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Hello, welcome to my guest post, where I share one of my favourite childhood recipes…and a taste of Australia. If you make these biscuits, I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!


When I lived in London, I once had an argument over holiday planning with a boss who didn’t want to let me have time off to go home to Australia for Christmas. “England is your home now,” she said. I immediately burst into tears and booked the flight online as she watched on in bemusement. In 3 years I will have been living outside Australia for longer than I lived there growing up but it is still where I mean when I say “home.”

With 12 years in London and 5 years in France under my belt (I’ll save you the math; I’m 37 and I moved overseas at 20) and with travel off the cards for the foreseeable future, it feels further away than ever. But there are some foods that transport me back home immediately, to dusty hot days in the playground (Vegemite sandwiches), salty air at the beach (shaved ice), or pre-exam jitters in the beautiful sandstone courtyard of my university (Allen’s pineapples).

Through it all, I have a flimsy little cookbook that has followed me around the world and lives in our kitchen in Paris, that was put together by my mum’s best friend, when she was a kindergarten teacher, over 20 years ago. The cover is a little faded, the pages stained from years of use, and as soon as I open it I find a recipe that leads me down memory lane. We call it a “community cookbook,” a typical school project in Australia. Each family contributes their favorite recipe and they are all bound into a little book that is sold (usually right back to the people who have contributed the recipes) and the money donated to charity.

The beauty of these books is that the recipes are the best of the best. Written as simply as possible (some a little too simply…many are missing oven temperatures) with no comments section to ask whether you can substitute this for that, halve the sugar, or make the recipe fat-free. They’re classic family favorites that have been made so many times that they are ingrained in my muscle memory. 

One of the recipes I have been making from this book since childhood is Anzac Biscuits. According to the Australian Government’s DVA (Department of Veteran Affairs) website “the Anzac tradition – the ideals of courage, endurance and mateship that are still relevant today – was established on 25 April 1915 when the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula.”

Anzac Day is a day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand and commemorates servicemen and women who have served in wars, conflict or peacekeeping operations. There are services held at dawn (the time of the original landing at Gallipoli, in Turkey) all over Australia, where wreaths are placed and a minute of silence is observed. In France, a dawn service is held in the town of Villiers-Bretonneux at the Australian National Memorial, on the former battlefields of the Somme in northern France, where the names of close to 11,000 Australians are listed who lost their lives in France and have no known grave. Lest we forget.

You are probably wondering what the link is between a World War I battle and biscuits? Legend has it that wives and families in Australia and New Zealand sent care packages to soldiers that included biscuits made from store cupboard staples such as rolled oats, golden syrup and flour. Eggs were scarce so were not included, making these treats perfect for surviving the long journey overseas. 

There are strict guidelines listed by the DVA and recipes “must not substantially deviate from the generally accepted recipe and shape, and must be referred to as Anzac Biscuits or Anzac Slice (not Anzac Cookies)”. Brilliant food writer Lara Lee (who went to the same culinary school as me in the UK!) explains biscuits vs cookies here. In keeping with the times, substitutions can be made to cater for specific dietary requirements, including gluten-free and vegan (Mardi Michels has a gluten-free and vegan version here) but other deviations (including adding chocolate or fruit) are not (officially) allowed. The furthest I have strayed out of bounds is by experimenting with a dash of mixed spice or a sprinkling of salt over the top just before baking, but I tend to stick to the classic recipe. 

These biscuits can go from thought to table in 20 minutes, don’t require any fancy equipment, and are great to make with kids. I vividly remember making these with my Nanna (my maternal grandmother), a keen baker who kept tins of golden syrup stashed in her kitchen until she passed away recently at 91 years old. They are a popular item at fundraising stalls, school fetes and can be found in supermarkets and cafes in Australia all year round. 

“Chewy or crispy?” is the first question an Australian will ask when you offer them one. My preference falls in the middle, the elusive crispy edges and soft center. The texture of the oats, with the aromatic coconut and the caramelised golden syrup come together in a buttery mix that means that although they will keep for two weeks in an airtight container, they have never lasted more than a day in our house (I made 4 batches while writing this article and they all disappeared before I could take a good photo, the pile getting mysteriously smaller each time someone walked past the kitchen).  

