I miss baking with my Baked Sunday Morning friends. I really enjoyed baking from the "Baked" Cookbooks. My life has taken a different path lately...I am on the road to health and wellness and making baked goods every other Sunday is no longer something I should do. I still do traditional baking occasionally when I have a special event of holiday to bake for. Now my baking is vegan, refined sugar free and gluten free. When I saw that Nanaimo bars were next on the list to be made....I remembered seeing a vegan Nanaimo bar recipe that I saved and wanted to try...so no better time than now!
There is no dairy, no refined sugar and no gluten in these bars. I wouldn't call them low calorie, but I would call them healthy and DELICIOUS!
I used dates, walnuts, granola, cacao powder and coconut oil for the bottom layer. Cashew cream is the middle layer and cacao powder, coconut oil and maple syrup made up the top layer. You freeze these babies...so hey, that is close enough to ice cream for me!
Your traditional Nanaimo bar is delicious...I have made my fair share of them and if you would like the recipe you can find it here
I am posting the recipe I used to make these delicious and healthy bars below.
Raw Nanaimo Bars
adapted from Catching Seeds
2 cups dates (soaked in hot water to soften if hard)
2 cups walnuts
1 cup granola (no oat granola...mine had seeds and coconut in it)
2 Tbsp of raw cacao powder
Pinch salt (I omitted this...the granola tasted salty enough to me)
2 cups of raw cashews (soaked 4-6 hours to soften) then drain
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp of vanilla paste
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup raw cacao powder
2 Tbsp maple syrup
Prepare a 8x8 baking dish by lining it with parchment paper you want a sling to lift out the bars.
Add all of the crust ingredients into a food processor and pulse until it is broken down into small pieces and begins to stick together. You might need to scrape it down once or twice to make sure you get it all. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan and set aside.
Add the filling ingredients into your clean food processor and process until it is silky smooth. I had to add a little bit of coconut milk to get the desired consistency that I wanted only because I don't think I let the cashews soak long enough. Pour over crust ingredients and freeze for 45-60 minutes until set.
Once the filling is set, put all your top layer ingredients in a small sauce pan and heat until just combined. Pour over the bars and spread out the mixture...it should harden up right away because the bars are cold and frozen...if not, just stick in the freezer. Cut into 16 bars and enjoy! Keep leftovers frozen.