Total Time
Prep 20 mins
Cook 15 mins

I spent a summer in the UK a few years back and practically lived off McVities Digestive Biscuits. Cheap and easy to find in the UK, fairly expensive and hard to find in the US, so I decided to make them myself. I was not able to find a recipe that tasted enough like them, so I made my own recipe. They have been really popular with other McVitie lovers. Hope you like them, too!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flours, bran, baking powder, baking soda, and cream of tartar with a pastry blender. Mix in sugar with the pastry blender. Mix in fats with the pastry blender. The mix at this point should be crumbly and uniform. Mix the vanilla in the half-n-half and add to the mix. Mix with pastry blender until it is uniform and resembles really soft playdoh.
  3. You can at this point refrigerate for 20 minutes to make the dough easier to handle, but it is not necessary. Be sure to roll out dough between two pieces of waxed paper! Roll to approximately 1/8" thickness. Cut into rounds with cookie cutter about 2 1/2 inches in diameter (I used the ring off one of my canning jars).
  4. Transfer to cookie sheets or baking stone and prick with a fork. Bake 15 to 18 minutes (adjust the baking time up to dry them out more if the biscuits are too soft and fluffy), or until golden. Let cool on wire rack.
  5. Optional: spread the backs of the cooled biscuits with melted semi-sweet chocolate (as in chips - almost everyone has these for chocolate chip cookies). Set the biscuits chocolate side up on the rack until chocolate hardens.
  6. Store in an airtight tin -if storage is even necessary! They will go fast.
Most Helpful

WOW, these are truly awesome and you are my hero! :) I spent a year living in Ireland when I was in school and fell in love with McVities Digestives. However being from Germany, I cannot get them easily back home. Ive been wanting to duplicate them, but never found the perfect recipe until now. Yours truly is it! The biscuits came out nearly PERFECT! My only mistake was to roll out the dough too thick, so that my digestives ended up a bit on the poofy side. Next time Ill fix that, though. Also I think adding a tiny bit of salt to the dough would make them even better.
As I didnt have it on hand, I left out the shortening and I also used milk instead of half and half.
THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH for sharing this recipe with us, SerenaWeber!

Lalaloula July 03, 2011

Thank goodness for someone who has read the McVities packet.<br/>McVities Digestives are nothing like Graham Cookies !!<br/>This recipe is wonderful. I added 1/2 Teaspoon of salt and a also found them a bit too sweet<br/>The dough is very 'gloopy' and difficult to manage.<br/>But the taste is wonderful.<br/>Congratulations.

tworg July 19, 2013

My husband was born and raised in Rhyl, Wales UK -- We have spent quite a bit of money on McVities at Cost Plus World Market over the years. :) I made a batch of Bara Brith (delicious fruit tea bread, Welsh) this morning and thought, "Wonder if I can find a good digestives recipe..." My resident Welshman just declared this to be "top shelf"! I appreciated the advice to add salt -- we will lower the amount to 1/4 tsp next time, but otherwise this is a wonderful, authentic recipe! Oh, one more thing... I did this by hand as the recipe called for. I would not recommend a mixer or food processor. I think that a delicate hand, and not over-mixing provided the delicate crumb and crispiness that we all adore in a McVities digestive.

Andy D. October 12, 2013