Raw Chocolate Cranberry Bars (gluten, dairy & refined sugar free)

I had originally intended for this to be a Christmas recipe, but this week I received a box of local fresh cranberries in my CSA box and thought it would be really great for Thanksgiving as well! When I attend a holiday gathering, one of my tactics to staying healthy and avoiding my food sensitivities is to bring a dish that I know I can eat. That way if there are no options that work for me, at least I can eat the dish that I prepared. When you have a gluten allergy, dessert options around the holidays can be hard since most pies and cookies contain some type of gluten grain.

These bars need to be frozen until eaten, so make sure to ask your host in advance if they will have a small piece of freezer real estate for you, or leave them out in the snow if you live in the Northeast! Once dinner is over, bust out these bad boys and enjoy! If they start to get a little ooey gooey just make sure to give your guests a napkin for those sticky fingers. It’ll be worth every finger licking morsel. Here’s how you make them:


For the base:

  • 12 pitted medjool dates
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder
  • 3 tbs soft (melted) coconut oil


  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 2/3 cup raw cashews
  • 4 tbs finely shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 6 tbs raw honey
  • 1 tbs soft (melted) coconut oil

Chocolate Shell Topping:

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 2 tbs real maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder

To Make:

  1. Place all of the Base layer ingredients in the food processor and pulse until well combined into a paste. Spoon the mixture into a parchment lined 8×8 (or slightly larger) baking dish and press down firmly with the back of the spoon. Put in the freezer to harden up.
  2. While the base is hardening, add all cranberry filling layer ingredients (except the coconut oil) to the food processor and pulse until smooth. Add in the coconut oil and blend again until well combined. Add this filling on top of the base smoothing over the top with the spoon. Place back in the freezer for 1-2 hours to fully harden.
  3. Take the dish out of the freezer and cut into your desired bar shape. Place back in the freezer while you make the chocolate shell.
  4. For the chocolate shell layer, melt the coconut oil in a saucepan. When fully melted add in the maple syrup and turn off the heat. Whisk together until well combined. Then whisk in the cacao powder until a nice smooth liquid consistency is achieved. Pour the chocolate shell on top of the cranberry layer creating a thin shell layer. Optional: sprinkle cacao nibs or coconut flakes on top. Place the dish back in the freezer for 2-3 hours.
  5. Remove from the freezer. And Enjoy!



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