Scottish Oatcakes

By • November 6, 2013 • 8 Comments

Author Notes: These nubbly, crumbly little shortbread-like cakes make for a tasty little breakfast or snack, especially when paired with a bit of cheese or jam and a cup of tea. This recipe is adapted from one that is on Epicurious but that I've seen in a whole bunch of different places as well, so it's true origins may be lost to time. fiveandspice

Makes about 1 1/2 dozen

  • 1 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chilled, salted butter (I like to use Kerrygold) cut into small chunks
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  1. Heat your oven to 350F and line two baking sheets with parchment. Combine all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
  2. Using your fingers, rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles a coarse meal. Stir in the buttermilk and use your hands to press everything together into a messy ball of dough.
  3. On a lightly floured surface roll or pat the dough out until it's 1/4 inch thick. Use a 2-inch round cookie cutter to cut circles and transfer these to a baking sheet leaving about 1/2 to 1 inch between the circles. Gather the scraps and roll them out again and cut more circles.
  4. Bake until the oatcakes are golden brown around the edges, about 12 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Serve plain or with cheese and jam. Store the oatcakes in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
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6 months ago Shweta

Are these cakes Soft to chew or a little hard to bite like a cookie?


6 months ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

They are on the crispy side.


7 months ago Stacy

I made these for a breakfast potluck at the office (you can only have so many egg/meat/cheese casseroles) and served them with Washington apple butter. They were a hit! Folks snacked on them all day.


7 months ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

That's so great!


9 months ago Scot

Nothing like traditional Scottish oatcakes - more like a cookie. If you like Nairns or any other oatcakes, you'll find these quite different. Theses are very sweet - and identical to the recipe on epicurious. Omitting the sugar might bring these closer to real Scottish oatcakes.


9 months ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Interesting. I've seen a recipe that's basically the same as this in a whole bunch of different places. I just looked at the one on Epicurious and it looks like they use shortening. I'll have to try that and see how it compares! I haven't ever been to Scotland, so I've never had the opportunity to try real Scottish oatcakes, but hopefully someday I will!


10 months ago Coco Harris

Oatcakes were one of my favorite discoveries while traveling in Edinburgh last summer. Nairn's is the popular brand, I ate so many of those!


10 months ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.