Summer has icy cold treats, pie takes the stage in autumn, and the winter holidays wouldn’t be complete without cookies. But where do you turn to satisfy your springtime sweet tooth? Look no further than Sophie Jaffe’s lemon bars. Sophie is the founder and CEO of the health food brand Philosophie, and she knows a thing or two about creating a light and flavorful treat you can feel good about.
The healthy dose of Vitamin C provided by the lemon and the protein boost from the cashews make the bars a perfect guilt-free dessert for you and your friends… or you can keep them all to yourself. We wouldn’t blame you.
LEMON BAR INGREDIENTS
For the Filling:
1 cup Raw Cashews
1 cup Coconut Cream
2 tablespoons Arrowroot or Cornstarch
½ cup Lemon Juice
1 tablespoon Lemon Zest
Pinch of Sea Salt
¼ cup Berry Bee Honey, to taste (maple syrup or coconut nectar is good, too!)
2 tablespoons Organic Powdered Sugar, for topping (optional)
Dehydrated Lemon Slices (optional)
For the Crust:
1 cup Gluten-Free Oats
1 cup Almonds or Almond Meal
¼ teaspoon Sea Salt
2 tablespoons Coconut Sugar or Berry Bee Honey
4-5 tablespoons Coconut Oil, melted
LEMON BAR ASSEMBLY
1 | Add the raw cashews to a mixing bowl and cover with boiling hot water. Let them rest for one hour uncovered, then drain thoroughly. If you have more time, you can also soak overnight in cool, filtered water.
2 | Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line an 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
3 | Add oats, almonds, and sea salt to a high-speed blender and mix on high until at a fine consistency.
4 | Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and add Berry Bee Honey and melted coconut oil, starting with four tablespoons, adding more coconut oil if it’s too dry.
5 | Stir with a spoon until a loose dough is formed. You should be able to squeeze the mixture between two fingers and form a dough instead of it crumbling. If it’s too dry, add a bit more melted coconut oil.
6 | Transfer mixture to parchment-lined baking sheet and spread evenly. Then place parchment paper on top and use a flat-bottomed object (such as a drinking glass) to press down firmly until it’s evenly distributed and well-packed.
7 | Bake for 15 minutes, and then increase heat to 375 degrees and bake for five to eight minutes more, or until the edges are golden brown and there is some browning on the surface. Remove from the oven to cool slightly, then reduce oven heat to 350 degrees.
8 | Once the cashews are soaked and drained, add to a high speed blender with the coconut cream, arrowroot starch, lemon juice, lemon zest, sea salt, and Berry Bee Honey. Mix on high until creamy and smooth. (Taste and adjust flavor as needed. It should be very lemony, and not overly sweet.)
9 | Pour filling over the pre-baked crust and spread into an even layer. Tap on counter to remove any air bubbles.
10 | Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the edges look slightly dry and the center appears “jiggley” but not liquidy.
11 | Let rest for 10 minutes, then transfer uncovered to the refrigerator to let cool completely (at least four hours, preferably overnight).
12 | To serve, slice and sift with powdered sugar (optional). Store leftovers in the refrigerator, covered, for up to four days. (Add the dehydrated lemons when ready to serve.)