I made healthy candy bars for you.
You’re not sold on that.
I made incredibly tasty and complex, irresistible healthy candy bars for you.
Now you’re on board. Good!
When I was in high school, I was pretty much the pickiest eater ever. My stress levels were high and my stomach always hurt. It wasn’t my finest hour.
So most days for “lunch” which I devoured in class because of the strange schedule at my school, I ate a granola bar and a candy bar. This was in the pre-chocolate allergy days and Twix was one of my favorites. Three Musketeers. Payday (which I can thankfully still eat). Snickers. Kit Kat. Milky Way. Caaaaaaannnnnndddddyy.
I do enjoy a good healthy treat these days. That’s not to say I don’t still love and sometimes splurge on junk food, but on a day to day basis it’s nice to have a treat to feel good about eating.
Homemade Paleo Twix Bars are exactly that. They are made with some pretty healthy ingredients that also taste ah-mazing. It starts with a crumbly shortbread that should be the base of every shortbread bar from here to eternity.
Then there’s the cashew butter caramel. I mean it’s not quite caramel, but it’s smooth and creamy and has only a vaguely nutty flavor. There are totally hints of caramel in it. I used cashew instead of almond butter because it’s creamier, but get crazy experimenting with nut butters.
My topping is carob, yours will be chocolate, either way, it’s like crazy delicious, adding just the right snap for a texture trio that you’ll reach for again and again.
Another thing I found with this recipe and a lot of Paleo recipes is that I like a hint of really high quality sea salt. Salt used to be one of my least favorite foods, and I still eat it sparingly, but it enhances the subtle flavors of vanilla and maple and rounds out the flavor profile in a way that perhaps replaces some of the sugar and butter in traditional baking.
I might just have to grab a candy bar for lunch today. Who’s with me???Print
- 2/3 cup coconut flour
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1/3 cup coconut oil, softened, but not melted
- Seeds from ½ of a vanilla bean
- 2/3 cup creamy, salted cashew butter
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
- ¼ cup carob or cocoa powder
- Flaky or pink sea salt for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Oil an 8 in baking pan.
- Make the crust. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, syrup, oil, and vanilla bean seeds until a dough comes together. Press into the prepared pan and bake for about 10 minutes until golden brown, particularly around the edges.
- Once the crust is baked and cooled, make the filling. In a medium microwave safe bowl, stir together cashew butter, syrup, and oil. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until fully melted and combined. Stir in the vanilla and pour over the cooled crust. Allow to set for a couple hours at room temperature or an hour in the refrigerator.
- When the filling is set, make the topping. Stir together the oil and powder until fully combined. Pour over the filling and smooth into an even layer. Sprinkle with salt and allow to set until firm.
- Slice and serve! I cut them into different shapes, sticks, squares, and triangles, so feel free to have fun with it. Bars may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature about an hour.
Additional cooling time is necessary
Recipe adapted from Bakerita
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes