When my good friend Ricki said that I could share a recipe from her new e-cookbook, Desserts without Compromise, it took me all of five seconds to pick the Apple Pumpkin Crumble Bars. I had many reasons for my selection. Back to school and work means a demand for packable healthy treats, prepping for the upcoming season with delicious guilt-free desserts, and, quite frankly, I am a fall foodie. I love the flavors of fall and seriously can’t wait for the produce of September to arrive.
But regardless of my reasons, this recipe, and all of the recipes from Ricki’s kitchen, are amazing. She keeps everything vegan, gluten-free, and low glycemic, which is why these crumb bars aren’t overly sweet. They’re perfect for savoring with hot tea or coffee as you relax and watch the leaves turn.
Special Diet Notes: Apple Pumpkin Crumble Bars
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, vegetarian, and low sugar.
- ⅓ cup melted coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons yacon syrup, agave nectar, or maple syrup
- 20 drops plain or vanilla stevia liquid
- 1 tablespoon flaxmeal
- ⅓ cup plain or vanilla unsweetened dairy-free milk beverage
- Zest of 1 lemon
- ¾ cup walnut pieces
- ½ cup almonds (with skin)
- 1 cup rolled oats (not quick or instant)
- ⅓ cup coconut flour
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 cups canned or homemade pumpkin purée (can sub sweet potato puree)
- 3 medium sweet apples, peeled, cored and grated on large holes of a box grater
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 20-30 drops plain or vanilla stevia (to your taste), or ¼ cup to ⅓ cup agave nectar
- Preheat your oven to 350F (180C). Line a 9-inch (22.5 cm) square pan with parchment, or spray with nonstick spray.
- In the bottom of a large bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, yacon syrup, stevia, flax seed, milk beverage, and lemon zest.
- In the bowl of a food processor, blend together the walnuts, almonds, oats and coconut flour until the nuts are ground and mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add the cinnamon, ginger, cardamon and salt and blend just to mix.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture in the bowl and toss with a fork (as if making pie dough) until it comes together in a very moist yet crumbly dough (it will stick together if pressed, but should readily separate into crumbles if tossed with the fork).
- To make the filling, mix together the pumpkin, apple, lemon juice, vanilla and stevia.
- Take about half the crumble mixture and press it firmly into the bottom of your prepared pan. Top with the filling, spreading evenly. Sprinkle the remaining crumble mixture evenly over the filling and press gently with the palms of your hands.
- Bake 45 to 55 minutes, or until the edges are browned and the top of the crumble begins to brown a bit. (The filling won’t bubble the way typical fruit pie fillings do).
- Allow to cool to room temperature before cutting into squares; reheat if desired to serve. Leftovers may be frozen.