Healthy No-Bake "Twix" Bars

 

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Last September I received the Happy Pear Cookbook to review and having loved the their healthy Caramel Slices and seeing Jill from Properfud raving about their healthy version of Twix bars I had to check them out. Jill was right, these are magnificent. And all they contain is fruit and nuts (and vanilla, and coconut oil). Smug with extra chocolatey caramelly goodness. If this is healthy eating sign me up!

 

Healthy Chocolate-Coated “Caramel” Bars (Makes 20) aka Twix
Recipe from The Happy Pear Cookbook by David & Stephen Flynn
You can buy the book here {affiliate link} –  The Happy Pear: Recipes and stories from the first ten years

Ingredients
For the base
90g pitted dates (They say medjool or regular, I don’t know the difference but when I bought them in Tesco the ones in the fruit aisle were half the price of the ones in the baking aisle)
240g ground almonds
1 pinch of salt
1 teaspooon vanilla extract
For the caramel
180g pitted dates (see above for description)
90g cashew butter (or almond butter, I used cashew butter)
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon coconut oil
For the chocolate coating
300g dark chocolate (they recommend 70-85%, I used 70% and half milk chocolate as my kids don’t like very dark chocolate)

Base:
To make the base put the dates into your food processor and blend until smooth (think smooth peanut butter smooth, spreadable, not lumpy at all smooth). You might need to add water if you’re not using the medjool dates. then add the ground almonds, salt and vanilla to the date paste and whizz it again. The texture will now be like playdoh, or so my 4-year-old assistant thought.Get a baking tray that will fit into your freezer (and make room in the freezer for a tray of treats) and put greaseproof paper on it.

This is the messy bit. You’ve to shape the mixture with your hands, it’s sticky and messy and really hard to get the shape. Press them together and mould them, I used a knife to get a straight edge. It should make 20 bars of 7cm long and 0.5cm high. When you’re all done put it in the freezer and leave them in for 15 minutes while you make the caramel.

Caramel:
Wash all the bits of the food processor (grr). Blend together the dates, cashew butter, water and oil. You might need a little extra water like in the base if you’re not using the fancy dates. (I don’t know if they are any fancier, but they sound it). Blend it til it looks like caramel. You might need to test it to check that it tastes OK too, go easy though!

Now take the bases out of the freezer and spread the caramel on, smoothing it with a knife then put it back in the freezer for 30 minutes. Mine looked messy, but with Laoise up from her nap time was of the essence!

When the 30 minutes is up melt the chocolate in a glass bowl over a pan of boiling water. Then, remove the bars from the freezer and (GET THIS!) ROLL them in the chocolate one by one, then back on the baking tray. This is super messy, there will be chocolate everywhere. It’s worth it.

When they’re all chocolate coated put them back in the freezer for at least an hour before tucking in.

Healthy Twix bars about to go into the freezer

They TASTE like Twix, but it’s hard to get the shape right so they don’t all look like Twix

 

 

Healthy Twix bar

A TV snack, condensation from the fridge

 

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