Starbucks oat bars have been a favourite treat of mine for a long time. Lucky for both of us, I came across a recipe while visiting Europe that was an exact duplicate of these favourite oatmeal bars. They are known as British flapjacks and you are going to love this copycat recipe as much as I do. Oats are just straight up yummy and I am a huge fan of oatmeal and anything to do with the breakfast classic. These Starbucks bars are perfect for a quick and easy breakfast, a midday pick-me-up, or a satisfying after-dinner treat. Plus, they’re very easy to make at home, so you don’t have to spend a fortune on buying them at Starbucks.
Starbucks oat bars aka British flapjacks are a perfect treat for a rainy afternoon, a school snack or a sweet breakfast option. They are easy to make and can be enjoyed at any time of the day. Give this classic British recipe a try to see how they are the perfect copycat Starbucks oat bar without the Starbucks line.
Why You Will Love This Starbucks Oat Bar Recipe
- Control over Ingredients – When making Starbucks oat bars at home, you have complete control over the ingredients that go into them.
- Cost Effective – Homemade oat bars are so much cheaper to than purchasing at Starbucks. You can buy ingredients in bulk and make a large batch of oat bars that will last for a while.
- Customizable – Copycat Starbucks bars can be customized to suit your own taste. You can experiment with different ingredients and flavours to create your own unique recipe.
- Freshness – Making these flapjack bars at home will ensure they are fresher than store bought ones.
British Flapjack Flavour Notes
With a first look at this Starbucks oat bar recipe (flapjacks), you may think it is similar to a Nature Valley granola bar, but that is not the case. These are wonderful little treats! The texture is somewhere between a chewy granola bar and a crispy, chewy oatmeal cookie. It is chewy and dense with slightly crispy edges.
The sugar and butter caramelize and have such a rich deep flavor – very buttery, and carmel-y which is the perfect accent to the nuttiness of the oats. You will love the dash of salt and the cinnamon. They both are very much just a hint, but they make everything else really pop. The turbinado sugar adds just tiny bursts of sweetness and very light crunch.
Starbucks Oat Bar Ingredients
British flapjacks and this Starbucks oatmeal bar are a traditional sweet treat made with simple and delicious ingredients and this recipe variation to make these Starbucks oat bars can also say the same. You will need quick cooking rolled oats, butter, turbinado sugar, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and golden syrup which gives it that yummy chewy texture.
What is Turbinado Sugar?
Turbinado sugar is made from sugar cane juice and is also known as raw sugar. You will find that turbinado sugar has a slightly coarser texture than white granulated sugar and it has a subtle, natural molasses flavour. It is often used as a sweetener in baking and cooking, as a topping for oatmeal, cereals, and fruits, and as a sweetener in coffee and tea. In this Starbucks oat bar recipe, if you don’t have turbinado sugar, you can substitute in more brown sugar.
What is Golden Syrup?
Golden syrup is a type of inverted sugar syrup that is commonly used in British baking. It has a unique, rich flavor that is distinct from regular syrup. Golden syrup is a key ingredient in these oat bars as it helps to bind the oats together and gives the finished product a characteristic golden colour and a delicious, sweet taste.
It is a nice thick syrup similar in texture to honey. A lot of people liken it to corn syrup but it’s very different. It’s much more like honey or maple syrup. It is sweet with hints of delicious caramel. You can purchase it online or at specialty markets. You can actually even make golden syrup at home. If you can’t find golden syrup, you can use dark corn syrup or honey in its place.
Oats Used in Oat Bars or Flapjacks
Similar to flapjacks, this Starbucks granola bar recipe uses quick cooking rolled oats. There are so many different kind of porridge oats, but it is important for this recipe to use the correct one. These quick oats are thinner and smaller than regular oats, which allows them to cook more quickly and evenly. These are the oats I used in this recipe and there is also a gluten free oats (here) version to consider. You will want to make sure you are using the correct oats, but in a pinch, you could put regular oats in a food processor and pulse it 2 to 3 times to break them down.
Oat Bar Recipe Variations
The best part of making these bars at home is that you can customize the ingredients to your liking, whether you prefer your bars sweeter or more savoury, or you want to add nuts or seeds to the oat mixture for some extra crunch.
This is a great base recipe, you could add different spices, flavourings, or mix ins to really make them your own! Think… raisins, nuts, dried fruit, dried berries, chocolate chips, M&Ms, pumpkin spice, vanilla bean paste. You can make endless healthy oat bars varieties with this base recipe. You could even drizzle some melted chocolate on top of them.
These homemade Starbucks oat bars are a great way to enjoy a tasty snack without any guilt. They are also a great option for those who have dietary restrictions, such as gluten free or vegan, as they can be easily adapted to suit those needs. So, get creative, have fun, and enjoy your homemade oat bars!
How To Serve British Flapjacks or Starbucks Oat Bars
These homemade oat bars a versatile treat that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Some popular serving suggestions include:
- As a snack – Cut the traditional flapjack oat bars into squares and serve them as a snack. They are a great alternative to store-bought snacks and can be enjoyed on-the-go.
- As a dessert – Serve the Starbucks oat bars warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or a dollop of whipped cream for an extra delicious dessert.
- With tea or coffee – As we all know, these copycat Starbucks oat bars are a great accompaniment to a cup of tea or your morning coffee.
- As a breakfast – Serve the oat bars with a drizzle of honey or maple syrup and a cup of yogurt for a sweet breakfast option.
- As a topping for yogurt or oatmeal – Crumble the copycat oat bar over yogurt or oatmeal for a crunchy and sweet topping.
- As a trail mix – Mix chunks of the oat bar with different nuts, dried fruits and seeds to make a great trail mix, perfect for hiking and picnics.
Tips for Making the Bars at Home
- Line the baking dish with parchment paper and allow it to hang over the sides for best results. The bars will slide right off, which makes it so easy to remove to cool and slice.
- The key to making traditional flapjacks bars that are crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside is not to overcook them. Keep an eye on them while they are in the oven and remove them as soon as they are golden brown.
- Make sure to mix the ingredients well, to make sure the oats will be evenly coated.
- Once the mixture is ready press it into the baking tray, making sure it is evenly spread out and pressed firmly.
- Use a shorter cooking time for more chewy flapjacks and a bit longer time if you prefer them crisper.
Starbucks Oat Bars FAQs
Yes, you can add a variety of ingredients such as nuts, seeds, dried fruits, chocolate chips or even spices to the recipe to customize it to your own taste. Make sure to add them after the butter, sugar and syrup have been melted and mixed together before adding the oats.
Yes, just substitute the regular quick cooking rolled oats with gluten free quick cooking rolled oats. I like to use these gluten free oats found here. Gluten free oats may not have the same texture as regular oats, so the result may be slightly different in texture and taste.
These oat bars contain butter, so they are not vegan. However, I have made them with plant based butter and they work fine.
If you can’t find golden syrup, you can use dark corn syrup or honey in its place.
The bars will last for about a week when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. They can also be stored in the refrigerator to extend their shelf life. To reheat them, you can put them in the oven or microwave for a few seconds before serving, to regain their crispiness.
Yes, you can freeze flapjacks. After baking and cutting into squares, place them on a baking sheet and freeze for 1 to 2 hours. Then transfer the oat bars into an airtight container or a freezer bag. They will last for up to 3 months in the freezer.
Starbucks Oat Bars Recipe
Starbucks Oat Bars
- 10 Tablespoons salted butter
- ⅓ Cup turbinado sugar
- ⅓ Cup brown sugar
- ⅓ Cup golden syrup
- ¼ Teaspoon salt
- ¼ Teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 ¾ Cups quick cooking rolled oats quick cooking rolled oats
- Prepare a 9×9 baking dish by lining the bottom and sides with parchment paper.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a medium saucepan combine the butter, turbinado sugar, brown sugar, golden syrup, salt, and cinnamon. Melt the mixture together over medium heat until the butter has melted and the brown sugar has mostly dissolved, the turbinado sugar will remain crystallized. Remove from heat.
