It’s been quite a few years since I excluded refined sugar from my diet and I have absolutely no desire for it, even when I see the creamiest, most lush, deliciously-flavored dessert. Well…except chocolate. When it comes to chocolate desserts, everything changes and my heart starts to beat faster and faster. I love Sacher torte, brownies, cupcakes, frosting, ice cream, and everything that involves chocolate. How do I manage to survive? The answer is…raw!
The incredible versatility of raw desserts saved me from breaking my decision to eliminate refined sugar from my diet. I don’t know if you can recreate any dessert using raw ingredients only, but the most popular chocolate delights definitely have a delicious and healthy raw version. Lucky me!
These gorgeous fudge bars are packed with excellent nutrients: potassium (from both banana and dates), healthy fats and minerals. And because we’re talking about chocolate, it is the raw cacao powder that loads the bars with even more high-quality nutrients, especially antioxidants. There is a big difference between raw cacao powder and the cocoa powder you will find in all supermarkets, which is the one most people use. Regular cocoa powder is obtained after the cacao nibs are fermented, dried, sometimes treated with additives, and processed to obtain chocolate or cocoa powder – so many of its nutrients are destroyed or reduced in the process.
The raw cacao powder is a real superfood, loaded with antioxidants, proteins, antioxidants (flavonoids), calcium, magnesium, sulfur, copper, iron, zinc, potassium, healthy fats, fibers, and vitamins E, B2, B1, B5, B3, and B9, with multiple health benefits. So, when you’re preparing your next raw chocolate dessert make sure you use the real deal!
Raw Chocolate Almond Butter Fudge Bars
- 1 cup pitted dates soaked in filtered water for 1 hour and drained
- 4 tbsp raw cacao powder
- 2 ripe bananas
- 1 &1/2 cup raw almonds unsalted
- ½ cup raw cashews
- ½ cup raw hazelnuts
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp raw agave nectar
- Place the pitted dates, 2 tbsp raw cacao powder, cashews and hazelnuts in the food processor and mix until well blended.
- Spread the mixture in a small baking pan an press it down with your fingers or a spoon.
- Place the almonds in the food processor and mix to obtain a creamy butter (it should take about 10-12 minutes, pausing every minute to not overrun the machine; the texture will go all the way from coarsely chopped, to crumbly, finely ground and butter).
- Add the bananas, agave nectar, coconut oil and 2 tbsp raw cacao powder to obtain a smooth cream.
- Pour the banana cream on top of the date base and spread evenly.
- Cover with a plastic foil and place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
- Remove from the refrigerator, cut in squares, sprinkle with raw cacao powder and serve.
Hey 🙂 I love the recipe! Could I use almond butter from a jar? I just happen to have some in the cupboard at the minute 🙂
Hey! You can use almond butter from a jar, but I’m not very sure if this one is raw. Anyway, it will taste fantastic 🙂
If you DID use almond butter (instead of bananas??) how much do you think you would need? I have a daughter who is allergic to bananas.
I would probably add a tablespoon almond butter for each banana. I don’t think it will turn out very differently, it will actually be creamier without the banana. Let me know if you try this recipe, would love to read about the result.
Arata de vis! Felicitari!
Thanks, Natalia! One small request: please write your future comments in English so everyone can understand them. Hugs!
WOW! I just found your blolg, it’s amazing here! I’m in love with all your recipes and your photography! Great work, keep it up Ana!
Greetings from Germany
Thank you for your kind words, Rike!
What an amazing recipe! they look absolutely delicious – no need for any refined sugar here! Love your blog and signing up to follow
Thanks Mary, and good luck with your new blog! XO
Meg @ Noming thru Life says
I am so obsessed with raw desserts right now!! Can’t wait to give this a try!
Meg, I’m very sure you’ll love it! Let me know how it turned out!
wow these look delicious – just right for coffee on Christmas morning – just need to find a substitute for the bananas:)
I would normally replace them with avocado and add some agave syrup for sweetness, but I think pears would fit great in this recipe!
Christine // my natural kitchen says
What a beautiful treat! Your photographs are really gorgeous and I love the ingredient list for these. Just perfect!
Thank you so much, dear Christine, I am really happy that you like it!
