Failsafe rolled oats cookies (Anzacs)

I tried this recipe out of the Failsafe Cookbook. It meets the requirements of the Failsafe food intolerance diet, but contains *yikes* white sugar & golden syrup. For someone trained on anti-candida (and other healthy-eating principles) it’s quite scary to be cooking like this! But I decided to go for it since my eating options are so limited already.


1 cup plain flour
2 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup sugar [I reduced this to 1/2 cup and cookies are definitely sweet enough]
125 g butter
2 tbs golden syrup
2 tsp sodium bicarbonate
2 tbs boiling water

Mix together flour, oats and sugar.
Melt butter and golden syrup together.
Mix bicarbonate with boiling water and add to butter mixture.
Pour into blended dry ingredients and stir to combine.
Place large spoonfuls of mixture onto greased oven tray, leaving room to spread.
Bake at 160°C for 20 mins.

[Sue Dengate, The Failsafe Cookbook (2007), p. 168]


[NB: this photo was taken of my 2nd batch of cookies, where I followed the oven temperature instructions exactly. The result was much darker than the first time I made these and was judging the appropriate cooking time purely by sight.]

Baking notes

1) Reduced the sugar to 1/2 cup. Will try reducing even more next time.

2) Golden Syrup is not easy to handle! Firstly because even before I had broken the plastic seal on the Tate & Lyle’s retro-styled tin, tiny ants swarmed my kitchen. Had to clean out the whole cupboard and wash the unopened tin in soap water. So I have since kept the golden syrup in the fridge, which means it’s pretty stiff when you try to spoon it out. Solution: use a metal spoon heated up in some hot water, and a hot knife to spoon and almost cut it out of the tin!

3) There was only just enough liquid to bring the whole mixture together and bits of rolled oats seemed to keep falling out instead of staying in a nice cookie ball. However, they held together very well once they were baked.

4) I was impatient and tried to use the Fan Bake function on my oven, which worked well with my muffins and puff pastry – simply reduce the oven temperature by 20°C, and cut the baking time by half. However, when I did this, the cookies were not sufficiently browned on the outside, or dry enough on the inside. In the end, I had to reduce the oven temperature to 90°C then leave them in long enough to become more solid, which took 20 mins as recommended in the recipe anyway.

My cookies were chewy – I hope they are meant to be that way. They taste really nice (the allure of forbidden sugar :)?) and because of the high quantity of oats, they are very filling as well.

P.S. Want to know why these cookies are so popular Down Under and are called ANZACS? Read a bit of food (and military) history here.


7 Responses

  1. we down here in australia are quite fond of anzac biscuits …

    your blog is full of interesting articles and tangents. next time i get congee with preserved duck egg i might reconsider.

  2. […] at the end of 15 mins because they were so soft to the touch. Remembering my experience from baking Anzac cookies, I thought they would probably crisp up upon cooling, and this turned out to be true. Slightly […]

  3. Thanks for this recipe. I can’t find my FAILSAFE Cookbook at the moment (just moved house) and really wanted to make some ANZACs for the kids’ lunches. I find a lot of the FAILSAFE sweet recipes WAAAY too sweet (and the kids do, too). Like you, I am “thingy” about sugar, but I can justify feeding ANZACs to my kids because oats are so very nutritious! (except for me, because I am gluten intolerant, lol…. miss my oats!) Thanks again!

  4. Hi Fiona, thanks for your comment. I find that you can reduce the sugar to 1/3 of stated amount in virtually all recipes and no one will notice the difference. If you go below 1/4, some people with ‘standard’ tastebuds might notice :). Putting my recipes on this blog helps me too as I can access them anywhere, without having to have my cookbooks on hand :).

  5. A tip for the golden syrup if you don’t mind. Transfer it to a glass jar (recycled one) so you don’t have to keep it in the fridge. Cans rust anyway in a moist atmosphere.

    when you need to scoop some out with a spoon swipe a bit of oil onto the spoon over and under so that the syrup won’t stick and will drop off the spoon easily .and you will get accurate measurements.

    btw …a question (maybe silly) …is the sugar content and type of sugar in honey and golden syrup equally bad? Would the product be ‘healthier’ if honey was used instead of golden syrup?

    • Hi Zurin,

      Thanks for the tip. Right now, I’m doing much better with my golden syrup as I got a brand (Red Man) that comes in a squeezy plastic bottle. No ants so no need to store in fridge, plus easy dispensing :).

      As for the sugar content, I’m not sure and certainly there are many ways in which honey is considered a ‘better’ sweetener than the refined sugar in golden syrup. However, this recipe is from the Failsafe Cookbook (link in main post) which caters to those sensitive to salicylates — honey is very high in salicylates and in fact, the only two sweeteners that are OK for people who react to salicylates are golden syrup and maple syrup. If one is following an anti-candidiasis or hypoglycemic diet then all sweeteners, honey as much as golden syrup, are a no-no :(.

  6. Oh one more thing…these cookies sound very much like flapjacks . the only diff being it has flour in it. I htink I might try it baked spread out in a lamington tin and then while still warm ill cut them into squares. It might save the trouble of scooping the dough into little balls.

    They look great in teh picture. Ill let u know how it turns out. :)

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