and humus along with lots of other good for you main course packed lunches so I think I’ve got those covered for now (or at least the next week!). I wanted to give him a desert that will keep him going until 3:15 when I collect him, so we cooked up a batch of your flapjacks together today and he loves them. Now I just need to convince Hertfordshire school dinners company to make it and scrap their chocolate cake and chocolate chip cookies that they are giving for dessert with custard poured on top, that’s after the chips for mains! …

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Amie, thank you for your comment, it made me very happy 🙂 I am delighted that you and your son approve of the flapjacks. I sent my girls (8 and 6) to school to day with some in their pack lunch (one had hers with raisins in, one without). I agree that school dinners can be a minefield, at my kids primary school we’ve just started a school dinners working group with the aim of bringing some positive change!

  2. Denise says:

    Thanks so much for this simple but fab recipe!
    It was perfect to get my 2yr d son and 3yr old friend cooking today.
    And they both loved them.
    We only had 1 banana so we added a little extra milk & all the extras..honey, raisins, coconut flakes & peanut butter.
    I’ll definitely be making these again!

    Thanks 🙂

  3. Natasha says:

    Thanks for this incredible recipe! My 5 yr old and 2 year old can’t get enough. I add lots of dates and dried apricots plus a handful of mixed seeds like sesame (to increase calcium). They just love them.

    Have you ever tried freezing them… Would love to take them camping and use them as healthy museli bars?


  4. Rachel says:

    I made these flapjacks last night. I really like the recipe. I have 1 question though. The flapjacks were crispy at the top but the bottom was wet. Is this wetness because of the banana or should i bake them in the oven for longer? I left them in for 45 mins at 150 degrees fan oven. Thanks.

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Rachel, thanks for trying the flapjacks 🙂 Nobody like a soggy bottom!! These flapjacks may not be crispy on the bottom, but they should be too wet either. Make sure that as soon as they come out of the oven you put them straight on a cooling rack…..don’t let them sit in the baking tray or on greaseproof paper as they will ‘sweat’, making them hold on to the moisture. If you like an even dryer bottom, you can remove them from the baking tray and put back in the oven at a higher temperature (say, 180 degrees) straight on to the baking rack. Hope that helps!

    • Amanda says:

      I found the same with the soggy bottom. I left them in the oven a lot longer and they weren’t soggy but not crispy either (even after cooling on the rack) but I flipped them over (bottoms up!) and baked for another 10 mins and they were perfect! Will definitely make them again with this method, thanks for the recipe – so easy and healthy. Thanks

      • sarahdietitian says:

        Hi Amanda! What a fab idea for getting them crispier 🙂 Nobody likes a soggy bottom!!! Another idea to make them crispier is to add some healthy fats e.g. a tablespoon of rapeseed oil or coconut oil. I do this when making them for my kids to add a few extra calories as they are very active, skinny wee things and can do with the extra!!!

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Mandy! Total calories for the whole batch is about 840 calories. I usually make mine in a square tin and divide into 9 squares: each provides 92 calories, 1.5g fat, 15g carbohydrate, 3g protein. Hope that helps!

  5. Fiona Shaw says:

    Hi Sarah this could be the answer to a prayer as my whole food shop keeps running out of stock of sugar free cereal bars and my teeth can’t take any sugar anymore at the grand old age of 65! One question: how much coconut (dessicated or flakes) and raisins would do you suggest?thanks so much, Fiona

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Fiona, you are right that it’s hard to find low sugar cereal bars! I would suggest about 2 tablespoons of desiccated coconut and about the same of raisins. I usually measure by the handful……. about a good handful of each!

  6. Fiona McLaughlin says:

    Hi, I love these but found the quantity of milk was too much so I had to add extra oats. What should the consistency of the uncooked mixture be?

  7. Andrew says:

    As part of my New Year resolution to lose a bit of weight, I made these yesterday instead of my normal recipe involving brown sugar and golden syrup. They are great! So easy to make and perfect for a healthy snack. I’ll definitely try some more of your recipes. Thank you!

  8. Andrea says:

    Hi loving these flapjacks as do my children. Great for energy before a run. Do you know how many calories would be in them please xx

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Andrea. I have added the calories to the post. The whole batch provides about 840 kcal, I usually divide mine in to 9 or 10, so providing about 85-90kcal each, 15g carbs, 3g protein, 1.5g fat. Enjoy your running! 🙂

  9. Tanya says:

    Thank you. I was looking for a healthier treat. I just made these with sultanas and chopped walnuts. Really lovely

  10. Gemma says:

    Thank you very much for this recipe. I was looking for a healthy grab-and-go breakfast as well as a sweet treat for my 1 year old and these fit the bill perfectly. I used crunchy hazelnut butter as well as sultanas and a dried cherry berry mix I had left in the cupboard. Really delicious considering no sugar. I found the chunkier the oats though, the soggier the bottom as they didn’t absorb the mixture quite so well.

  11. Amanda says:

    I sometimes make too much porridge and was thinking turning it into flapjacks based on this would be a great way to use it up – just add the dried fruit, coconut, honey etc and bake. Going to try it out and see what happens 🙂 The dog will not be pleased!

  12. Ffion says:

    Going to try these tonight !
    Do you know how long they will last (before going off that is not before being eaten !)

