This world, this country has become a very sad, divisive place as of late. Food is one of the few things that bridges cultures and makes people truly happy. These coconut horchata bars will put a smile on your face and maybe will, for a moment, let you forget the troubles here and afar.
These semi-frozen treats are all the “frees”: gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free…but still delicious. And just with like any good dessert, the crust is the best part.
Horchata has such amazing flavors–cinnamon, vanilla, and rice milk–which combined create a creamy sweet base. I was looking for a super creamy consistency because I wanted them to be semi-freddo-ish so I added coconut cream and milk.
In fact, the more fat the fewer dates are needed. Put differently, the more fat the less sugar has to be added.
I blended coconut cream, rice milk, the meat from coconut milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and dates which ended up…bruh….this stuff was crazy good.
If you want it even creamier with less fat and still low in sugar, you can substitute frozen bananas. I’m just not the biggest banana fan so I went full coconut with this dessert.
Plus, using coconut still allows the rice milk to peak through on your taste buds. If you choose bananas, their intense flavor will permeate the whole dessert and the rice milk will be all but lost on your palate. Still yummy, just not as horchata-y.
Either way you try it, these coconut horchata bars are where it’s at. And I started eating the crust by the spoonful right out of the food processor….mmmk, I’ll leave it right there.
Enjoy ¡mi gente!
- For the crust:
- • ½ cup walnuts
- • ½ cup pecans
- • 5 dates
- • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (optional)
- • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- • ⅛ teaspoon salt
- For the top :
- • 1 can coconut cream, completely chilled
- • 1 can coconut milk (only the meat), completely chilled
- • ¼ cup rice milk, completely chilled
- • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- • 4-5 dates
- • ⅛ - ¼ teaspoon salt
- • Garnish: toasted coconut flakes & freeze-dried raspberries (optional)
- Line an ungreased 8” x 8” square metal baking pan with parchment paper, leaving a two-inch overhang.
- Place the walnuts, pecans, dates, coconut flakes, protein powder (if using), coconut oil, and salt in a food processor and blend for 1-2 minutes (scraping down the sides of the machine periodically).
- Pat the crust into the baking pan evenly and place in the freezer for 10 minutes.
- Add the coconut cream, the meat of the coconut milk, rice milk, cinnamon, vanilla extract, dates, and salt into a blender and mix until smooth.
- Pour the mixture over the crust and top with any garnishes you like.
- Allow to freeze for at least 4 hours.
- When ready to serve, allow to come up to room temperature for 10 minutes before running a knife around the edges to loosen the bars.