While you certainly see a fair range of indulgent, not so good for you, treats and recipes cross your screen on this blog, I have found that anyone truly can cook scrumptious food. As Paula Deen infers adding a pat of butter to any recipe will surely make it instantly more delicious. And, while out Circus Animal Cookie Truffles have gotten decent traffic on Pinterest, I shudder every time I see or create a recipe that is merely mashing 2 or 3 already delicious ingredients together. Do you drizzle hot fudge on ice cream and call it a recipe? Yes, even I have my limits.
Every Thursday I bake something to share here on the blog, and bring it into the bowling alley for our mixed adult bowling league. Our teams are comprised of men and women, young and old, from all walks of life. As delicious as my sweet treats are, not everyone can enjoy them. We have several diabetics I try to accommodate with recipe variations, and now a team that is taking on a month long Paleo challenge. Couple this with our close friend who is celebrating a year as a Vegan and you have the perfect storm of recipe challenges. So I set out to create a No Sugar Added Paleo Vegan Friendly dessert recipe.
At it's core Paleo individuals do not consume processed or artificial foods and attempt to eat ingredients that would closely mimic that of a caveman's. This means a diet rich in protein and nutrient dense core ingredients like grass few beef, wild caught seafood and vegetables. Most Paleo followers will avoid sugar, gluten, and generally anything with 'artificial' in the ingredients list. While it can be fairly complex, depending on the person, consider it close to an Organic, low sugar, gluten free diet that tends to lean towards raw or minimally handled ingredients.
These Vegan Paleo Mock Snickers Bars contain no added sweetener (aside from the natural Honee plant based sugars) and a dash of Agave syrup may be added to any layer if you desire a slightly sweeter end result. My bowling mates rarely ever question what I've made each week and these bites/bars disappeared quickly! Several people were floored to hear just how 'good for you' this dessert was, and a few even asked for the recipe. So, if you're in the fence, I'd say it's definitely a recipe worth trying. Not only are these the perfect treat (a little goes a long way to satisfy) but they can be frozen for enjoyment later as well! Do you have, or know anyone with, any special dietary restrictions you struggle to cook for?
What Daughter Says: This year I'm going to challenge myself in all aspects of my life, not because I need to, but because I want to!
Vegan Paleo Mock Snickers Bars
*** Click here for printable Mock Snickers Bars recipe.Ingredients:
1/4 C Coconut Oil, Melted
1/2 C Raw Cacao Powder
2 TBS Honee (Plant Based Honey Substitute) Or Maple Syrup
1 TSP Maca Powder (Supplement, May Be Omitted)
2 TBS Raw Cacao Butter
1 TBS Agave Syrup (Optional)
1/2 C Smooth, Raw, Cashew Butter
1/4 C Coconut Butter (Not Oil)
2 TBS Honee (Plant Based Honey Substitute) or Maple Syrup
1/2 TSP Pure Vanilla Extract
1 C Pitted Medjool Dates (You will likely have to pit them yourself)
1/4 C Smooth Roasted Cashew Butter
2 TBS Coconut Oil, Melted
2 TBS Lukewarm Water
Dash of Pink Himilayan Salt
1/4 C Roasted Salted Cashew Nuts
1. Place Cacao Butter and Coconut Oil in double boiler and allow to melt thoroughly, whisking occasionaly. When melted whisk in Honee/Maple Syrup, Cacao Powder, and Maca. Pour mixture into a lined 9 x 9 baking dish. Allow to set in fridge for 45 MINS- 1 HOUR.
2. Place all raw cashew butter and coconut butter in a double boiler and allow to melt completely. When melted whisk in Honee/Maple Syrup and Vanilla Extract. Remove from double boiler and let sit in cold water bath for 5 minutes, continue to stir often. Ensure that the chocolate layer has set entirely and pour Nougat layer over chocolate layer. Return to fridge immediately for 1-2 hours or 45 minutes in the freezer.
3. Blend pitted Medjool Dates, Salt, and Cashew Butter to a smooth paste in the food processor. This will likely take some patience and some scraping. Add melted coconut oil and blend to combine. Add lukewarm water to help loosen ingredients and ease blending. Your mixture should be a thick spreadable paste and NOT a pourable consistency.
4. Once nougat layer has set in fridge or freezer spread Date caramel layer atop. Sprinkle with crumbled cashews and chill for 2-3 hours before serving. Cut into bars or bites an serve cold or room temperature. These may be frozen in an air tight bag for up to 3 months and thawed.