Gluten Free Maple Pecan Date Caramel Bars
The month of May is Celiac Awareness Month, and to support all of our friends that follow a gluten free diet, we're bringing you the MOST delicious gluten free caramel bar recipe featuring our Maple Pecan Granola.
What is celiac, and why is there an entire month dedicated to its awareness? Celiac is a genetic autoimmune illness that is triggered by eating a protein called gluten. When someone with celiac disease consumes gluten, their body responds by essentially attacking itself causing damage to the small intestine. Because of this, persons with celiac follow a gluten free diet. We dedicate an entire month celiac awareness in hopes for future treatments and a cure so that people suffering from celiac can some day eat without the fear of accidentally consuming gluten.
Beyond celiac disease, many other autoimmune illnesses are able to be controlled by following a gluten free diet. Today's recipe was created by Rachel Straining of The No Gluten Girl, who began following a gluten free diet after being diagnosed with Crohn's disease in 2014. She shares her experiences battling Crohn's, all while creating delicious gluten free recipes to help others that have turned to special diets like a gluten free diet to manage their food intolerances. You can follow Rachel along her journey and get more of her delicious gluten free recipes on her blog, The No Gluten Girl.
Now save this recipe and grab yourself a bag of Maple Pecan Granola to bake this at home when the next caramel chocolate craving strikes!
Maple Pecan Date Caramel Bar Recipe
For the crust:
1 ½ cups of Within/Without Maple Pecan Granola
4 tbsp coconut oil, melted
For the caramel:
1 cup of dates (approx. 20 medium)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp almond butter
5-8 tbsp coconut milk
⅛ tsp salt
For the chocolate drizzle:
¼ cup refined sugar-free chocolate chips or refined sugar-free chocolate bar of your choosing
1 tsp coconut oil
- For the crust, pulse the granola gently in your food processor, adding in the melted coconut oil one tbsp at a time.
- Press crust mixture into a parchment lined, 6x6 baking dish, spreading evenly. Bake for approx. 15 mins at 350 or until golden brown.
- Let the crust cool and place in the freezer until firm.
- For the caramel, In your (cleaned) food processor, blend/pulse the dates, vanilla, almond butter, and salt, adding in the coconut milk one tbsp at a time until it reaches a smooth, caramel consistency.
- Layer your caramel over your crust using a spatula, spreading evenly, and place back into the freezer until firm.
- For the chocolate drizzle, mix the refined sugar-free chocolate of your choice with coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30 second increments, stirring each time until smooth.
- Drizzle your chocolate over the bars, top with granola, and freeze until firm.
- Once firm, remove the bars from the pan, keeping it on the parchment paper. Cut into bars, store in the freezer as needed, and enjoy!