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VEGAN FUDGE BARS. SO DIVINE. AND SO HEALTHY. I promise! Here is the unwarranted list of: they’re gluten-free, refined sugar free, vegan, raw, oil free, and… am I missing anything? Just know that these bars contain all the flavors and textures of a succulent dessert while also providing many health benefits. The bars are simple to make, requiring 5 ingredients only!
First, oats help with gut digestion and can help lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
Second, dates can help lower blood pressure, increase bone mass, and strengthen your hair.
Lastly, walnuts help with brain function and damaged tissues, and can also help lower blood pressure and cholesterol.
Dates have been gaining popularity in the vegan world because they act as an excellent natural sweetener and binder. It is a more expensive product and I wish they would go on sale more often, but this particular ingredient is worth the investment as it’s quite versatile. Many recipe developers ask that you use medjool dates, one of the pricier date types. I have experienced with both and have found that all date types work, and I use deglet noor dates in bulk which come at a price of $2.57/lb. Not terrible. Medjool dates are creamier, but I can get an indistinguishable outcome using deglet noor dates with a bit of hot water.
These fudge bars are tri-layered, starting with a crust, a fudge filling, and then a chocolate glaze which acts as the cherry on top. The majority of the steps are performed in a food processor or blender so it’s a “throw it all in” sort of recipe that can be done in 10-15 minutes.
Vegan Fudge Bars (No-Bake)
yield: one mini loaf pan
For base layer:
- 1/2 c. oat flour
- 8 dates soaked in hot water (Any date type will work; does not have to be medjool)
- 1-2 tbsp. hot date water (Add gradually. Add more or less if needed.)
For fudge layer:
- 1/2 c. walnuts
- 3 tbsp. cocoa powder
- 9-12 dates soaked in hot water (depending on how fudgey you want it)
- 2 tbsp. hot date water
- 1 tbsp chia seeds (optional)
For chocolate coating:
- 1/4 c dark chocolate chips
For garnish (optional)
- 1 tsp coconut flakes
- 1 tsp chopped nuts
- Microwave a bowl of water until hot (temperature is not important), just make sure it’s hot enough to soften dates and place all the dates in to soak for at least 10 min,
- Line a mini loaf pan with parchment paper.
- In a food processor, pulse the dates, oats, and hot water together until a thick paste forms. Mixture should not be too sticky. Press down the mixture into the pan.
- In a food processor, pulse the walnuts, dates, cocoa powder, chia seeds, and hot date water until mixture comes together. Mixture should be semi-sticky. Press mixture into the pan on top of the oat mixture.
- In a small bowl, melt the chocolate chips and pour on top of the date mixture. Smooth over and sprinkle some chopped nuts and coconut flakes on top. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes and then transfer to the fridge for an additional 10 minutes.
- Take out of the fridge, remove from the pan and slice into squares or thin, candy bar-like slices.
What can I say? I’m kind of in a date frenzy right now because these bars are addicting! I’m eating them for breakfast, as a snack, at work… I’m thinking of tripling the recipe and sharing it with friends so people can see how deceitful healthy desserts can be.
The bars can last in the fridge up to 2 weeks for best taste or can be frozen. After tasting these, I have been wondering, where have these been all my life? I’d take these over halloween candy any day! I am hoping to experiment with other unique flavors of vegan bars. If you have any ideas or would like to see a particular flavor, leave a comment below!