Eat Well, It's okay to not be Superhuman, Live Well, Pecan Caramel Shortbread Bars

Pecan Caramel Choco Shortbread Bars + It’s okay to not be Superhuman

Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars

Hi Friends!

Oh how I missed you guys! I’m sorry for the lack of posts the past couple of weeks. But, as most of you might know, I just got back from a trip from Belgium and Italy just this week! The trip was incredible! There was so much walking, so many sights to see in such a short time, ate the most incredible waffles, dark chocolate, pasta, Tiramisu, and more cakes, and gelato and chocolate… Climbed up over 1000+++ stairs to see the city views of Brugge, Cinque Terre, Florence… that it was quite an adventure. I came back to Edinburgh feeling as if I had left my legs somewhere in Italy and not really being able to believe that just a few hours before that I was standing at the heart of the Vatican City.

There will be a post telling the story of my adventure and all the foodie goodness and lessons I learned from the trip in the next post. Today I’m going to be sharing a very easy peasy snack bar for all of you sweet tooth and chocolate lovers: These Pecan Caramel Chocolate Shortbread Bars.

 

Understanding the lesson in listening to our body’s needs

When I got back from my travels… after eating for 10 days outside, I missed creating something in my kitchen and using my oven. But I didn’t want to make something over elaborate since my body needed rest. Around 6 days into the trip, my legs and lower back started hurting from too much walking and not getting enough sleep since we had to catch early flights / train rides. Being a bit stubborn and wanting to see all of the sights as I can, I didn’t listen to my body when it said ‘stop walking’, so I pushed through the pain and just kept on going. The pain got worse as the days went on, and by the 8th and 9th day I was basically sitting down at every chance I could in the trip.

So, by time I got back my body just needed rest. Rest meaning allowing myself to get a full night’s sleep or two, kicking up my feet on the couch and not walking for a couple of days and just recovering. The voice in my mind kept on saying, ‘Cmon, you just had 10 days of a ‘break’ from going to Italy and Belgium, now it’s time to get back to work… there’s emails to be opened, blog posts to plan and write…’  But, I reminded myself that I wasn’t a machine that could go non-stop; it was okay to feel tired and worn out, it’s okay to not want to do anything for a few days when you feel like you need to just zone out. It’s really okay. (the world is not going to fall apart, but you might if you don’t take a break)

It's okay to not be superhuman! Take the time to rest and recharge. Click To Tweet

 

I wanted to write a bit on how it’s important to listen to our bodies and giving the rest it needs, because sometimes we like to be superhuman and would like to be able to just do just about everything on our list but it’s okay to just rest and recoup.

So I allowed myself to rest and in the course of doing so, I dreamed up these bars. They’re filled with healthy fats from nut butter and pecans (from a new found love obsession Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter from Whole Earth), carbs from wholemeal and oats, and naturally sweetened with maple syrup and dark chocolate.

They make a really good pick me up snack or dessert, especially when you’re craving for something sweet in the afternoon or to finish your day with 🙂

Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman

 

 

Here’s the recipe!

 

Bottom layer: Shortbread base (adapted from my Vegan Raspberry Crumble Bars)

1 1/2 cups flour (I used wholemeal flour)

1 cup oats

1 tsp salt

1/3 cup – 1/2 cup of unrefined muscovado sugar (depending on your preferred sweetness)

6 Tbsp of room temperature vegan butter

1 tsp vanilla essence

A few Tbsp of water

 

Middle layer: Peanut Butter ‘Caramel’

One jar (340 grams) of Whole Earth Crunchy Organic Peanut Butter (or another nut butter you prefer, Almond Butter would work incredibly well too!

10 Medjool dates (pitted and soaked for 15 mins in water)

1 Tbsp of Maple Syrup (if needed)

1 tsp of salt (if your nut butter is not salted)

 

Top layer: Pecan studded Chocolate

4 -5 heaped Tbsp of melted coconut oil

2 Tbsp of maple syrup

3 Tbsp of unsweetened cacao / cocoa powder

A pinch of salt

Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman

Instructions

To make the SHORTBREAD BASE

1. Preheat your oven to 170 Celsius.

2. Combine the oats, flour, salt, sugar, maca powder together in a bowl. Together with the vegan butter mix the oat mixture until it resembles crumbly moist mixture. I recommend using your hands to mix (it’s easier and funner!). Add a few Tbsp of water to help it moisten the mixture a bit

3. Press down firmly the mixture onto a baking pan lined with baking paper.

4.  Bake the crumble mixture for 15 – 20 minutes until the mixture is golden toasted brown.

5. Take it out and let cool on a wire rack.

 

Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman

To make the CARAMEL LAYER

1. Soak the Medjool Dates (pitted) in water for 15 minutes or so. Cut up the soaked dates into little pieces.

2. Together with your nut butter, blend the soaked dates in a high speed blender until relatively combined. Use a few Tbsp of the water used from soaking the dates to help it blend. Add salt at this point, if your nut butter is not salted. Taste, if the sweetness is according to your liking. If not (remember there is still another chocolate layer to put on top which will add to the sweetness), add 1 Tbsp of maple syrup.

