What’s Inside: These homemade tahini dessert bars are inspired by classic Twix chocolate bars, but made healthier! The nut-free shortbread crust is topped with naturally sweetened tahini caramel and a layer of dark chocolate. This recipe is dairy-free and Paleo, with an AIP option
Easy Tahini Dessert Bars will taste familiar…
Twix chocolate bars were one of my favorite candies as a kid, what’s not to love? It’s got all the texture and flavor (x2). But cut to growing up and growing food sensitivities, I couldn’t tell you the last time I even had one or registered one as food (hahah!) But alas, mama is only human, and suddenly had a craving for a shortbread cookie crust, sticky caramel center and smooth dark chocolate recently.
When holidays or events creep up, homemade candy is just the activity I want and recently that’s what gave me the idea to whip this up. The result with these… a hit. When my husband even likes a dessert I make (Mr. “It’s good but could be sweeter”)… you know it’s extra special!
Because I’m operating with whatever’s in my pantry… I added a little twist of TAHINI. To be honest, I probably would have added it anyway because Bon Appetit posted these shortbread millionaire bars with Tahini which subliminally told me to. And, if you know me, tahini often works its way into my baking because it’s the best! But, by all means, use any nut/seed butter you love.
Prep + Storage Tips
Using parchment paper in your loaf tin helps this not stick, so don’t skip out on that part.
These will keep freshest stored in the freezer, but you could also store them in the fridge.
Whether you’re always making homemade holiday candy or this is your first Easter at home while social distancing… (I’m writing this in the time of COVID-19)… you will LOVE these and if you have some kiddos looking to get involved, take them up on the process.
A nut-free shortbread crust topped with naturally-sweetened tahini caramel and drizzled with dark chocolate makes a healthier homemade Twix Bar of your dreams! It’s Paleo, Vegan, and Nut-free, with an AIP option.
Soak pitted dates in boiling hot water for 20-30 minutes at least until soft.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line and lightly grease a 8-inch loaf pan with parchment paper, set aside.
Mix all shortbread ingredients together until a smooth batter forms, press it evenly into the lined loaf pan in a single layer. Bake it for 11-12 minutes or until cooked, it may still be soft which is okay. Pop it into the freezer (carefully) when it’s out.
Meanwhile, make the caramel filling by combining all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Once the shortbread layer is cooled to handle, you can drizzle the filling and spread it over top with the back of a spoon, pop it into the freezer to set.
Lastly, combine the chocolate and oil/ghee in a small saucepan (or you can zap in the microwave for 30 seconds). Melt the ingredients together until you have a smooth chocolate.
Pour the melted chocolate over the filling of your bars and spread it evenly by moving your loaf tin around so it’s evenly distributed. Finish off with some flakey sea salt and let it finish setting in tthe freezer for 5 mins or so.
Remove from the freezer and use parchment paper to remove the chocolate bars from the loaf tin. Using a serrated sharp knife, cut 8 pieces out.
Serve/store in the fridge or freezer in a container or back in your loaf tin and covered with the parchment paper. Enjoy!