All the gooey goodness of summertime s’mores baked into a chewy buttery s’mores cookie bar. Vegan, nut-free, and made with a clever gluten-free graham cracker sub!
SPONSORED BY SUNBUTTER
I am writing this from a sun-flooded balcony with the most vibrant turquoise view of the gulf on my second to last day in Cancun, and while my honeymoon might be almost over this heat is a strong reminder that summer is absolutely here to stay a while. Summer is my favorite season for sweets—I thrive on no-bake bars and new ice cream recipes. And while there aren’t many sweet treats I want to use more heat to make in the summer months, there is one gooey chocolatey one that is always worth it…S’MORES.
The Ultimate Indoor S’mores
I don’t know about you, but personally, I find there are many more occasions where I’m craving s’more’s versus occasions where a bonfire or campfire is readily available. Enter: the S’mores Cookie Bar!
The “Graham Cracker” Cookie Bar
These marshmallow-filled chocolate chip blondie bars are vegan, gluten-free, and nut free. Made with just a handful of easy ingredients, a “buttery” rich cookie dough, and baked in less than 30 minutes. Delicious ingredients you will need:
- Natural SunButter. The key to a super moist and buttery cookie texture without butter (or nuts!), and this flavor just so happens to be my favorite. It’s lightly sweetened, lightly salted, and for a salty-sweet cookie bar recipe like this it’s the perfect variety to use. The SunButter also adds enough richness that we don’t need any added oil in the recipe, especially in combination with…
- Unsweetened applesauce. The only other wet ingredient in the cookie batter, and also a healthier oil/butter swap. Extra moisture, extra sweetness, but it’s a pretty small amount so the cookie texture won’t be gummy or weird like low-fat applesauce recipes can sometimes be.
- Coconut sugar. Or brown sugar will be fine here too.
- Cane sugar. Or white sugar will be fine here too. Even use all coconut sugar if you want, but the cookie bars may turn out a little bit extra gooey and not have that same perfect cookie crumble.
- Oat flour. Oat flour has the perfect wholesome cookie taste and and texture for this recipe, and it’s naturally gluten-free as well. I made my own by grinding old-fashioned oats to a very fine consistency in my Vitamix.
- Granola. My favorite sneaky secret to create a “graham cracker” like flavor without having to hunt down gluten-free graham crackers. My favorite is linked in the recipe card, but just go with a neutral flavored slightly cinnamon variety preferably. Grind the granola up in a food processor or blender just like you would to create graham cracker crumbs and stir them right into the batter.
- Salt, baking powder, and vanilla extract. You could even add in an extra dash of cinnamon, especially if your granola doesn’t have any, for extra “graham” flavor.
Now Let’s Add The S’mores Stuff
This is the fun part! This is where we go from YUMMY cookie bar to GOOEY summer cookout sweet treat…
- Chocolate chips. Semi-sweet melts best, dark chocolate chips will be fine too. Use a dairy-free variety to keep the recipe vegan, and I prefer full-size chips to mini here (chunks would be yummy too!)
- Mini marshmallows. Vegan if desired. You can swap in marshmallow fluff if you prefer, but personally I think actual marshmallows brown better in that classic campfire way.
The assembly is pretty simple: layer most of the cookie dough on the bottom, add a thick layer of chocolate chips and marshmallows, patchwork the remaining cookie dough on top covering some of the mix-ins but leaving some poking through. The hardest part is waiting for them to cool, because trust me those gooey chips and golden mallows will be calling to you. But they really are a mess if you try to slice them warm. The gooiest experience will be still slightly warm from the oven, but I promise they are really delicious cooled or even chilled too!
More Summer Desserts You’ll Love
- Tahini Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches
- Homemade SunButter Chocolate Soft Serve
- Mini Key Lime Pies
- Dairy-Free Rocky Road Ice Cream
- Caramel Cashew Ice Cream Bars
All the gooey goodness of summertime s’mores baked into a chewy buttery cookie bar. Vegan, nut-free, and made with a clever gluten-free graham cracker sub!
- 1/4 cup (60g) unsweetened applesauce
- 3/4 cup (192g) Natural SunButter
- 1/2 cup (75g) coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup (100g) cane sugar (can sub more coconut sugar)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (50g) oat flour
- 1 cup (80g) granola*
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup (150g) dairy-free chocolate chips
- 3 cups (120g) mini marshmallows (vegan if desired)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8″ pan with parchment paper and/or grease with nonstick spray.
- With a hand mixer, beat together the applesauce, SunButter, coconut sugar, and cane sugar.
- Add the vanilla and mix again until well combined.
- In a blender, grind the granola to a fine crumb.
- Add the granola crumbs, flour, baking powder, and salt to the wet ingredients. Continue mixing with the hand mixer until well combined into a sticky thick cookie dough.
- Press 2/3 of this mixture into the bottom of the baking pan. Set aside the rest.
- Evenly spread the mini marshmallows and chocolate chips on top of the cookie layer.
- Top with the remaining cookie dough covering as much of the surface as possible (lots of marshmallows and chocolate chips will still show through, that’s fine).
- Bake for 25-28 minutes at 350°F until the marshmallows are golden brown on top and the cookie is slightly browned as well.
- Cool completely before removing from the pan and slicing into 16 squares.
*If your granola doesn’t contain any cinnamon, add 1/4 tsp for more of a “graham cracker” like flavor.
Keywords: gluten free, summer, chocolate, blondie, baking, healthy, dairy free, marshmallow