What: A vegan dessert using beans(!) that is healthy-ish and tastes just like cookie dough – I know, I couldn’t believe it myself!
When: This recipe is a great way use of leftover chocolate chips in odd amounts – you only need a 1/4 cup. This snack/dessert is also a winner when you need to whip up something no-bake in a pinch using pantry items!
Why: Even though I am not a huge fan of hiding vegetables in foods to get your kids to eat them (I believe that we have to normalize veggies by having them appear obvious and often in everyday favorite foods- more about that HERE), there’s absolutely nothing wrong with adding extra nutritional punch to dessert. One batch of these amazingly tasty vegan bars includes about a half a can of fiber-packed beans. Not only are the beans undetectable, but they lend additional satiety to this comparatively virtuous dessert made only with natural sugar. Additionally, these are dairy free, egg free, and can be made with or without nuts as dictated by your family’s dietary needs and preferences.
How: Have a food processor? Then you’re 10 minutes away from making these. You can use a blender as well, but see below for those instructions.
Vegan Cookie Dough Oat Bars
Lightly Adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie
Makes 1 8×8 Pan, cut into cubes, bars or squares as you wish.
8 oz White Beans (after draining) such as chickpeas, cannellini, great northern, etc
2 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
Just shy of 1/4 tsp salt
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
2 Tablespoons Sunflower Butter (other nut butter acceptable too)
2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
1/3 Cup Honey (you can use pure maple syrup or agave as well) – taste and add more as desired but 1/3 Cup was sweet enough for me!
1 1/2 Cups Rolled or Quick Oats
1/4 Cup Vegan Chocolate Chips or more if desired
Line an 8×8 pan or pyrex with parchment paper or wax paper. Drain beans into a colander and rinse them quite well several times. Using a food processor, blend all ingredients except your chocolate chips. Be sure the mixture is very smooth. You can use a blender but it won’t work quite as well and you should stop several times to ensure ingredients are mixing evenly. Stir in the chocolate chips and spoon the mixture into the prepared pan. Smooth the top using a spatula. Freeze.
Once chilled (2 hours or more), remove from the freezer and lift the parchment paper out of the pan. Cut into bars or squares and allow to come to closer to room temperature to serve (though they are good chilled as well!). To store, arrange them in an airtight container with parchment in between layers of the bars.