No-Bake Almond Date Bars

A couple of months ago my daughter offered me one of these date bars she had just made (she found the recipe here), and since that moment, I kid you not, my refrigerator has not been without a container of them.  As soon as we get down to one or two left, The Husband starts getting nervous and anxious and biting his nails and I have to assure him that I really am about to make the next batch.

I’m eating one right now while I’m typing this, just to get me into the most optimal state to explain their deliciousness.  Because boy howdy, are these ever good.  Like really really good and super easy to make.

There are only 5 ingredients and you will do no baking.  You will need a food processor, however, and a knife to chop a few dates, but that's about as complicated as it gets.

Five ingredients and none of them is sugar.  And I promise you will not miss it.  There is a small amount of coconut oil in the recipe, but other than that, we’re talking almonds, oats and dates.  It just doesn’t get much better than that, folks.

But let’s talk about dates for a moment.  For this recipe you really must use Medjool dates.  I have tried it with regular pitted dates and believe me, it’s just not the same.  This is just one of those instances where size matters…

And flavor.  Medjool dates are just so much more date-y tasting and basically luscious and if you want your date bars to be luscious, you will have to hunt down some Medjools.  I have found them at both Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, but most large-scale stores carry them these days.

So basically we’re just going to process almonds, salt, coconut oil and dates together to create the top and bottom layers of the cookie bars, then puree dates and water together for the filling.  And then assemble thusly…

Line your baking dish with parchment paper...

Divide the ground almond mixture in half and press half of it into the bottom of your pan..

Spread the date puree over the top of the ground almonds...

Top that with the rest of the ground almond mixture...

And refrigerate.  I would recommend a couple of hours minimum in the fridge, but one hour will do if you’re in a panic.

There just aren’t many cookie bars in this life that make you feel good about eating two or three (or six), but here’s one that you can eat with impunity.  Or a good cup of coffee.  Here’s the recipe…

 NO-BAKE ALMOND DATE BARS

Click here for a printable recipe

Recipe from OhSheGlows

Be sure to use Medjool dates in this recipe.  Regular dates do not work as well.  And to make these gluten-free, just use gluten free oats.

Crust:
1.5 cups whole raw almonds
1.5 cups regular oats (old fashioned)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
10 Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil

Date filling:

25 Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped (~2.5 cups)
1/2 cup water

Directions:

1. Line a square pan (I used 8in x 8 in) with two pieces of parchment paper going opposite ways. In a food processor, process the almond, salt, and oats until a fine crumble forms. Now add in the dates and process until crumbly again. Melt the coconut oil and add to the mixture and process until sticky. You can add a tiny bit more oil if the dough is too dry.  Remove from processor, set aside 1/2 of the mixture for later, and press the rest of the mixture very firmly and evenly into the pan.

2. Grab your pitted and roughly chopped dates and water and process in the food processor until a paste forms. You will have to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl often. You can add a tiny bit more water if needed, but you want the paste quite thick. Scoop out the date mixture onto the crust and gently spread with the back of a wet spatula until even.

3. Sprinkle on the reserved half of the mixture you set aside and gently press down with fingers. Refrigerate in the fridge until firm for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. Cut into squares and serve. Store in the fridge or freezer.

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