It’s hard to explain the funny feeling of wanting to be in two places at once to someone who has never lived abroad. It’s sort of like going to your favorite restaurant but they have taken your best-loved item off the menu. Everything else is good, perhaps even great, but you just can’t satisfy the lingering craving. So as I continue to build my life in France, and until travel opens up again, I will keep flicking through my well-worn cookbooks and teaching my children to make things that taste like “home”.

Have you ever made Anzac biscuits? Let me know in the comments below or on Instagram.

Anzac Biscuits

The original recipe mentions that you can double the golden syrup for a chewier biscuit. I have tried that and find them too sweet for me, so I tend to stick to the original amount.
Course Dessert
Servings 22 biscuits
  • 125 grams (4 1/2 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 25 grams (1 tablespoon) golden syrup
  • 210 grams (1 cup + 2 tablespoons) light or dark brown sugar (the original recipe just says sugar so you can use whatever you have to hand)
  • 100 grams (1 cup) old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 65 grams (1 cup) unsweetened desiccated coconut
  • 150 grams (1 cup + 1 tablespoon) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons boiling water
  • Pinch of salt
  • Turn the oven on to 160ºC (325ºF) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • Melt the butter and golden syrup in a saucepan on low heat.
  • Measure the oats, coconut, flour, sugar and a pinch of salt into a mixing bowl.
  • Mix the baking soda and hot water in a little glass and check that it is fizzing away. Take the saucepan off the heat and pour the water/baking soda mix into the melted butter and golden syrup. It should foam up immediately.
  • Pour it into the dry mix and stir. It comes together very easily.
  • Roll into golf-ball sized balls, place on the baking sheet and give them a light squash so they are flat on top. They spread quite a bit so make sure to leave room.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes (in my old oven it was 11, in my new oven it is 9). They are ready when they are quite golden all over and smell divine. They are deceptively soft when they come out of the oven but they harden up a lot, so don’t be fooled - unless you like them really crispy!


    • Gavrielle Perry

    Not just wives and families in Australia, Emily! Anzac biscuits were sent by New Zealanders too and are still at least as big a deal in New Zealand as they are in Australia, if not more. I’ve commented to David before that while he has previously altered the recipe to include cranberries and that’s fine as he’s not a Kiwi, I would never contemplate fiddling with the classic on pain of being deported.

      • Emily Cunningham

      You are totally right I have added that they were sent by New Zealanders too!

    • Kerrie

    Thanks Emily.
    Planning to make a batch to take on our travels around Australia this year. No planes just car and camper. Joining all the other Aussies not travelling abroad.
    Stay safe and hopefully you’ll be home again soon

      • Emily Cunningham

      That sounds like such a wonderful trip – hope you have a great time! Such a good time to see Australia.

    • Martinn Key2paris

    I made some for ANZAC day on April 25th. They are delicious. I skipped the coconut flakes as I did not have any. But I used Maple syrup and oats and they were amazing. I’s day that as all cookies, they seem very soft when you remove them form the oven but they will harden when cooling so you really need to respect cooking time and not let them longer. The recipe is SO good, I am nit sure I’ll wait until ANZAC 2022 to bake a new batch.

      • Emily Cunningham

      So glad to hear you enjoyed them!

    • Mary

    What is golden syrup, or at least a worthy substitute for baking in the USA?

      • Jo

      You can get Golden Syrup at British food traders. The brand easiest to get in the US is Lyle’s. I know they have sold this at Trader Joe’s, World Market and Whole Foods. Its also on Amazon in the US.

      The nearest equivalent is LIGHT treacle. Do not use dark treacle or molasses as taste is wrong.

    • Suzette

    What is golden syrup? I am in the U.S., would love to make these but am unsure of what this is or if we even have a substitute. Thank you.

    • Ian McKendry

    My four grandkids live in the same city – Melbourne – and we’ve had a tradition of making Anzacs when they come over for a visit. This lovely tradition started when one child at about age 8 spoke quietly to me, murmuring, “You know grandpa, I wouldn’t have minded if you’d made Anzacs for today”. Well! What more incentive does a grandfather need?
    With the 5 kilometre travel limit in Covid Quarantine, we couldn’t get together, so we had a Zoom cooking session across three households – making Anzacs, of course!
    The recipe I use, honed over a couple of decades, is pretty standard, but I do use a couple of teaspoons of spice mix.