- Add the oats to the saucepan and mix into the butter sugar mixture until the oats are fully coated.
- Press the oat mixture into the prepared 9×9 baking dish. Pat the mixture down with a spatula so that the top is a flat and even surface.
- Place the bars into the oven and close the door, immediately reduce heat to 325 degrees F. Bake at 325 degrees F for 25 minutes, or until the edges are lightly golden brown.
- Remove the bars from the oven. While they are still hot and in the pan, cut the flapjacks into 16 pieces. Leave the flapjacks in the pan to cool.
- Once the oat bars are completely cooled, carefully lift them out of the 9×9 baking dish and place onto a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to re-cut the 16 pieces. Separate the pieces and either serve immediately or store in an airtight container.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.
You will just absolutely LOVE this homemade version of Starbucks’ delicious oat bars! They are very similar to traditional British flapjacks with a few variations. These cafe style oat bars are made with wholesome ingredients and are perfect for a quick breakfast or snack on the go. Plus, these granola bars are easy to make and can be customized to suit your taste preferences. Enjoy the taste of Starbucks in the comfort of your own home with these homemade oat bars!
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Bella Bucchiotti is a storyteller, food lover, dog mom and adventure seeker living on the Pacific coast. She shares her passion for food, dogs, fitness, adventures, travel and philanthropy, in hopes of encouraging followers to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places and stand for a cause. Bella lives with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease.
These do seem to taste very similar to the starbucks ones, which i love, but my first attempt seems that they just fall apart. i didn’t get it to come out in one piece so i could cut it, very crumbly. have you maybe had this happen on your early attempts and might know what to adjust? Thanks.
This hasn’t happened. I do press them down firmly…maybe you need to press them down to compact them more?
hmm, okay, i thought i did with the spatula as i was spreading it out. will try differently next time. the taste is good though so i’ll try again sometime.
Taste different, perhaps my version was wrong. Tasted like there was less sugar, IDK? A bit on the dry side as well. I think Starbucks uses a sugar glaze on theirs as well; “Whole Oats”.
I made these and followed your directions to the letter. Mine were very dry and I had to cook them longer because they were not drowning up like Starbucks . When I tasted one it was very gross tasted like I was eating raw oats the inside looked nothing like Starbucks either. Most comments below were submitted by people saying they looked yummy or they looked easy to make but very few made them and then commented. Any suggestions ?
Oh no! I am not sure what to suggest. I have made them several times and not had what you described. Maybe you made them too thick? Did you press them down super hard? I literally use every bit of strength I have to compress them.
Awesome recipe! Thanks for posting it! I had absolutely no, zero, nadda issues as people post below, and basically found the recipe simple, straight forward, completely as you describe, and delicious! Thanks again – this recipe is now a staple in my household!
Great recipe, however I think credit should be given to the company who supplied Starbucks with the oatbars until they decided to make their own copy of the original. Cakes etc. In Victoria, BC was the supplier for Starbucks until the coffee company decided to make their own (inferior) version. Its frustrating to see a corporate giant take credit for someone else’s work.
Hi, just wondering if I could substitute honey for the corn syrup?
I haven’t tried. Let me know if you ended up testing that variation out. 🙂
I have used this recipe twice with great results. I made the following changes: substituted maple syrup instead of corn syrup; used honey instead of sugar; added whipping cream instead of milk; added half a cup (maybe more) of dried cranberries; added a handful of raw pumpkin seeds and a good handful of flax seeds; I also added a large pinch of flake salt to the dry ingredients (they were made as nutrition bars for cycling so the salt was added as an electrolyte). I found that they needed 10 mins more baking time in my oven. They are delicious.
