The Best Date Bars Ever
- Make the date filling first because it needs to cool.
- 2 cups dates pitted and chopped
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 1/2 cup almonds , finely ground – not to a meal but finely ground
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 3/4 cup dairy-free butter , softened
- 1 cup brown sugar , packed
- 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 cup quick cooking oats
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Put the dates in a Food Processor, and chop too fine pieces.
- In a medium-sized saucepan add chopped dates, water, and sugar.
- Stir and cook over medium-high heat and then turn down and cook until the mixture is thickened.
- Add the vanilla extract, almond extract and finely ground almonds.
- See it’s thickness in the photo below. It is very very moist.
- Spoon into a bowl and let cool down because you will be pressing this out, with your fingers, onto the bottom layer of the crust.
- Lightly grease a 9″ x 13″ baking pan – set aside.
- Cream the butter and brown sugar with a Hand Mixer, until light and fluffy. About 5 minutes.
- Add the flour, baking soda and salt. Mix.
- Add the oats and mix well.
- It will be a crumbly mixture but it will press together.
- Sprinkle half the dough into the prepared baking pan.
- Press down with your fingers to an even layer all across the pan bottom.
- Now take the date mixture and dab teaspoons full here and there across the bottom layer in the pan. It will be easier to spread this way.
- With your fingers – gently press out the filling for a solid layer across the complete bottom of the crust.
- Sprinkle the rest of the dough over the filling layer.
- Make sure it is even. Then press the top crust with your hand to make a solid layer. I use my fingers and the palm of my hand. It doesn’t take much pressure.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes.
- Cut into squares while it is still warm.
- Cut to make 4 squares across and 6 squares down and that will be 24 bars.