Friends, I am in need of a vacation.
A tropical, drink-a-cocktail-from-a-coconut-on-a-beach kind of vacation.
But alas, a sticky park bench overlooking NYC’s finest – the Hudson River -will have to do.
For tonight’s recipe, I decided to take a culinary vacation to the tropics.
In the form of these AMAZING Tropical Breakfast Bars!
Flavors of pineapple, coconut, macadamia nuts and lime are the stars of the show in these bars!
It’s the closest I’ll get to a Hawaiian beach anytime soon, but hey – I’m okay with that!
And not only are they gluten free, vegan, and Specific Carb Diet friendly…BUT — they are packed with nutrition!
You’ve got fiber and healthy fats, protein and lots of vitamins.
Plus – they just taste dang delicious.
Larabars WISH they could be this decadant!
Here’s What You Need: (Makes 12 bars)
*Note: some of the ingredients are divided
14 dates + 2 dates — PITTED
1 cup dried pineapple (unsweetened)
1 cup + 1/4 cup dried coconut chips (unsweetened) (not the flaked coconut used for baking…this is actual dried coconut chips. This is the brand I used)
1 cup raw macadamia nuts + 1/2 cup raw macadamia nuts
1/4 cup almond butter
2 healthy pinches of salt
zest of 1 lime
Optional: (and not Specific Carb Diet friendly)
1/4 cup white chocolate chips
1 tsp coconut oil
Place into your food processor: 12 dates, 1 cup dried coconut chips, 1 cup dried pineapple, 1/4 cup almond butter, 1 cup macadamia nuts, 2 pinches of salt and the zest of 1 lime.
Process until it is incorporated and resembles wet, clumpy sand.
Then, add 1/4 cup macadamia nuts, 2 dates, and 1/4 cup coconut chips into the food processor, and pulse 5 or six times.
Line a square 8″ brownie pan (or any other size of square/rectangular deep dish) with parchment paper. Have the parchment paper extend up over the sides so that you can easily remove the bars.
Pour the contents of the food processor into the dish. Place another piece of parchment paper on top, and with your hands, press the mixture to the sides, in an even layer.
Remove the top parchment paper (save it) and sprinkle on the remaining 1/4 cup macadamia nuts. (I would suggest cutting them in half). Then put the top parchment paper back on, and press those macadamia nut halves into the mixture.
Meanwhile, in a microwave-safe dish (or on the stovetop) melt your chocolate chips and coconut oil, stirring every 15 seconds until completely melted and “drizzly.”
Then, with a fork, drizzle the white chocolate over the top of the bars. Cool in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes, until the white chocolate is set.
((Another option is to just press the chips into the bars.))
Then, cut into bars. It will make 12 hearty bars — or you can also make 18 smaller ones.
Wrap individually in parchment paper for an on-the-go treat.
Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
OK — THIS RECIPE IS THE BEES KNEES!!
If you read those all caps as me shouting — good! Because I AM SHOUTING!! hahha Just kidding. But seriously – I have officially found my new favorite treat!
If you’ve never had macadamia nuts before…consider this your personal invitation. They are the superior nut. I’m serious.
It is the most buttery, rich, and luxurious of all the nuts. I mean, if you think pecans are special…they pale in comparison with the king, macadamia nut!
And they give these bars such a rich and unique flavor. It’s not overpowering, and in fact…quite subtle. They just give this underlying buttery depth that you’ve never tasted in a Larabar.
And granted — yes, you technically could substitute them with cashews….but I’m not going to lie…you’d be severely missing out!
But my favorite part, was that there was a tiny little kiss of lime from the lime zest. It really brightened up the rich flavor palate!
And finally — the white chocolate drizzle. Granted, the batch I ate was white-chocolate free…because…Specific Carb Diet. BUT I have inside information from a participant who consumed this recipe, that the white chocolate absolutely took these bars over the top.
Reminiscent of my popular white chocolate macadamia nut cookies, in fact.
And finally, the texture was out of this world.
I prefer them best cold – but however you enjoy them – they’re so delightful.
The base is chewy and a little sticky from the dates. There’s a slight crispy bite from the coconut chips. But my favorite are the big bites of macadamia nut halves that were pressed into the top.
It provided a terrific crunch that was exciting and unexpected, and the perfect contrast to the sweet stickiness.
If you can’t tell — these were a huge hit. And I really hope you give them a go!
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
A big thank you to my foundational sponsor, BetterHelp Online Therapy. I cannot begin to express how beneficial therapy was for my recovery from anorexia. Speak with an online therapist. Or check out content about eating disorders from BetterHelp.
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