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Pecan Pie Bars

Vegan, gluten-free, AND better-for-you? We can't ask for much more in a dessert, which is why we are so excited about this recipe and we hope you are too!
4 from 4 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 16 bars

Ingredients
  

Crust

  • 1/2 cup (~90 g) pitted dates (soaked in warm water for 10-15 minutes, then drained) ~9 dates
  • 1/4 cup (56 g) refined coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup (56 g) coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup (64 g) oat flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Pecan filling

  • 1 1/2 tbsp (14 g) cornstarch + 3 tbsp (45 ml) nondairy milk
  • 2/3 cup (150 g) refined coconut oil
  • 1 1/4 cup (250 g) coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (250 g) fresh pecan pieces

Instructions
 

Make the crust

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8 pan with parchment paper.
  • In a food processor, add the soaked dates and coconut oil. Puree until a paste is formed.
  • Add in the flours, salt, and vanilla. Mix to form a dough. The dough should be crumbly, however if it feels too dry to become a dough, add in small amounts of water until a dough is formed.
  • Press the dough evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes.

Make the filling:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and milk.
  • In a saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the coconut oil.
  • Add the coconut sugar and maple syrup.
  • Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a gentle boil, constantly stirring.
  • Whisk in the cornstarch mixture.
  • Allow the caramel to boil for a minute or so, stirring constantly, then remove from heat.
  • Stir in the salt and vanilla.
  • Reserve 1/4 cup of the caramel sauce and set aside.
  • To the remaining caramel, stir in the pecans. Pour the pecan mixture over the crust.
  • Bake for another 20 minutes.
  • Allow to cool completely (this will take a few hours - you may want to refrigerate to ensure they cut nicely). Cut into 9 large squares or 16 smaller squares. Heat up the remaining caramel and serve with a drizzle of the caramel.