Vegan Mofo Day 9: Nova Scotia Oatcakes

Although oatcakes are more of a Scottish thing, they were brought to Canada by Scottish immigrants and seemed to have found a home in most parts of Nova Scotia. If you head into pretty much any coffee shop or bakery in Nova Scotia you can still still find these humble little morsels in amongst all the other various cookies and scones. Even though I’ve spent many summers in Nova Scotia over the years, I’ve never had the pleasure of trying an “authentic” oatcake, but with a traditional recipe in hand, I figured I could put my own vegan spin on things.

Somewhat of a cross between a cookie and a scone, oatcakes are lightly sweetened and slightly flaky. They might seem kind of plain on their own but they’re super good with a bit of jam or warmed with a little margarine. I made these up early Saturday morning for breakfast then brought a box along with me to the dentist to share with the oral hygienists…because that’s just the kind of gal I am….I encourage the people who clean my teeth, to rot theirs πŸ˜‰


  • Servings: 8 Cakes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
Adapted from Quilt Canada


  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled quick oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup non-dairy margarine or shortening, chilled
  • 1/2 cup cold water


  1. In a medium bowl or food processor, mix together all the dry ingredients except for the oats. Using the food processor, pastry blender, or two knives, cut in the margarine or shortening until the mixture resembles large crumbs.
  2. If using the food processor, place the ingredients in a bowl and mix in the oats. Mix in the water until a rough dough forms.
  3. Roll out to about a ½” thick, then sprinkle with some additional rolled oats.
  4. Cut into 3” squares and bake on ungreased baking sheet at 400F for 15 to 18 minutes or until light brown around edges.


22 thoughts on “Vegan Mofo Day 9: Nova Scotia Oatcakes

  1. Emily says:

    I love all things oats, but I’ve never heard of oatcakes. I’ll have to give them a go, but any chance one could reduce the margarine without making the end result suffer?

    • Maggie Muggins says:

      You could try decreasing it a bit, but don’t get rid of it all together as you’ll lose that flaky/crispy texture they have. Maybe try subbing in a little applesauce or just decrease without replacing it with anything.

  2. Joey says:

    I love the Scottish version of oatcakes – really good with hummus and that. These ones are new to me, but they look really tasty – are they like flapjacks?

  3. xanthiagoddess says:

    These are one of my favourite comfort food. I think I’ll make some soon. The husband doesn’t like them much which is fine because I don’t like to share.

  4. John Otvos says:

    Difficult for me to read that an oatcake with shortening(read cold animal fat) or margarine (read transfat and/or GMO soy or canola) could be considered either healthy or vegan. Still cannot find a true NS vegan oatcake recipe.

    • Maggie Muggins says:

      Hi John, shortening is actually hydrogenated vegetable oil, I believe you’re mistaking it for lard. I don’t use or recommend using lard in any recipes I post. I don’t make any claims about my blog being a “health” blog, so Im not sure why you would make that assumption. Vegan does not automatically equal health food. Also, I thought I should point out that the margarine I used was Earth Balance, which is GMO-free and has 0 grams of trans fat.

  5. sheryl says:

    My husband had a peanut butter oakcake at a coffee shop yesterday. If i used this recipe and wanted the peanut butter flavor would you reccomned just adding some in or using it to subsitute something else ie: some of the margrine.

  6. Lisa says:

    Loved them. My daughter was worried they wouldn’t be sweet enough so I added a mashed banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
    P.S. I only got 1 πŸ™‚

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