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Stack of 4 triple layered chocolate squares with a few chocolate chips scattered around and a jar of milk in the background.

Chocolate Fudge Bars

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 16
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

These ultra-decadent, triple layer chocolate fudge bars that are perfect for special occasions but wholesome enough for everyday too. You’ll love how easy they are to make with just a few basic ingredients and no baking required!


Ingredients

For the Brownie Crust

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews (80 g)
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds (80 g)
  • 1 cup packed, soft pitted dates (220 g)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (25 g)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract, optional
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt, optional

For the Fudge Layer

  • 1 cup almond butter (240 g)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (25 g)
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup (30 mL)
  • 2 tbsp melted coconut oil (30 g)

For the Ganache Topping

  • 3/4 cup dairy-free chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate (140 g)
  • 2 tbsp almond butter (30 g)

Instructions

  1. Line a 7 or 8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper so it sticks out over the sides of the pan. This will allow you to lift the bars out once set.
  2. Add the cashews, almonds, dates, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt to a food processor and blend into a crumbly but sticky dough. It should almost be coming together in one big clump as you blend and you should be able to press the dough between your fingers. If the dough seems too dry or crumbly, which can happen if your dates were too dry, add 1-2 tbsp warm water and process again. That should do the trick. Use your hands to firmly press the dough into the lined baking pan until smooth and even.
  3. Mix the almond butter, cocoa powder, maple syrup and coconut oil together in a bowl until smooth and combined. It will be quite thick. Spread the fudge over the crust layer in the pan in an even layer.
  4. Melt the chocolate in the microwave in 15-20 second increments or using a double boiler until completely smooth, then stir in the the almond butter. Spread the melted chocolate over the fudge layer in the pan using a spatula to evenly spread and smooth as best you can.
  5. Place the entire pan in the freezer until the chocolate has hardened, about 20-30 minutes. The fridge is ok too, it will just take longer to set.
  6. Once the bars are set, warm a sharp knife under hot water and score the bars by creating lines where you plan to cut. I’d suggest starting with 16 squares, though I like to slice the 16 squares into 32 mini bars. After scoring, slice and enjoy or store in the fridge or freezer.

Notes

Almond butter can be swapped for any other nut or seed butter. Try peanut butter for peanut butter fudge bars! If you don’t have any cashews on hand, you can substitute them with an additional 1/2 cup of almonds or walnuts or pecans.

It’s important to use soft, moist dates to bind the crust layer. If your dates are too dry, the crust will be too crumbly to press together. If your dates are overly dry, soak them in hot water for 15 minutes then drain well before using in the recipe.

Storing: Whether in the fridge or freezer, keep cool until just before serving as they will become very soft and melted if left at room temperature for too long or it’s warm out. Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or freezer for up to 3 months. They’re really good straight from the fridge! You can enjoy them straight from the freezer as they don’t freeze solid but I like to let them soften a bit at room temperature before enjoying.

The almond butter in the chocolate topping helps soften it to make it more like a ganache than hard chocolate. You can skip it or use melted vegan butter or coconut oil to the same effect. If you don’t add a fat source to the chocolate, let the bars soften at room temperature for a bit and use a hot knife to prevent cracking the chocolate when you slice the bars.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 224
  • Sugar: 12 g
  • Fat: 16 g
  • Carbohydrates: 19 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 6 g