Sweet, spiced, and so easy, these No-Bake Gingerbread Bars are a perfect healthy vegan on-the-go snack. Dreamy coconut butter glaze optional, but makes them extra delicious!
I just realized I am unconsciously falling into a gingerbread mondays pattern. Or I suppose since this is the internet I should say #gingerbreadmonday although that really is the opposite of catchy.
Last week there was nice cream. This week these delicious date bars. Next week I have something baked and deliciously ginger-spiced planned. I didn’t mean for it to happen, I just love gingerbread and can’t think of a better way to start off any winter-y week. And yes I do know that it’s technically still fall, but in my mind once I have to trade shorts for pants it’s basically winter.
These bars are inspired by Larabar’s seasonal gingerbread flavor, but much easier to find. They tend to frequent food processors, so look there first. Dark brown, sticky, cinnamon-fragrant, just sitting and waiting to be turned from dough ball to bar. My version is made with oats instead of almonds and cashews, so they are lower in fat and nut-free. Also, I added molasses because in my opinion that is gingerbread essential.
Now can we just take a moment to imagine how amazing one of these bars broken up into chewy ginger-spiced pieces and stirred into this would taste…(you better be doing it too, don’t make me do all the imagining by myself)…mmmm I will be testing that out that very soon!
But now let’s address the creamy, white, drizzled-on elephant in the
room post–the glaze! No it’s not low-fat. Yes it did take me 4 tries to get right. No it is not at all necessary to glaze a snack bar (but zero regrets). Yes it is as dreamy as can be…
The glaze is made with 3 ingredients: coconut butter, maple syrup, and non-dairy milk. I have tried making low-fat glazes before but they always just soak in or melt off much to fast and end up everywhere except on top of the food. To avoid using coconut oil, I turned to it’s thicker, less-processed cousin: coconut butter. And what I’ve learned is that it is one tricky beast!
Too cold–it’s clumpy. Too hot–it’s clumpy. Stir it counter-clockwise instead of clockwise–it’s clumpy. Okay maybe not that last one, but it is very temperamental. Like the Goldilocks of food. But with some guidance from Arman (who I’m pretty sure is also the coconut butter whisperer) I finally managed to get a perfect pours-off-the-spoon-but-not-the-food glaze. And then, of course, tested it 2 more times just to make sure I had it figured out before sharing.
Once you get it right it has a marvelous texture for drizzling, I find myself wanting to put it on everything. And if you follow this glaze recipe then refrigerate it overnight, it turns into a wonderfully spreadable frosting.
If you want a lower-fat alternative for drizzling on top of these bars (and everything else), might I suggest this -> Silky Sweet Date Caramel Sauce
No-Bake Gingerbread Bars
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 60 minutes
- Total Time: 70 minutes
- Yield: 4 bars 1x
Sweet, spiced, and so easy, these No-Bake Gingerbread Bars are a perfect healthy on-the-go snack. Dreamy coconut butter glaze optional, but extra delicious!
- 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ginger
- 2 tbsp molasses
- 1/4 cup coconut butter
- 1–2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2–4 tbsp nondairy milk
- Combine all the ingredients for the bars in a food processor. Process until it forms a sticky ball of dough.
- Press into a rectangle.
- Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- To make the glaze, microwave/warm the coconut butter slightly until it is soft and melty. Add the maple syrup and 1 tablespoon of nondairy milk. Stir vigorously. Keep adding nondairy milk 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach a drizzle-able consistency.
- Cut the rectangle into 4 bars. Top with glaze. Enjoy.
- The bars will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days, but it is best to glaze them just before eating.
