Oh my gersh I’m so happy with the way this recipe came together.
I’ve surrounded myself with oodles and oodles of vegan, paleo desserts in preparation for my Christmas dessert cookbook that’s set to launch November 5.
And, while I would have loved to put this baby in the book, date squares just didn’t scream Christmas to me. So, out it went and here it is, for you!
As I mentioned in this post, it’s incredibly important to soak your nuts before you use them in recipes like this. I highly, highly, highly (have I said highly?) recommend soaking and drying out the brazil nuts and macadamia nuts before you make this recipe. It’s SO easy to do and your digestive system will thank me later. Promise.
If you don’t have a dehydrator, no worries. You can dry your nuts in the oven on the lowest setting it will go (around 180F) or, dry them out in the sun. I haven’t tried the sun technique and I am not too sure how to do it. If anyone has tried this, or knows where to find some great instructions, please share in the comments!
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- 1 cup brazil nuts, soaked and dried
- ⅓ cup macadamia nuts, soaked and dried
- 1¼ cups shredded coconut
- 8 medjool dates, pitted
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cup medjool dates, pitted and chopped roughly
- 1 cup dried mission figs, hulled and chopped roughly
- Zest from a medium orange
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup water
- Add brazil nuts and macadamia nuts to the bowl of your food processor. Blend to small pieces.
- Add remaining crust ingredients and pulse until everything is well mixed and the dough begins to form into a ball.
- Press ⅔ of the crust into an 8X8-inch cake pan. Set remaining dough aside.
- Add all ingredients but water to a large bowl, mix until fully incorporated.
- Transfer half of the date mix to your food processor. Add water and blend until smooth.
- Transfer back to the bowl with chopped fruits and mix thoroughly.
- Drop date mixture onto prepared crust, smoothing out with the back of a spoon. Then, crumble remaining crust on top.
- Cover and transfer to the freezer to chill overnight. This will help the bars form nicely and avoiding breaking when you're cutting.
- When ready to serve, cut into 16 bars.
- Keeps for 10 days in the fridge or 4 months in the freezer.
Medjool dates - I made this recipe with medjool dates because they are softer and more pliable than honey dates. If you want to use honey dates for this recipe, you may have to soak them beforehand.
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Here’s a picture to give you an example of the size you should be going for for the ground nuts. It doesn’t have to be perfect, this recipe is very forgiving!
Once the crust is complete, firmly press it into your prepared pan. There’s quite a bit of natural oils so you shouldn’t have to worry about the dessert sticking to the pan. If you’re concerned with this, feel free to drape parchment paper over the sides of the pan.
Once the crust is in, add the date mixture.
Crumble the remaining crust over top and chill these babies for at least 12 hours.
I can’t wait to hear how you like this dessert! Date squares were one of my favorites before I went gluten-free (5 years ago) and I haven’t had one since.
These guys? Are the real deal… and SO much better for our bodies than the original date square that’s loaded with butter, brown sugar and flour. Who needs it?!