I will have to try your version! Thanks for coming back to share. 🙂
Husband loves it. I used 1/2 c. Of apple sauce, 1T.of butter, used maple syrup instead of golden syrup, used reg. Oatmeal, pulsed it for few min. Baked it for 25 min. Perfect! I will Make it again. Omit the brown sugar, plenty sweet.
These were really yummy – but I got there the hard way. I was probably a little generous with the butter. So I added more brown sugar and corn syrup. Once mixed with the oats, I decided to add mini chocolate chips. But my chips kept disappearing. Then I realized that the mixture was too hot and my mini chips had melted! My mixture was now chocolate oats!! All good – I put it in a pan prepped with cooking spray and a parchment lifting sleeve. I tried pressing it down, but my mixture was too wet. At this point, I should have taken it out and added more oats for the extra liquid. But, I just threw it in the oven at CONVECT BAKE 325 for 20 minutes. I wasn’t sure if these would turn out (given my modifications) – so I mixed up some muffins too and put those in for Convection 385. I pressed down on the bars some more (after 20 minutes of baking it had dried out and I was able to finally press it). I put them back in the oven with the muffins at the higher temp for 10 minutes. I took them out, gave them a good press, and let them cool. Anyone who is not getting good results, has either made too much butter mixture (by not measuring properly), has not added enough oats, or has not allowed these to cool. I will make again next time making sure the mixture cools before adding the chocolate chips and making sure if the mixture is too wet, that I add more oats. Thanks for the recipe!
Glad you figured it out! I think the type/brand of oats can make a difference in the consistency and cooking time.
Made these yesterday as directed, turn out perfectly. I added some dates to the food processor and tamped them well. Will make again, Thank You.
Dates would be a great addition. I will have to try this! Thanks, Rick
Made ’em! Loved ’em! I used what I had – steel cut oats, 1/4 cup maple syrup and 1/4 cup brown sugar. I found them a tad dry and wonder if adding some oil would make them chewier. I believe that with some practice, this is a highly adaptable recipe. Thanks for putting a delicious end to my Starbucks craving!!
I am so glad I found this recipe again. I have made them so many times and then lost my paper I had printed. They are our family favorite!
Glad you love them!
My hubby and I love Starbucks oat bars but not so much the kings ransom to purchase them. This recipe is the antedote and couldn’t be easier to make! I followed everything to a ‘T’, cooked them for 20 minutes, cooled them liberally in the pan, and got picture perfect results. My husband said the word ‘love’ more than a half dozen times while eating them, all directed to the oat bars! For optimal results, I recommend following the suggestion to flatten the bars with a metal spatula just before baking (I sprayed mine with non-stick cooking spray).
So glad you like them!
I am sooooo glad I found this recipe again. I have made so many times and my family loves it. I have no idea how I lost it but I was so disappointed. Making it TODAY!
You are not the only one that loves this recipe. It is always a hit at my house, too. Enjoy!
Pro-Tip: Use a Tablespoon of Vanilla instead of a Teaspoon. I Frick’n love these…
Thanks for the pro tip! I will try that myself the next time I make them again. 🙂
I have made these 3 times now and we really love them.
So glad you like the recipe!
Made these yesterday exactly as written. Taste is excellent..just like Starbucks but texture was crumbly. I covered and put away until today and Lo and behold, they are perfect. Hold together beautifully. Love this!!
These are so great to make ahead for the week so I can have breakfast on the go… and they taste JUST like the Starbucks version
These oat bars were thick, gooey and chewy! I love the Starbucks version but yours were better!
I can’t believe how easy these were to make! Delicious! I did sub in honey, but they still came out amazing!
What did you take out (sub) for the honey?
There is no honey in this recipe. There is golden syrup. You could use honey instead of the golden syrup though.
I thought these tasted just amazing, flavorful and sweet and so enjoyable!
Dare I say- I think these are BETTER than Starbucks!! So yummy!! Thanks for the recipe.