Delicious Scottish Oatcakes: A Traditional Recipe

Welcome, my dear readers, to my recipe article on the traditional Scottish oatcakes. As a chef who specializes in British cuisine, I must say that the Scottish oatcakes are one of my favorite recipes because they not only taste amazing but also represent a piece of Scotland’s rich culinary history.

Oatcakes have been a staple in Scotland’s diet since the 14th century and are still enjoyed by many today. These traditional Scottish oatcakes were originally made using medium oatmeal and hot water, but now there are several variations of this recipe that you can try.

In this recipe article, I’ll be sharing with you my version of the traditional Scottish oatcakes. These oatcakes are a delicious and healthy snack that you can enjoy any time of the day. They’re easy to prepare, and you can even make them gluten-free by using a combination of oat flour and steel-cut or pinhead oatmeal.

So, whether you’re a fan of traditional Scottish cuisine or looking for something new to try, I assure you that these oatcakes will make your taste buds dance with joy. So come along with me, and let’s dive into the world of Scottish oatcakes!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Traditional Scottish Oatcakes
Traditional Scottish Oatcakes

Are you someone who enjoys traditional, hearty and wholesome foods? Are you looking for a recipe that is not only easy to make but also incredibly delicious? If so, then this Traditional Scottish Oatcakes Recipe is perfect for you!

Oatcakes are a traditional cracker made from oats, which have been a staple in the Scottish diet since the 14th century. They are made with simple ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry, including oatmeal, whole wheat flour, and bicarbonate of soda.

What makes this recipe stand out is its perfect balance of flavors and textures. The combination of oatmeal and whole wheat flour gives the oatcakes a crunchy texture that is perfect for dipping in your favorite dip or spreading with butter or cheese. Meanwhile, sea salt adds just the right amount of flavor while keeping it healthy.

But that’s not all! This recipe is incredibly versatile and can be easily adapted to suit your personal tastes. You can add chopped herbs, spices or seeds to switch up the flavors. You can also make this recipe gluten-free by using oat flour or steel-cut oats instead.

So whether enjoyed as an afternoon snack or paired with your favorite savory dish, these oatcakes are sure to satisfy both your taste buds and stomach. Give yourself a taste of Scotland’s culinary history by trying this easy Scottish oatcake recipe today!

Ingredient List

 A simple and wholesome breakfast with Scottish oatcakes
A simple and wholesome breakfast with Scottish oatcakes

Before diving into the recipe, let’s take a look at the ingredients you will need to make these Traditional Scottish Oatcakes.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 cups of oatmeal
  • 1 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 cup of boiling water, plus extra
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil or melted butter
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

These simple ingredients have been used to make oatcakes in the Scottish diet since the 14th century. They are a traditional cracker, made from oats and are typically served with cheese. The ingredients used for this recipe are all pantry staples that you might already have on hand.

It should be noted that while this recipe calls for olive oil or melted butter, other fats such as lard or margarine can also be used as a substitute. In addition, while whole wheat flour is traditionally used in this recipe, gluten-free flours can be easily substituted for those with dietary restrictions.

The Recipe How-To

 Watch your morning coffee pair perfectly with these traditional oatcakes
Watch your morning coffee pair perfectly with these traditional oatcakes

Now I will guide you on how to make traditional Scottish oatcakes. These oatcakes have been a part of the Scottish diet since the 14th century and are usually eaten as an alternative to bread. They are made from oatmeal and are a traditional cracker-like biscuit. Follow these steps for these easy Scottish oatcakes.

Step 1: Mix the ingredients

In a large bowl, mix together 2 cups of steel-cut oatmeal, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 4 tsp of bicarbonate soda, 1/2 tsp of sea salt, 1 tbsp of sugar, and 1/2 cup of olive oil. I recommend using medium oatmeal for these oatcakes as it is the most traditional.

Step 2: Add boiling water

Slowly add hot boiling water, about one tablespoon at a time, stirring continuously until a thick dough is formed. Be careful not to add too much water or the dough will become too wet.

Step 3: Knead the dough

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for several minutes until it is smooth and elastic.

Step 4: Roll out the dough

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it’s about 5mm thick. Use a biscuit cutter or glass tumbler dipped in flour to cut out the biscuit shapes.

Step 5: Bake the oatcakes

Place each piece on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake in preheated oven at 350 F for approximately 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool off completely before serving.

Now your delicious traditional Scottish oatcakes are ready. Keep in mind that these can be served either sweet or savory with toppings such as cheese, butter or jam. Happy baking!

Substitutions and Variations

 Flaky and tender oatcakes ready to be served with your favorite toppings
Flaky and tender oatcakes ready to be served with your favorite toppings

The beauty of traditional Scottish oatcakes recipe is its versatility. There are plenty of ways to switch up the ingredients and customize the recipe according to your tastes or dietary needs. Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try:

– Flour: You can swap the whole wheat flour with oat flour if you want an even more wholesome and nutty flavor. If you opt for a gluten-free version, use a gluten-free flour blend that includes xantham gum or an equal amount of rice flour.

– Oats: Scottish oatcakes are typically made with medium or pinhead oatmeal, but you can also use steel-cut oats or rolled oats. Just make sure to process them in a food processor until you achieve the desired texture. For a denser and chewier texture, try mixing different types of oats.

– Baking Soda: If you don’t have bicarbonate of soda on hand, simply use baking soda instead.

– Butter or Oil: While butter is the traditional fat used in Scottish oatcakes recipes, you can substitute it with olive oil or any other vegetable oil. You can also use melted butter instead of softened butter for an easier mixing process.

– Flavorings: You can add different flavorings to your oatcakes batter, such as cheese, herbs, spices, honey, or brown sugar. You may need to adjust the amount of salt accordingly.

– Shape and Size: Scottish oatcakes are traditionally shaped into large rounds and then cut into triangles or squares. However, you can experiment with different shapes and sizes, such as rounds, squares, or rectangles.

Whether you’re trying to accommodate specific dietary requirements or simply looking for something new to try out in your kitchen, these substitutions and variations will help you make delicious and unique Scottish oatcakes that will surely impress your guests.

Serving and Pairing

 Bring a little bit of Scotland to your kitchen with these oatcakes
Bring a little bit of Scotland to your kitchen with these oatcakes

– The traditional Scottish oatcakes can be enjoyed in various ways, depending on your personal preference. You may opt to have them on their own as a delicious savory snack or pair them with your favorite topping.

– One of the most popular toppings for oatcakes is cheese. The natural nuttiness and slight sweetness of the oatcakes make them a perfect match for the salty, sharp taste of cheese. Grate some cheddar or crumble some blue cheese over the oatcakes for a quick and easy snack.

– For something sweeter, you can try topping your oatcakes with fruits such as sliced apples, berries, or bananas. Drizzle some honey or maple syrup on top and sprinkle with cinnamon, and you’ll have a delightful breakfast or snack.

– Another excellent way to enjoy Scottish oatcakes is by using them as a substitute for crackers when creating appetizers such as bruschetta or crostini. Simply add your desired toppings to the oatcakes, such as tomato and basil or smoked salmon with cream cheese.

– If you want to keep it simple, you can serve the oatcakes alongside a warm bowl of soup or stew to add a nice crunchy texture to the meal. The oatcakes also pair well with cold cuts and pâté.

– Finally, true Scots may suggest that no meal is complete without a glass of whisky to wash it down. Pairing the Scottish oatcakes with whisky is not only culturally appropriate but surprisingly complementary too. The rich, smoky flavor of whisky pairs beautifully with the earthiness of the oatcakes.

Overall, there are countless ways to serve and pair traditional Scottish oatcakes; it all depends on your creativity and taste preferences.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 An oatcake a day keeps the hunger at bay
An oatcake a day keeps the hunger at bay

One of the best things about Scottish oatcakes is that they can be made ahead of time and stored for later. This makes them a great option for meal prep or as a snack that you can grab on the go.

To prepare ahead of time, simply follow the recipe instructions and let the oatcakes cool completely before storing them in an airtight container. They can be kept at room temperature for up to two weeks, or in the freezer for up to three months.

When reheating oatcakes, it’s best to do so in the toaster or under the broiler for a few minutes until they are slightly crisp. You can also microwave them for 20-30 seconds, but this may result in a softer texture.

If you find that your oatcakes have become slightly stale, try reheating them in the oven with a sprinkle of water on top. This will help to add moisture and make them taste fresh again.

It’s worth noting that while oatcakes will undoubtedly last a decent amount of time once stored correctly, they never quite match up to their freshly baked counterparts. Therefore, we always recommend consuming your oatcakes within two days after baking them – not too much longer and they will start to lose their irresistible crunch!

In conclusion, making Scottish oatcakes ahead of time is super easy and convenient. Just be sure to store them properly so they retain their flavor and texture!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Start your morning strong with these hearty Scottish oatcakes
Start your morning strong with these hearty Scottish oatcakes

As a chef with a focus on British cuisine, I have learned how to perfect the traditional Scottish oatcake recipe. Here are some tips to help you achieve the perfect results when making these delicious oatcakes in your own kitchen.

1. Use the Right Type of Oatmeal

The key ingredient in Scottish oatcakes is oatmeal. Make sure you use medium or pinhead oatmeal, not rolled oats or steel cut oats. The texture of the oatmeal is important for achieving the right consistency in the oatcake.

2. Chill the Dough

Once you’ve mixed all your ingredients, pop your dough into the fridge for at least an hour before rolling it out. This will allow it to rest and will make it easier to handle without falling apart.

