Thursday, November 21, 2013

Grain-Free Magic Cookie Bars

I shared my take on She Cooks, He Cleans' magic cookie bars last April; it was a treat the kids loved and I've made a couple of times since.

I came up with today's take on the layered bar after a friend asked me for a low-maintenance but healthy cookie recipe. She's not going to seek out arrowroot powder or palm sugar, and doesn't know a ton about nutrition. I wanted to come up with a grain and sugar-free treat that *anyone* could make and enjoy.

Grain-Free Magic Cookie Bars

2 cups coconut or unsweetened almond milk
1/3 cup granular or liquid sweetener of choice (such as raw honey)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbs. coconut oil or butter, melted
2 large egg whites
1 cup almond meal or other nuts, ground until fine in a food processor
1 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter chips (use another layer of Enjoy Life chips if you want to avoid the peanut butter)
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped raw walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Put milk, sweetener and vanilla in a small sauce pot. Heat over low heat, stirring occasionally. You don’t want to allow the mixture to come to a boil but rather to simmer and thicken. It will take about 15-20 minutes for it to reduce.

Beat the egg whites in a small mixing bowl and mix in almond meal and melted butter. Line a 9 x 9 pan with parchment paper (it will help you remove the bars after baking).

Press almond meal mixture into the pan, making it as even as possible and pushing it into the corners.

Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the top of the crust mixture. Repeat with shredded coconut, peanut butter chips and walnuts.

Drizzle reduced milk mixture over the top. Sprinkle with a little more shredded coconut.

Bake for 30 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars. I find these keep their shape best in the fridge or freezer.

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