A series of mesoporous NiO/NiCo2O4/Co3O4 composites has been synthesized by nanocasting using SBA-15 silica as a hard template. The evaporation method was used as the impregnation step. Nickel and cobalt nitrates in different Ni(ii): Co(ii) molar ratios were dissolved in ethanol and used as precursors. The composites show variable degrees of order, from randomly organized nanorods to highly ordered hexagonally-packed nanowires as the Ni(ii): Co(ii) molar ratio decreases. The materials exhibit moderately large surface areas in the 60-80 m2 g-1 range. Their magnetic properties, saturation magnetization (MS) and coercivity (HC), can be easily tuned given the ferrimagnetic (NiCo2O4) and antiferromagnetic (NiO and Co3O4) character of the constituents. Moreover, the NiCo2O4 rich materials are magnetic at room temperature and consequently can be easily manipulated by small magnets. Owing to their appealing combination of properties, the nanocomposites are expected to be attractive for myriad applications. © 2010 The Royal Society of Chemistry.