A while ago I posted about date paste. It is wonderful to sweeten desserts with it or just add the paste to your smoothies, but there is so much more you can do with dates. One of my favourite ways to use this date paste is to create a base for deliciously soft and chewy no-bake breakfast bars. They are a fantastic breakfast on their own when you are in a rush since they are packed with fibre, healthy fats and protein.
Making them is almost as easy as eating them. Since they are no-bake bars, they require very little prep time or attention. All they need is a little bit of time to set and firm up. You can do that by either leaving them in the fridge overnight or go the express route and place them in the freezer.
But before you get to that you have to make them. If you have ready-made date paste, great! If not then it’s not much of a problem either. Since you will be using this one instantly and in these bars, it doesn’t matter if it is perfectly smooth since you will use it combined with nuts. I just blend some dates up with good old plain water and mix it with the coconut oil and peanut butter in a sauce pan. That way I make sure it blends perfectly before adding it to the dry ingredients.
You can mix the ingredients by hand or go the quick and easy route of using a hand mixer with dough hook attachments. That way it all is perfectly mixed within a few seconds without breaking the dried fruit. The mixture will be very sticky and this point but that will go away once the bars have set in the fridge. Place it all into a square baking tin that is lined with baking paper. Make sure to press the mass down as hard as you can. If it is too loose, there will be air trapped in the mixture, and that will make your bars crumble once you cut them. These no-bake breakfast bars will last easily for a week when stored in the fridge. Alternatively, you can keep them in the freezer, which is something I prefer.
- 300g (2 cups tightly packed) pitted dates*
- 125ml (1/2 cup) water*
- 50g (1/4 cup) coconut oil
- 125g (1/2 cup) peanut butter
- 175g (2 cups) rolled oats
- 50g (1/2 cup) ground almonds
- 35g (1/2 cup) shredded coconut
- 35g (1/4 cup) roughly chopped almonds
- 20g (1/8 cup) sunflower seeds
- 20g (1/8 cup) pumpkin seeds
- 15g (1/8 cup) golden raisins
- 15g (1/8 cup) golden linseed
- 1tsp vanilla essence or 2 scraped vanilla beans
- 1 tsp cardamom
- ⅛tsp salt
- optional topping
- 12 whole almonds
- 12 blanched whole almonds
- 1tbsp golden raisins
- 1tbsp pumpkin seeds
- Process the dates and water in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add the date paste with the coconut oil and peanut butter to a saucepan and heat gently to melt the oil and the peanut butter. Stir until evenly combined.
- Add the paste to the dry ingredients and add the vanilla, salt and cardamom. Mix everything by hand or use a hand mixer with dough hook attachments.
- Once it is evenly combined press the mixture into a square form of 20*20cm (8*8inch) that is lined with baking paper. Make sure to press the mass down as hard as you can. If it is too loose, there will be air trapped in the mixture, and that will make your bars crumble once you cut them. I lay a piece of baking paper on top of it because it makes it easier to even the surface out.
- If you choose to make them look a little bit fancier, then scatter the topping over the evened out mixture and press the nuts and seeds into the surface. Cover with baking paper and store in the fridge for a few hours, best overnight.
** Calories are calculated with the optional topping.