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Leah M | love me, feed me says
That sweet coconut butter glaze thoooo! I’ve fallen into the gingerbread hole and I’m not sure I even want to try to get out, sweet spicy goodness! Craving these so hard! Especially swirled into nana ice cream obviously <3
Nope, don’t fight it! Just eat all the molasses and spice-filled things from now till Christmas, that’s my plan 🙂
Demeter | Beaming Baker says
Okay, #gingerbreadmonday have to be a thing now. Gosh darn it, I just sent out a tweet for this post, and I TOTALLY neglected to include this amazing new hashtag. What was I thinking?? Madness, I say. You know what’s so funny? I got self-conscious about releasing pecans recipes three Mondays in a row, so I moved them to avoid well, #pecanmondays. Haha. But now you’ve shown me the error of my ways… gingerbread-style. 🙂 These no bake bars are making my no-bake lovin heart just swoon. Can you bring some of these over so our no bake treats can hang out together and become besties like us? 🙂 LOVE that glaze and so happy that you figured it out! Props to Arman for the tip! Muah! xoxo
Hehe we could just create #_______mondays all month long and no one will understand but us but that’s cool because it makes me feel better inside about holiday flavor repetition lol. Because I just can’t stop on the gingerbread ideas. And honestly I don’t think you can over pecan either, they are one versatile nut. I’ve actually been brainstorming on some recipes using them too, it’s a holiday flavor I often neglect? Oh yes my gingerbread bars certainly need to get in with your no-bake posse, I don’t have nearly as many (or as cool) no bake treats as you. Yes coconut butter and I are on much better terms after this experiment woohoo! Thanks lovely <3 xoxo
Aimee | Wallflower Kitchen says
More gingerbread goodness? Yes please. My favourite christmassy flavour!
Mine too!! This is not the end lol 😀
Kaila @ Healthy Helper Blog says
You know my OBSESSION with the seasonal larabar flavors…so this is incredible!! Can I bribe you with dates to make a snickerdoodle version!?
It’s seeing them on your IG feed that makes me want them so bad!! That’s why I made them, because I can never find them around me. Mmm snickerdoodle…:)
Yum! Would maple syrup work in place of molasses?
Absolutely! Or you can just leave it out, they are sweet enough with just the dates I just add the molasses to give it that classic gingerbread flavor.
Those look fabulous Natalie, and I’m craving gingerbread. Do I NEED to use the store bought coconut butter for the smoothness or can I make my own in this instance? I know in some recipes you really need to use the store bought ones. I will make them soon!!
I am far from a coconut butter expert, but I do believe homemade will be just fine! It may require a little less/more nondairy milk to get the same consistency is all. Mmm I’m craving gingerbread too!
Christmas is on it’s way with these gorgeous little guys! I can only imagine how delicious they are! Another one for the ‘to bake’ list Natalie you are so creative!!
Yeah I’m getting a little ahead of myself on these holiday repines, but I just can’t help it! Thanks Ashely 🙂
Would it be possible to replace the oats with something grain free?
Absolutely! Almonds, cashews, almond meal, coconut flour–any of those would work. I’ve even made them before with protein powder as the only dry ingredient 🙂
The Vegan 8 says
Oh yes, you have been on a gingerbread kick and we are all happy about it! I LOVE ginger and just sipped down a big mug of ginger matcha green tea and now the only thing that would have made it better would be one of these gingerbread bars! You know I love coconut butter, so I am ALL OVER this glaze. This is exactly how I make my icing for my cinnamon roll oatmeal and I love using coconut butter in my frostings and caramel too, it is such an amazing versatile ingredient and I love that it is a whole food! It is so buttery and delicious and I imagine that these bars with the icing would just be magical. I love that closeup drizzle shot…I just want to stick my mouth right underneath it, LOL! What a wonderful recipe Natalie, as always!
I tried working with coconut butter once forever ago and it was a disaster, haven’t thought about the stuff since. But since it really is the perfect healthy glaze/frosting base, I had to give it another shot. Yes I love that it’s a whole food too! You do so many wonderful things with it both as toppings and actually in recipes. I am having to resist not frosting everything right now lol. I haven’t tried baking with it yet but I want to. And try making my own because woo it’s pricey! Tapioca starch, now coconut butter–I always come around to realize you are right these ingredients are awesome eventually 🙂
Bethany @ Athletic Avocado says
Oh yeses please! Call me the gingerbread man because I’m all about the seasonal flavor! Love that these bars are nut free and need no baking! SCORE 🙂
Woohoo to no bake holiday snacking!! I’m with ya Gingerbread Woman?
This is really Awesome!! I LOVE IT!!
I had almost forgotten about these, but yes yes so yummy! A little gingerbread minus the baking–I hope you enjoy Janet 🙂
where is the recipe?
oh, there it is.