Are you ready for the perfect fall dessert? Vegan Maple Pecan Bars are the ultimate sweet treat for autumn!
Guys, these Maple Pecan Bars are out of this world good and the perfect way to kick off your fall baking. It was 80 degrees when I baked these maple pecan bars and I maybe had to turn on the air conditioning one last time to truly enjoy having the oven on, but it was all worth it in the end. Think of these like a shortbread-y crust topped with a big batch of quick caramel and a healthy dose of pecans folded in. The brown sugar in these maple pecan bars gives off a caramel taste to both the crust and topping, while coconut cream is mixed into the topping to make everything creamy and dreamy. True fall baking heaven!
I actually ended up taking these to work and to a blogger potluck on Monday, both times ended with the batch I brought disappearing way faster than I anticipated. Before I left the house on Monday night for the potluck, I held back two maple pecan bars so I wouldn’t get the ‘Where did those go?!’ exclamation from my husband that so often happens. Because of the way our schedules line up, by the time I bake and photograph a recipe, he sometimes doesn’t have a chance to eat what I’ve made, especially if it gets taken to work first. A few times I’ve posted the recipe and come home to ‘Um, so where did you put those things you put up today?’ and I have to tell him that they are gone, whoops! Anyway, these vegan maple pecan bars earned the approval of even one of my pickiest co-workers and were gone in a flash from the dessert portion of the potluck. On a related note, if you ever get invited to a potluck with food bloggers, GO. Everything is guaranteed to be 100% delicious and getting the recipe is easy as pie, for obvious reasons.
One last note, the first time I made the base for these, I tried out using teff flour instead of all purpose flour because I still had some left over from making these brownies. It ended up not working out so well and kind of resembled sand, so I’m going to continue to leave the gluten free baking to my more talented GF friends from now on! Also, I know it’s tempting to skip the whole lining the pan with parchment paper step, but especially because of the caramel topping, I would highly recommend saving your sanity by going ahead and doing it. I missed one small spot on my batch and I soaked the pan for a couple days before it actually scrubbed off. All that to say, the maple pecan bars are worth it, without a doubt!
What are you guys up to this weekend? I’m working a bit and am able to meet up with my best friend since she will be in the area, so I’m ready for little sleep and lots of cocktails! If you make any recipes, don’t forget to tag your photos with #heartofabaker! I love to see what you make!
Vegan Maple Pecan Bars
- For the crust:
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup brown sugar firmly packed
- 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- For the filling:
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 2/3 cup brown sugar firmly packed
- 1/3 cup coconut cream or coconut milk
- 2 cups chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9 x 9 inch baking pan with parchment paper and then grease the paper lining. Set aside.
In a large bowl, stir together the whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, brown sugar, salt, and olive oil. Stir until everything starts to come together into a dough. Transfer the dough to the lined and greased pan. Press into the bottom of the pan in an even layer. Bake for 15-17 minutes, until crust is firm when touched.
While the crust is baking, prepare the filling. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the olive oil, maple syrup and brown sugar. Stir the mixture together until combined and sugar is dissolved. Keep over heat until the mixture comes to a boil, then boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat after boiling and stir in the coconut cream and pecans. Stir together until cream has dissolved and pecans are mixed in. Pour the filling over the crust and spread it evenly and all the way to the edges.
Bake until filling is bubbling and set, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool completely before cutting (will take about an hour).