Paleo Pumpkin Bars
A few years ago, I missed a meeting I was supposed to attend. No big deal, I thought, I’ll just get the high points from someone who was there. Little did I know the high point involved food! Word started spreading about these amazing pumpkin bars Alyssa brought to the meeting.
She sent me the recipe from Paleo Cupboard. I made the pumpkin bars, ate way too many before they were even cool, and quickly resolved not to miss any more meetings this year.
I haven’t done much gluten-free or Paleo-friendly baking so I wasn’t sure what to expect with this recipe. It turned out way more moist and flavorful than I was expecting. So, less like your typical bar and more like a crustless pumpkin pie. You could eat it with a fork or spoon or, hey, use your fingers and scoop it right out of the pan. Worked for me!
And the vanilla frosting? Crazy. It only calls for four ingredients: coconut oil, honey, vanilla, and salt. The finished result tastes like a melty swirl of honey butter and vanilla icing.
The coconut oil needs to soften before you will be able to spread it. I just kept the frosting covered in the refrigerator. Then I pulled it out and let it warm up on the counter until I was ready to spread it and serve the bars.
Paleo Pumpkin Bars with Vanilla Frosting
Recipe barely adapted from Paleo Cupboard
1 cup pumpkin puree (canned if you can find it or fresh)
3/4 cup honey, warmed (raw honey is AMAZING)
1/2 cup coconut oil, warmed
1 t. vanilla extract
1 cup almond flour (Costco has a great option as well)
1/4 cup arrowroot powder or tapioca starch
1 1/2 t. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 t. salt
1 t. baking powder
1/2 cup coconut oil, softened
4 T. honey or maple syrup
1 t. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Combine the eggs, pumpkin puree, honey, coconut oil, and vanilla extract in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment (or a mixing bowl using a whisk or hand mixer).
- In a separate bowl, stir together the almond flour, arrowroot powder, pumpkin pie spice, salt, and baking powder.
- With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture; stir until combined.
- Pour the mixture into a square 8×8″ pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the center is set. Remove and cool completely before frosting.
- To make the frosting, beat the coconut oil, honey (or maple syrup), vanilla extract, and salt together until light & fluffy. Refrigerate until ready to use and soften before spreading on the bars.
The whole Paleo diet has intrigued me since it first started gaining popularity. I borrowed the cookbook Well Fed: Paleo Recipes for People Who Love to Eat by Melissa Joulman (Amazon) from a friend two years ago. While I don’t follow the Paleo diet, the rest of the title certainly fits. However, I loved the layout of this book and tried several of the recipes, with great results. While there is definitely no shortage of Paleo cookbooks currently available, this one has over 1,800 reviews and a 4.5-star rating.
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