I get that the idea of a vegan, gluten-free, fruit-based caramel cookie sounds gross (and seriously high maintenance). But I can’t even tell you how good these are. They put real Twix bars to shame (and straight into the trash).
They’re a little labor intensive so do not share them with trick-or-treaters. You won’t want to anyway.
Vegan Gluten-Free Twix Bars
Years ago I made a vegan variation of Martha Stewart’s chocolate-caramel cookie bars. Those were pretty damn fantastic but what they lack is that extra layer of chocolate. Never skip an extra layer of chocolate. The caramel was also quite the process. SO… for this updated version, I started with Martha’s cookie crust, topped it with Detoxinista’s date caramel and slathered that all in a blanket of chocolate.
Vegan Gluten-Free Shortbread Crust (variation of this recipe)
- 9 tablespoons Earth Balance
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1.5 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
- pinch of salt
Vegan Date Caramel (from this recipe)
- 2 cups medjool dates
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup vegan chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons almond milk
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- Prepare cookie crust. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat Earth Balance and sugar together until combined. Add flour and salt and mix until crumbly dough forms.
- Form dough into a ball with hands and then pat it out into a rectangle on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until golden brown on the edges.
- While cookie is baking, prep caramel filling. Combine dates, almond milk, salt, vanilla and coconut oil in a blender and blend on high until smooth and creamy. (Note: mine never got that “smooth.” It’s fine.)
- After cookie is baked, let cool completely before spreading with caramel filling
- Prep chocolate coating. Combine chocolate chips, almond milk and coconut oil in a microwave-save bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute, stopping to stir at 30 seconds.
- Spread chocolate over the caramel-topped cookie. Place in freezer to set.
- Once chocolate is set, cut cookies into bars.
This is quite a process but it’s worth it. Just trust me.
The cookie alone is kind of worth it.
I got way too frustrated with my blender to get the caramel to a smooth and creamy consistency, but I assure you it doesn’t even matter. If you doubt the sweetness of a sugar-less caramel, you’ve never eaten a date. Those suckers are SWEET.
Idea: Adding shredded coconut to the date caramel dip would make a killer German chocolate cake frosting.
Go make these. You’ll never buy another Twix again.