Since fall is here and the temperatures in TX are finally starting to cool down, I am in the mood to bake! Canned Organic pumpkin seems to be all over the grocery store shelves and I cannot resist coming up with new, fun, healthy and delicious recipes that include pumpkin! Remember form my last pumpkin post that it is high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants! It is also low in calories, so it is a great thing to add to your diet.
Pumpkin and chocolate go so well together and almond butter has become a staple in most of my healthy desserts. This recipe is Vegan, since there are no eggs, and I used Erythritol to sweeten them. Erythritol has become a popular sweetener recently since it does not spike insulin levels and is Diabetic, Keto and Paleo friendly. This was actually my first time using it and I was really happy with the results. In my opinion, it is a great way to sweeten for baking. I am still a fan of maple syrup and honey but if you are vegan, diabetic or keto, maple syrup and honey will not work.
Since I have cut out sugar, I do not like anything too sweet anymore. 1/2 cup of erythritol was plenty to sweeten these bars. Since erythritol is fairly, new studies, so far, show it is safe, so I would use it for baking but probably not add it to my diet everyday, as it could still trigger sugar cravings!
YOU MUST MAKE THESE BARS!! Even my picky kids loved them! They are a great option for breakfast, or a healthy snack any time of the day.
1 cup unsweetened organic pumpkin (1 15 oz can)
1 cup almond butter
1/2 cup almond milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup erythritol (or 1/4 cup maple syrup)
2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp kosher salt
3/4 cup dark chocolate chips + more for sprinkling (I like Enjoy Life allergy free)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9×13 baking pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together (except chocolate chips) until well combined and smooth. Add the chocolate chips and pour the mixture into the lined baking pan. With a spatula, smooth the batter, and press some more chocolate chips on top. Bake for 25-27 minutes or until a toothpick comes out almost clean and it is slightly brown on top. Let cool and slice into squares. Enjoy!