My grandfather was the kindest man I’ve ever met. I looked up to him and wanted to be just like him. I remember my grandpa eating dates when I was just a kid. and even though I was convinced they look like a bug, I ate them because he did. Over the years my love for dates has continued to grow. Especially when I realized how nutritious they are and how delicious they taste in desserts. So, I’ve been on a bit of a date craze lately (I guess things could be worse). I made this date caramel sauce which will now be on everything eat, and whipped up a batch of these vegan snickers bars too while I was at it. Oh, and of course these bars were born. And let me just tell you, they are SO good. No, seriously… you’ve got to try these chocolate espresso bars!
Enough about my date addiction and on to more important things, like these bars!
Ingredients for chocolate oatmeal espresso bars
- oat flour– you can make it yourself!
- coconut sugar– or sub brown sugar
- ground espresso– get the good stuff! I used Birch Coffee and wow, simply amazing!
- melted coconut oil
- dark chocolate bar– in my opinion the darker the better, but you pick your poison.
- sea salt flakes– optional…but, is it really?
- baking soda
- coconut milk– or sub for other non-dairy milk
These bars are naturally sweetened and gluten-free, but no one will ever guess. Rich, gooey and sweet these chocolate espresso bars will hands down hit the spot!
How to make homemade oat flour
Guys! Oat flour is so easy to make and making it at home will save you lots of $$. Simply blend up some gluten-free old fashion oats into a fine powder and you are golden. The finer the powder the better!
Building the ultimate bars
The base and the topping of these delcious bars are made from wholesome oats, oat flour, cinnamon and coconut sugar. First, press the mix into the pan firmly to create the crust.
Next, add the gooey date caramel middle brimming with rich espresso flavor. Slather this thick luscious sauce over your crust and then scatter with your favorite chocolate chunks.
Then top the layer with the oat crumble mixture again and press it into place. Sprinkle with big flakes of sea salt and pop these beauties in the oven!
Bake for 30-35 minutes untill the top is golden brown.Print
Gooey, rich, and heavenly chocolate espresso bars. Naturally sweetened, and gluten-free but, you would never guess because they’re so delicious!
- 1 1/2 cups gluten-free oat flour
- 2/3 cup coconut sugar
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup coconut oil melted
- 1 cup of dark chocolate
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
For Filling AKA Caramel Sauce:
- 1 1/2 cups pitted dates
- 2 1/3 cups hot water
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 tsp. ground espresso
- 7 Tbsp. coconut cream
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 Tbsp. nut butter, sunflower butter, or tahini
- Maldon sea salt for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Bring water to a boil and pour 2 cups over a bowl of dates to soften them. Set aside for 10 minutes.
- Pour the remaining 1/3 cup water into a small bowl and add the ground espresso. Cover with a towel and set aside for 5 minutes so it can steep.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line an 8×8 pan with parchment paper.
- Combine oat flour, coconut sugar, baking soda, salt, melted coconut oil, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl.
- Measure out 3/4 cup of the mixture and set aside.
- Press the remaining dough firmly into the pan to make the base.
- Drain the water from the dates. Blend the dates, vanilla, espresso mix, salt, and coconut cream at high speed until smooth and creamy.
- Spread a layer of date caramel on top of the base.
- Sprinkle dark chocolate over the caramel.
- Cover with the remaining crumble mixture and sprinkle sea salt flakes.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until outside becomes golden brown and inside is soft and gooey.
- Allow to cool, remove from pan, and slice into 9 bars.
- Serving Size: 1 Bar
- Calories: 260
- Sugar: 22
- Fat: 12
- Carbohydrates: 40
- Protein: 4.2
Keywords: espresso, chocolate, date, caramel