3. Spread the ‘caramel’ nut butter mixture evenly on top of the shortbread base.

4. Put in the fridge to firm up a bit as you make the chocolate layer.

 

To make the CHOCOLATE LAYER

1. Melt the coconut oil inside a bowl on top of a boiling pan of hot water. Add the cacao / cocoa powder and pinch of salt once the oil has melted. Then add the maple syrup.

2. Slowly pour the chocolate on top of the caramel layer.

3. Press some crushed pecans onto the chocolate layer. Put back into the fridge to let the bars firm up over night or for 3 hours and more. Wait patiently…. then take it out, slice into squares according to your liking!

Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars Pecan-Caramel-Chocolate-Shortbread-Bars-It's-okay-to-not-be-Superhuman I hope you enjoyed these simple Pecan Caramel Chocolate Shortbread Bars recipe! Be sure to tag me @wellnesstogo and #wellnesstogo if you decide to bake them!

I hope you take the time to listen to your body’s needs this weekend! It could be your body needs some rest, sleep, good food, or perhaps some play time! Whatever, it is, please take the time to honor it, your body will thank you for it!

Do you have your own experiences of not listening to your body’s needs? What happened and how did you overcome them? I would love to know! Can’t wait to connect with you in the comments below! 🙂

 

Much love,

Gaby

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Pecan Caramel Choco Shortbread Bars
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Pecan Caramel Chocolate Shortbread Bars. Vegan, naturally sweetened, easy to make. Perfect for an afternoon snack or dessert to end your day with.
Author:
Cuisine: Snack / dessert
Serves: 9 bars
Ingredients
  • Bottom layer: Shortbread base (adapted from my Vegan Raspberry Crumble Bars)
  • 1½ cups flour (I used wholemeal flour)
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ⅓ cup – ½ cup of unrefined muscovado sugar (depending on your preferred sweetness)
  • 6 Tbsp of room temperature vegan butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • A few Tbsp of water
  • Middle layer: Peanut Butter 'Caramel'
  • One jar (340 grams) of Whole Earth Crunchy Organic Peanut Butter (or another nut butter you prefer, Almond Butter would work incredibly well too!
  • 10 Medjool dates (pitted and soaked for 15 mins in water)
  • 1 Tbsp of Maple Syrup (if needed)
  • 1 tsp of salt (if your nut butter is not salted)
  • Top layer: Pecan studded Chocolate
  • 4 -5 heaped Tbsp of melted coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp of maple syrup
  • 3 Tbsp of unsweetened cacao / cocoa powder
  • A pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. To make the SHORTBREAD BASE
  2. Preheat your oven to 170 Celsius.
  3. Combine the oats, flour, salt, sugar, maca powder together in a bowl. Together with the vegan butter mix the oat mixture until it resembles crumbly moist mixture. I recommend using your hands to mix (it’s easier and funner!). Add a few Tbsp of water to help it moisten the mixture a bit
  4. Press down firmly the mixture onto a baking pan lined with baking paper.
  5. Bake the crumble mixture for 15 – 20 minutes until the mixture is golden toasted brown.
  6. Take it out and let cool on a wire rack.
  7. To make the CARAMEL LAYER
  8. Soak the Medjool Dates (pitted) in water for 15 minutes or so. Cut up the soaked dates into little pieces.
  9. Together with your nut butter, blend the soaked dates in a high speed blender until relatively combined. Use a few Tbsp of the water used from soaking the dates to help it blend. Add salt at this point, if your nut butter is not salted. Taste, if the sweetness is according to your liking. If not (remember there is still another chocolate layer to put on top which will add to the sweetness), add 1 Tbsp of maple syrup.
  10. Spread the 'caramel' nut butter mixture evenly on top of the shortbread base.
  11. Put in the fridge to firm up a bit as you make the chocolate layer.
  12. To make the CHOCOLATE LAYER
  13. Melt the coconut oil inside a bowl on top of a boiling pan of hot water. Add the cacao / cocoa powder and pinch of salt once the oil has melted. Then add the maple syrup.
  14. Slowly pour the chocolate on top of the caramel layer.
  15. Press some crushed pecans onto the chocolate layer. Put back into the fridge to let the bars firm up over night or for 3 hours and more. Wait patiently.... then take it out, slice into squares according to your liking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Berta.karaim@gmail.com'
    Berta says

    I would have absolutely loved some of these as I lay around on the couch for the past few days, trying to get better from a cold! The desire to be superhuman is so familiar to me – I seem to be unable to simply sit down and do nothing, I always need to be productive, ticking off items from a to-do list…
    I hope you recover from your travels soon!

    • Yes me too! I’m so glad you can relate to it, I think my next goal would be to ‘schedule’ in some rest / me / down time on my agenda and actually feel okay when there is ‘nothing’ to do on the list because we don’t need to be productive all the time 🙂 Oh no, hope you get better soon and hope the winter is not too harsh in Melbourne!

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