This Anzac biscuits recipe is a little bit healthier than the usual, but every bit as yummy!
It’s an easy recipe to make and great for kids who are just starting out in the kitchen. They last well, although at the same time… they don’t, if you know what I mean! They are usually gobbled up in the first few days. 🙂 I love a tasty, crunchy biscuit but I sometimes find baking can be way too sweet for me. So I’ve cut the sugar in half in this recipe, swapped out the golden syrup for maple syrup and reduced that too.
This year I joined a co-op for organic, bulk-buying food and oats was top of my list. I order a 50lb (around 22 kgs) bag of traditional rolled oats and quickly realised I had underestimated the size of this when I brought my 20 litre food grade bucket. So after sending my hubby out to grab a second bucket, I got to thinking about what I was going to do with all these oats. You could say 2021 was my ‘year of the oats’. I started a list of all my favourite oat-related things. 🙂
Porridge, muesli, banana oat smoothies, baked oatmeal… and, of course, Anzac biscuits.
The history of Anzac biscuits
Anzac biscuits are named after the ANZAC soldiers (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) they fed, and lifted the spirits of, in WWI. To provide just a sliver of joy in such harsh times, wives and women’s groups made hundreds of Anzac biscuits to send to their men on the front line. They used golden syrup to bind the biscuits instead of eggs, which meant that would last the long journey.
If you’re wondering where to buy Anzac biscuits? Don’t! Make them at home, they are super easy and don’t take long to whip up. Freshly made, still slightly warm Anzac biscuits are definitely the best.
So… why don’t I use golden syrup?
There are many versions of the Anzac biscuit, and adaptions over the year, but golden syrup is a pretty key ingredient. So why swap it out? I’ve been using maple syrup as my go-to sweetener for years now and it really just comes down to preference. It has less sucrose than golden syrup – and while I love a bit of sweet, I’m not a fan of overly sweet things. It does also have less fructose than golden syrup, making your baking less shelf stable than if you use golden syrup. But honestly, these biscuits do not last more than a few days in my house! And finally, maple syrup has plenty of vitamins and minerals, and additional potential health benefits.
Highlighting a few of the ingredients
Traditional rolled oats
What’s not to love about oats? 💖
Oats are nutritious and well-balanced, can lower blood sugar levels and they are really affordable (especially if you buy in bulk). Check out these nine benefits of eating oats from healthline.com if you don’t believe me!
Coconut is also full of vitamins, good fibre and healthy fats. It’s particularly tasty when it has been toasted slightly, so adds a great flavour to these biscuits. You can read more about the benefits of coconut at everydayhealth.com.
Ready for some deliciousness? Let’s get into it!
How to make Anzac biscuits
Mix your dry ingredients in a bowl
First up, mix your dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix together a cup each of traditional oats, flour, coconut thread and half a cup of brown sugar.
Mix the wet ingredients and heat till just bubbling
Next, put the butter, maple syrup and water together in small pot and heat together until you start to see the butter bubbling. You need to make sure that you keep stirring the mixture, particularly as just as it’s starting to bubble to make sure it doesn’t burn on the bottom of the pot.
Once the butter starts to bubble (and not before! yes, this takes patience), add half a teaspoon of baking soda. Stir it in quickly, and it’ll froth up. This step only takes a minute. Half a minute even. 🙂
Combine the dry and wet ingredients
Now pour the hot mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until it’s all integrated. From here, take large spoonfuls of mixture and shape into round balls a little bigger than a golf ball. You can’t quite roll it between your palms, it’s more of a pressing it into shape between your hands. It does need a bit of a squeeze, so that when you press them down on the baking sheet they don’t crumble completely. But you also can’t squeeze too hard or they’ll fall apart in your hand.
Anzac biscuits – chewy or crunchy?
It’s just about how long you bake your bikkies. A few minutes can make all the difference between a chewy biscuit and some extra crunch! And it’s all down to your preference. Me? I like a bit of crunch!
Healthy Anzac Biscuits
- 1 cup traditional rolled oats
- 1 cup plain flour
- 1 cup coconut thread
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 125 grams butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp water
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- Preheat the oven on fan bake to 160 degrees celsius.
- Mix the dry ingredients – oats, flour, coconut, and sugar – in a bowl.
- Melt the butter in a small pot on medium heat and add the water and maple syrup. Heat until it just begins to bubble.
- Add baking soda and stir quickly. Take off heat.
- Pour the melted butter into the dry ingredients and mix until it's all combined.
- Shape the mixture into round balls a little bigger than a golf ball, squeezing gently to hold them together and place them on the baking tray. Using the back of a fork, press the balls flatter to make the shape of the biscuits.
- Bake between 15-20 minutes, checking after 15 minutes for a golden brown colour. 15 minutes will make a more chewy biscuit, 18-20 will make a crunchy biscuit.
- Allow to cool on a baking rack and enjoy!