Sugar free hobnobs

My store cupboard is looking a bit sparse at the moment. I used to make a regular pilgrimage to the whole food shop to stock up on healthy baking ingredients, however it is a dangerous place when money is tight and there are far too many delicious things I like in there so we haven’t been for a while. Arthur asked to do some baking this afternoon, so we had a look to see if we could be inspired by the minimal ingredients we had.

One of the best things about making up your own recipes is that you don’t have the disappointment of not having the ingredients the recipe requires. Instead we take out the ingredients we have and see what we can do with them.

Today I had a hankering for a nice cup of tea and biscuit. So hobnobs it was, refined sugar free hobnobs that is. Yes they do have a fair amount of butter and honey in them but I’m not suggesting you eat them all at once….we definitely haven’t eaten them all…yet. These are just my kind of biscuit as they are huge, they really expand in the oven and come out all soft and chewy and yummy.

Now I don’t want to brag but these are really tasty, and actually very similar to hobnobs. don’t just take my word for it though, make them and then decide.

*Note* I have used salted butter in this recipe because i think it gives the biscuits that signature hobnobbiness, but if this just sounds too weird to you then feel free to use unsalted butter instead.

Sugar free hobnobs


  • 100g self raising flour
  • 100g porridge oats
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g salted butter
  • 1/3 cup runny honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence


Preheat the oven to 160/gas mark 3 and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.

Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a large mixing bowl. Add the oats and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl mix together the butter, honey and vanilla. We used an electric mixer for this for two reasons, 1. it makes the butter and honey fluffy and creamy super fast and 2. Arthur flipping loves a machine that makes a noise.

Gradually fold in the dry ingredients until everything is combined thoroughly into a wet mixture.

Take spoonfuls of mixture and dollop them onto the baking sheet. The mixture will be quite wet but don’t worry it will come together in the oven. Be sure to space out the dollops as they will expand quite a bit. We got 10 biscuits from this mixture.

Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, switching your trays around half way so each gets some time on the top shelf.

Allow to cool on the baking tray for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to continue cooling.

Now boil the kettle…





Coconut & carrot breakfast bars

I’m guessing our house isn’t the only one that is sometimes a little chaotic in the mornings. Quite often we are a bit disorganised making breakfast. I make porridge and everyone decides they don’t want porridge, then I clean porridge from in between lots of tiny fingers and sometimes the curtains too. Oats are such a great way to start the day though so today I am prepared for tomorrow morning. I thought ahead and I’ve pimped up breakfast with these coconut and carrot breakfast bars. They are full of good things, oats, cashew butter, coconut and carrot! Yeehaw a vegetable hit before 7.30am is something worth celebrating for sure. If you have a little one who thinks of vegetables unfavourably I bet you they won’t detect the presence of carrot at all in these. So just enough time this evening to rustle up some up for the morning…

Coconut & carrot breakfast bars


  • 100g oats
  • 1/4 cup desiccated coconut 
  • 1/4 cup raisins 
  • 2 desert spoons coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 2 tbsp. cashew butter
  • 1/4 cup grated apple (about 1 small Apple)
  • 1/4 cup grated carrot (about half a carrot) 


Preheat the oven to gas 5.

Mix together the oats, desiccated coconut and raisins in a large mixing bowl. 

Melt the coconut oil in a pan. Once melted take off the heat and transfer to a hand blender. Add the honey, cashew butter, apple and carrot. Blend until they combine into a smooth liquid. 

Pour into the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Pour into the loaf tin and press down really firm until it is all flat. 

Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack then cut into fingers. 

Toasted pumpkin seed and apricot cookies

Seeds seeds seeds! My boy loves seeds. He likes them raw, toasted, roasted with honey or soy or even chilli but he especially likes them mixed with dried fruit. I’m hoping his seedy addiction will rub off on Sadie as soon as she’s big enough to start munching them too because they are great for you. Don’t underestimate the value of such a small addiction to your diet. Pumpkin seeds are packed with essential vitamins and minerals, protein, fibre and numerous antioxidants. Not to mention when eaten regularly can aid sleep. Yes sleep! remember sleep? Any parent of babies and small children will know full well that a good nights sleep is usually down to illness or miracle. Well stop press. Shovel some pumpkin seeds into your little monkeys before bed and maybe just maybe they will snooze all night long aaaahhhhhh. These little seeds of wonder pack a huge tryptohan punch. Yes this is a strange sciency sounding word but basically it’s a building block of protein and helps you make sleepy sleepy serotonin zzzzzzz. 

Now for my first experimental recipe which I am calling toasted pumpkin seed and apricot cookies. (Maybe that’s a little long winded but I’ll work on my catchy names I promise) 


  • 100g porridge oats 
  • 50g toasted pumpkin seeds 
  • 50g ground almonds 
  • 50g dried apricots (finely chopped)
  • 3 tbs coconut oil
  • 2 tbs almond butter 
  • 2 tbs maple syrup
  • 2 tbs water 


First preheat your oven to 180/gas 4 and line a baking sheet with grease proof paper. If you don’t have grease proof which I regularly don’t just grease it with a bit of coconut oil.

Lightly toast the pumpkin seeds in a frying pan on a low heat for a few minutes. you don’t want to overdo them as they will toast more in the  oven. Once you start hearing them pop they are about done. 

Next mix together the oats, ground almonds and seeds in a mixing bowl then add the chopped apricots. 

In a small pan on a very low heat warm through the coconut oil, almond butter and maple syrup, stirring gently until they are all dissolved together. 

Pour this mixture into the dry ingredients and add the water. Stir to combine. This mixture will look quite loose so the next stage is important 

Take tablespoons of mixture into your hands and squeeze really firmly to stick it together into balls and then slightly flatten them onto your baking sheet. This should makes around 10 cookies. I often do half quantity of new recipes so this will work well too if you just want to try them out. 

Bake for about 20 minutes until the edges start to go a nice golden brown. Cool on a rack and then enjoy!