Great recipe! On my second batch. Although very satisfying for my chocolate fix the banana taste is very present. What is the purpose of the banana? Also for my batches, the banana makes the top layer like an icing, very thick. Is this the same for you? Again very delicious and happy to have found your blog! Definitely makes being vegetarian wanting to be vegan inspiring. Cheers.
Dear Christine, I am really happy that you made my recipe and also liked it!I love the banana flavor and the creaminess it gives, this is why I decided to use it for the top layer. Freezing the fudges gives them ice-like consistency, but if you leave them at room temperature for a few minutes they’ll be just fine. Hugs, Ana 🙂
Haha. In the USA we refer to “icing” as the top creamy thick layer of cake or cupcakes, sometimes also called frosting . I wasn’t saying that the bars are like ice. 🙂
I got it now! 🙂
Your site is very well done and your pictures are fabulous.
I am planning to make these, but would honey work as a replacement for the agave?
Thank you for your feedback, Tami! Yes, you can replace agave with honey, it won’t be a raw recipe anymore but I’m sure it will have a great taste!
This looks fabulous, but I’m unable to eat cashews or hazelnuts. Would I be able to substitute more almonds?
Hi Nora, you can use almonds only, it won’t turn out as creamy as this one, but I’m sure it will taste very good.
Awesome recipe! Thanks for sharing.
Happy you liked it! 🙂
This recipe is so SO creative and looks delicious. Well done Ana!
It was a great replacement for the classic fudge, so delicious and guilt-free, I ate a lot when I made these 🙂 Thank you, dear Aysegul!
I couldn’t agree more with everything you wrote in this post- I just adore raw cacao brownies. I especially love the double layer you created here with the banana cream on top. Just too perfect and beautiful!
Thank you so much, Emily, I’m really happy that you visited my blog and found something inspiring 🙂
This was the first raw dessert I ever made and it was lovely. I used a bit more cacaopowder and used maple syrup instead of agave. Eating chocolate and being healthy at the same time, it can’t be any better. This means I’m gonna try out more raw recipes. Thanx.
That sounds great, Inge! Maple syrup is a very good choice, and there is always space for extra cacao 🙂
Ana, I made these bars and thet tasted great, like a chocolate banana cream pie. My top layer seemed to come out much runnier than it looks here, less like fudge or even frosting and more like a pudding. Could it be that my bananas were too big?
This might be a possibility, but either way it should freeze nicely even with too much banana.
Am I SUPPOSED to freeze it? When I read to put it in the refrigerator I put it in cold part of my fridge, not the frozen part.
Yesss, I actually meant to write freezer and not refrigerator 🙂 I’m really happy you wrote me, so I can now correct the mistake! Thank you 🙂
Hans S says
Altough I really like your recipe, I have problems reproducing it. I mixed the almonds for a very long time, but it never resulted in peanut buttter, no matter how many times I tried. Please help, I am really confused!
Good point Hans 🙂 The recipe is correct now!
It doesn’t matter how long you process it you will NEVER get peanut butter from almonds! (Sorry, just could not resist pointing out the obvious).
It takes a very long time to turn raw almonds into butter… up tp 20 min. Roasting the almonds first cuts processing time in half.
These look incredible! How long will they last in the freezer?
They last up to two weeks. Thanks so much 🙂
I probably have silly questions, but I’m new with this 🙂
in France, it’s not written if the cacao powder is raw or not. I bought an organic fair trade cacao box, also not specified there. When it’s not written raw, does it automatically means it’s not ?
Alson the raw hazelnuts, almonds etc… Not written either. So when they are not “grilled”, does it mean they are raw?
Hi Allison, I wouldn’t consider ingredients raw unless they’re labeled so. We had the same problem here at some point, but with time they labeled everything. Maybe ordering from a trusted online source would help.
Hi can you use something in place of coconut oil please, would almond butter or oil be OK?
The coconut oil is meant to solidify the fudge, you can use almond butter instead but you need to freeze them for a longer period to keep them together.
Delicious, I love that it has no refined sugar but still tastes like it does. I am going to try it with avocado instead of banana next time as you suggested in a comment.
Ana Marija says
hi, did it, and my house Luv it. great recepie, great work, thank you