I’m ’bout to get heavy today. I know, chocolate and deep thoughts should really never be paired together, but sometimes it’s necessary. A woman needs to vent, right? So hear me out, as I introduce the next best thing to wine when you’re feeling crummy – no bake paleo chocolate mango bars.
My plan for these bars was GRAND, the brainchild in my head was epic. How could anything go wrong with a chewy nut bottom and creamy mango center topped with a decadent, thick chocolate shell? Well let me tell ya – you CAN’T go wrong. The flavor combo is like ‘WOAH just let me close my eyes and relish every little bite’. But the appearance….man, what a disappointment!
When I went in to cut these beauties, everything just sort of went south on me. In hindsight I probably should have delicately drizzled the chocolate on top these heavenly bars. Which would have turned out much prettier and avoided the weird break lines and broken top chocolate layer.
Back up – here’s my scenario for pretty much every single recipe I create: 1. Spend days or weeks coming up with something fun/healthy/easy/tasty/original/etc. 2. Map out the plan for this new recipe and get everything prepped so when little man goes down for a nap, I am READY 3. Work an hour or more making the latest and greatest creation 4. Ignore the complete MESS of a kitchen (for now) 5. Move to your photography station (this is where I start to sweat)
Food photography is HARD. Props, garnishes, focal points, backdrops, lighting – not to mention hoping the food doesn’t melt or dry out as it sits for the big shot.
Back to the countdown…6. PRAY little man doesn’t get up just as you get everything set up 7. Shoot shoot shoot 8. Hope (maybe pray again) that you have at least a few great shots. Because if the food is ugly, good luck getting love on Pinterest, or wanting to put it on your Instagram feed, or having people think twice about making it themselves (or coming back to see what else you have in store next week). And as a food blogger, if you don’t have that, ya pretty much have nothin’. Surprisingly enough, it’s a lot of pressure. I know, I sound like such a Debbie Downer. I have a point….getting to it.
When I finally cut into these bars and that sweet and lovely chocolate top just wouldn’t break a clean square I felt defeated. NOOOO!!! Now I have to make these again (not that it’s ALL bad, because they’re delicious), but here’s the deal-io. I don’t have time. I am under a nap deadline and a future baby deadline. My kitchen is a pit, my feet ache, I don’t want to run to the grocery store again, and there’s never enough damn time. And I’m tired. Just plain tired.
So I made a choice. They taste amazing, they don’t look perfect. Guess what? Sometimes that’s life. How can I go preaching about easy meals and understanding the life of a busy mom when I put ALL this pressure on myself to have the PERFECT looking bar. What a silly standard! I’m not a fancy person, I don’t need perfection in my real life to be happy – all I really need is love, health, faith, and chocolate. And this almond/pecan nut base with a cool and creamy mango center helps. Can I get an amen?
If you want the perfect looking bar, maybe this isn’t it. If you want a pretty bar, I’d suggest drizzling the chocolate over the top for easier cutting. If you want a bar that makes you feel normal, makes you fall in to a world of complete decadence of sweet, fruity, crunchy, cold, and FREAKING delicious, then I got you covered with these no bake paleo chocolate mango bars.
Ladies/mommas/girlfriends: you don’t have to be perfect, your baking, your cooking, your cleaning, your career, your parenting, your body – none of it has to be perfect. It just needs to be good enough. And trust me, it all is.
But in all seriousness, if you follow this recipe exact here are some tips:
When you want separate these into oddly-squared bars like pictured, the best way to do it is to raise your knife and karate chop where you want the chocolate to break. It’s oddly therapeutic.
Make sure you eat ’em cold. If the mango center starts to get warm, it will run. So get your chompers prepped and devour straight from the freezer.
You can use whatever kind of chocolate you prefer. If you aren’t following strict paleo guidelines, try a high quality dark chocolate! Or use these dairy-free Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips to make these a vegan dessert.
No mango? No problem. You could sub the mango for other pureed fruit with a similar consistency like strawberries!Print
No Bake Paleo Chocolate Mango Bars
- 1/2 cup almonds
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 8 medjool dates
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 1 extra large mango
- 1/3 cup coconut cream
- 2 cups dairy free chocolate chips (or high quality dark chocolate)
- Pulse almonds, pecans, dates, and melted coconut oil in a food processor until well combined -enough to stick
- Pour mixture into an 8×8 baking dish and gently press well until evenly distributed in the bottom of the dish
- Next, pulse the mango chunks and coconut cream until creamy and well combined
- Pour mango mixture on top of the nut base and place into the freezer for at least one hour
- Once the bars are frozen, melt the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl, mixing every 10-15 seconds so the chocolate does not burn. Keep microwaving and mixing until chocolate melted
- Pour (or drizzle) the melted chocolate on top of the frozen bars. If you opt to spread the chocolate over the top to make a shell, do so quickly, as the chocolate will set in a few seconds
- Place back into the freezer another 20 minutes
- Cut into squares and serve
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