cashew cranberry carob squares

These nut, fruit and carob squares without added sugar remind me of the cubes sold in bulk bins at many health food stores20131003_141805, Chunks of Energy.  They’re perfect for when you want something sweet with coffee or chai, or a glass of almond milk, without going into the cookie jar or raiding the chocolate stash.  Simple to make, too!  The formula upon which these are loosely based comes from Maria Makes Muffins, a clean eating (nonvegan) blog.  You could form them into balls and roll them in coconut, but I like to press the mixture into an 8 x 8 square pan, chill, and cut them.  If you like the extra tang, toss 1/4 cup more dried cranberries in as you mix it all together!!

Update:  I wanted to make these for something sweet to pack in lunches, but had no cashews in the house.  So I substituted raw walnuts (1 cup) and added raw sunflower seeds (1/3 cup).  The results are incredibly yummy!  Pulse walnuts in food processor and remove them, just as you would cashews, and toss the sunflower seeds in with the remaining ingredients.

Makes 16 squares
Prep Time: 10 minutes (or less!)
Chill Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:
1 cup raw cashews
1/3 cup pitted dates
1/2 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
1/2 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup flaked coconut, plus a little more to sprinkle on top
2 T tahini
2 T carob powder
zest of one orange
fresh juice of that same orange
just a little coconut oil for greasing pan

Method:

Step One:  Gather ingredients and zest the orange.

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Step Two:  Pulse cashews in food processor till they’re chopped up medium-fine.  Be careful not to turn them into nut butter.

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Step Three:  Remove chopped cashews from food processor.  Process the dried fruits, coconut, tahini, carob powder, and orange zest for 20 seconds or until mixture is well combined but not completely pureed.

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Step Four:  Squeeze orange juice into the mixture; pulse another 10 seconds.

Step Five:  Using your hands, mix cashews into carob mixture in a large bowl.  20131003_134004

Step Six:  Press mixture into glass 8 x 8 dish lightly greased with a very small amount of coconut oil.  Sprinkle with a little flaked coconut and press it into the top.  Chill for twenty minutes and cut into squares.  Store in ziploc bags or other container in the fridge or freezer.

23 thoughts on “cashew cranberry carob squares

  1. Reblogged this on Honk If You're Vegan and commented:
    I just ran across these super healthy plant-based goodies and wanted to share them. These are sooo much healthier, and probably tastier, than Cliff Bars.

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  2. Gosh my mouth is watering looking at this post! this is another recipe i shall have to try! thanks for sharing.

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  3. Ca-ray-zee yummy lookin’!

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  4. These look and sound very tasty Celeste, I believe even with my cooking skills I could make these !

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  5. ohmygoodness! i love everything about these bars! my 8 year old ate all the cashews though 🙂 will pick some up tmrw. have you tried using any other kind of nut in these bars?

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    • Maria, I think walnuts would work quite well, as they are similar in texture and their flavor would go well with cranberry and orange. Let us know how they turn out for you. And you too may have to stash a few in the freezer, ha!

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    • I haven’t! Hmmn…walnuts might do well. Let me know any experimenting that works out. Been thinking of trying them with cacao instead of carob too.

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  6. They looks so delicious!I want to grab one piece through my computer screen. 🙂

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  7. Mmm, these look really moreish!

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  8. […] These cashew, cranberry carob squares are packed full of goodness, with the only sweetness coming from the fruit. Click on the link for the full recipe jengoesvegan.com […]

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