Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

I am near-sighted.  I started having trouble seeing in fifth grade.  Most people would say this isn’t a big deal, and it’s not in the scheme of things.  But I didn’t want to wear glasses; they weren’t for me.  So for two years, I didn’t wear glasses to school.  When I was at home I wore them in increasing amounts until I became comfortable with them, but I didn’t wear them to school.  It wasn’t easy, but I managed to swing it.  After those two years, I got tired of having to go sit in front of the chalkboard to copy down notes or read the day’s assignments, so I started wearing them to school.  I’d take them off at lunch or when I didn’t need to see, but I got over it and wore them.

However, to this day, I still don’t wear my glasses in public.  Crazy, I know, but I don’t like how I look in glasses.  When I picture myself, it never involves glasses.  When I’m shopping or out to eat, I keep them in my purse for emergencies.  When I go see a play, I often put them on after the lights go down.  So if you see me at the mall and wave and I don’t wave back, it’s only because I can’t see you.

Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

I can kind of see and make do quite well.  I also have prescription sunglasses I sometimes leave on when I’m grocery shopping or the like.  It’s not ‘cause I think I’m cool.  I know I’m not cool.

I have tried contact lenses before and it didn’t work out.  The discomfort and thought of touching my eye were simply too much for me to handle.  I’ve also considered Lasik, but that sounds pretty freakin’ scary.  So for now I make do with sunglasses and squinting.  Really, it’s served me pretty well so far.

Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

It’s not hard to see why these Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars are delicious.  You’ll never know they are vegan with a firm, crunchy oat and coconut topping and crust, surrounding sweet blackberries.  Even though summer is over 🙁, you can probably still find them in the stores.  I also think frozen, thawed, and drained blackberries would probably work.  The filling might be a little juicer, but I think that would be a good addition.  Make these bars and see how good they are for yourself!

 Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

Vegan Blackberry Coconut Bars

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Yield: 9 bars


½ cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 cup old fashioned oats

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ cup shredded unsweetened coconut

¾ cup virgin coconut oil, solid

3 ½ - 4 cups blackberries

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment, leaving overhang for easy removal later.

In a medium bowl, stir together ½ cup sugar, flour, baking powder, and coconut until combined. Add coconut oil and stir until it is distributed evenly and a crumbly mixture forms. Press half of it into the pan.

In a medium bowl, stir together blackberries with remaining tablespoon sugar and lemon juice. Pour over the dough in the pan. Top with the remaining dough. Bake for 50-60 minutes, rotating halfway through, until the top is golden brown. Be sure dough is set and fully cooked on top. Cool bars completely in pan before slicing and serving. Bars may be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 4 days, or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature for about an hour or in a 350 degrees F oven for about 15 minutes.


Recipe adapted from Yummy Mummy Kitchen

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  1. I started wearing glasses in the 3rd grade, and so had to wear them – I couldn’t even the top line on the eye chart! I had cataract surgery a few years ago, and one of the nifty things about that is the lens they implant usually partially corrects your vision (I need reading glasses, but that’s it). Although after all those years of wearing glasses, I look weird to myself without them! Anyway, lovely coconut bars – such a nice recipe. Thanks so much.

  2. gosh I had to wear an eye patch for 3 years as a kid, but it paid off, I don’t have to wear glasses all the time anymore, just for reading.

  3. I wear contacts – luckily, they don’t bother me! These bars sound amazing 🙂

  4. I’m like John, I can’t read the top line on the chart without my glasses, have had glasses since I was a kid. I got contacts for the first time last year, and for me it was weird to see my face without them. Especially to be able to see my face without the mirror touching my nose.

  5. Mhmm these look fantastic! I love the ingredient list and how you made a vegan dessert look SO delicious!

  6. I’ve been wearing contacts since I was nine because I hated my glasses so much…but now I mostly wear my glasses to work because the contacts dry my eyes out. I just don’t care lol.

    These bars are serious beautiful! I am kind of drooling everywhere over them.

  7. I’m near-sighted too! And I NEVER wear my glasses because of the same reasons you pointed out. I don’t think I look good in them at all. I’m supposed to wear them to drive and I always bring them to shows or movies so I can see 🙂 Then they come right off again.
    What delicious looking bars! You did a great job with them!

  8. Debbie Eccard says:

    First, I think you are cool! Second, these look wonderful and I love blackberries!!!

  9. I started wearing glasses about the same time you did and for many years did not have to wear them except to see the blackboard or a movie. Then I started to drive and had to wear them then…you know, to see stuff like stop signs, etc. I got over wearing them in public and am now glad I do. They sort of disguise the bags under my eyes from exhaustion. 🙂

  10. My eyes are getting worse and worse as I grow older. And I have one word for you, if you don’t wear glasses.
    WRINKLES! Yep, around the eyes and I know you don’t want them. But these are gorgeous. Just like you-with or without glasses!

  11. Staring at these blackberry coconut bars is not helping! They look yummy! Anyway, I can’t imagine wearing contacts. They look like they hurt… but at least you get to change your eye color. LOL

  12. Lol…I used to be like with glass. Then I got contacts. But they make so many cute glasses so I have a pair of those for weekends. I considered Lasik too but I’m too scared too!
    I’ve never cooked with coconut oil before but these look delicious. I love oat bars, especially this time of year. Yummy!

    • I like the idea of baking with coconut oil because it’s so healthy, but often find it doesn’t turn out perfectly in recipes. I will for sure keep trying it though and think it worked pretty well in these.

  13. Baking with coconut oil is so fun—Same textural results as butter and so much more wholesome. These bars look amazing, and the blackberry makes me miss the summer.
    Wow I wish I could survive without my glasses or contacts, but my prescription is so bad that I honestly can’t function without one or the other. Hoping to get Lasik once I stop growing once and for all!

  14. Just mouthwatering…looks delicious!

  15. These bars look fantastic Laura! I’ve never baked with coconut oil before, but I have used it for sautéing things. I had Lasik about 12 years ago and it was like a miracle to be able to open my eyes every morning and see without stumbling to the bathroom to put my contacts in. But now I am starting to need reading glasses 🙁

  16. Laura, love your stories! You have such a talent for making a simple subject into something that captivates the reader. I think you would actually look pretty cute with the glasses. 🙂 And I’ve seen these blackberry coconut bars on Facebook earlier this week – they look wonderful!

  17. Do you think frozen blackberries would work? These look great!

    • Hi Sara! I do think frozen blackberries would work. Just thaw and drain them and make the recipe as stated. I hope you enjoy these 🙂

  18. I just finished making these and was ready to pop them in the oven when I realized that you left out the oats in the instructions. I assume they should be mixed with the flour so I sprinkled some on top afterwards. Please adjust your instructions to include the oats. Thanks!

  19. They were delicious!!!!!!!!!

  20. Dorothy says:

    I picked a lot of blackberries last weekend and this might be the first recipe I make with them! Did anyone try these without lemon juice? It’s the only thing I don’t have on hand and I’m not a fan of citrus.

    • I’m not sure how it will work or taste, but I think you could successfully use water instead of the lemon juice. It’s not a large quantity and should blend right in with the berries. Hope this helps, Dorothy!


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