Last Updated on February 19, 2021
While my own dietary requirements are minimal (I am allergic to strawberries and chia seeds), I really appreciate the struggles of those with more extensive requirements, either for themselves or for a family member. I do have a relative who is on a special diet including gluten-free and dairy-free together with a host of other restrictions. So, it’s great to find options that will work for her when she visits but still taste good enough for the rest of the family to enjoy!
Sweetpea Pantry offers a range of mixes, from flapjacks and brownies to high protein pancake and pizza dough. All gluten-free, all vegan (depending on what you add) and all low in sugar.
I was sent a flapjack mix and banana and chocolate chip muffins.
Flapjack is one of my own go-to recipes, but my recipe involves not just golden syrup or honey but a lot of sugar. It’s also worth pointing out that oats, one of the main ingredients of flapjacks, are not necessarily gluten-free. That’s a function of the milling and packing process. If you are buying oats for someone with a serious gluten intolerance you need to check the package. The Sweetpea Pantry flapjacks come with desiccated coconut, sultanas and dates for sweetness and with quinoa flakes and flaxseed for extra goodness (fibre and protein). That means all you need to add is butter or coconut oil (for a vegan option) and honey or the syrup of your choice (the pack lists golden, maple, date agave or rice malt – the best option for you will depend on your own dietary requirements).
I made up the mix using butter and honey because that’s what I had in the cupboard. I imagine that coconut oil would taste fabulous and that golden syrup might work a little better than honey in terms of helping bind the flapjacks.
The pack doesn’t specify the size of tin and I found that my own brownie tin was far too big. But, a small loaf tin worked perfectly and the flapjacks were cooked in 15 minutes.
I marked out my flapjack squares after baking as I do with my own recipe. The flapjacks themselves were delicious to eat, but rather more crumbly than the sugar-packed version that I normally indulge in. On the pack it suggests refrigerating them to avoid crumble, but flapjacks are not the kind of treat I want to eat below room temperature and once they were cut, it seemed to make very little difference.
They tasted delicious and my only issue was with the level of crumble. Another time I’ll try using golden syrup.
Banana and chocolate chip muffins were similarly easy to make. The non-vegan version involved adding an egg and oil with the option of a mashed banana while the vegan version replaced the egg with the mashed banana. I made the non-vegan version but did add a mashed banana.
Cooked and warm from the oven these were utterly delicious. The ingredients create a high fibre muffin that manages to taste healthy AND good. It’s not overly sweet and the egg version rises beautifully. I did make 9 muffins rather than 6 because my muffin pans appeared to be too full. Another time I might try making 6 as recommended.
As detailed on the packet these take about 5 minutes to prep – you don’t need a mixer – and then 20 minutes in the oven. Perfect with a cup of coffee for elevenses!
For anyone who prefers not to bake from scratch, both the flapjacks and the muffins are well worth considering. They don’t have that sickly sweet ‘from a packet’ taste you sometimes get from the big commercial brands. For those of us who bake, they are still worth keeping in mind. I know I struggle when I am catering for people with dietary restrictions and the advantage of these packet mixes is that they are good enough for everyone to really enjoy while covering most of the dietary restrictions you are likely to have to deal with. So, I’ll be keeping a couple of packs on hand!
Sweetpea Pantry products are available from their own shop or from a number of online retailers including Ocado. Definitely one to check out.
Meanwhile, if you are looking for something to bake from scratch do try our ginger and chocolate chip cookies!