My family likes these Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars more than traditional apple pie and you’ll love the ingredient list!You are going to want to stop what you are doing and make these bars immediately. Seriously. These Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars just shot up onto my favorite desserts list.
We’ll just call them healthy-ish. I removed the butter from the shortbread crust and used coconut oil. Instead of all-purpose flour I used whole wheat pastry flour. I used coconut palm sugar in place of white, refined sugar. I also made the salted caramel sauce on top with no heavy cream or dairy whatsoever. It’s actually a fat-free vegan caramel sauce made with dates!
But it’s a dessert with more wholesome ingredients than your standard dessert and one you will feel great about serving to guests. I’m hosting Thanksgiving this year and I’ve already put these on my dessert list.
Here’s the other thing about these apple pie bars. They are simple as pie. What does that saying even mean? Pie isn’t that simple. These are actually fifty times simpler than pie. The shortbread crust is made in one bowl by simply mixing a few ingredients together. Fail proof! Unlike pie crust. Forget about pie. Bars are where it’s at. If you haven’t gone apple picking yet this year, this is your excuse to go. You have got to try these easy and delicious apple pie bars. I’m already dreaming about my next batch.Print
Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars
These Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars have a bottom crust, a layer of sweet apples, and are topped with a crumble topping and salted caramel sauce. They are divine!
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 30-35
- Total Time: 55 - 60 minutes
- Yield: 9 bars 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: American
For the Crust
1/2 cup refined coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup Coconut Palm Sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
For the Filling
2 large apples (use a sweet and tart variety for most complex flavor), peeled and thinly (1/4″) sliced
2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour
2 tablespoons Coconut Palm Sugar
1 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
For the Topping
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/3 cup Coconut Palm Sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup solid coconut oil
For the Vegan Salted Caramel Sauce
15 pitted dates*
1/2 cup water+more as needed
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon Coarse Real Salt
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Line an 8X8 inch pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving overhang on all sides. Set aside.
- Start by making the crust. Stir together the melted coconut oil, sugar, vanilla extract, and salt. Add the flour and stir until combined. Press the mixture into the pan evenly and bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
- While the crust is baking, prepare the filling and topping.
- For the filling, combine the apples, flour, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg and set aside.
- For the topping, stir together the oats, sugar, cinnamon, and flour. Add the solid coconut oil, in chunks, and combine with your hands. You can also use a pastry cutter or two knives to do this. I just use my hands. The mixture should resemble coarse crumbs when you are finished.
- Remove the crust from the oven, and turn it up to 350 degrees. Layer the apples evenly on the warm crust. Press them down so they all fit. Sprinkle the apple layer with the streusel topping. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the topping is golden brown.
- While they are baking, prepare the vegan salted caramel sauce. Put the dates*, water, vanilla, and salt in your blender. Start on low for about 10 seconds, then turn it up to high and blend until you have a smooth mixture. Add additional water as needed to achieve your desired consistency. Taste and add more salt if you prefer. I have a powerful Vitamix blender which makes the sauce super smooth; other blenders may not be able to completely remove all date chunks. It will still be delicious! (But I highly recommend a Vitamix for that reason. :)) Set the sauce aside.
- When the bars are finished baking, pull them out of the oven and allow them to cool, on a baking rack, at room temperature for about 20 minutes. Then place them in the freezer for 30 minutes. This gives the bars a chance to firm up before cutting. They won’t stay together as well without this step. You can also refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
- Cut the bars into 9-16 bars and top with the salted caramel sauce. Enjoy!
*Soft dates work best. If your dates aren’t soft, soak them in hot water for about 5-10 minutes.
- Serving Size: 1 bar
- Calories: 350
- Sugar: 28.2g
- Sodium: 25mg
- Fat: 19.1g
- Carbohydrates: 47.4g
- Protein: 3.3g
If you make this Vegan Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bar recipe, or any Happy Healthy Mama recipe, I would LOVE to see it! Please take a pic and share it on Instagram or Facebook and tag me @happyhealthymama ?
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Want more fall baking recipes that are on the healthier side? Here are my favorite recipes!