A vegan version of traditional Scottish Tablet. It’s not as dense as hard candy but not as soft as fudge. This deliciously sweet, melt-in-your-mouth tablet is seriously addictive and makes a lovely homemade gift!
To be perfectly honest, I hadn’t heard of Scottish Tablet before I first visited Scotland 10 years ago and I’m so glad I tried it! I remember first coming across it at a small coffee shop on the outskirts of Edinburgh. I found the name really intriguing, so I couldn't go without giving it a try, and, to my surprise, it was love at first bite. If, like me, you’re a lover of all things sweet, tablet is probably something you’ll enjoy – it’s rich, buttery and melts in your mouth.
What is Scottish Tablet?
Scottish Tablet is a traditional Scottish confection with a truly unique texture, and although the appearance is similar to fudge, the two really can’t be compared. It is believed that it dates back to the early 1700s. A book from this time, The Household Book of Lady Grisell Baillie mentions it, though at this time the recipe was made with just sugar and cream. Today, Scottish Tablet is more commonly made with milk, butter, condensed milk, and a generous amount of sugar. It's boiled to a high temperature, before beating the mixture until thickened, and then setting it in a tray. It’s usually cut into small squares or bars, so it’s perfect for a bite-sized sweet treat or great as a homemade edible gift.
Is Scottish Tablet difficult to make?
I found it rather easy to make, but I must warn you that it can be quite temperamental, and it needs your full attention to make sure it doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pot. Be prepared to devote your full time to the recipe and make sure to follow the exact ingredients and you shouldn’t have any problems.
Things You’ll Need to Make Scottish Tablet
LARGE, heavy pot for the stovetop – and we mean LARGE as the Tablet needs to bubble up. I prefer to use a cast iron pot as they distribute heat more evenly.
Scale for measuring or cups
7 x 11 inch tray – you can use whatever size tray you like, depending on how thick you want your Tablet to be, but this is the size I use most of the time
Vegan Scottish Tablet Ingredients:
Here’s everything you’ll need for this recipe – consider it your shopping list!
Vegan butter – I prefer to use salted vegan batter as it adds an extra depth of flavour to the tablet, but unsalted vegan butter can also be used.
Plant-based milk – my preferred choice of milk is oat milk, but any unsweetened, neutral tasting plant-based milk will do.
Sugar – You’ll need white granulated sugar or white caster sugar for this recipe. Brown sugars or sweeteners are not an option.
Condensed Coconut Milk – I’ve used condensed coconut milk as it’s the most similar to regular condensed milk. I wouldn’t suggest using other vegan condensed milks as they can sometimes be a little grainy and brown in colour.
Vanilla extract – The vanilla extract gives the tablet a lovely flavour. You can used either liquid vanilla extract or powdered vanilla.
This Scottish tablet recipe is the perfect base, so you can experiment by adding additional ingredients such as chopped nuts or whisky, just make sure to stir them in last.
How to make vegan Scottish Tablet
Line a 7" x 11" tray with parchment paper. Place the butter, sugar, and oat milk in a large, heavy pot and heat to melt the butter.
Bring the mixture to a boil and allow to simmer (keep boiling, but turn it down so it doesn't overflow the pot) for 5-7 minutes, stirring regularly.
Pour in the condensed milk. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring regularly so that it doesn’t stick or burn. Keep it simmering until the mixture turns to a lovely golden colour. If you'd like to use a candy thermometer, the setting point for tablet is 120C.
Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract (and any other additional ingredients) and allow it to cool down for a few minutes before beating vigorously until it thickens – this can take anywhere from 5- 10 minutes.
When thickened, pour into the prepared tray. Allow to cool to room temperature then place in the fridge for 1 hour to set.
Cut into small squares and enjoy! Tablet kept in an airtight container and stored at room temperature will last around 10 days, if stored in the fridge, it can keep for a few weeks!
How to store Scottish Tablet
Tablet is over 50% sugar and because sugar is a natural preservative, it means that if it is kept in an airtight container and stored at room temperature, it can last for around 10-14 days. If you keep it in the fridge, however, it can keep for several weeks!
Notes and Tips
Use the exact ingredients and follow the directions as written for the best results.
If you'd like to use a candy thermometer, the setting point for tablet is 120C.
Tablet will keep for over a month in the fridge, if stored in an airtight container. It is mostly sugar, so not much risk of expiring.
Make sure to use a large, heavy pot and a wooden spoon to beat the mixture.