These No Bake Chocolate Walnut Bars are sweetened with dates and pair perfectly with a glass of milk for a healthy dessert!
I debated a name for these all afternoon:
Raw Walnut Fudge
Kit's Chocolate Coconut "Copycat" Bars
5 Ingredient Raw Chocolate Brownies
Big Squares of Heavenly Deliciousness...
...what's in a name though, right?
The important thing here is the ingredient list. Short and simple: dates, walnuts, unsweetened chocolate, coconut oil and salt.
And maybe even more important? NO BAKE.
Yes, yes, yes to more chocolate in your life. And less time cooking in the kitchen. Right?
I originally developed these bars a few years ago at a time when I was avoiding too much added sugar in my diet. That principle is still important to me, but...
(Sidenote: I've since learned to embrace the beauty of a little pre-workout sugar. If your trips to the gym fall flat, take note of what you're eating ahead of time. A little sweetness might just be the difference between having energy to burn and feeling burned out.)
... in the time since I first developed these, I've come to realize that the real nutrition benefit isn't just what ISN'T in here, but what IS -- walnuts.
We've known for years that walnuts fall into a category of foods that have a protective effect against heart disease. And while walnuts are a rich source of "good fats," emerging research suggests at least part of this benefit may actually start a bit farther down the line from your heart -- in your gut.
At a recent conference I attended (my attendance was partially funded by support from California Walnuts) I learned about new research that showed when animals were fed a diet rich in walnuts, they experienced a significant positive change in the bacterial make-up of their gut microbiome.
You've heard me applaud the changes that grain-based fiber-rich foods can have on the GI system. But it's increasingly clear that numerous plant-based foods, including walnuts, have a beneficial effect, as well.
So whether you want to eat these as a flourless brownie for a chocolate fix OR tell yourself you need one all in the name of good gut health, I'm with you. Big Squares of Heavenly Deliciousness are always a good idea.
These No Bake Chocolate Walnut Bars are sweetened w/ dates & pair perfectly w/ a glass of milk for a healthy dessert Tweet this
No Bake Chocolate Walnut Bars
- 10 to 12 pitted dates or pitted Medjool dates
- (about 120 grams) 2 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
- 3/4 cup raw walnuts
- (about 90 grams) 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- Pinch of salt
- 1 to 2 tablespoons Swerve or sweetener of your choice (if desired)
- Pulse dates and walnuts in food processor until very finely chopped.
- Melt chocolate in microwave on HIGH in 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval. Add coconut oil to melted chocolate and stir until smooth; spoon over date mixture in food processor. Add salt and pulse until mixture loosely forms a ball.
- Spoon mixture into an 8-inch loaf pan lined with parchment. Refrigerate until firm (about 2 hours). Cut into bars. Store in refrigerator.