Refined Sugar-Free Apricot, Orange & Almond Flapjacks


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By Lorraine Pascale

Published 2017

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So many recipes and cookbooks out there claim to be sugar-free, but still include a lot of honey. I don’t understand that – honey is a type of sugar and your body reacts pretty much the same way to it as it does to all the usual suspects. Dried fruit and regular fruit are packed with sugar, but they have a redeeming quality: due to their fibre content, the insulin spike that comes with eating sugar is reduced somewhat, making them slightly healthier.


  • 100 g blanched almonds, finely chopped
  • 175 g pitted dates (Medjool or any sticky dates are good)
  • 240 ml water
  • 250 g porridge oats
  • 100 g ready-to-eat dried apricots, finely chopped
  • zest of ½ orange
  • pinch of sea salt flakes
  • pinch of ground cinnamon
  • seeds of 1 vanilla pod or 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50 g sesame seeds
  • 50 g sunflower seeds
  • 50 g toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 3 tbsp melted extra-virgin coconut oil or 3 tbsp melted butter


    Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 160°C/350°F/gas 4) and line the baking tin with baking parchment. I make sure there is some extra baking parchment hanging over the edges – this makes it easier to pull out the flapjacks once they are ready.

    Spread the almonds out in a small baking tray and cook in the oven for 3–4 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Keep an eye on them as they do catch quickly. Remove them from the oven and leave to cool.

    Put the dates in a blender (or you can use the smaller bowl of a food processor if you have that attachment) and add the water and blitz to a paste. Tip this into a large bowl along with the toasted almonds, oats, apricots, orange, salt, cinnamon, vanilla, and sesame, sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Mix to combine and then mix in the coconut oil or butter.

    Tip the mixture into the lined tin and squish down with a wooden spoon – spending a little bit of time doing this will stop the flapjacks from falling apart when you cut them. I use my full body weight to really push down on it! Using a sharp knife, mark out sixteen squares and pop the flapjacks into the oven for 18–20 minutes.

    When the flapjacks are baked, remove them from the oven and leave them to cool a little bit, then carefully remove from the tin using the overhanging baking parchment. Cut into the sixteen squares to serve.

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