      • Emily Cunningham

      That sounds like the best Zoom session of lockdown! I occasionally use a dash of mixed spice in them too – yum indeed.

    • Jax

    Hi Emily

    I am so excited to try your Anzac Biscuit recipe and hope that it transports me back to Australia as well. I love that cookbook – can you flip the pages and see if you have a true blue old fashion recipe for Lamingtons and Pavlova? I miss those so much (and iced fingers) but I want a recipe that tastes the way my friends mum’s used to make and some of the ones I have tried have missed the mark. A community cookbook from the past may hold what I am looking for. Anyway – thanks for this recipe – maybe I can finally show my husband a proper tasting Anzac Biscuit.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Jax,
      not sure if you have instagram (my link to that is at the bottom of the article) but if you message me on there I can send you pictures of some of the other recipes!

    • Janet

    I have never been to Australia but since I discovered a version of ANZAC biscuits 2 weeks ago, I have made them twice and am addicted to the point where I am never without them. Will bake some later today. This version is for people with digestive issues. I love how they are crispy outside and soft inside fresh out of the oven and don’t mind when they turn soft the next day.
    Thank you for sharing the story and your recipe, Emily! Will test different versions for variations.

    • Amy

    Such a lovely post Emily! I had a whole series of “Oh!” moments in quick succession. I saw the title “Anzac Biscuits”, and knew I was in for a treat, interested to see how David would talk about them, then realised a guest writer, and that you were Australian. Then I read about the sandstone courtyard and thought “oh she must mean UQ”, she’s a Queenslander. Then I saw the photo of your Mitchelton kindy cookbook and yep, definitely a Brisbane girl. I’m from Brisbane and have lived in Scotland for 12 years. I was supposed to go home last year for the first proper trip in a very long time but obviously that didn’t happen. I understand everything you’ve talked about here. I always say I have two homes, the home without, and the home within. Or that Australia has my heart and Scotland my soul. But there’s no way to truly explain it. And the community cookbook! Your description made me laugh, because yes they’re so bare bones – a soup spoon of this, a tea cup of that. With instructions often not much longer than “Add. Mix. Bake.” It’s what makes them so magical. These people KNOW cooking. The one I use is from the Whittlesea Agricultural Society in Victoria, where a good friend of mine lives. Not as old as yours, from their 150th anniversary in 2009. It’s one of my most treasured (and useful) items. The Anzac biscuit page has 3 marginally different recipes, each loved family ones, with the names of the people who submitted them, and dedications “recipe given by the late Lynne Gray”, and “in loving memory of my Nan”. I spent Anzac Day last month making some biscuits and weeping gently into my rolled oats. (That little touch of salt makes all the difference).

    I wanted to thank you so much for this lovely moment of nostalgia and knowledge that someone else out there understands.

    Amy x

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Amy,
      Hello to you over there in Scotland. Yes you got it exactly right, I went to UQ :) That little touch of salt does make all the difference. Hope you can get back to Australia for a visit soon! Emily

    • David
    David Lebovitz

    Mary and Suzette: You can get Golden Syrup in the US; you can find it online here, and in well-stocked supermarkets (such as Whole Foods.) Substitutes include sorghum, rice syrup, or cane sugar syrup. Mild honey can also be used, although it lends a little flavor which isn’t quite right in these biscuits. So if you can, I strongly recommend tracking down some Golden Syrup. You won’t regret it! : )

    • Lula Quinsey

    Emily, for North American readers, can you explain golden syrup? It’s not corn syrup, right? I don’t see golden syrup on our grocery shelves.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Lula, according to David:

      You can get Golden Syrup in the US; you can find it online here, and in well-stocked supermarkets (such as Whole Foods.) Substitutes include sorghum, rice syrup, or cane sugar syrup. Mild honey can also be used, although it lends a little flavor which isn’t quite right in these biscuits. So if you can, I strongly recommend tracking down some Golden Syrup. You won’t regret it! : )

      Hope you can find some!

      • Emily Cunningham

      No definitely not corn syrup!

