Next up on our holiday dessert list are these vegan, gluten free, raw, delicious Caramel Pecan Bars. 🙂
If you’ve never made real caramel before, a typical recipe calls for white sugar, butter and heavy cream. Explains why I love caramel so much… but like hi, can you get any worse?
So you can probably believe my amazement when I tried making raw caramel from dates, and it actually looked and tasted like real caramel. Although dates still have a lot of sugar, it’s natural and non-processed. Plus, eliminating the butter and heavy cream makes this vegan caramel way skinnier than the original.
So make a batch, pour it over this gluten free crust, and you’ve got yourself a guilt-free holiday treat!
- 2 cups of mixed nuts (I used almonds and pecans)
- 3 tablespoons of almond meal
- 2 tablespoons of peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons of coconut oil (melted)
- 1/4 cup of maple syrup (or honey if not vegan)
- dash of sea salt
- 1 cup of dates (pitted and soaked in hot water for 15 minutes)
- 1/4 cup of almond milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla
- dash of sea salt
- *1/2 cup of chopped pecans for topping
- Add all the crust ingredients into a high speed blender, and blend until a "dough" forms. It does not need to be perfect, just enough that it is broken down and sticks together.
- Place the dough into a small glass dish (8x8 or so) and press down to form an even layer.
- Place in the freezer.
- Drain the dates and place in a high speed blender with the 1/4 cup of almond milk, vanilla and sea salt.
- Blend until smooth.
- If you feel as though the caramel sauce is too thick, add an extra splash of almond milk and blend.
- Pour the caramel over the crust and spread until even.
- Sprinkle sea salt over the caramel.
- Top with chopped pecans,
- Place back in the freezer until mostly solid (the caramel will stay sticky).
- Cut into squares and store in the fridge.