Scottish Oatcake Recipe (gluten-free oats, sunflower seed)

  • Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

Oatcakes were an alternative to bread in Scotland for centuries, and, still very much enjoyed there. Oats are one of the only grains that grow in Northern parts of Scotland, so it makes perfect sense that it would have been a staple food in times past.  

Traditionally made with oatmeal, oatcakes are a crunchy, cracker-like flatbread baked in the oven, not to be confused with Staffordshire Oatcakes, which are soft, not crunchy and used more like a wrap (check out my recipe for Staffordshire Oatcakes HERE).

One of the things I love about oatcakes is that they are excellent if you are on a budget. In their most simple form, they are made with oats, salt and water. My recipe also brings in sunflower seeds (one of the least expensive and most abundant seeds available). They are also very tasty, moorish and full of super healthy goodness. What’s not to love!

Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

Everybody seems to love oatcakes. They can be made gluten-free if you want to avoid gluten (gluten-free oats simply means that the oats have not been processed in a plant that processes gluten grains and have not been harvested from a field that is contaminated with wheat, barley, rye etc).

You can read more about what gluten-free oats are here: Are oats gluten-free or not? 

Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

Scottish oatcakes are pretty easy to make. You will need to grind down your oats and seeds to make flour (either a fine or a rustic meal/flour is fine). A simple food processor, nut mill, magic/nutri-bullet or blender works fine to blend the ingredients down. 

The next important part is getting the water ratio right. This varies from batch to batch. I measure 200ml of water in a measuring jug and use a little less than 150ml (three-quarters of it) to start with (and have the rest on hand just in case dough is too dry after adding the water).

You need to get a dough that pulls together firmly. If it sticks to your hands, then it is too wet, in which case all you need to do is add a little more oat flour, until you get the right consistency. Please see my video below for an excellent visual guide on this.

Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

Next, we need to roll it.

You simply sprinkle a bit of oat flour onto your clean worktop surface, making sure there is flour on the bottom and on top of the dough. Without flour, the dough may stick to the rolling pin or the worktop as you begin to roll it. If it sticks to the worktop, the just slide a knife, spatula or fish-slice under it, flip over and reapply the flour before continuing to roll. 

If you don’t have a rolling pin, then you can use a large glass jar with a flat surface instead.

Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

How to get circular shapes?

Getting circular oatcakes is easy – simply use a round cookie cutter. I didn’t have one available when I made the video, so I used a round-topped drinking glass. I also rolled a batch and cut into triangle shapes. See my video below to see what I mean here.

Cut into shapes, pop onto lightly oiled baking sheets and then put into a hot oven at 425F or 220C for 20 to 25 minutes. Keep an eye on them and be sure that they don’t get too over tanned or over baked. 

Once baked, put them onto a cooling rack, allow to cool a little and enjoy immediately. Once cooled you can keep them in an airtight container for about a week.

Here is my video tutorial to show you all the ins and outs of making these Scottish Oatcakes, please watch this before you make them for a great visual guide…

Scottish Oatcake Recipe with oats, sunflower seeds, dried herbs and parsley - oil-free, vegan, plant-based and gluten-free. By Anastasia, Kind Earth

Scottish Oatcake Recipe (gluten-free oats, sunflower seed)

Yield: 20 oatcakes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

A delicious Scottish Oatcake recipe with oats and sunflower seeds. Easy and very popular with soup, dips and snack time.


  • 200g oatmeal
  • 100g sunflower seeds (ground)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 heaped teaspoons dried parsley
  • 150ml water (approximately) more or less
  • Extra oatmeal (for rolling or adding if the mixture is too gooey)
  • Dash of oil for baking tray


  1. Turn your oven on to gas mark 7 (220C/425F).
  2. Mix all dry ingredients together.
  3. Add 150ml of water and mix the dry ingredients thoroughly with your hands. You need to achieve a dough ball that holds together very firmly, but does not stick to your fingers (please see my video for a demo). If the dough is too soggy then simply add more oatmeal until you get the right consistency.
  4. Split the dough into two (this makes it easier to roll). Roll out onto an oatmeal dusted surface until it is about 3mm thick (about ¼ of an inch).
  5. Cut with a cookie cutter (alternatively use the open top of a glass/jar or a sharp knife).
  6. Place on an oven tray and then bake in your pre-heated oven between 20 and 25 minutes until they begin to gently tan.
  7. Once baked, lift from the tray and place on a cooling rack. They should firm up nicely, with a crunch. If you want them softer take them out of the oven earlier.
  8. Once cooled, they keep in an airtight container for about a week.
This recipe features in The Kind Earth Cookbook.  It is jam-packed with loads of the best incredibly delicious plant-based recipes….

