Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (2024)

Oatcakes are a traditional cracker made out of oats that can be found in shops and restaurants all across Scotland, but not everyone has an easy Scottish oatcakes recipe for making them at home. Well, look no further…

Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (1)

Their versatility means you’re as likely to be served them with soup as with cheese or pate when you’re eating out, and there is a multitude of different varieties across supermarket shelves, including some with different flavour combinations.

Oatcakes are perfect as an addition to a meal or an in-between snack. They’re a bit like the bread of Scotland, and have been made here for hundreds of years.

While they’re widely available in Scotland, that’s not always the case around the world, so we decided to make a simple oatcake recipe for anyone who can’t easily get their hands on a pack, or for anyone who just fancies making up their own batch at home.

And in any case, when you’re making homemade oatcakes you can decide exactly what you want in them too! We’ll share a little more about some possible flavour combinations a bit further on.

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Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (2)

What is an Oatcake?

In Scotland, an oatcake can sometimes refer to something more bread-like, like a bannock. Which in turn is sort of like a flatter scone made with oats. Confused yet?

But in this Scottish oatcakes recipe, we’re referring to the hard oatcakes that are more like a cracker and have a snap.

They’ve been recorded as being made in Scotland since Roman times, but it’s widely thought that they were made there long before that.

There is tell of nuns in Scotland in the 14th Century making small pancakes the size of communion wafers; this is one of the earliest descriptions of the making of oatcakes.

Obviously, things have changed a little since then, and you’ll sometimes find oatcakes made with flour as well, rather than just plain ground oats. We’ve decided to stick to the more traditional and just use oats!

You can see what a bannock looks like in our recipe here.

Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (3)

Things you’ll need to make Oatcakes

Oatcakes are relatively simple to make with just a few kitchen items.

  • Rolling pin
  • Baking tray
  • Baking paper or reusable baking mats
  • Cookie cutter, glass, or scone cutter (we use one like this)
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Ingredients for Oatcakes

  • 100g rolled/porridge oats
  • 100g oatmeal
  • 25g butter
  • 1tsp salt
  • A few tablespoons of hot water

What oats you’ll need

Different types of oats go by different names, depending on the country you’re in. When you’re making oatcakes, the type of oats you have will have a big impact on how they turn out.

You want your Scottish oatcakes to have a little texture but not just fall apart because the oats are too big, so using the right sort is crucial to the recipe.

On the other hand, you don’t want the oats to turn into porridge and have no texture at all!

Let’s start with the UK

Rolled oats are usually the bigger, rounder variety that are flattened with a roller. Porridge oats are a little more broken down as they are crushed. Oatmeal is like a blended version that is smaller again.

For our recipe, we use a mixture of porridge oats and oatmeal. In this sense, the oatmeal is like ground-up porridge, as we often see oatmeal referring to cereal elsewhere!

If you only have access to rolled oats, then you can use these as they also break down well in water, or you can use a blender to make them slightly smaller. Not too much or they’ll be like oatmeal!

In the US things are trickier…

You can see the photos below, which is likely to be the most helpful because there are not even uniform names in some cases. They could possibly be called quick-cook rolled oats, Scottish oats, oat flakes, etc. You could use rolled oats instead if that’s all you can get.

The oatmeal is possibly ground oats or fine ground oats.

Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (5)
Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (6)

How to make Scottish Oatcakes – step by step method

Pre-heat the oven to 180C or 350F.

Take a large bowl and mix the two types of oats together.

Add the melted butter and mix to combine.

Now start to slowly add a little hot water until the oats and butter mixture comes together to form a pasty ball. You don’t want to add too much, so add 2-3 tablespoons and allow the oat mixture to absorb it. If you need to, add 1-2 more and then knead with your hands.

Form the mixture into a ball before transferring to a flat surface for rolling out. We like to use a non-stick rolling/pastry mat, but you can also sprinkle the surface with a little flour or oatmeal if you need to so they don’t stick.

Roll the mixture out to about 1/4 inch or 0.5cm thick. Use a cookie cutter, glass, or the round edge of a scone cutter to cut the dough into circles and then move them into your baking tray.

Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, turning once. Allow to cool and eat!

