Vegan Samoa Bars

Let me start this off by saying, I am extremely disappointed in myself…  Sheena has been trying to teach me the importance of photo documenting when I’m cooking and I almost always forget.  That being said, this time I remembered all of the photos EXCEPT THE FINAL ONE!!  Hahaha, you talk about frustrating!  Ah, tis just a typical day in the life of Meggie!  So, lets jump in to this!

Vegan Samoa Bars?  You mean the delicious Girl Scout Cookies, Samoas?  You’re dang right I mean the Girl Scout Cookies!  I found these on a blog that I love, Cooking ala Mel and thought I’d give them a try.  I’ll admit, I didn’t believe it myself when I first heard that you could make these vegan and somewhat healthy.  Let me just say, now I’m a believer.  Just try it.  I promise.  Really.

“Shortbread” Ingredients:

  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Coconut “Caramel” Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups dates, soaked for about 10 minutes in hot water
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened, shredded coconut

Chocolate Base and Drizzle

  • 1 1/2 cups vegan dark chocolate chips or carob chips

Directions:

Line a 8X8 Pyrex dish with foil or parchment paper.  In a food processor, pulse the walnuts and coconut for the shortbread until well combined.  Add the honey, vanilla, and sea salt and pulse until the mixture comes together into a sort of dough.  Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the Pyrex with a rubber spatula and set aside.  IMG_4210

For the coconut “caramel”layer, toast the coconut at 350 for 5-8 minutes being careful not to burn it.  IMG_4225

Once the coconut is finished toasting, set it aside and allow it to cool while you make the “caramel”.  For the caramel, soak the pitted dates in hot water for 10 minutes and then drain.

IMG_4213

Put the dates into a food processor and pulse until they form a paste.  Add in the coconut milk, vanilla, and salt into the food processor and blend until combined.  Add the toasted coconut and pulse only until well combined.  Using a rubber spatula, spread the coconut “caramel” mixture evenly over the “shortbread” crust.

IMG_4216

Cut evenly into bars and place into the freezer to harden a bit while you prepare the chocolate.  IMG_4229

Using a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips or carob chips over simmering water until just melted.

IMG_4232

Remove the bars from the freezer and dip the bottoms of each one into the chocolate to just cover the bottom.  Set them aside on parchment paper to harden.  Once you have dipped all of the bars, transfer the remaining chocolate into a zip-lock bag and make a tiny snip in the corner of the bag.  Drizzle the tops of the bars with the chocolate in a diagonal pattern.  Bars are best eaten straight out of the freezer!  Enjoy!

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