Thursday, December 20, 2012

Paleo Magic Cookie Bars (AKA 7 layer bars)

The Paleo Christmas cookie kitchen is in full swing around my house this week! I'm on a mission to make paleo versions of some of our Facebook Fans' favorite Christmas cookies. One of the challenges extended to me was to make a paleo 7 layer bar (AKA Magic Cookie Bar). This one turned out to be one of the easier ones to replicate as the cookie doesn't have much of a "cookie" quality to it. The bottom layer is the closest thing to a cookie and is mostly a crust for the whole bar; each of the other layers are just ingredients of choice with a milky binder pored over the whole thing. I believe my version turned out wonderfully like the original!

Paleo Magic Cookie/7 Layer Bars
2 C almond or coconut milk (full fat)
1/4 C maple syrup
1 t vanilla
1 C almond meal or flour
1/2 C coconut oil
1 C dark chocolate chips
1 cup shredded coconut -divided
1/2 cup chopped nuts (I used pecans, but walnuts or other nuts would work as well)

Preheat the oven to 375°F

Simmer milk with maple syrup and vanilla over medium heat until the volume is reduced by half.

Mix almond meal with coconut oil to form crust. Pat the crust mixture down evenly in a 9 x 9 pan. Make parchment paper "handles" to pull out the bars when they are finished. I didn't do this and wish I had!

Layer 3/4 of the chocolate chips, 1/2 of the coconut and all the nuts.

Slowly pour milk mixture over the top.

Layer extra coconut over the top and sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips.

Bake 30 minutes, cool on stovetop then refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Cut into small bites. Makes 24 to 36 bites. And they are so rich a bite is really all you need! :)

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