    • Cynthia Morton

    I love those community cookbooks. They’re popular here (Canada) as well. Thank you for this recipe, I’ve been wanting to try ANZAC biscuits for a while. All I need to do is find some golden syrup.

      • Emily Cunningham

      It is such a good thing to keep in the cupboard and it lasts forever! So if you find some you will definitely get a chance to use it all :)

    • E

    Absolutely love the photo of the little helpers, i.e., the future chefs!

    • ellie

    @ Mary & Suzette
    For anyone who can’t get golden syrup where they live, try a 50/50 mix of runny honey and maple syrup. That’s my discovery since living over here in France!!

    • Ian McKendry

    Lula, I used to live between The Bay Area and Melbourne, and had no problem sourcing Golden Syrup. The brand available is usually Tate & Lyle. It was available at our local supermarket in Marin, and at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. It’s also available via the ubiquitous Amazon.

    • Laurie Gafni

    Hi Emily,
    Coincidentally, the Bon Appetit website featured Anzac Biscuits on April 19, 2021:

    While certain quantities (butter, flour, and rolled oats) remain the same, the most obvious difference is the omission of boiling water. I’d love to hear your input before deciding which recipe to adhere to.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Laurie – yes that recipe is by Lara Lee who I mention above in the article (and link to). She uses hot water in her recipe so I think it will work the same. Any recipe I have made of hers in the past has turned out well so I think you are in safe hands either way :)

    • Julie

    Thank you for this post. I’m from Melbourne and have also lived in Malaysia (husband no. 1) and Germany (No. 2) and that pull of ‘home’ is always strong. I havent made Anzac biscuits in yonks, will have to do so now.

    • Anne M

    Is golden syrup high fructose corn syrup? I hope not..I love the Anzac biscuits..

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Anne, no it’s made from cane sugar – it is also sometimes called light treacle.

    • Geno

    Suzette and Mary, Any syrup will do, agave, corn syrup, maple syrup eg. Even honey is fine.

    • Liz W.

    Kroger carries Golden syrup as well. I use it for flapjacks.

    • Donna Hart

    Several Golden syrups available including Lyles on Amazon as well as Whole Foods and friend said she found it at Trader Joes also in US.

    • Lucy Burdette

    Emily, always look forward to your posts and your chef helper is adorable! Here’s hoping you get home soon…

      • Emily Cunningham

      Thanks Lucy :)

    • Tricia

    Hi Emily, your recipe is almost identical to the one I’ve made for many years that originally came from the 1970 edition of The CWA Cookbook. My recipe uses ½ cup sugar instead of 1 cup. The original recipe calls for ¼ lb butter so I use 110 g. Also, as I live in Italy where we have unsalted butter and in Australia the butter ‘back in the day’ was always salted, I add a couple of good pinches of salt to the mix. I’ve not met anyone who didn’t love Anzac Biscuits. Unfortunately, with Australia’s ban on travellers my supply of CSR Golden Syrup is running perilously low :-(

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Tricia – it’s a classic isn’t it! I bet you can order some golden syrup online if you get really desperate. We had a shortage here after Brexit but it’s come back into stock again. My poor mum has to bring an extra suitcase with all my favourite foods when she visits and when she finally gets back here the list will be long!

    • Alana

    You explain the longing for home perfectly. Thank you. It isn’t a rational thing…. We did leave for a reason.

    • Charlotte

    My husband and I spent several months in Australia with local friends. We grew to love Anzac biscuits. We will love to make them with this recipe. Other favorite treats (pavlova and vanilla slice) are much harder to replicate here. I’m making the Anzac biscuits today! Thank you.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Have a lovely time baking!

    • Emily Cunningham

    Thank you to everyone sharing places to get golden syrup and substitutions!

    • Lynette

    I did not know these were called Anzac biscuits! They were a favourite in our household (South Africa) when I was growing up, we call them Crunchies.
    Such wonderful memories…

      • Emily Cunningham

      I had no idea – can’t believe my old South African housemates and I never figured this out!

    • GG Mora

    I make them all the time, often to add to the dessert table at pot-lucks. I love that they’re so humble-looking, people tend to ignore them – until one brave soul tries one and word gets around and suddenly they’re all gone!

