Vegan, Gluten Free and Paleo Friendly Nanaimo Bars


I don’t usually post recipes on my blog, but this was such a hit on my instagram I thought I should share. There is a popular Canadian treat called a Nanaimo bar, wikipedia has a whole page dedicated to it here.

Traditional Nanaimo bars are insanely sweet sugar bombs. They are delicious, but I can’t have them any more due to multiple problematic ingredients. I’ve been developing this recipe in my head for a while. Today, I decided to give it a shot. I’m happy to say my first attempt is nearly perfect. My only complaint is that the bottom layer could be a bit more moist. That is nit-picking though, the bars were excellent as is.

This is a no-bake recipe. Since it uses a lot of coconut oil, it’s best kept in the freezer as coconut oil gets all oozy at room temperature.

I made mine in a loaf pan lined with plastic wrap for easy removal.

1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
4 tbsp cocoa
¼ cup almond meal
¼ cup granular sweetener of choice
¼ cup coconut oil (melted)

1 ½ cups macadamia nuts or cashews
2 tbsp granular sweetener of choice
3 tbsp coconut oil (melted)
2 tbsp vanilla protein powder (I used Sun Warrior Vegan Protein)

100 grams of dark chocolate (I used 85%)
1 tbsp coconut oil (melt)

Starting with the base layer, mix all the dry ingredients together. Mix in the melted coconut oil with a fork. Press this mixture in to the lined loaf pan. Put this in the freezer while you work on the middle layer.

In a food processor or high-powered blender, mix up all the middle layer ingredients. I did it in the Vitamix. If you don’t have a blender of food processor, you could use pre-made cashew butter. Pour this layer on top of the coconut layer and spread it evenly. Put this all back in the freezer and get started on the top layer.

Chop up your chocolate in to small pieced for easier melting. Melt it over low heat (double boiler if possible) with the coconut oil.  Once it’s melted, pour it on top of the other two layers and make sure it’s evenly spread.

Put that bad boy in the freezer for 30 minutes.

After that, you can just pull the whole thing out and cut it in to 10 small-ish pieces. It’s very rich, so a little goes a long way. I recommend letting them sit a few minutes before you serve, if they have been sitting in your freezer…but they are also good frozen.


Disclaimer: I’m neither Vegan or Paleo, so I don’t adhere strictly to any dietary rules. That is my way of warning the diet police that my recipe may not fit perfectly in to the parameters of the Paleo or Vegan diet. If you see something that doesn’t fit your definition, this recipe should be easy to adapt to make it work.


2 thoughts on “Vegan, Gluten Free and Paleo Friendly Nanaimo Bars

  1. jasmine Post author

    Thanks for stopping by! I’m going to work on developing some more keto recipes! I’ll be sure to post them on /r/keto!


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