These treats come from my little black book of tricks. My little black book is where my favorite recipes go to live. Usually I'm not one to follow recipes, and I rarely make something more than once. Come on people, there are only three meals a day to capitalize on! No way am I going to waste my cooking efforts on the same-same. Unless it's worth it. And the recipes in the little black book? They're worth it.
Long before I ruled out grains and processed sugars, Dark Chocolate Chip and Cherry Cookie Bars were one of my favorite desserts to make (and eat!) (even for breakfast!).
Giving up grains didn't stop me from loving the recipes in the little black book. Instead I would reminisce over them. The gooey chocolate. The flavor of caramelized butter. The flavor of caramel. Vanilla. Sugar. Marshmallows. And that's how it would go. My mind was off in sugar world and there was no bringing me back. On occasion, I'd even actually make one of those recipes and give the end product away just for the sake of making it. (Is that self torture or what?!). That had to come to an end. Enter: Mission Paleoize. Goal: make all of my favorite treats but with out the refined sugars, nutritient-empty flours, or other food chemistry ingredients.
Would you believe me if I said the paleo version of these puppies are even better than the originals? They're gooey. They're rich. They're begging for a scoop of homemade coconut milk ice cream.
They're the perfect birthday treat. Happy Birthday, Sylvie!
Have you tried to convert any of your favorite recipes to meet new dietary restrictions? Was it a hit or a bust?
This recipe is part of the August Naturally Sweet Recipe Roundup. For more naturally sweet recipes, visit Living Free.
Dark Chocolate Cherry Cookie Bars
1/2 cup almond butter (I used blanched almonds to make my butter, which results in a "blond" colored cookie)
2 tablespoon melted coconut oil, organic grass-fed butter, or ghee
3 tablespoon honey
2 cups almond flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or chopped up dark chocolate bar
1/2 cup dried cherries
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Line a 9x9 glass baking dish with parchment paper.
3. In a small bowl, combine eggs, almond butter, melted honey, melted butter (ensure the honey and the butter are melted but no longer boiling hot--that will cook your eggs before they're cookies). Stir until smooth. (I'm lazy. I do this step in my blender.)
4. In a separate bowl, combine the almond flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk them together, and then add the wet ingredients. Use a spatula to stir everything until combined. A sticky dough will form.
5. Fold in the chocolate chips and cherries. Spread the dough out in the 9x9 pan.
6. Bake for 25 minutes, until golden on top. The bars will still be fairly gooey. Allow the bars to cool 10 minutes before slicing and serving. They will set some as they cool, but expect soft cookie bar.
This version was made with regular almond butter (versus blanched):