    • Linda Michaluk

    I have corn syrup but no golden – I also have malted milk powder…can I use the corn syrup (for the sugar part) and malted milk powder (for the carmel/bitter part)? Thoughts?

      • Emily Cunningham

      You can substitute most syrups, it will taste different but still give you a nice biscuit. Not sure malted milk will work, they will probably be better just with the corn syrup on its own (and maybe a dash of honey if you have it!). But it is quite a forgiving recipe so give it a go and see what you think :)

    • Martinn Key2paris

    I got it from Australian friends that you can use Maple syrup. That’s what I did and they were great. Now I don’t know how they taste with golden syrup

      • Emily Cunningham

      You can indeed – a bit of a different taste but a great result all the same!

    • Debbie

    Last week I made David’s recipe for Cranzac “cookies”. I guess he couldn’t call them biscuits with the addition of dried cranberries!
    I am American but my son has lived in Sydney, AU for about 13 years and has dual citizenship and I love visiting that beautiful country. We must never forget the sacrifice that so many made for freedom.

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Someone recently (it may have been today?) said online that they are biscuits, not cookies, because they are crisp. Hence the “biscuit” moniker. (And speaking of crunchy, there are also South African crunchies, which have similar ingredients.) However as Emily notes, there are some that like their Anzac biscuits chewy, some that like them crisp. In (American) English we often call crisp cookies “snaps” (as well as cookies), but there are also wafers too. Hmmm…

    • David Yaranon

    Love making the cranzac biscuits. Since these biscuits are so easy to make I’ll have to make this plain version and cranzac version and see which one I like better.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Let us know what the results of the “competition” are!

    • Shelley

    Hi Cynthia. Depending on where you are, I would do a search for something like “British Groceries in -enter your city name-” They will usually have Aussie and NZ stuff, too. In Regina, there’s a place called “Simply British Foods”, Hamilton there’s “Across the Pond” and Opie’s. My MIL often gets Import stuff from her Superstore or other Loblaw’s grocery.

    • Tegan

    Anzac biscuits aren’t a tradition by my Australian partner here in Canada but funnily enough you still showed a tradition we have nonetheless. The recipe for sesame coconut balls is almost identical to one his Mum made when he was a kid (we swap the sesame for hulled sunflower seeds) and he brought the recipe with him when he moved.

    We still make them regularly and it was a delightful surprise for us to learn they’re known to other folks as well.

    Our copy was always a bit of a mystery as it’s handwritten on a well-used recipe card so we didn’t know how common they might have been, or continue to be.

    I’m definitely going to dig up some golden syrup and give Anzac biscuits a try though, I’m always a fan of recipes with history to them.

      • Emily Cunningham

      What a strange coincidence! Nice to know they were some family’s absolutely favourite, so much so that’s what they chose to contribute to this book.

    • Bunny

    How I love Anzacs! I grew up as a Navy brat and, consequently, our family was bounced around all over California. My mom used to shop at a grocery store that had a cookie counter. On rare occasions, my dad would treat my brother and I to a cookie. My dad chose the cookie, always the same one, and I loved them. As an adult, I never knew the name of the cookie and my dad didn’t remember either. My grocery store also had a small cookie counter and I saw a cookie called “Anzac” behind the glass. Being an adventurous eater, I chose that cookie because I thought I never tasted it before. That first bite instantly transported me back to my childhood and I was thrilled. I’ve tried making Anzacs but they always seem to miss the mark somehow. I’m hoping your recipe will be the ticket back to that magical childhood bite.

      • Emily Cunningham

      That’s such a nice story – fingers crossed these ones live up to the memory!

    • Kathleen

    We emigrated to rural NYS from NZ when I was little and I grew up with these biscuits being baked by my Kiwi mum on a regular basis. So delish! Thanks for the reminder to make some soon and use up my horde of golden syrup!

    • Darla

    These are fantastic and they stay fresh for a super long time!!

    • Susan Walter

    Hi Emily. Nice to ‘see’ you guesting again, with a classic Aussie recipe. Your community cookbook has ‘stolen’ the CWA recipe, btw. It’s the one I make too. I’ve made David’s Cranzacs too — they are nice, but not Anzacs.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Good to know where it has come from! It’s a classic for a reason :)

    • Cathi

    My sister just forwarded this recipe to me in Scotland from Canada! I read it and just had to make them, like right away! I didn’t have golden syrup, I used honey, I didn’t have butter, I used margarine. I didn’t have brown sugar, I used white! For some strange reason I did have unsweetened desiccated coconut!! Baked for 11 minutes they came out crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. Now, they may not be ‘Anzac biscuits’ but boy, are they ever good. Definitely won’t last the day! Thanks for the recipe, Emily! x

      • Emily Cunningham

      So nice to hear – enjoy them!

    • Janine

    So lovely to hear an Aussie perspective in David’s newsletter. I have Anzac envy: I currently live in an apartment without a proper oven but I’m about to move, and I think I’m prepared to sacrifice a metre carré or two to become Anzac self-sufficient. Thanks for the inspo!

      • Emily Cunningham

      An Aussie friend of mine makes them here in Paris in her little bench top toaster oven and they turn out pretty well… Could be an option for Anzac (and other baking) needs!

    • Pamela

    Central Market in TX has golden syrup!

    • Alex

    I found Golden Syrup at Kroger in the section of European imports.

    • Jung

    My heart ached reading your last paragraph as you captured that feeling of living abroad for so long, yet still calling Australia home, and that craving that forever lingers. There’s a time and a place for both the chewy and crispy Anzac biscuits and I’m eager to try what sounds like a glorious mix of both! Thank you for the recipe! (and inspired me to try to find and bring back my community recipe books the next time I’m able to go back home and visit my parents!)

      • Emily Cunningham

      Oh yes – crispy ones are the best to have with tea! Hope you find some great old recipes in your community cookbooks :)

    • Juanita

    You can look online for a recipe to make golden syrup. It is made with sugar, water and strip(s) of lemon zest.

    • Joycelyn

    You are taking advantage of this lovely and very interesting guest blogger post to sell your own products.
    I find that quite rude that you would do such a thing.
    As for your claim on your site that oats must be fermented first if you don’t want the oats to cause gastric/stomach problems, I find that hard to believe as the public world wide would have heard medical specialists, especially gastroenterologists issuing warnings about how oats must be “fermented” before consuming.

    I understand fermentation is all the rage these last couple of years and people have paid an incredible amount of money for jar weights, the how to books and all the other so called necessary gear being sold online by people taking advantage while they can but for anyone to actually say oatmeal must be treated with Your fermentation product only before consuming is more than far fetched, it’s bordering on blatant deception.

    Oats do not need to be fermented if you have a GI problem/disease which members of my family have including myself. You simply avoid consuming what would trigger a flare up by learning what is okay to eat and what is not.

    As for oatmeal/rolled oats. We buy gluten free, non GMO verified, rolled oats made in gluten free facilities only. One source being a local health food store, the other being Costco where I can buy 2.27gm bags of gluten free, non GMO verified, glyphosate free rolled oats. Not once have we had a gut problem after consuming our rolled oats.

    • Ali

    Thanks for this. ANZAC Day falls on my birthday, but I never knew it before this (I’m American). I came to say: 1. I cannot wait to make this biscuit recipe (trying very hard not to call them cookies) because it looks SO GOOD, and 2. your English boss sounds so heartless. Home will always be home.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Happy birthday for recently! She was one of those bosses that sometimes was harsh but was generally really great. But she had always lived in the same place so it was just a totally foreign concept!

    • Marie elise elise Vaillancourt-Henry

    Bonjour David,
    Is it possible to use olive oil in the Anzac cookies instead of butter and if
    so in which proportion .
    My nephew ” David ” is allergic to any
    dairy so no butter at all of course.
    From Cobourg,Ontario and also Québec city.
    Marie elise
    Marie elise

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Marie Elise, There is a link in the article to a vegan option by Mardi Michaels that is tried and tested, so that could be a good option to try out. Hope that helps! Emily

    • Jackie Scarsella

    I loved your article. My mother and I traveled to Australia and NZ as a present for graduating from nursing school. Oh, what a glorious time we had , the memories are coming back in tides. The people, the food, the glory of the countries and yes, the Anzac Biscuits. Thank you for wiping the dust off those memories.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Such a nice phrase “wiping the dust off those memories”. Happy to remind you of your trip.

