My gluten free Vegan Layered Banana Flapjack Cake is a delicious and versatile treat that can be eaten for breakfast or dressed up as dessert. Easy to make, it uses wholesome ingredients and is relatively guilt free.
Originally posted 8th January 2017. Post updated 3rd July 2022
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Banana Flapjack Cake – Made for sharing
Meet my gluten free, vegan, layered Banana Flapjack Cake. It’s a throwback to 2017, when it first appeared on the blog. It was originally born out of a need to use up a load of over-ripe bananas. After all, in the 21st Century, it’s really not acceptable to waste food.
And so… The Banana Flapjack Cake was born… A healthier treat, full of good stuff which is made for sharing! Even better… Because this one’s not the over-sweet syrupy type of flap jack base, it passes for a sustaining oat-filled breakfast as much as a sweet treat. But doused in custard (whether served warm or cold) it makes the yummiest of ‘rustic’ desserts.
Okay… I know it’s not the prettiest… But then neither was the ‘Ugly Duckling’ 😘 … And as my mother always told me, you should NEVER judge a book by its cover x
What is a Layered Banana Flapjack Cake?
Depending on where you live, I suspect you could be reading this with a degree of confusion… If you live Stateside, then you may have been expecting to see a pile of banana pancakes, made into a cake… But divine as that sounds, it’s not quite what this is…
You see… I’m from the UK. And for us, a flapjack is in fact something entirely different. Over here, a flapjack is a straightforward traybake made with oats, butter, syrup and sugar. It can have extras included such as fruit and nuts and can be chewy and sticky or drier and crunchy. Either way, it is usually served cut into squares.
So what of my Layered Flapjack Cake? Think of it as flapjack meets crumble meets layer cake… A middle layer of fruit, nuts and coconut, sandwiched between two layers of oaty ‘flapjack’. It’s not quite a standard flapjack recipe, but is created to be lighter and heading towards ‘cake’… Oats combined with carefully-chosen wholegrain flours for balance and something a little bit different. And because of the ratios used, the top (when baked) becomes almost crumble-like… Three treats in one!
Oh… And I baked it round to be cut like a cake 😁 (although if square is what you love, stick with it)!
What’s in this healthier Flapjack Cake recipe?
Because this is a healthier Banana Flapjack Cake (and because it is also Vegan), it doesn’t follow the standard butter and golden syrup that is expected in a flapjack recipe. Instead, it uses a bunch of more natural sugars and other ingredients that create something altogether more guilt-free. So what’s in it?
- Standard rolled porridge oats
- Additional gluten free flours to make the bake lighter and less ‘sticky’ (wholegrain sorghum, buckwheat and oat flours and a little corn starch… However, the flours you choose are probably fairly flexible)
- Coconut Oil (in place of the usual butter)
- A mixture of less refined coconut sugar and soft light brown sugar for gorgeous caramel overtones and tempered sweetness. (You can, of course, use just one or the other)
- Coconut Syrup or honey (in place of sugar-high golden syrup)… But again, you can use other syrups instead.
- A pinch of salt and a spot of xanthan gum (optional) for extra flavour enhancement and surety of binding.
- Three deliciously sweet (preferably over-ripe) bananas
- Chopped roasted hazelnuts and walnuts (or any other nuts you love)
- Some chopped glacé cherries for extra flavour and interest (my homemade Glacé Cherries are incredible)
- A little desiccated coconut for texture and chew
I don’t have any over-ripe bananas… Can I still make this Flapjack Cake?
Yes. I’ve made my Banana Flapjack Cake with seriously over-ripe bananas and also bananas that are still perfectly yellow. It works either way. The bananas will be mashed with the fruit and nuts, so it makes little difference (although riper bananas tend to taste a bit sweeter).
Is this recipe safe for Coeliacs?
If you are planning on making the cake for someone else who is Coeliac however, then please check whether they can eat oats first. A small percentage of Coeliacs are unable to eat them as they contain Avenin, a protein that is similar in structure to gluten.
There are no other gluten-containing ingredients in my Flapjack Cake. However, it’s always important to check ALL ingredient labels to be certain there are no ‘may contain’ warnings or hidden gluten.
What else is this Banana Flapjack Cake ‘free from’?
In addition to being gluten free, my Layered Banana Flapjack Cake is also free from dairy, egg, soy, fully-refined sugar and rice. Plus it’s Vegan too.
Ready to make a Banana Flapjack Cake?
I hope you love my Layered Flapjack Cake. While it may not be the prettiest, it has such a great flavour and is super-versatile and relatively guilt-free.
If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch. If I don’t get back to you instantly, I will as soon as I can. Leave a comment at the bottom, send me an email, or contact me via social media. I’m easiest to find on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.
Other gluten free recipes for using up over-ripe bananas you’ll love…
Layered Banana Flapjack Cake
- spoon and fork
- large baking tray
- 170 g coconut oil melted
- 75 g light soft brown sugar
- 75 g coconut sugar (or combine the sugar weights and use 150g either soft brown or coconut sugar)
- 45 g coconut syrup or honey or alternative syrup of choice
- 130 g rolled porridge oats (gluten free)
- 60 g oat flour (grind oats in blender to flour if necessary)
- 50 g corn starch )
- 80 g sorghum flour ) or replace combined weight of corn, buckwheat and sorghum with 180g alternative wholegrain flour blend (such as Gluten Free Alchemist Blend B – See NOTES)
- 50 g buckwheat flour )
- pinch fine sea salt
- ½ tsp xanthan gum
- 3 medium over-ripe bananas
- 25 g chopped walnuts or pecans (or alternative nut of choice)
- 15 g chopped roasted hazelnuts (or alternative nut of choice)
- 35 g glacé cherries rough-chopped
- 10 g desiccated coconut
- extra brown sugar or demerara sugar to sprinkle
- Base-line a deep 8 inch/20 cm loose-bottomed non-stick, spring-form tin with baking paper.
- Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
- In a large bowl, beat together the melted coconut oil with the sugars and coconut syrup/honey until very well-blended.
- Weigh and mix together the oats, flours, salt and xanthan gum until evenly combined (TIP: weigh into a large airtight container and shake vigorously).
- Add the dry oat-flour mix to the beaten sugars and oil and stir until completely blended and ‘wet’ looking. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, mash the bananas and mix thoroughly with the nuts, cherries and coconut. Set aside.
- Spoon half of the oat-based mix into the baking tin, spread to cover the base and press down gently with the flat bottom of a glass or the back of a spoon to condense.
- Next spoon all of the banana-nut mixture onto the base layer and spread evenly with a spoon, leaving a 1 cm un-banana'd border at the edge.
- Finally, spoon the rest of the oat-based mixture on top of the banana layer (starting with the edges) and again spread to cover evenly, gently pressing the mixture with the back of the spoon to bring together.
- Sprinkle over a little brown/demerara sugar and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until golden and crisp on top. (Before placing in the oven, ensure the baking tin is on a baking tray as there is likely to be a little leakage of oil as the ‘cake’ cooks.)
- When done, remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool for 20 to 30 minutes in the tin.
- Loosen the sides and carefully remove the ‘cake’ from the tin. Set aside to cool completely (or serve warm with custard as dessert).
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist