These No-Bake Chocolate Almond Butter Bars are a dream! Made from only 7 ingredients, these healthy and creamy bars are Vegan, Paleo, & Refined Sugar-Free.
For the Chocolate Base Layer:
- 2/3 cup (65 g) blanched almond flour
- 3 tablespoons cacao powder
- Pinch of salt
- 3 tablespoons grade A maple syrup
For the Almond Butter Filling:
- 1 cup (260 g) natural unsalted almond butter
- 1/4 cup (6o ml) grade A maple syrup, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup (48 g) refined coconut oil,* melted and cooled
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt (omit if your nut butter is salted)
For the Chocolate Top:
- Prep: Line a 8″x3″ loaf pan with parchment paper. Make sure there is extra paper hanging over two sides of the pan, to make the bars easier to remove (see blog post photos for reference).
- Base Layer: Whisk the almond flour, cacao powder, and a pinch of salt together in a medium bowl. Pour in the maple syrup, then begin mixing with a spatula. Mix until all of the flour has absorbed the maple syrup and the dough sticks together when pinched; you may need to switch to your hands at some point. Transfer the base layer to the lined pan and use a damp spatula or fingertips to evenly press the dough into the base; place in the freezer for 10 minutes while you prepare the filling.
- Almond Butter Layer: Whisk the almond butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt together in a separate medium bowl. Add the melted coconut oil once combined and mix until completely incorporated – the filling will begin to stick to the sides of the bowl, but still be runny. Pour this mixture into the lined pan over the base layer, using a spatula to smooth out the top. Return the pan to the freezer and freeze for at least 10 minutes.
- Chocolate Layer: add the dark chocolate and coconut oil (if using) to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 60 seconds; remove from the oven and use a clean and dry spatula to stir the chocolate and oil together until all pieces of chocolate have completely melted. Pour the melted chocolate mixture over the almond butter mixture. You can use a spatula to spread it around but it should still be quite runny, so you can also gently shake the pan back and forth to help it spread evenly. Sprinkle Maldon salt over the melted chocolate, then place in the freezer for 30 minutes, or until the bars have hardened.
- Slice: Run a sharp knife along the un-lined edges of the pan, then grab the two “flaps” of parchment paper to remove the bars and transfer to a cutting board. Use a sharp, clean knife to slice the bars into 18 even pieces, or as desired. To prevent the chocolate layer from cracking I have found it easiest to use a knife to “score” the top chocolate layer first; once you have made shallow grooves in the chocolate it is easier to cut all the way through the bar.
- Serve: as desired; these bars will soften over time at room temperature and are best served slightly chilled. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for a fudgy texture, or in the freezer for a firmer bar.
- Coconut Oil: I recommend using refined coconut oil because it is flavorless – if you use virgin or raw coconut oil these bars will have a coconut flavor to them. To keep this recipe oil-free you can substitute the coconut oil with coconut butter. The bars still taste great this way, but they have a distinct coconut flavor and the almond butter filling is a little harder to spread evenly.
- Chocolate: I recommend using a chocolate bar over chocolate chips in this recipe because chocolate chips are made with wax and do not melt as smoothly. I used a strong 88% dark chocolate, but if you prefer your bars to be sweeter you can use a bar with a lower cacao percentage.
- Other Substitutions: I have not tested any substitutions for almond flour. Maple syrup can be replaced with any other liquid sweetener of choice. Almond butter can also be replaced for any nut or seed butter of choice – the thicker the butter, the thicker the bars will be