Simplest Ever Raw Fig Rolls

by - August 07, 2014

  Believe it or not, as a Fig lover, I have never tried a Fig Roll. Or a Fig Newton. It wasn't because I didn't like the concept of it, but I just never though to try one. I mean, it sounds great doesn't it? A sweet and sticky fig heart cocooned in biscuit-cakey blanket. 

  But my Mother adores fig Newtons. She loves 'em. She likes them more than actual figs (that, I do not understand). So I decided to make her some raw-vegan versions.
  So recipe-less and without having any knowledge of what an actual fig newton tasted like, I set out to create the perfect 80/10/10 friendly fig roll. After reading through the ingredients list of a fig newton, I BEGAN!
  I handed one of these babies to my mother and she proclaimed they tasted identical to a fig newton, the only thing slightly different was that my fig rolls were less crumbly. But I'll take it. Less crumb, less mess anyhoo!

  If you DID want a more crumbly fig roll, I would stick it in the dehydrator or the oven set on the lowest possible temperature for slightly longer than I have included here. Just remember to keep an eye out for them so that they don't become TOO dry and TOO crumbly. That won't be pretty.

  I call this the 'simplest ever' because it has like, five main ingredients. And for such a complex tasting little bugger, it is hard to believe. I watched the How it's Made video (read: my all time FAVOURITE videos to watch because machines look so human-like marking marbles and all that jazz) on how fig rolls were made. There were probably five ingredients in the starter for the dough itself. And none of mine contain the words 'high fructose' or 'partially hydrogenated'.
  No thank you.

  This recipe calls for raw buckwheat groats. Which have pretty much become my favourite thing to work with when it comes to raw vegan desserts. It has a really distinct taste and I find it really worked in this recipe. I also used rolled oats in the recipe which I understand is not fully raw. However, if you are keeping this strictly raw, you can easily swap the oats out for an equal amount of buckwheat. I just prefer the flavour of the cookies with the oats.

Simplest Ever Raw Fig Rolls
Makes: 12 cookies

3/4 cup dried figs (I used about 6 large dried figs)
Hot water
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp freshly squeezed orange juice, optional

3/4 cup of rolled oats
1/4 cup of buckwheat groats
1 cup of medjool dates, about 6 medium ones. If you do not have medjool you can soak the dryer varieties in water before using them
1 tbsp agave syrup
1 tsp cinnamon powder

Soak the figs in a large bowl of hot water for about an hour. Remove them and squeeze them gently to get out and water that has kind of accumulated in the fig from the teeny hole at the bottom. Place the figs into a blender with the vanilla and OJ, if using. Blend on high until it is even, then set it aside.

Next, grind the oats and buckwheat into a flour like consistency, add the pitted dates and agave and cinnamon and blend until you get a thick dough.

Roll out the dough onto a surface and divide it evenly into two balls. Cover one ball with cling film, then use a rolling in to roll it into a rectangle, getting the dough to a thickness of about 1/4 of an inch. Remove the cling film and place half the fig filling on half of the rectangle and fold over to seal it (you can look at the pictures above!). Cut it into fig rolls and place on a baking sheet. Repeat this with the other dough ball.

There are now three things you can do. You can pop them into your mouth now, eat them raw. Or you can dehydrate them overnight. If you do not have a dehydrator, place it in your oven on the lowest setting, mine was at 40C for about an hour, to dry it up. Do keep an eye on it though to make sure it is the dryness you want it.


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  1. Hi! I was wondering if there is anything I can substitute buckwheat groats with? I love figs and I am dying to try this recipe. Thanks so much :)

    1. Hey Verona! You can use more oats or oatbran in place of the buckwheat! If are not strictly trying to keep this low fat, using almonds in place of the buckwheat will also be lovely. The buckwheat gives it a slightly nutty, whole wheat flavour, which makes it taste like fig newtons. but I am sure using oats will still be as delicious :)

  2. Hey! This is excellent - I bought some figs the other day with the express intention of trying to find a raw fig rolls (as they're called in the UK) recipe and I found you!

    I have two questions - can you advise on alternatives for agave? Could I use manuka honey or coconut sugar? If so, can you advise on quantities? Also, could I use fresh figs just as well or are dried ones better for their consistency?

    Thank you :-)

    1. Hello there :) I would use any other liquid sweetener you have on hand as a sub for the agave, such a maple syrup/raw honey/brown rice syrup/date nectar! I would use an equal amount. I do not recommend using coconut sugar as it may not become sticky enough to hold together, unless you use really sticky dates! I would also suggest making these with dried figs as they have less water and form the paste you need. If you really want to use fresh figs, I would probably add about two tbsp of milled chia to form a paste, but I can't guarantee whether it will produce the correct thickness. I hope you try these because I love them to death! x

  3. wow! Thank you. I work in a vegan rstsurant in the South of Italy. I love try your recipie I have many dried figs and almons;so ill try the almond version. thank you so much! :-) is there a way to follow you on Facebook or by email? grazie :-) vic

    1. Thank you! Yes, if you look at the sidebar on the top right, there is a headline saying 'subscribe to yumminess' where you can subscribe by email. There is also a facebook icon under my logo where you can like my facebook page!

  4. I just made them, and dang, they were so delicious, though I think I have problems with the sweetness of the figs (I love it though). Thanks so much for the recipe Sasha! Never buying fig newtons (even though i've never bought any haha). Love your recipes!

  5. Made these and they're great (I had to add a lot more dates than you did. though). I will be making them again!

  6. Hi, just wondering, would toasted buckwheat work instead of buckwheat groats? :)

    1. Yes, kasha (toasted buckwheat) will work ok as well, may have a slightly different flavour but I have used it before :)