These no bake chocolate coconut pumpkin bars are a paleo treat made with pumpkin, dates, cocoa and coconut. Delicious and guilt-free!
Yesterday, around 4:45pm, single lady-dom for the next 6 months (on weekdays) commenced.
And while Ginger (who has been staring longingly out the window for the past hour as I type this) and I will definitely miss Ulysses during the week, I can’t say there aren’t some things that excite me about this sudden long-distance relationship.
1. Toilets will remain in the state that I left them in. As in, seat down and no “splattering”.
2. Sink drain food particles will be emptied before they turn into gross slimy who knows what.
3. A comfy, brand new down comforter in a bed all to myself (I’m not a snuggler while sleeping, there’s a line down the middle of the bed that distinctly separates the two sides. Cross it and be prepared to be pushed/kicked/elbowed back.)
4. The potential of only 1 grocery store trip a week now that banana, egg and milk consumption should fall to normal levels.
5. Treats like these no-bake pumpkin coconut bars lasting an entire week.
It’s not that I don’t like sharing (although, really…who does?) the stuff I make with Ulysses, it’s more that I know he couldn’t care less that these are a mix of a bunch of healthy (read: more expensive) ingredients, that they’re paleo or that they shouldn’t be scarfed down in 2 bites.
If he were around during the week, 8 or 9pm would roll around, he’d be making himself some tea and start opening pantry doors, fridge doors and freezer doors to find something to eat for dessert.
He’d come to these and likely eat one, standing up in the middle of the kitchen and be done before I could even tell him what they were.
I’ll draw the process out to at least 15 bites to make the whole dessert experience last as long as possible, he’ll demolish it in .5 seconds with absolutely no care to what he just ate.
A Twinkie or some other store bought hfcs laden gem would garner the same respect (as in, none) as these whole food, expensive, put together layer by layer with love coconut pumpkin bars do to him.
I recently came across these vegan bounty bars and know the same would apply to them!
So for now, I’m enjoying the perks of single status.
At least until garbage day on Thursday when I have to drag those damn cans up our ridiculously long, steep driveway myself.
More recipes like these chocolate coconut pumpkin bars to enjoy this fall:
No Bake Chocolate Coconut Pumpkin Bars
- 10 medjool dates pitted and soaked for 15-30 minutes in water
- 1 cup almonds
- 11/2 tablespoon dark unsweetened cocoa powder
- 11/2 teaspoon cinnamon divided
- 1/4 cup coconut butter softened until spreadable
- 1 banana
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 tablespoons honey
- unsweetened coconut flakes for garnish optional
- Combine dates, almonds, cocoa powder and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a food processor. Process until a ball starts to form and “dough” becomes sticky.
- Transfer to a 9×13 baking pan (a bread loaf pan) and spread/flatten out across the bottom of the entire pan.
- Spread the softened coconut butter as evenly as possible on top of the date/nut mixture.
- Add the banana, pumpkin, honey and remaining cinnamon to the food processor and process until smooth and fully combined.
- Pour mixture on top of the coconut butter, spreading evenly across the entire surface.
- Sprinkle coconut flakes on top and freeze until set. About 30 minutes.
- Cut into 8 squares once frozen.
- Keep bars stored in the freezer. They can be eaten directly from the freezer or thawed for a couple of minutes for a softer pumpkin top layer.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.