I don’t make cheesecake often, but when I do, it’s raw, vegan and straight out of my food processor! In fact most of my dessert recipes these days are completely health-ified and that’s just the way I like ’em. I’m a sweets person, so it’s important for me, especially around the holidays, (read Canadian Thanksgiving till February) to have ‘treats’ that I can substitute in that I know I can feel good about eating because they are low in sugar and high in fiber and nutrients. HOWEVER, these recipes are often time consuming, super expensive, or both- creating a real hinderance when it comes to converting my clients.
Well, not this one my friends! This treasure of a recipe is cheap, easy and absolutely delicious- and will completely fool any unsuspecting SAD (standard american diet) lover. I try to buy a lot of my baking products in bulk, which even further cuts down on cost and ensures a high quality of nutrients and environmental responsibility. I have bought six 4 litre jugs of local maple syrup in the past- but that’s fodder for a different post!
Getting back to these gourmet bars, I promise you’ll swoon. The ‘real deal’ are chock full of dairy, sugar and gluten products- whereas this recipe only contains 2 tablespoons of maple syrup in the whole recipe, not to mention it’s completely dairy and gluten free (if you use the right oatmeal!) PLUS the whole recipe only takes 20 minutes to whip together, including cleaning if you’re quick!
Try them out and see for yourself, you can thank me later 🙂
BOTTOM RICH CHOCOLATE LAYER:
- ⅓ c. oats
- ⅓ c. raw sesame seeds
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
- ¼ t. sea salt
- 18 baking dates (or 9 medjool dates)
- 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp boiling water
TOP CREAMY COOKIE LAYER:
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 2 Tbsp almond milk
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 10 drops liquid stevia (or 2 more tsp of maple syrup)
- ½ c. oats, measured then ground into meal
- ⅛ t. sea salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
FOR THE CHOCOLATE LAYER:
- Combine dates and coconut oil in a cup, pour hot water over to melt oil, allow dates to soften
- Process the sesame seeds and oats until they are a meal consistency.
- Remove the mix, and add in the dates.
- Process the dates until they are paste-like.
- Add back the seed/oat meal, along with the coconut, cocoa, salt, & vanilla-process until well combined.
- Press the mix into a baking dish- I use my loaf pan (9 1/4 x 5 1/4).
- Place in the refrigerator.
FOR THE COOKIE LAYER:
- To melt the coconut oil- I use a mini double boiler method- I pour boiling water into one of my stainless steel measuring cups and put the oil in smaller one then place in the bigger one- making sure it doesn’t overflow!
- Start with a clean processor- process the 1/2 cup of oats until it’s meal. add salt and cinnamon- process a little more. Pour melted coconut oil, milk, maple syrup, vanilla, and stevia (if using) into your processor and whir until well combined.
- Pour the ‘batter’ onto the chocolate layer.
- NOTE: I didn’t bother with a chocolate top layer because it’s extra work that I don’t think is necessary- but if you’re into really tricking people into thinking they’re the ‘real deal’- then go ahead and combine about 4 oz of cacao nibs with a couple teaspoons of coconut oil NS teaspoon or so of hot water in a small pot on low heat to create a chocolate ganache. Spread it on top. Bam!
- Place in the freezer to set- about 15 minutes until they can be cut and served!
- If you freeze them, be sure to allow about 15 minutes for de-thawing. Store in the refrigerator for best taste.
In health & wellness, Ariel Richards, R.H.N.