Rhubarb & Cardamom Flapjacks

A stack of oatmeal bars on a plate with a wooden spoon.

Everyone loves to eat flapjacks, and these ones are a bit special with a rhubarb compote running through the middle and a hint of cardamom.

Traditional flapjacks are surprisingly high in refined sugar, but my version uses sticky dates and a bit of honey to sweeten them, which are much more nutritious and gentler on your blood sugar levels.

They are deliciously squidgy but hold together really well, making them an ideal treat for a picnic, lunchbox or after-school snack.

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Rhubarb & Cardamom Flapjacks

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Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Cooling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Course Baking, Snacks & Treats
Servings 9 flapjacks
Suitable for Special Diet (or adaptable) Egg-free, Gluten-free, Low-sugar, Nut-free, Sensory, Vegetarian


Rhubarb & Vanilla Compote



  • Preheat the oven to 160℃ (fan) and line a 20cm square baking tin with greaseproof paper.
  • Roughly chop the rhubarb into evenly-sized chunks, approximately 2cm square. Put into a saucepan with the honey and gently simmer, stirring frequently, to a jammy consistency. This takes about 10 minutes. Allow to cool, add the vanilla extract, then pour into a blender and whizz to create a smooth purée.
  • Next make the flapjack mixture. Roughly chop the dates and put into a large heavy-based saucepan. Add the set honey, butter and water. Heat gently until the butter and honey have melted and the dates are soft. Set aside to cool and then blitz until smooth with a hand blender.
  • Stir the oats, sunflower seeds, ground cardamom and sea salt into the sticky date mixture until well combined, then press half of it into the prepared tin. Add a layer of rhubarb compote, then top with the remaining oat mixture, pressing down to create an even layer. Don’t worry if some rhubarb squeezes through to the top – it all adds character!
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the flapjack is a rich golden brown.
  • Allow to cool and then cut into slices.


  • You can prepare the rhubarb compote ahead of time. If you are in a rush or it is out of season, you can also buy ready-made rhubarb compote and jam in the supermarkets. This recipe makes a little extra compote, so eat it with Greek yoghurt as a cook’s perk!
  • You could easily replace the ground cardamom with ground cinnamon.
  • Dairy-free – use a dairy-free spread such as Naturli.
  • Gluten-free – use a gluten-free oats or quinoa flakes
  • Store the flapjacks in an air-tight container and eat within 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.  
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