It’s been a long haul without a dessert around here.
No gluten free fudge brownies, peanut butter power balls, bliss bites, date caramel or any of the sorts.
You might even mistake me for someone who doesn’t enjoy a sweet treat.
Truth be told, it is quite the opposite. As an ex-sugar addict, candy hoarder and icecream queen, I am pretty choosy about what sort of sweets take residence in my home.
Even healthy cookies take a certain amount of willpower to eat in moderation, so my mantra for myself and my clients is if you don’t want it in your body, don’t bring it into your house.
There are a few exceptions to this rule, and those exceptions are nestled tightly in the freezer in the form of vegan turtle cookies (so good).
These bars are a good reminder that there is room for nourishing treats in your diet that are balanced with fiber, protein, and made with natural sweeteners.
A deliciously rustic take on the classic, the crust and topping is made with crumbly bits of ground almonds, oats and gluten free flour. With first bite you will be in love, but unlike most desserts they will actually fill your belly and satisfy you. Fat from the coconut oil, fiber and protein from the nuts and oats help you feel satisfied and keep you going through the afternoon.
No more reaching for your third dessert and feeling sluggish after- me and these date bars get you.
- 1.5 heaping cup dates
- 2/3 cup water
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 + 1/4 cup all purpose gluten free flour/sprouted grain flour
- 1/2 cup almonds
- 3/4 cup large flake oats
- 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
- 3/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 t baking soda
- pinch salt
- 1/2-1 t cinnamon
- Prepare an 8 by 8 inch baking dish with parchment paper and preheat your oven to 350 F.
- Start by combining dates, water and orange juice in a small sauce pan on medium high. Let bubble away for 5-6 minutes until soft and heavily soaked in the liquid. Let cool slightly.
- In a food processor, combine flour, sugar, almonds, oats, coconut oil, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Pulse for 30-40 seconds until mixture is grainy and crumby, not finely ground. Be careful not to over mix.
- Scoop roughly 2/3 of crumbly mixture onto the bottom of your prepared pan. Press down firmly to create a crust.
- Pour dates and their liquid into food processor and blend for about 40-60 seconds until smooth.
- Scoop date mixture onto crust and smooth out evenly using a spatula or large spoon.
- With remaining 1/3 oat topping, use hands to finely crumble evenly onto dates.
- Bake in oven for 30-40 minutes, top should be golden brown.
- You'll want to dig right in, but allow to cool slightly before you cut into the bars or they will be crumbly.
- Bars store deliciously in the fridge for up to a week.