Monday, 15 June 2015

Suma Blogger's Network - Chocolate Coated Almond Flapjacks GF

Gluten Free Chocolate Coated Almond Flapjacks

I haven't been able to discover why the British call oat bars "flapjacks". All I know is that these sweet and utterly moreish bars made with oats, golden syrup, sugar and butter become incredibly popular in the 1920s following the long period of rationing during the First World War. It is believed that they became known as "Flapjacks" in the 1930's sometime but in the US, the word "flapjack" refers to a pancake and these are nothing like a pancake!

This recipe has been created for the Suma Bloggers Network. Suma is a West Yorkshire food cooperative which has been specialising in vegetarian products for 40 years. Please check out the other bloggers who are part of the network, you won't be disappointed!

Baked Gluten Free Almond Flapjacks

I used a combination of apple sauce and almond butter to replace the fat traditionally used in these types of oat slices and because I've used Coconut Palm Sugar in the recipe, the flapjacks have a slightly caramel taste. I was brought up believing that these delicious oat bars were actually quite a wholesome and hearty treat but the lavish amounts of butter and sugar that go into the mix certainly don't scream "healthy" to me now! So is this recipe a better choice? I would think that the absence of butter makes these flapjacks healthier than standard flapjacks but they still have sugar in them, even if it is unrefined. And though coconut sugar retains most of its minerals and compared to normal sugar has far less fructose in it, it's still sugar! I used coconut sugar in this recipe purely for its taste and not for any of the health benefits it may or may not have. So these flapjacks are a treat and not something you should be eating every day - says she who has baked and eaten loads of flapjacks while developing the recipe!

Slice the Baked Almond Flapjacks

You must cut the flapjack into pieces about 15 minutes after it comes out of the oven or else you're in deep trouble because it hardens making it very difficult to slice. You don't have to cover them in chocolate but if you're going to indulge, why not indulge in style! I made my own chocolate coating but you can melt a bar of at least 70% dark chocolate to coat the flapjacks instead if you prefer.

Drizzle the baked Almond Flapjacks with chocolate

The chocolate also seeps into the cracks, especially around the flapjacks in the middle so watch out for those disappearing first and reserve one for yourself!

Gluten Free Chocoate Coated Baked Almond Flapjacks

Chocolate Coated Almond Flapjacks GF


225 g coconut sugar

150 g apple sauce 
150 g almond butter
350 g gluten free oats
3 rounded  tblsps maple syrup or honey
pinch of sea salt

Chocolate Coating

50 g cocoa butter

3 tblsps raw cacao
2 tblsps maple syrup
pinch of sea salt

  • Heat the oven to 150° C.
  • Line a tin measuring 10" by 6" with baking parchment or lightly grease the tin with coconut oil because some baking parchments can make it go a little soggy underneath.
  • Measure out the coconut sugar, almond butter, apple sauce, maple syrup and salt and tip into a pan.
  • Over a low to medium light, heat the ingredients until they have completely melted, stirring regularly, then take off the heat.
  • Measure out the oats and stir into the mixture until well coated.
  • Tip into the prepared baking tin.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until firm on the top.
  • Leave to cool and cut into slices after 15 minutes using a sharp knife.
  • Make the chocolate coating next.
  • Measure out the cocoa butter into a bowl and add a pinch of fine sea salt.
  • Set the bowl over a pan of hot water on a low light and melt the cacao butter gently.
  • When the cacao butter has melted, add the cocoa powder and mix using a whisk until smooth - I find that this type of mini whisk works really well.
  • Measure in the maple syrup and stir well - the mixture should be runny.
  • Pour the chocolate over the flapjacks and leave in a cool place to set.

The chocolate sets hard overnight so if you can resist, bake the day before you would like to eat it.

Gluten Free Chocoate Coated Baked Almond Flapjacks

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  1. Oh my word, Vicky! Those look like the most amazing treat EVER! Gosh, I want of those RIGHT NOW! Must feature on All Gluten-Free Desserts immediately! Oh and I had no idea that flapjacks meant oat bars in the UK. So interesting!


    1. Thank you so much Shirley! I thought it a little strange when I found out that flapjacks were also pancakes!

  2. Oh yes! These look lovely...I am always finding ways to make flapjacks healthier and this week decided to make some that didn't have oats either for those that are unable to eat them!!!! That will be on the blog as soon as I clear some of the backlog of recipes!!

    1. Thank you Vicki! can't wait for your recipe Vicki. I made some with almonds and dessicated coconut which tasted incredibly delicious but they never made it to the blog and I haven't a clue what the quantities of the ingredients were since the paper with my notes on went walkabout!

  3. Oh wow Vicky, this looks so good! My boys love flapjack but they ones they buy from Holland & Barrett and our local health food shop as a 'treat' are full of margarine and sugar. Not sure how they fall into the 'health food' category ;) I love the subs you've made - coconut sugar and almond butter are two of my fave ingredients. Thanks for sharing your recipe. Definitely pinning it on my 'to try' list :D xx

    1. Thank you Sharon! Yes, the ones you can buy and the ones I used to make are full of the bad stuff and I agree - how do they fall into the health category for oats alone or a few seeds added!? Many of the muesli bars have a ton of sugar in them too. These aren't very sweet and I was tempted to add even more sugar in them but held back. I can now understand why "fat free" products have extra sugar!

  4. I love love love flapjacks! This whole foods version looks so much better than the traditional butter/sugar laden version. All of my favourite baking ingredients in here too :)

    1. Me too! Yes, these are definitely a better "healthier! version of the original, I agree. I just love the taste of coconut sugar in baked goods, it adds a rich caramel taste which is heavenly! Thanks Emma :)

  5. Looooooove flapjacks. Seriously craving one of these right now!

    1. Hi Aimee, now I'm looking at the pictures again, I'm also craving one too! Hope you're having a lovely Summer, thank you for visiting x