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Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (8)

Oatcake variations

You’ll find plenty of varieties of oatcakes in the supermarket, but now you can make your own too!

We have made these traditional oatcakes with just oats, but you can add in a few other ingredients for flavour too.

Add in some grated cheese and black pepper or some sesame and poppy seeds. Try peri-peri and a hint of chilli for some spice or even herbs like rosemary.

What to serve Oatcakes with

As we said, oatcakes can be like the bread of Scotland. That means you’ll often see them served with soup, cheese, or with a variety of toppings.

They can really be served with anything you like! Pickle and cheese is one of our favourites, as is cream cheese and a bit of cold-smoked Scottish salmon.

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Yield: 15

Scottish Oatcakes Recipe

Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (10)

Oatcakes are a traditional cracker made out of oats that can be found all across Scotland.

Their versatility means you’re as likely to be served them with soup as cheese or pate when you’re eating out, and there is a multitude of different varieties across supermarket shelves.

Perfect as an addition to a meal or an in-between snack. They’re a bit like the bread of Scotland, and have been made here for hundreds of years!

Prep Time 15 minutes

Cook Time 25 minutes

Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 100g porridge oats (or rolled oats - see notes)
  • 100g oatmeal
  • 25g butter
  • 1tsp salt
  • A few tablespoons of hot water

Instructions

How to make Oatcakes - step by step method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C or 350F.
  2. Take a large bowl and mix the two types of oats together.
  3. Melt the butter then mix with the oats to combine.
  4. Slowly add a little hot water until the oats and butter mixture comes together to form a pasty ball. Don’t add too much too quickly, so add 2-3 tablespoons and allow the oat mixture to absorb it. If you need to, add 1-2 more and then knead with your hands.
  5. Form the mixture into a ball before transferring to a flat surface for rolling out. We like to use a non-stick rolling/pastry mat, but you can also sprinkle the surface with a little flour or oatmeal if you need to so the mix doesn't stick.
  6. Roll the mixture out to about 1/4 inch or 0.5cm thick.
  7. Use a cookie cutter, glass, or the round edge of a scone cutter to cut the dough into circles and then move them into your baking tray.
  8. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, turning once. Allow to cool and eat!

Notes

Oatcakes are a delicious and easy snack! You can top them with chutney and cheese, jam, peanut butter, banana, whatever you want! They're also lovely with soup.

Different types of oats:

Rolled oats are usually the bigger, rounder variety that are flattened with a roller. Porridge oats are a little more broken down as they are crushed. Oatmeal is like a blended version that is smaller again.

For our recipe, we use a mixture of porridge oats and oatmeal. In this sense, the oatmeal is like ground-up porridge, as we often see oatmeal referring to cereal elsewhere!

If you only have access to rolled oats, then you can use these as they also break down well in water, or you can use a blender to make them slightly smaller. Not too much, or they'll be like oatmeal!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

15

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 31Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 173mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 1g

The nutritional data in this recipe is provided by a third party and these values are automatically calculated and offered for guidance only. Their accuracy is not guaranteed.

Other Scottish Savoury Baking Recipes to Try:

  • Simple Scottish Bannocks Recipe
  • Forfar Bridie Recipe – Scottish Handheld Meat Pies
  • The Perfect Scottish Morning Rolls Recipe
  • Butteries Recipe (Also Known As Rowies and Aberdeen Rolls!)
  • Easy Haggis Sausage Rolls Recipe

Sonja and Phil x

Easy Scottish Oatcakes Recipe - Scottish Scran (2024)

FAQs

Are Scottish oatcakes healthy? ›

Deliciously packed full of coarse, wholegrain oats, they're high in soluble and insoluble fibre. Not only that, but they are full of complex carbohydrates and rich in vitamins and minerals giving you a wholesome boost to help you get the most out of your day.

Are oatcakes Irish or Scottish? ›

Oatcakes have been a staple of the Scottish diet since at least Roman times and probably long before. In the 14th century, Jean le Bel accompanied a French count to England and Scotland, and describes nuns making "little pancakes rather like communion wafers", and this is thought to describe the making of oatcakes.

How do you eat Scottish oatcakes? ›

Scottish Oatcakes are made with oats but the result isn't a traditional cake! This recipe can be mixed and baked in about 30 minutes. The result is a crisp and cracker-like Oatcake to be eaten with cheese, butter, jam or meat. Oatcakes are almost a Scottish icon like whisky, highland cows and castles.

