I’m all about trying to eat seasonally and using what is fresh. I think eating locally is one of those win/win situations, good for local food producers, reduces your carbon footprint (no giant trucks driving your produce from out of state), and gives you access to fresher (and usually tastier!) food.
I guess eating seasonally is not good for people who work at large grocery conglomerates, but I think they’re all doing just fine.
That being said….sometimes cravings take over and suddenly eating seasonally doesn’t seem as important as getting a slice of carrot/pecan/sticky goodness into your mouth.
Imagine carrot cake, cinnamon rolls, and pecan sticky buns forming a delicious union. And then imagine something even tastier than that – that is what these bars are.
I promise I’m not exaggerating, I gave some to my parents who were hosting a dinner party and they served these with a scoop of ice cream (à la mode, if you will). Their guests were pleasantly surprised to learned that, ‘these are really an item from your daughter’s vegetable blog??’
Clearly I need to work on the messaging when discussing my blog.
It was good feedback even if it was weirdly phrased. What I heard him say was ‘I can’t believe that these can be healthy, have vegetables in them, and be delicious’ which is exactly what my blog is here to prove! Dessert can still be delicious, healthy, and have the occasional vegetable thrown in. Most nuts are a source of protein, healthy fats, and Vitamin E (great for your skin!) and carrots are known for their levels of beta-carotene (aka the antioxidant otherwise known as Vitamin A).
So basically eating these is like taking a Vitamin..! (Possibly a bit of a stretch)
These would be nice addition to a fall table spread what with the warm cinnamon flavors typical of fall desserts, but if you put them in the freezer I think they’re wonderfully refreshing even in the heat of the summer.
These are pretty easy to make, a food processor makes them even easier, if you have a grater attachment your carrots will be grated in seconds. They stay fresh for about 5 days and even longer if you decide to freeze them.
If you are like me and bake a lot, you probably go through a lot of nuts, and they are not very cheap. I find the best way to fuel the need for nuts is to buy them in bulk. I get pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds all online to save $$.
Carrot Sticky Nut Bars (Gluten Free/Vegan)
- 2 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup oat flour
- 1 cup grated carrots
- 1 cup coconut oil
- 1 cup coconut sugar sub white sugar
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup brown rice syrup sub honey
- 5 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 4 tbsp almond milk sub milk of your choice
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar sub white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla powder sub vanilla extract
- 3 cups chopped nuts I used pecans and walnuts
- 1/4 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350 F degrees and line a 13 x 9 pan with parchment paper
Combine all crust ingredients (except carrots) in food processor until combined and resembles course sand, mix in the grated carrot by hand.
Press mixture into the bottom of prepared pan
Bake for 20-25 minutes depending on your oven
While the crust bakes, bring the brown rice syrup, coconut sugar, almond milk, coconut oil, maple syrup and salt to a boil in a pan on medium heat, stirring every 30 seconds until smooth. Stir about 2 minutes once boiled.
Remove from heat and add nuts and vanilla to the warm mixture.
Once crust is out of the oven and slightly cooled, pour the nut syrup mixture over it and spread evenly.
Bake for another 15 minutes (or until bubbly) at 350 F degrees, let bars cool completely before serving.
Bars are best cut after chilling in the fridge. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream if desired!