Gut-Healthy Chocolate Caramel Slice

Gut-Healthy Chocolate Caramel Slice, Quirky Cooking

I don’t eat many sweets these days, but sometimes I just really crave something special after dinner or for a weekend treat. Last Saturday while I was doing a cook up of sensible, meat-and-veg kinda meals for the freezer, I couldn’t stop day-dreaming about chocolate caramel slice. So I finally gave in and made one!

I cobbled together a few recipes from my blog and my upcoming cookbook, and kept it pretty simple. A nutty base with a few dates to stick them together, a simple date caramel filling, and my dairy free chocolate on top. It’s made with nutritious, gut-healthy ingredients – no nasties – and can be dairy free and even vegan if you prefer.

If you’re worried about eating too much, just cut it into little squares and freeze it so it’s not staring you in the face every time you open the fridge! 😀

You can watch me making it here (for the first time – very experimental ha ha!).

A few little notes on the recipe:

  • You can use any nuts or seeds for the base really – I think oily nuts like pecans, walnuts, macadamias and cashews will work best, but mix it up and use what you have. If the mixture is too dry, just add another date to bind it together.
  • Make it dairy free by using coconut oil instead of butter; or if you are a dairy lover and don’t love coconut, try sour cream in the filling – it’s amazing!!
  • I added gelatine (this brand) to give the filling a bit of firmness so it doesn’t ooze out when you bite it. But if you want ooziness, leave out the gelatine!
  • If you LOVE nuts, try adding a handle of activated (or roasted) pecans to the filling after blending – it gives it a creamy-crunchy delicious texture!

Tweak to your heart’s content… knowing me, I’ll probably make it different every time. Ha ha!

ENJOY!

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Gut-Healthy Chocolate Caramel Slice

This delicious chocolate caramel slice is practically guilt free! It’s made with whole-food, gut-friendly ingredients and sweetened naturally… plus it’s super simple and quick to make. Wooo!! 

Ingredients

Base

200g pecans

200g cashews

80g unsalted butter or coconut oil, plus extra for greasing dish

4 pitted medjool dates

1/4 tsp fine sea salt

Filling

300g pitted medjool dates

150g ghee, unsalted butter or coconut oil

300g coconut cream or sour cream

1 tsp vanilla paste or 1/4 tsp vanilla powder

1 Tbsp gelatin powder

1 tsp fine sea salt

Chocolate* (or see Notes for other ideas)

200g cacao butter

30g Dutch cocoa powder

5060g honey or pure maple syrup

1 tsp vanilla bean paste or 1/4 tsp vanilla powder

1/8 tsp fine sea salt

Instructions

Thermomix Method

Base:

  1. Place all base ingredients into Tm bowl and mix 20 sec/speed 6, or until mixture comes together. Blend longer if you want a finer result. (If you use other nuts/seeds you may need to add another date, if mixture is too dry.)
  2. Press base mixture into a greased rectangular baking dish (approx 26x19cm). Place into freezer while making the filling.

Filling:

  1. Place all filling ingredients into bowl and cook 5 mins/80C/speed 3.
  2. Blend 30 sec/speed 6.
  3. Pour filling over base and place back into freezer to set. (Make sure dish is on a flat surface!)

Chocolate:

  1. Chop cacao butter roughly with a knife on a chopping board to approx. 1-2cm cubes then mill in Thermomix 20 sec/speed 8.
  2. Melt cacao butter 6 mins/50°/speed 2, scraping down sides of bowl with spatula towards end of cooking time to ensure all the cacao butter is melted.
  3. Add remaining chocolate ingredients and blend 30 sec/speed 6.
  4. Pour chocolate over cold filling, place back into freezer to set chocolate.

Conventional Method

Base:

  1. Mix all base ingredients on medium-high speed in a food processor or blender until mixture comes together – blend longer if you want a finer result. (If you use other nuts/seeds you may need to add another date, if mixture is too dry.)
  2. Press base mixture into a greased rectangular baking dish (approx 26x19cm). Place into freezer while making the filling.

Filling:

  1. Chop dates finely. Place all filling ingredients into a saucepan and simmer for 5 mins over medium heat, stirring, until ingredients have melted together.
  2. Using an immersion blender, blend in pan until smooth. Or pour mixture into a blender once slightly cooled and blend for 30 seconds at medium speed.
  3. Pour filling over base and place back into freezer to set. (Make sure dish is on a flat surface!)

Chocolate:

  1. Chop cacao butter roughly then melt in a saucepan over medium heat until completely melted. Add remaining ingredients and whisk until well combined and smooth.
  2. Pour chocolate over cold filling, place back into freezer to set chocolate.

To serve:

Slice into squares as soon as chocolate is just set (about 10-15 mins) as it will crack if you slice it when the chocolate is very firm. Store in the fridge or freezer.

Notes

  • Swap the nuts for pepitas and sunflower seeds for a nut-free version.
  • Omit the gelatin, use coconut oil rather than butter/ghee, and use pure maple syrup to sweeten the chocolate for a vegan version.
  • If you prefer a softer chocolate use this recipe: Nutty Chocolate from Life-Changing Food cookbook/app.
  • If you don’t have cacao butter, use this recipe: Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge (with or without the chopped nuts).
  • Make a very simple, soft chocolate layer with coconut cream, honey and cacao powder using the chocolate in my Chocolate Gingerbread recipe, which can be found in “A Taster” ebook.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag @quirkycooking on Instagram — I can’t wait to see what you’ve made!

9 thoughts on “Gut-Healthy Chocolate Caramel Slice

  1. Varina says:

    Hey Jo,

    I have made this twice now and it is delicious. I first made it with butter and coconut cream. I think the base could do with less butter or coconut oil. On my second attemp I used 40g of coconut oil and it stuck together perfectly. I also used 20 normal dates instead of 4 medjool and normal dates in the caramel layer. I used walnuts instead of peacans. On my second attempt which I made for my vegan friends I used 1 teaspoon of agar powder instead of gelatine and it set perfectly. So these were my money saving and vegan changes if anyone is interested. I did wonder if the coconut oil could be halved in the caramel layer but haven’t tried.

    • Quirky Cooking Team says:

      Fantastic to hear that you could easily convert this into vegan friendly slice:-). Well done!!!

  2. Katie says:

    Oh my goodness! Where have you been all my life gut friendly caramel slice!
    Thanks Jo, you really are an amazing chef! 😋😋😋

  3. Jessica Blencowe says:

    Love this slice!! I have substituted half dairy free chocolate (Sweet William) when I was low on cacao butter and it also worked perfectly. The base could also have a little less butter if you wanted but it’s also still perfect with. Thanks Jo, amazing!! My daily treat at the moment. 😂👍🏼

  4. Lorrae says:

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe as always, so grateful. How long does this last in fridge please? Is it best to freeze if keeping longer than 7 days, or will it be ok?
    Many thanks

    • QuirkyJo says:

      Hey Lorrae, the caramel slice should last for about a week and a half in the fridge, however I just keep mine in the freezer so it can last for up to 6 months (although it gets eaten quite quickly in our house 😉)

  5. Karen says:

    So yummy! Has been made again and again in our house! Thank you so much for this recipe. 🙂

  6. Anne Sandell says:

    This recipe is wonderful! I combined pitted medjool dates with pitted prunes. The ghee is wonderful with the coconut cream in the caramel layer. The gelatine gives a perfect hold-together texture to the caramel layer as well. The chocolate layer was absolutely perfect! Must get some more cacao butter❤️ And maple syrup 😍

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