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Taste the versatile pecan and banana flapjack

For breakfast or for a snack: Catherine Burns writes that to an English person, flapjacks are a kind of soft granola bar but in North America, they are the same as pancakes (Photograph submitted)

Oh dear, I might have confused the Americans before we even get started. To an American, flapjacks are the same thing as pancakes. But to an English person, flapjacks are a kind of soft granola bar — and they are totally delicious! I suppose — just as you would with pancakes — you could always have a flapjack for breakfast, especially if it's a fibre rich recipe like this one!

Flapjacks were one of the first things that I made with my kids. They are always really easy to make, with no fine motor skills required.

For very young children, you might want to chop the pecans yourself or just use a food processor if you want to avoid sharp knives altogether.

However, this recipe is a great way to introduce measuring out ingredients into cups and trying to gently stir things together without sending them flying out of the bowl.

Do be prepared for a certain amount of the kitchen annihilation though if this is the first time you were cooking with your kids. Try to expect it, relax about it and let it go.

Kids won't have a fun cooking experience if the adults around them are stressed and over-focused on mess. And, if they do create chaos, make sure you include them in the cleaning up — another lesson well learnt.

Now, if you are going to have something carbohydrate-based for breakfast or as a snack, you want to include as much protein and fibre as possible which ultimately helps to steady the release of sugar from the carbohydrates into the bloodstream.

This results in less pressure on the pancreas and a better sustained energy release —which feels so much better then the quick up and quick down that you usually get with sugary cereals or pop tarts.

In this recipe we have included lots of ground seeds which provide extra protein, fiber and a healthy dose of omega-3, too.

This recipe is very flexible and you can replace the ground seeds with any ground nut or seed of your choice. If someone in your family does not like bananas then you can replace the banana with applesauce.

These flapjacks are also really great with a thin layer of melted dark chocolate poured over the top (once called.) But I didn't tell you that!

Pecan and Banana Flapjacks


½ cup Earth Balance Vegan Margarine (I use the organic one)

¼ cup coconut oil

1 cup maple syrup or agave

1 pinch salt

1 large very ripe banana, mashed

2½ cups gluten free oats

1 cup Linwoods sunflower, pumpkin, flax, sesame and goji berry ground seed mix*

½ cup hemp seeds*

½ cup pecans, finely chopped or whizzed in the food processor*

*You could use any nuts/seeds here - the trick is to go for a combination as that bumps up the available protein. I used what I had in the cupboards!


1, Preheat the oven to 350F. Oil a square (for deep flapjacks) or rectangular pan (for shallow flapjacks) with coconut oil.

2, Melt the margarine, coconut oil, maple syrup/agave and salt in a large pan over a very low heat

3, When melted, stir in the mashed banana and turn off the heat

4, Stir in the oats and your choice of seed/nut mixes. Make sure everything is evenly coated

5, Press into your pan and bake for 20-25min, until the sides have gone darker and a little crunchy and the top is more golden.

6, Cool completely before cutting. Keep in the fridge!

Note: You can also press this into mini muffin pans (oiled) for bite-sized/lunchbox-sized treats! Cook for approx 10min.

The advice given in this article is not intended to replace medical advice, but to complement it. Always consult your GP if you have any health concerns. Catherine Burns BA Hons, Dip ION, BNTA is a fully qualified Nutritional Therapist trained by the Institute for Optimum Nutrition in the UK She works at Waterfront Wellness in Bermuda. Join Catherine on Facebook: www.facebook.com/nutrifitandnaturalnutritionbermuda or instagram @naturalbda

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Published May 17, 2024 at 7:59 am (Updated May 17, 2024 at 7:32 am)

Taste the versatile pecan and banana flapjack

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