If you let me, I’d eat dessert with every meal.

Breakfast, brunch, lunch, linner, dinner… You name it. Especially if it has chocolate… You can bet I’ll eat it. So, after making a heartbreaking decision last month to give up dairy, gluten, and refined sugar (yes, I’m one of those people), my biggest complaint has been the lack of dessert.

There’s only so many times that you can eat a watermelon and pretend it’s the same as a chocolate cake. Ergo, these delectable chocolate squares were born.

It has a chocolate graham cracker crust. It has a thick, decadent coconut cream frosting. It has cinnamon. You won’t even know that you’re eating dates. Trust me. I’ve trialed the recipe on my Twizzler-loving siblings with great success.

Hello, healthy dessert. You’re welcome.

Chocolate Coconut Squares

  • Prep Time:1 hour
  • Cook Time:15 minutes
  • Total Time:1 hour 15 minutes
  • Servings:16
  • Advanced Course

    Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans, halved
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 5 pitted Medjool dates
  • 1 large egg
  • 5 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 28 oz full-fat coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoon liquid sweetener (e.g. maple syrup, honey)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 125 grams dairy-free chocolate
Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 1

Place two cans of coconut milk upside-down in the refrigerator. Allow cans to chill overnight, or until the top layer of coconut cream fully separates from the liquid coconut milk.

Step 2

Preheat oven to 350°C

Step 3

Place a large metal bowl in the freezer to chill. This will be used to whip the coconut frosting later.

Step 4

In a large food processor, blitz almonds and pecans until a fine flour forms. Add shredded coconut, dates, egg, cocoa powder, and coconut oil to nut mixture. Process further until sticky dough forms.

Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 5

Line an 8×8 pan with baking parchment. Using a spoon, press dough firmly into the pan.

#SpoonTip: If the mixture is sticking to the spoon, place another sheet of baking parchment on top of the mixture and press down firmly on the parchment with your hands.

Step 6

Place the pan in the oven, and bake the mixture for 12-15 minutes, or until baked through. This will become the base of the squares.

Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 7

Whilst the mixture is baking, open both cans of refrigerated coconut milk. Scoop the separated coconut cream into the chilled bowl, and set aside remaining coconut milk for other recipes.

#SpoonTip: you can use the coconut milk to make drinks, such as this Strawberry Refresher here

Step 8

Add liquid sweetener, cinnamon, and vanilla extract to the coconut cream. Beat on high for 5-7 minutes, or until soft peaks form.

Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 9

Once the base of the squares has cooled, spread coconut cream mixture on top of the base. Set aside.

Step 10

Heat a small pot on the stove over low heat. Add dairy-free chocolate, and heat for 2-3 minutes, or until chocolate has melted.

Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 11

Swirl melted chocolate through coconut cream frosting until the top of the squares are marbled.

Photo by Jody Brimacombe
Photo by Jody Brimacombe

Step 12

Place the marbled mixture in the freezer for an hour, or until firm. Cut into squares and enjoy.