Healthy-ish Nanaimo Bars

Who doesn’t love dessert???  I came up with this recipe two years ago for Canada’s 150th birthday.  A healthy-ish take on a quintessentially Canadian dessert, and one of my favourites.

Be sure to check out the Recipe Notes at the bottom, and let me know what you think of them 🙂

Healthy-ish Nanaimo Bars, the Oh Kells No way!

  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup hemp hearts
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut butter**
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk, divided
  • 1 tsp arrow root starch
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Combine all ingredients into a food processor and blend until mixed together
  3. Scoop mixture into a lightly greased brownie pan and pack it down with a spoon
  4. Bake for 6-8 minutes
  5. Let cool completely before adding the filling (I usually place my pan in the fridge while I work on the filling)
  1. Place the coconut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, 1/4 cup of the non-dairy milk and sea salt into a double boiler and whisk until melted and smooth.
  2. Mix the arrow root starch with the remaining 1/4 cup of non-dairy milk and then add that into the main mixture to help it thicken.
  3. Pour over the base and let cool completely


  1. Place all ingredients into a double boiler and whisk until melted and smooth
  2. Pour over the filling and let cool completely


**Recipe Notes
It’s important that the filling has cooled completely before the chocolate topping goes on, or you’ll end up with a mixture of the two.

**Homemade Coconut Butter:
OK, so I know coconut butter is expensive!!!!!  $13 for a small jar is crazy, but you can easily make your own.  Dump 4 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut into your blender (food processor is not ideal for this one but will work) and let it go.  You’ll have to blend it for a good 4-5 minutes, scrape down the sides and continue blending for another 2-3 minutes.  You’ll notice the texture change, and when it’s runny you’ll know it’s done.

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