Cereal Bars

17 Jan

This scrumptious-looking recipe comes from the lovely Michael, a couchsurfer from Loch Lomond over the border in Scotland. He regularly organises “kitchen surfs” – mass cooking sessions for couchsurfers – which sound amazing.  Thanks for the recipe!

Michael says: “I hope you like my recipe that I adapted from one given to me on the back of an envelope from a mysterious ‘Hannah’ years ago. When young couchsurfers come who have never cooked or baked I often start them with this.”

Hats (and everything else) off to you, mysterious Hannah!

5 minutes preparation, 15 minutes cooking time

Ingredients: 3 cups (250g) oats, 1 cup (120g) chopped nuts, ¾ cup (70g) dried fruit e.g. raisins, cranberries, figs, or dates, ½ cup (70g) seeds, e.g. sunflower, pumpkin, caraway, hemp, linseed, or even add a little aniseed too. (All variable / optional.) , 2 tablespoons (25g) plain flour (gluten-free works fine). (Add more flour for more cake-like bars or less for tougher bars.) 1½ tablespoons (30g) sugar (preferably golden granulated) 1½ heaped tablespoons (10g) cinnamon,  ½ tablespoon (4g) nutmeg, 2 tablespoons (30ml) golden syrup, maple syrup, or substitute molasses / black treacle for a stronger flavour. (Add more for a chewier bar.), 150 ml boiling water

Naked Micheal taking vegan cereal bars out of the oven. he is wearing an apron.

Heat oven to 160°C/ gas mark 6.

Mix all of the dry ingredients together.

Put the boiling water in a jug and stir in the syrup then pour the liquid into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula thoroughly until it is all absorbed.

Spread the mix onto greaseproof paper on a baking tray and fold the paper over the top and use a rolling pin to form it into an oblong of cereal bar thickness, square it up with the spatula and re-roll until firm.

Bake for 15 minutes – or longer for a harder bar.

Once cool cut into bars with a bread knife.

Yummy looking cereal bars arranged circularly on a terracotta plate


Add margarine for a more flapjack-like consistency.

Increase the spices and decrease sugar for healthier bars – but the sugar acts to preserve them. Keep them in the fridge in an airtight container to keep longer.

Vary the spices e.g. allspice, mixed spice, ginger.

Add chocolate chips and/or cocoa powder into the mixture.


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18 Responses to “Cereal Bars”

  1. John Tompkins January 17, 2012 at 4:30 pm #

    I was getting really excited about these they sound great, particularly when you said gluten free flour works well enough. unfortunately Not only am I allergic to wheat but I am also diabetic – so too much sugar/ molasses etc.

    Ahh well I’ll keep looking, maybe have to experiment myself.

  2. peter January 17, 2012 at 7:31 pm #

    you guys are great. keep smiling!

  3. charlottedickenson January 18, 2012 at 1:40 am #

    These are great! I love experimenting with cereal bars / flapjacks as they are so versatile!
    I can’t believe that I have only just discovered this cooking blog, you have some really good new recipes! I really like that there are photos of your food as well, I think that is the bane of a cookbook, they very rarely have photos of what you are about to cook, very off putting.
    I love vegan cookery and experimenting with different ideas. I posted on my blog (a very baby starter one really) about my attempts to make vegan tuna mayo today – which didn’t go too badly!

    • radicalrabbit January 18, 2012 at 1:48 am #

      Thanks! Yeah, we always try and get pictures up. Pictures are definately the best thing about cookbooks…!
      I used to make “tuna mayo” by mashing up chickpeas, seems to work well? What do you use in yours?

      • charlottedickenson January 18, 2012 at 3:07 pm #

        They really are!
        Oh really? that sounds like a really good idea 🙂
        I used tinned braised tofu, kelp powder and lemon juice. It worked out quite well but I wanted the tofu to be a little drier.
        Well, if you can see the picture ok, it looked about the same, just a little less pink! http://soitgoesperspective.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/attempt-1-tuna-mayo/
        What other ingredients did you use in your chickpea tuna?

  4. Catriona Blackburn January 18, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

    Ive just been watching you peeps on 4od, love your moral process but got even more excited about the fact that your all vegan ❤ – Im a recovering anorexic/bulimic and would just like to say to the lovely boy whos had similar problems that there is much hope, a few years ago i couldnt eat more than a few hundred calories without being sick or freaking out and now i can eat most yummy vegan food without having a panic attack – sending the love ❤ xxxxxxxx

  5. cherie January 18, 2012 at 10:56 pm #

    just watched you guys on 4od. youre so great and inspiring, as for negative comments pay no attention because youre all gorgeous inside and out! well done, im think i may go walk around naked for a bit now 😀 xx

  6. caroline January 19, 2012 at 11:13 pm #

    I didn’t know where else to write this but I’ve just watched the channel 4 doc you feature in and I think what you guys are doing is really great.. I only walk around naked in the comfort of my own home but am going to search for opportunities and events like what you guys do especially over the summer! I think this could definately help with my body confidence and it’s nice to know there are people with a similar way of thinking..

  7. lochlomondman January 20, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    Happy to organize a naked cooking event at Loch Lomond. Lots of room. No preconceptions.

    • charlottedickenson January 20, 2012 at 11:51 pm #

      If only you lived in my area! I would love to attend but I don’t think I would have the guts to organize it myself!

    • Nelson May 27, 2012 at 3:29 am #

      Woop woop to you!I found your blog today and cannot stop reidnag it. Your writing is very simple and yet beautiful, you are very inspiring so please keep it up! How long have you been vegan for? Has it been since August 08?I went vegan last October and relate a lot to the things that you say. Thankfully, I didn’t become vegan because I was ill. I decided it was time for me to open my eyes to the harsh reality of the animals’ condition, the damage caused to the environment and to my body.Thanks for sharing your experience. Your blog is now listed in my favourites!Alex

  8. caroline January 21, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

    I’m occassionally in Scotland so may be able to make this and if the place you’re talking about is accessible by public transport I’m in!

    • lochlomondman January 21, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

      Easily accessible by public transport.

      • pauljw11 April 2, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

        Hi Lochlomondman–just wondering whether anything transpired re your cooking event–I live in Fife myself at the moment—Paul


  9. Emma January 21, 2012 at 7:23 pm #

    These look delicious. Love me some vegan flapjack and this recipe looks great, especially that it’s not got too much added sugar. I’ve just been introduced to your blog by a friend. I saw the advert for your channel 4 program but was out when it was on- will definitely watch online. Didn’t realize you were vegans though, just makes you even cooler 🙂 Look forward to reading more.

  10. caroline January 21, 2012 at 11:41 pm #

    Awesome.. well my email is here: caroline.janes.93@gmail.com for contact 🙂

    • lochlomondman January 24, 2012 at 11:05 pm #

      I hope that you get my reply

      • lochlomondman April 2, 2012 at 6:59 pm #

        Thinking of organizing an event at Loch Lomond on April 14th.

        I think that we should assume only that we’ll have some fun cooking together, always a pleasant way to send an evening.

        It would be about fun, shedding inhibitions about body image, good food, and making new friends.

        Personally I wouldn’t feel comfortable just undressing for the sake of it. I am naturally shy so the Vegan Cereal Bars was a bit of fun to take me out of my comfort zone.

        So why not cook together and if some feel comfortable they can discretely undress? Others may choose not to.

        Maybe try to get a group of 6-8?

        I’ve copied in the original Manchester Group in case any of them want want to join in – I hope so.

        There is plenty of room here to stay over if people bring sleeping bags.

        I have biggish kitchen with most things needed. The house is pretty private, no passers-by etc..

        Post if interested in joining in.

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