VEGAN Cheesecake Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

This is one of the BEST vegan dessert recipes I have tried so far. It has some pretty simple substitutions in case you haven’t fully converted yet, but even so, most of the ingredients are pretty easy to find at your local grocery store. The best part about this recipe is that it’s perfect to bring to a potluck or party, and everyone will be pleasantly surprised that it’s vegan!

Recipe: Makes about 12-16 bars

For the cookie layer:

1 cup almond flour

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup agave

1/4 cup coconut oil, softened

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup cacao nibs, carob chips, or vegan chocolate chips

For the cheesecake layer:

1 package silken tofu

1 cup vegan cream cheese (daiya was used in this recipe)

1/4 cup agave

1 tsp vanilla extract

Juice of half a lemon

2 TBSP non-dairy milk (soy or almond)

1 TBSP coconut oil

For the peanut butter and chocolate toppings:

2 TBSP peanut butter

2 TBSP agave

2 TBSP cocoa or cacao powder

 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9″x9″ baking pan.

Prepare the cookie layer by mixing together almond flour, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl. Combine agave, coconut oil and vanilla extract in a separate bowl, then add to bowl of dry ingredients. Thoroughly combine, then stir in cacao nibs or chocolate chips.

Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the baking pan so that it covers the entire bottom. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.

While the crust is baking, prepare the cheesecake layer by combining all ingredients in a blender. If you’re having a difficult time blending, add an extra splash or two of non-dairy milk to help smooth things along.

When the 15 minutes are up, remove pan from oven and spread cheesecake layer evenly over  crust. Return to oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until edges become slightly golden.

Remove from oven and let cool. You’ll want the pan to cool completely otherwise the bars will crumble when you cut them. You could speed this up by placing the pan in the fridge for about an house once it’s cool enough to handle.

Once pan is completely cool, cut into bars (should make 12-16). To make the topping, mix 2 TBSP peanut butter with 1 TBSP agave, and transfer to a pastry bag (or plastic baggie with the corner cut) and draw zig-zags on top of the bars. Mix 2 TBSP cocoa powder and 1 TBSP agave to make the chocolate topping and do the same. Enjoy! 🙂

 

*Image and recipe courtesy of bestofvegan instagram*

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