    • Kellie

    Cynthia, I’ve seen Golden Syrup at Bulk Barn…

    • Susan Hill

    I so understand that neither here nor there feeling. I live in North Carolina; it is my home; it is in my bones. But I sometimes long for the other places I have lived, for the things they offered that I can’t get there. And sometimes there isn’t even there anymore. It exists only in my memory.

      • Emily Cunningham

      Oh yes – I have chased many things which turn out to be elusive memories!

    • Kerrie

    If every one managed to find golden syrup another recipe is golden syrup dumplings. A winter delight.
    An added deliciousness is to lick the spoon.
    (I can’t imagine lemon peel reproducing golden syrup, there is no bitter taste)

    • Lauren

    I just made them. 1/2 with chocolate
    I can’t say they are my favourite but I just ate 5 of them….oddly adictive

      • Emily Cunningham

      Don’t leave them on the kitchen counter or the whole batch will just disappear. They have a strange power!

    • Robin

    ANZAC biscuits are the first things I made with my children when they were little. Not just for ANZAC Day but any time. Always delicious and always accompanied by the debate over crisp or chewy. Thanks fir sharing your story.

    • Erica

    Great surprise to read a post on Anzacs! I make them every year- mostly unsuccessfully according to my ungrateful family. This year, was the exception. They were great( says she modestly!) I used the CWA recipe which is pretty well identical to yours- minus the sultanas.
    Love the website and emails.
    Thank you to both David and you!

      • Emily Cunningham

      Great work! The good old CWA always does the classics so well.

    • Andrew Buchanan

    Greetings Emily from a surprisingly cold and wet Brisbane. Not Michelton though, but we did go to the same university and suffered exam anxieties in the s
    same sandstone courtyard – those bloody Jacarandas!!
    I made Anzac biscuits on Anzac Day as always, following the CWA recipe my mother used! I’m glad that your recipe has that odd technique of putting the bicarb into warm water. I haven’t come across that in any other recipe.
    Love your posts (and David’s too)!

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Andrew – small world! Every time I see a Jacaranda I feel like I should be studying :)

    • Robyn

    And after spending all your adult life abroad you go ‘home’, and the yearning is then for the ‘other’ ……
    What fun baking with your gorgeous kitchen crew must be.
    Greetings from Waiheke Is. NZ
    Lest we Forget

    • Chris

    I followed the recipe but had to bake them in a tin, they wouldn’t form balls for cookies, not enough “moisture “ to hold them together. I read through all the comments but nobody else seems to have had this problem. Should I add an egg next time ?

      • Emily Cunningham

      Hi Chris, they can seem like they are’t wet enough but if you give the ball a really good squeeze it should hold to place on the tray. But they are also often baked in trays so as long as you are happy with the taste they that’s not a problem. I have never seen them made with an egg. Try doubling the golden syrup instead. Hope it works out!

        • David
        David Lebovitz

        Also sometimes a little bit of water works, rather than egg. I’d try just a teaspoon and see if that works, and add a little more gradually.

    • annie

    Thank you for posting this on a French site. I am in NZ and have just made a pile of these for Anzac day (25 April) During the years I lived overseas I too got all misty eyed when I read about Anzacs!
    Golden syrup I think is hard to find in the US, it is a product that is sugar one stage more refined than treacle. I have made Anzacs with treacle, it’s fine but they are darker.An important point for those outside Aus and NZ, Never call them cookies, they are biscuits. Thanks again.

    • LoveAndSqualor

    For those in Canada, Roger’s Golden Syrup is similar, is it not? It’s sold in a bottle in the pancake syrup aisle, unless that’s just a West Coast thing. When you mix it with Cool Whip and put it on pancakes, it tastes like caramel.

    Emily — thanks for this post! I’ve never tried Anzac biscuits, but as a Canadian who’s been in the US for 13 years now, I know the exact feeling you’re talking about. For me, it’s nanaimo bars and buttertarts (and hot-smoked salmon) that set it off. I make a big batch of each every Christmas and bring them in to work. I’ll have to try your recipe — maybe I’ll get my sister to mail me a bottle of the Roger’s and I’ll see how it works in the recipe!

