Almond, Chocolate, Coconut, Caramel Bars

These bars are like a glorified almond joy candy bar but sweetened with dates, and honey – so they are healthy, right?! They are full of nuts, coconut, and chocolate – they are sweet and filling, making little bite-sized bars the perfect amount. Before getting too deep into this recipe, you should know this: the caramel isn’t going to firm up so storing these in the fridge or freezer is imperative, also extra napkins.

almond joy bars close up
stacked chocolate bars

INGREDIENTS:
chocolate layer
12 ounces dark chocolate
4 heaping tablespoons creamy peanut butter
almond/coconut layer
2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut
1 cup roasted almonds
1 cup pitted dates
1/4 cup melted butter
caramel layer
1 14oz can coconut milk
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon coconut oil or coconut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup roasted almonds, chopped

DIRECTIONS:
1. Line a 9×13 inch baking dish with parchment paper
2. Put 6 oz of chocolate and 2 tablespoons of peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Pour into the prepared baking dish and spread into an even layer. Place in the freezer for about 15 minutes to harden.
3. Meanwhile, using a food processor, pulse coconut and almonds until ground. Add dates and butter until mixture thickens and comes together.
4. When the chocolate has hardened, press the coconut mixture into an even layer on top. Return to the freezer.
5. In a saucepan, combine the coconut milk, sugar, and honey. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 10 minutes, until slightly thickened. Remove from heat, and let cool for 10 minutes, then stir in coconut oil, vanilla, and chopped almonds. Pour the caramel mixture over the top of the coconut layer. Return to the freezer and chill for at least an hour.
6. Put 6 oz of chocolate and 2 tablespoons of peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Pour onto the caramel layer, spreading to all edges. Place in refrigerator until well chilled, at least an hour.
7. Prior to serving, cut the bars into squares, and store any extra in the refrigerator.

cut chocolate coconut bars
hand holding bar

Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest

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