Store bought candy bars may not be healthy, but these homemade Twix bars sure are. No corn syrup, dairy, wheat or artificial flavorings to be found here! Better yet, these Healthy Homemade Twix Bars are Paleo, Vegan, gluten free and nut free. They consist of a tigernut flour shortbread cookie, creamy date caramel and dark chocolate coating. This healthy Twix recipe is just the thing for a real food Halloween treat.
Truth: I had the hardest time photographing these Paleo Twix candy bars. Simply put, they're not very pretty from the outside. But, like with most things, it's what's on the inside that counts...right?
While a "real" Twix bar may be more photogenic, these homemade candy bars have a whole lot more going for them. I mean, have you looked at the ingredients in a conventional Twix candy bar?
Ingredients in a Conventional Twix Candy Bar
"Real" Twix candy bars contain not-so-great-for-you ingredients. Okay, so that's being nice. They contain horrible ingredients! In fact, pretty much every ingredient is something I don't eat. Here's the list:
Milk Chocolate (Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Chocolate, Skim Milk, Lactose, Milkfat, Soy Lecithin, PGPR, Artificial Flavors), Sugar, Enriched Wheat Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Palm Oil, Corn Syrup, Skim Milk, Dextrose, Less than 2% - Food Starch-Modified, Salt, Cocoa Powder, Baking Soda, Soy Lecithin, Artificial Flavor.
Something I find a bit funny: the enriched wheat flour and the fact that they listed the vitamins/minerals found in it. It's almost as if they're trying to say that the product is healthy because it contains these vitamins. But, don't be fooled, these are all synthetic vitamins and found in very small quantities in a candy bar.
Also, I had never heard of PGPR (in the milk chocolate) until doing some research for this post. Apparently the full name is: polyglycerol polyricinoleate. This substance is used by many big brand chocolate companies to replace cocoa butter because it is far cheaper. PGPR consists of glycerol and fatty acids typically derived from castor beans. In addition to being cheaper, it increases shelf life. (1)
Now, compare this to my homemade Twix recipe and the two are almost nothing alike! The only similarities: they have a filling made of shortbread cookie and caramel and a chocolate coating.
Ingredients in Healthy Homemade Twix Bars
These Paleo and Vegan friendly Twix bars contain simple, real food ingredients. They're even nut free! (Which, if you do a quick google search you'll quickly find that most Paleo candy bar recipes contain nuts.)
The shortbread cookie is made of tigernut flour, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla and salt. Almond flour would be a great alternative for the tigernut flour if you aren't looking for something nut free. For this substitution, I recommend using 150 grams (or about 1 + ½ cups) of blanched almond flour.
The caramel filling consists of dates, coconut oil, coconut flour, vanilla and salt. This simple, easy caramel is made in a food processor and blended to a thick, creamy paste.
Dark Chocolate Coating
Lastly, the dark chocolate coating is purely dark chocolate. For this recipe, I used a 90% dark chocolate. But, any bar of your favorite chocolate will work.
How to Make Twix Bars From Scratch
These Twix bars are easy to make and don't require any baking. They do take a bit of time to put together, mostly because it is best to let the shortbread and caramel layers set in the freezer prior to dipping them in chocolate.
To start, line an 8" x 8" baking pan with foil. Set aside.
Combine all ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl and mix (first with a fork and then using your hands). Roll the dough into a ball and then press into lined baking pan.
First, place dates in a microwaveable bowl and cover with luke-warm water. Microwave on high for 2 minutes.
Next, drain the water and place the dates in food processor along with coconut oil, vanilla and salt. Blend well, stopping to scrape the sides every so often.
Add in coconut flour and blend until the mixture has a thick, smooth texture. Carefully spread the caramel over the shortbread, then use your hands to flatten it.
Freeze for a minimum of 2 hours. This makes dipping the bars into chocolate far easier.
After freezing, melt the dark chocolate over low heat in a small sauce pan. Stir frequently. Once the chocolate is fully melted, retrieve the bars from the freezer and cut into 16 equally sized pieces. Dip the pieces (one at a time) into the melted chocolate. Place them on a lined baking sheet to set.
These Healthy, Homemade Twix Bars can be stored in the fridge or freezer.
More Easy, Paleo Chocolate Recipes
For more simple, easy-to-make chocolate recipes, check out these:
- Pumpkin Peanut Butter Cups
- Spicy Coconut Butter Cups
- Allergy Free Fudge
- Dark Chocolate Turmeric Truffles
These healthy Paleo, Vegan and gluten free Twix bars consist of a tigernut flour shortbread, creamy date caramel and dark chocolate coating.
- 112g tigernut flour (about 1 cup)*
- ¼ cup coconut oil (room temp)
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 1 + ½ cups pitted dates (225g)
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- ½ tsp vanilla
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 3 Tbsp coconut flour
- 4 oz dark chocolate
- Line an 8" x 8" baking pan with foil. Set aside.
- For the shortbread cookie: add all ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl and mix (first with a fork and then using your hands). Roll dough into a ball and then press into lined baking pan.
- For the caramel: place dates in a microwaveable bowl and cover with luke-warm water. Microwave on high for 2 minutes** Drain the water and place dates in food processor with coconut oil, vanilla and salt. Blend well, stopping to scrape the sides every so often. Add in coconut flour and blend until mixture has a thick, smooth texture. Carefully spread the caramel over the shortbread, then use your hands to flatten it.
- Freeze for a minimum of 2 hours***
- Chocolate Coating: in a small sauce pan, melt dark chocolate over low heat. Stir frequently. Once chocolate is fully melted, remove bars from freezer and cut into 16 equally sized pieces. Dip the bars (one at a time) into the melted chocolate. Place them on a lined baking sheet to set.
- Bars can be stored in the fridge or freezer.
*May substitute the tigernut flour for 150g (1 + ½ cups) blanched almond flour.
**If you don't have a microwave, simply soak the dates in hot water for at least 2 hours.
***Freezing the bars firms up the caramel and shortbread, making them easier to dip into the chocolate.
Keywords: candy bar, Paleo, Vegan, dessert, Halloween, nut free, egg free, dairy free, no bake