      • Emily Cunningham

      I’ve just had a look and it seems like Roger’s is the same so should work perfectly. Fingers crossed!
      My sister in law is from Canada and introduced me to the magic that are butter tarts – so yummy.

    • Dawn

    ANZAC Cookies / South African Crunchies
    I must try these! The ingredients
    match the South African Crunchies I tried on my first trip to SA. I can easily make a pan of them and eat them all over a couple of days. They are my favourite! I am going to put the Anzac Cookies on my bake list. I know already I will not be sharing them :)

    • Nora Eldred

    One of the very first recipes we made in home-ec class in grade 4 (1962/63) in Vancouver, BC, was Anzac Biscuits. They were absolutely delicious and I still remember their crispy edges and chewy texture. I came across my handwritten recipe last year when going through items for my 50th high school reunion. I’m neither a cook nor baker (except by necessity) but I’m now inspired to resurrect that recipe … or try yours!

    • Heather Gordon

    I was born and grew up in Melbourne but have lived in Canada since 1967. I don’t recall ever hearing about Anzac Biscuits. Ever. I feel as if I lived in an alternate universe.
    And I honestly haven’t heard mention of, or thought of, golden syrup in more than 50 years! Blast from the past.
    But the mention of Anzac will always get my attention. My late father was a returned soldier.
    I think I will try making these biscuits but will use maple syrup .

    • Mary

    I have seen Lyle’s Golden Syrup at Cost Plus World Market.

    • Adele

    Cooks Illustrated also has a recipe for Anzac biscuits. They claim theirs are crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside. They reduced the sugar and increased the golden syrup.
    It’s behind a pay wall but here’s the link

    • Catherine

    You can find golden syrup in the US. I have bought mine from Amazon a few times and prefer it over maple syrup, personally.

    • Carole

    No coconut what can I use instead

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Coconut is a prominent flavor to these cookies so there really isn’t a swap out. If you can’t find unsweetened coconut, you can pour boiling water over sweetened coconut and let it sit for about 10 minutes, then drain, squeeze dry, and lightly toast until the moisture is out.

    • angela

    I was excited to try these, especially as I’ve made David’s Cranzac cookies before. But these turned out way to sweet for me. Had to give most of them away. Would personally halve the sugar another time.

    • Leah

    I was excited to see the recipe was from the Mitchelton kindy, as my husband grew up in Arana Hills and has many Mitchy connections (we are also the same age as you – we probably even know people in common knowing how small Brisbane can be!). Anzac biccies are one of my go to kid-approve recipes and I have somehow convinced myself they aren’t too unhealthy due to the oats…

    • Ann

    Carole, as David says, the coconut flavor is rather characteristic of this biscuit. However, I have substituted some of the coconut with wheat germ in the past. If you replaced all the coconut with wheat germ, the biscuit will probably end up tasting more like hobnobs, which aren’t bad either.

    • Ellen

    I first had Anzac biscuits on a flight to Singapore. They were packaged and passed out as a snack to all the passengers. I have never enjoyed prepackaged cookies, but these were addictive! I read the ingredients, and there was something I had never heard of before – waddle seed, which I understand is native to Australia. I have been on a search for wattle seed ever since then, and I found it online recently, but unfortunately, it is prohibitively expensive…

    • Julie

    Leave it out! It’s the golden syrup and oats which are important. I’m Australian and have never used Wattle seed.

    • Janet C

    I bought a bottle of golden syrup at my local grocery store recently but wonder what else to use it for after it is open? For a long time I saw it only in cans so didn’t purchase until I saw it in a bottle. Thanks.

    • Ellen Dow

    One of my favorite uses for golden syrup is a delicious yet simple, quick and easy Cooke recipe on Epicurious called Skibo Castle Ginger. crunch.

    • Janet C

    Thank you! I’ll take a look there.


    I added 1 tsp vanilla to the butter mixture and also rolled the dough into a log and refrigerated it overnight. I sliced the raw cookie dough into thin slices and then also flattened each slice with the bottom of a glass. The cookies came out extra crispy which is the way I prefer them.

    • Julie

    Anne, from an Australian, they aren’t called cookies, but biscuits.

    • Mary

    Anzac biscuits got us through 5 lockdowns in Melbourne. Like in your house, every time someone passed through the kitchen, the pile on the plate got smaller!!


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