  13. Chaz Wyman says:

    Honey is basically sugar, around 82%. The high content of fructose is disappointing from a nutritional point of view. And don’t tell me about vitamins as they only exist in trace amounts, as do antioxidants which are better sourced from more concentrated foods.
    People tend to get excited about it being more natural – but in this recipe it is basically the same as the sugar you might put in any other recipe. The key here would be to put much less sugar OR honey and enjoy less sweetened flapjacks in whether made with honey or sugar for a more healthy snack.

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hey Chaz, you make some very fair points! I totally agree with you about the over rated nutritional value of honey. I also agree that too much sugar and sweetness in our diets is not a good thing, whether that is from white sugar, honey or other ‘natural sweeteners’ such as brown rice malt syrup. That is why I suggest honey as an optional extra. Some people like a little sweetness, and I am not evangelical about having zero sugar in the diet. I find a little sweetness from a small amount of honey can be a great way of getting my children to benefit from the other fab ingredients like the oats! I always have a little taste of the mixture before adding any honey, just to see if it is necessary. Thanks for again for your comments 🙂

  14. Malwina says:

    Thank you for the recipe! I made them the other day and they were delicious, me and my 2 year old loved them! My husband is not a big fan of bananas so I was wondering if I could swap them for pears or something else so the whole family can enjoy them?

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Malwina, give pears a try….perhaps tinned pears or very soft and ripe fresh pears? I would predict that they may not have the same binding effect of the bananas though. Let us know how they turn out!
      Has your husband tried the original version with the bananas? My 8 year old daughter cannot bear bananas – she literally cannot be near a peeled whole one, but seems to love these!! Bizarre!

  15. Liam says:

    Can almond or soya milk be used instead of traditional milk?

    Hoping to make these as they sound great but being dairy free for the most part makes it a little harder 😊

  16. liambresnahan says:

    Can almond or soya milk be used instead of traditional milk?

    Hoping to make these as they sound great but being dairy free for the most part makes it a little harder 😊

  17. Beth says:

    Just put some of these in the oven, my mix seemed really runny, is that okay? I guess I will find out pretty soon anyway but just a little concerned. Can’t wait to see how they turn out 🙂

  18. Emma says:

    I love this recipe! The only issue I had when making it was the flapjack sticking to the grease-proof paper when I was taking them out of the tin – does anyone have any tips to stop this happening? Would love to make them again :-)

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Emma, I’ve had the same problem depending on which brand of grease-proof paper I am using at the time! Try drizzling a few drops of vegetable or olive oil on your grease-proof paper and rubbing it over before adding the mixture. Hope that sorts out the sticking issue!

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Neil, it depends on the size of your cookie 🙂 !!! The whole batch provides about 840 calories (that’s for the basic oats, milk and bananas recipe). So divide that by the number of cookies you have made. I hope that helps!

  19. Faye Cunningham says:

    Thank you for this recipe. It’s so nice to find a tasty recipe that’s not full of fats and sugars. Even better, it’s so easy to swap the extra ingredients in this. I think this is going to be my go to recipe for healthy snacks! 🙂

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Thanks Faye! It’s one of our go to recipes too 🙂 In fact my kids are now old enough to make it themselves and experiment with all the different extra ingredients…….hours of Mum free entertainment. Result!!!! x

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Hi Fuzzy Fuzzy Brainy Bunny. Fab name! It’s up to yourself…….you can cut them up in to big ones or little ones. I usually make them in to about 9 or 10 roughly 5cm square. I hope that makes sense!

  20. RideLikeTheWind says:

    Thanks for the recipe! I made these yesterday and they are so good. I used roasted unsweetened Almond Milk, 50g extra oats, 1 tsp Ceylon Cinnamon, 1 tsp Vanilla powder, 50g of raisins and 50g of milled Linseeds. I couldn’t resist a hot one from the oven … amazing! and had another earlier today – so good. Your recipe is my new go-to, and I can’t wait to experiment.

    • sarahdietitian says:

      Awesome! Your extras sound amazing…….I hadn’t thought of vanilla powder! I also sometimes add some milled linseeds (also known as flaxseed) for additional fibre and variety in the type of fibre. Thanks for commenting 🙂

  21. Irisinee says:

    Thrilled to find no sugar no fat treat recipe, so thank you. Just made them, have got soggy bottoms but have read previous comments on how to avoid that. Also I thought of using the mix next time as a topping for chopped apples in individual ramekin dishes, a bit like oaty apple cobbler 🙂

  22. Christine Dobbins says:

    Hi.I made this recipe for my friend that is trying to lose weight healthily!They have gone down a treat!I used almond milk,apricots,cranberries,brazil and hazel nuts with a tsp of almond butter.Delicious!!

  23. designedbycarrie says:

    Love this receipe so much, thank you!!! We are making it with crushed dark chocolate, crushed almonds & hazelnuts and goji berries. Have shared to all my climbing friends as it’s the perfect energy snack.

    I cook using a spoon to make cookies; 20 mins each side in the oven and it makes them nice and crunchy on the outside, soft inside

  24. Erica says:

    This is basically my kids’ normal breakfast but baked – what a great idea for a portable breakfast when they have before-school clubs and can’t face eating before 7am!

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