Kind Earth Cookbook Cover


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Easy Scottish Oatcakes, bu Anastasia - with sunflower seeds. Gluten-free, vegan and delicious


  1. Pam Johanon April 17, 2019 at 6:24 pm - Reply

    Could I substitute ground flax for the sunflower seeds?

    • Anastasia April 17, 2019 at 10:49 pm - Reply

      Good question. I’ve not tried that before although I do often use flaxseed in baking. Flax would act a little different from sunflower seeds. I would probably substitute half of the sunflower seeds with oats though and add less flax. I might try that out actually to see 😉

    • Anastasia April 18, 2019 at 3:46 pm - Reply

      I’ve not tried that but I imagine it would work well – another one for me to test too 🙂

  2. Karen April 18, 2019 at 3:01 pm - Reply

    Could I substitute Almond flour for the sunflower seeds?

  3. Diane August 4, 2019 at 3:52 pm - Reply

    Thank you for sharing this recipe. I just made these and omg they are delicious. Will never buy crackers again. I didnt add the parsley to mine, instead I added 2 tbsp all bagel seasoning. Some were kind of over cooked as they were a little browned, well maybe more than little, but they were just as good…. love love this recipe.

    • Anastasia August 4, 2019 at 8:58 pm - Reply

      That’s what I love to hear ‘will never buy crackers again’… so wonderful when we find something we love like that.

    • Runjhun April 20, 2020 at 4:05 pm - Reply

      Hey Anastasia, I-want to make these oatcakes but I’m not a fan of seeds, what can I substitute them with. Thank you for sharing such an amazing, easy and healthy recipe.

      • Anastasia June 5, 2020 at 6:21 am - Reply

        Just sub the seeds for extra ground oats 🙂

  4. Bonnn August 26, 2019 at 2:27 am - Reply

    Lol. I thought I had a handy bag of oat flour. Made these , they tasted nutty.
    Realized the bag was almond flour not oat . 🙃
    Used rosemary instead of parsley cause it was handy .
    All in all, not so oaty but great with the plum jam I’d made
    And the mr din na’ mind .
    I do love oat cakes though so will do this again.The right way!

  5. Fily V Wolczek August 26, 2019 at 6:25 pm - Reply

    Do you think I could sub tahini for the ground sesame seeds? It’s almost the same thing, isn’t it? Thanks! I want to make these right away!!

    • Anastasia August 26, 2019 at 7:30 pm - Reply

      Hi Fily – it’s actually sunflower seed, not sesame seed. You could substitute with ground pumpkin or ground sesame, but using a seed butter like tahini will have a different outcome.

  6. Gem October 14, 2019 at 1:46 pm - Reply

    Hi Ana, I just made these and they are so good they’ve been added to my recipe journal right away! I’ve been spending a lot of money buying special gluten free oatcakes and these have a much better taste and mmm, the texture! Next time I’d like to try them with a hint of sweetness, by adding coconut sugar, would that work do you think? Thank you

    • Anastasia October 14, 2019 at 3:49 pm - Reply

      Wonderful – happy to know that you like these. I think a bit of sweetness goes well to make more of a cookie or biscuit. Definitely play with that idea if you feel it.

  7. Jeannette November 9, 2019 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    These are delicious! My oat flour was a little coarse (grinder is not the best) but followed the directions and it came out perfect. Very flavorful and easy. Finally a cracker without rice flour, thank you so much for sharing this recipe. 🙂

    • Anastasia November 9, 2019 at 8:31 pm - Reply

      You are very welcome – I am glad you like this.

  8. Jess January 7, 2020 at 5:36 pm - Reply

    Can I replace all of the sunflower seeds for oatmeal? Also do you use quick oats or regular oat flakes?

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe and answering our questions. I love oats

    • Anastasia January 7, 2020 at 6:18 pm - Reply

      Yes, you can just use oats without the seed.
      Either option (ground down if not already ground) should work fine.

  9. Barbara Rhodes March 28, 2020 at 2:33 pm - Reply

    I’m making these this afternoon and would like to add cheese to the mix because I like to bought cheese oatcakes, but they difficult to source at the moment. Do you think this will work or might they burn?

    • Anastasia March 28, 2020 at 6:15 pm - Reply

      Honestly, I think you’ll love them without the cheese 😉

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