What's the difference between Staffordshire oatcakes and Derbyshire oatcakes? ›

Derbyshire oatcakes are similar to Staffordshire oatcakes, but while following a similar recipe Derbyshire oatcakes contains a small amount of milk in the mixture. they are generally larger in diameter, thicker and when uncooked lighter in colour.

Do oatcakes spike blood sugar? ›

They are termed a low glycaemic index (GI) food which means they can help balance your blood sugar levels avoiding sudden highs and lows in glucose levels. This means they can be beneficial in helping glycaemic control in diabetics.

Are oatcakes better for you than bread? ›

Lots of calories – there are about 80-100 calories in a slice of bread and about 40-50calroies in an oatcake. Also condiser that a bagel or croissant can have 3-4 times the number of calories than a single oatcake and have very little fibre.

What do you eat with oatcakes? ›

Sweet oatcake toppings

Try making salted caramel and top Highland oatcakes with cream and bananas for a mini banoffee. A grating of chocolate on top is the final touch. You can also mash bananas (adding a squeeze of lemon juice to avoid them going brown) and add chopped walnuts and a drizzle of honey.

Why are my oatcakes so crumbly? ›

Mix together thoroughly, adding small amounts of water as necessary to bring the ingredients together into a dough. Too much water will make a harder, denser oatcake. For a crumbly, crisp texture you need just enough water to make a dough.

Why are oatcakes so good? ›

Naturally energising. Wholegrains are a rich source of fibre, vitamins and minerals – oats are high in soluble fibre and also naturally contain manganese**, phosphorus**, magnesium, zinc, iron, folate, vitamin B6 and thiamine. Our oatcakes contain nutrients** that contribute to normal energy-yielding metabolism.

How long will oatcakes last in the fridge? ›

They stay fresh for about 10 days in a bag in the fridge.

Are oatcakes anti inflammatory? ›

An anti-inflammatory and antioxidant bonus

So, now you know why oats are so good for your digestion, why not try including more of them in your diet?

Are oatcakes good for sleep? ›

4. Choose a carbohydrate-rich snack. Snacking on a few oatcakes, or a bowl of cereal, an hour or so before bed stimulates the release of insulin. This helps to clear any amino acids that compete with tryptophan from the bloodstream, allowing more of this to enter the brain.

What is the best way to eat oatcakes? ›

There are many ways to enjoy Scottish oatcakes. You can top them with cheese, smoked salmon, or your favorite spread. They also pair well with soups, stews, and salads, adding a crunchy texture to your meal.

What to eat with oatcakes for breakfast? ›

Try topping it with mixed berries, chopped banana or a little honey for a tasty start to your day.

What is Nairn's oatcakes? ›

Today Nairn's are the largest producer of oatcakes in the UK, one of the UK's leading and most trusted gluten free brands and our range is exported to over 30 countries. Whether your favourite is a super seeded or a stem ginger you won't have to go far to find a fellow fan.

Are oatcakes good for dieting? ›

The oatcake is seen as a low-energy dense food, which means it has lower calorie content when compared to its serving size. This means that oatcakes may help you feel fuller on less calories, which when eaten as part of a controlled diet may help you control your weight.

How healthy are oatcakes? ›

Naturally energising. Wholegrains are a rich source of fibre, vitamins and minerals – oats are high in soluble fibre and also naturally contain manganese**, phosphorus**, magnesium, zinc, iron, folate, vitamin B6 and thiamine. Our oatcakes contain nutrients** that contribute to normal energy-yielding metabolism.

How many calories in a Scottish oatcake? ›

Nutritional Information
Typical ValuesPer 100g / Per 100mlA serving contains
Energy1876kJ / 448kcal188kJ / 45kcal
Fat17.3g1.7g
Saturates6.4g0.6g
Carbohydrate57.5g5.8g
6 more rows

Are oatcakes healthier than rice cakes? ›

Oatcakes are generally higher in fibre than rice cakes. By choosing them instead, you'll feel fuller for longer, benefit from a slower release of energy and embrace all the goodness of wholegrain oats.

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