Unbaked sweet treats are a great way to entice budding young masterchefs into the kitchen. No-bakes are quick and easy to prepare, require little electricity and cleaning up is a breeze. They’re also a cool option for hot summer days. And kids of all ages love creating treats they can enjoy.

Often nourishing cereals and dried fruits can be incorporated — making them popular with raw food fans and suitable for lunch box treats. Most recipes for unbaked treats can be doubled and then stored in the freezer in airtight containers ready to pop on a plate for unexpected guests.

However, as with traditional baking, using level measurements and metric measuring spoons and cups helps reduce the risk of failure. Whatever the method of preparation, good results depend on a carefully balanced proportion of ingredients.

• Use consistent measurements in each recipe. That is, use metric measuring spoons and cups not a combination of everyday spoons or imperial and metric measures.  

• Spoon dry ingredients into a measuring cup then carefully level off to the required amount without compacting the mixture. The exception to this rule is brown sugar. Normally this is pressed firmly into a cup or spoon.

• When measuring liquid, place the measuring cup on a flat surface then fill to the required mark.


Can be frozen.

2 cups each: rice bubbles, quick cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup each: craisins, coconut sugar, golden syrup, crunchy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Grease and line a 23cm square cake pan.

Combine the rice bubbles, rolled oats and craisins in a large bowl.

Combine the coconut sugar and golden syrup in a small saucepan and heat, stirring until smooth. Remove from the heat and add the peanut butter and vanilla essence. Stir until smooth. Pour into the rice bubble mixture and mix well.

Tip into the prepared cake pan, pressing down evenly with a large spoon. Cool then cut into squares or bars. Makes about 36 pieces.


Decadent. Naked ginger is cooked in syrup and sold dried in a cellophane packet but it has not been crystallised

Base: 250g chocolate chip biscuits
100g butter, melted
Filling: 395g can sweetened condensed milk
50g butter, chopped
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup diced naked ginger
Topping: 250g milk chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup cream

Lightly grease and line a deep, 18cm square cake pan with baking paper.

Crush the chocolate chip biscuits finely and combine with the butter. Press into the base of the lined cake pan. Chill, until firm.

Place the sweetened condensed milk, butter and brown sugar in a large microwave jug. Microwave for 2-4 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the mixture is golden and thickened. Pour over the base. Top with the ginger then chill.

Place the chocolate and cream in a microwave jug. Microwave for 2-3 minutes until the chocolate has started to melt. Stir until smooth. Pour over the caramel layer. Chill. The top can be roughened with a fork, if preferred. Cut into squares or bars. Makes about 20 pieces.


Base: 6 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups pitted dates, chopped
1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup almonds
1 teaspoon pure vanilla essence
1 tablespoon water
Topping: 1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
2 tablespoons each: maple syrup, milk 

Grease and line a 20cm square cake pan with baking paper.

Place the base ingredients in a food processor — in batches if necessary. Process until fine and sticky. Tip into the pan and press down evenly.

Combine the topping ingredients, stirring until smooth. Spread over the brownie. Chill until firm then cut into squares or bars. Store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Makes about 25 pieces.


Raw energy.

3/4 cup each: pitted dates, prunes
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
pinch salt
desiccated coconut for rolling

Place the dates, prunes and salt in a food processor. Mix until completely smooth. Place in a bowl. And chill until firm-ish.

Take heaped teaspoons of the mixture and roll into balls. Roll in desiccated coconut or cocoa, if preferred. Freeze if preferred. Makes about 14.


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