3. Measure Ingredients Precisely

To avoid any issues with texture or taste, make sure you measure out all ingredients precisely. A slight deviation can change the end result significantly.

4. Don’t Over-Bake

Oatcakes can easily become hard and dry if over-baked. Keep a close eye on them and remove them from the oven as soon as they begin to turn golden brown at the edges.

5. Cut Out Rounds Carefully

When cutting out your oatcake rounds, be careful not to twist or distort them as you transfer them to your baking sheet. If they become warped, they may not cook evenly and will not look aesthetically pleasing.

By following these tips, you will have a much greater chance of achieving perfect results when making traditional Scottish oatcakes in your own kitchen!


Now that you have all the information you need to make traditional Scottish oatcakes right at home, you may still have some doubts about the process or ingredients used. In this section, I will address some common questions related to this recipe, so that you can have even more confidence and ease when making these delicious oatcakes from scratch. Let’s dive into the FAQs!

What are Scottish oatcakes made of?

As a chef specializing in British cuisine, I would like to share a recipe for oatcakes with you. These oatcakes can be enjoyed either as a cracker or a biscuit, and the main ingredients include oats, salt, and water. This Scottish variety of oatcake is a delicious and healthy treat that you can easily make at home. So let’s get started!

What is the origin of Scottish oatcakes?

Oats have been a vital part of Scottish cuisine for centuries, dating back to even before the Roman era. There’s historical evidence that Jean le Bel, a French nobleman, witnessed nuns in Scotland making small round cakes that were remarkably similar to the communion wafers during his travels in the 14th century. It’s widely believed that these cakes were, in fact, oatcakes.

Are Scottish oatcakes healthy?

Oatcakes are a nutritious option as they contain essential minerals like manganese and phosphorous that help sustain our energy levels. Their low glycaemic index can prove beneficial in regulating blood glucose levels, especially when paired with a high-quality protein or fat, such as nut butter.

Are oatcakes as good as porridge?

If you’re in a rush or want a heartier breakfast than toast, oatcakes are a great alternative. Similar to baked porridge, oatcakes can be topped with banana or peanut butter for a quick, nourishing, and satisfying breakfast.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Scottish oatcakes are a delicious and traditional snack that has been enjoyed for centuries. This easy Scottish oatcakes recipe is perfect for anyone who wants to try their hand at making these tasty treats. With just a handful of ingredients and simple instructions, you can have your own batch of freshly baked Scottish oatcakes in no time.

Not only are Scottish oatcakes a tasty snack, but they are also very healthy. They are made with whole wheat flour, oatmeal, and other nutritious ingredients that will keep you feeling full and energized throughout the day. Plus, they are gluten-free, which means that even those with gluten intolerance can enjoy them.

I encourage you to give this recipe a try and experience the authentic taste of Scotland in your own home. Serve them as a snack with butter, cheese or jam or pair them with coffee or tea for an indulgent breakfast or brunch option.

Remember to follow the tips and suggestions provided in this article for perfect results every time. Don’t be afraid to experiment with variations and substitutions to find the flavor and texture that best suits your palate.

In the end, there’s no denying the appeal of traditional Scottish oatcakes – from their unique taste to their rich history dating back centuries ago. With this recipe, you can bring a slice of Scotland into your own kitchen and share it with your family and friends. Once you’ve tried them, you’ll never look at crackers the same way again!

Traditional Scottish Oatcakes

Traditional Scottish Oatcakes Recipe

Small oat biscuits that are traditionally eaten in Scotland with cheese or pate' as a snack, we sometimes have them for a light lunch with a side salad.Last time I made them we had #211001 French Tarts French onion marmalade,with them and it was a perfect addition.
Course Appetizer/Side dish
Cuisine Scottish
Keyword < 30 Mins, Beginner Cook, Brunch, Easy, European
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 10 oatcakes
Calories 54.8kcal


  • 60 g medium cut oatmeal
  • 60 g wholemeal whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon lard
  • 5 tablespoons boiling water


  • Pre-heat the oven to 200c or 400f.
  • Cover a baking tpay with greaseproof paper.
  • Melt the lard until compleately melted.
  • Place dry ingredients in a bowl and add melted lard and water.
  • Mix until dough is formed.
  • Sprinkle some oatmeal on work surface and roll out dough about 1/2 centimetre thick and cut out as many as you can.
  • Place oatcakes in oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until the edges are browning.
  • Place on a wire rack to cool.


Serving: 211g | Calories: 54.8kcal | Carbohydrates: 8.4g | Protein: 1.8g | Fat: 1.8g | Saturated Fat: 0.6g | Cholesterol: 1.2mg | Sodium: 121.8mg | Fiber: 1.3g | Sugar: 0.1g

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