Chocolate Coconut Almond Bars

Chocolate Coconut Almond Bars

I just polished off the last of the Halloween candy. Please don’t judge me.

It was tucked into one of the shelves in the freezer door. Having a mini candy bar is such a good dessert. With a little willpower, you can just have one and your post-dinner craving is satisfied.

I love the variety packs they make just for Halloween. We had less than a quarter of a bag left. 

It was mostly Almond Joys. My husband isn’t a coconut fan, so it was up to me. 

I used to say I didn’t like coconut either, and then I gave it another chance. Wow! Do I love coconut now!

Everything I used to say I didn’t care for, whether it was the texture or taste, is what has me so hooked.

I had never actually tried an Almond Joy.  After the first bite, I knew I would have no problem finishing them myself. It was even better that I didn’t have to share!

Chocolate Coconut Almond Bars

When they were gone, I still wanted more coconut, chocolate and almonds. 

I wasn’t going to buy Almond Joy bars. Instead I made a from-scratch, lightened-up version. 

I started by pulsing roughly chopped almonds and dates, almond butter, vanilla extract and salt in the food processor until it became close to a paste that would hold together. 

Then I melted chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave.

To assemble, I pressed part of the nut-date mixture into the bottom of a loaf pan. I poured over half the chocolate and scattered on toasted unsweetened coconut flakes.

To make sure the chocolate layer stayed intact, I chilled the pan in the fridge. Once the chocolate had hardened, I pressed in the remaining nut-date mixture. 

I spread more chocolate on top and sprinkled on coconut flakes, almonds and flaky sea salt.

The pan went into the fridge for its final chill. 

Just like their frozen Almond Joy inspiration, I liked these chocolate coconut almond bars best served straight from the fridge.

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Chocolate Coconut Almond Bars

Chocolate Coconut Almond Bars
  • Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8 1x
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Ingredients

1 tablespoon coconut oil plus more for brushing pan
1-3/4 cups almonds, roughly chopped
2 cups roughly chopped dates
1/4 cup almond butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
1/4 cup toasted unsweetened coconut flakes
1 teaspoon flaky sea salt

Instructions

Grease a 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan with coconut oil and line with parchment paper leaving a 2-inch over hang on the long sides.

Chop 1-1/2 cups almonds, dates, almond butter, vanilla extract and salt in a food processor until the mixture becomes almost like a chunky paste that holds together. On a parchment-lined sheet pan, pat it into an 8-inch square. Chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 20 minutes.

In a small bowl, melt the chocolate and 1 tablespoon coconut oil in the microwave in 30-second blasts, stirring after each time.

Slice the chilled square of the nut-date mixture in half and place in the bottom of the prepared loaf pan. Spread half the chocolate on top and sprinkle with half the coconut flakes. Chill in the refrigerator until the chocolate starts to set, about 15 minutes.

Place the other half of the nut-date mixture in the pan and spread the top with the rest of the chocolate. Sprinkle with the remaining almonds, coconut flakes and flaky sea salt.

Chill the in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours. When ready to serve, let sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. Lift the bar out of the pan by the parchment paper and then slice.

Notes

Adapted from Martha Stewart Living March 2018

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