Remember those creamsicle popsicle bars? The ones that you used to get at the beach or the ice cream truck back in the day? Well, lucky for you I've found a way to recreate them and make them a little bit healthier in the process.
Healthier you say? Don't worry. My reinvention of the classic creamsicle doesn't leave out any of the favorite flavors. I've also made them into bite-sized bars and ditched the messiness of the popsicle stick.
So what makes them healthier? The base of the bar is made from a combination of dates, almonds, walnuts, oats, and a bit of sea salt. The nuts give the bars a balanced flavor, while the dates add in a nice touch of sweetness.
Next is the base of the bars. Instead of opting for heavy cream or a similar ice cream base, I went with coconut cream. The coconut cream still provides a creamy base but cuts out the richness of the heavy cream.
Now, the only problem with these creamsicle bars is that you have to wait overnight to eat them. I know, it's not ideal, but they need a good night in the freezer to stay together. Freezing them overnight allows the base to make a strong bond to the crust. While it might be annoying to wait, it is the easiest way to get the best result.
These bars are perfect for a hot summer day. They are super creamy and flavorful. They even store well in the freezer and can be taken out one at a time for a quick afternoon snack.
These bars can be made with pretty much any citrus fruit in the base. Think lemon bars, key lime pie bars, even blood orange bars in the winter. The base is pretty versatile!
Check out the recipe below and let me know what you think about these healthy creamsicle bars!
- 12-15 Medjool dates pitted
- ½ cup walnuts
- ½ cup almonds
- ¾ cup whole rolled oats
- ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt
- 1 (14 oz) can coconut cream
- 1 cup cashews
- zest of 1 orange (about 2-3 tablespoons)
- ½ cup fresh orange juice (about 2 navel oranges)
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- Line an 8x8 inch baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Make the base. In a food processor combine the dates, walnuts, almonds, oats, and sea salt. Start off with a few quick pulses to allow the mixture to come together. After the pulses, let the food processor run until the mixture is smooth. If it does not look like it is coming together, slowly add in 1-2 tablespoons of water. This will make it a little mushier but make it sticky.
- Once the mixture is formed, press it down into the prepared pan. You can use your hands or a piece of parchment on top to help smooth out the crust. It will be very sticky. Once the base is flat, place the pan in the freezer.
- Make the creamsicle base. In a large bowl, combine the coconut cream, cashews, orange zest, juice, maple syrup, and sea salt. Mix with a wooden spoon to make sure they are all combined. Next, use an emersion blender and blend everything until smooth. This can also be done using a high-speed blender.
- Take the crust out of the freezer and pour the creamsicle base over the crust. Place the bars back in the freezer and freeze overnight.
- Before serving, let the bars thaw for about 20-30 minutes. This will make it easy to cut. After cutting into equal squares the bars can be placed back in the freezer if not being eaten right away.
This recipe is adapted from Love and Lemons Everyday Cookbook.Â