These creamy, delicious no-bake peanut butter cream bars are a decadent, yet healthy dessert! Perfect for a simple summer treat.
The other day I was in the mood for a creamy dessert. But not ice cream…more like a cheesecake. And that was a real dilemma, because I don’t really do cheesecake. We generally don’t bake with dairy around here, although it seems like my oldest son is starting to tolerate it a little bit better, so maybe someday. And vegan cheesecake is generally made of cashew cream, so that’s definitely a no go for us, too!
So I put on my thinking cap, and looked in the cupboard, and saw some coconut cream. And I decided that coconut cream + peanut butter + a no-bake crust made with dates sounded pretty awesome, and these no-bake peanut butter cream bars were born. Plus I added a little chocolate drizzle on top just for good measure. :)
If you can’t do peanut butter, never fear, you can do any nut butter or seed butter that works for you. Sunbutter or pumpkin seed butter would work well here. I hope you enjoy this rich and creamy, but healthier dessert!
No-Bake Peanut Butter Cream Bars.
- 8 Medjool Dates pitted
- ¾ cup gluten free old fashioned oats
- 11 ounces coconut cream* 1 ⅓ cup
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
- ⅜ cup peanut butter
- ⅓ cup dairy free chocolate chips
Line a 5x8 loaf pan with parchment paper so that it hangs over the sides.
Place the pitted dates and the oats in a food processor, and process until combined. Press this mixture into the bottom of the loaf pan.
Place the coconut cream, peanut butter, and maple syrup in the blender and blend until smooth.
Pour the peanut butter cream over the crust. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 2-3 hours.
Place the dairy free chocolate chips in the microwave and heat for about 60 seconds until melted.
Remove the bars from the refrigerator, and use the edges of the parchment paper to gently remove the dessert from the pan. Place it on a flat surface, and slice into bars with a sharp knife.
Drizzle the peanut butter bars with the melted chocolate. Enjoy! Store leftover bars in the refrigerator.
*I used the So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk for this recipe, which is like a thick coconut cream. If you can't find that brand, I would recommend Taste of Thai, which is quite thick. Alternatively, you can take a can of full fat coconut milk, place it in the refrigerator for 24 hours and then scoop out the coconut cream, leaving the liquid behind.
These no-bake peanut butter cream bars are:
- light and delicious
- gluten free, dairy free, and vegan
- the perfect summer dessert
- a healthier dessert choice
A great success. Everyone loves it!
Hi I am having issues with the crust part. it isn’t making a crust or it is still crumbly after putting it in the processor am I missing something?
I’m sorry to hear that! Your dates could have been a bit more dry – you could add more dates and a bit of water if this happens again.
Thank you for the wonderful recipe. I used the cream as a pudding-like treat at the party for my nephew’s christening. I only changed honey for maple syrup and added a few drops of lemon extract. It was a huge hit! So creamy and just perfect for Advent (for us Greek Orthodox, Advent is a period of fasting).
Sounds really good! I’m glad it worked for you!
Can you elaborate on the kind of coconut cream you use? I’ve seen so many recipes call for coconut cream when what the recipe author really means is coconut milk or coconut manna. I made these bars this evening and used Thai Kitchen brand’s new product that is actually called “Coconut Cream” and after around 2.5 hours, they seem nowhere near firm enough to remove from the pan and slice. Thank you in advance!
My apologies….I now see where you specified above to indicate that you used the So Delicious brand of culinary milk. That explains the odd 11oz measurement….Now I wish I would have used the box of that that I have on hand. Even using the Thai Kitchen brand that is specifically labeled Coconut Cream proved somewhat challenging measuring out the 11 ounces.
No problem at all, I’m glad you commented. I will be adding a cup measurement to the recipe for those who can’t find that brand. Did your bars ever firm up? Thai Kitchen can sometimes be a little thinner in consistency. A Taste of Thai is a bit thicker, but my favorite is the So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk.
These look amazing!
Quick question though: when you say “coconut cream” do you mean the canned coconut milk or the ones actually labelled “coconut cream.” I’ve seen cans with both names.
Actual coconut cream would be best, or you could get full fat canned coconut milk and put the can in the fridge overnight. In the morning, the cream will have separated from the water. Just scoop out the cream and use that.
Do you use cream of coconut or coconut milk?
Cream of coconut! If you have only coconut milk, place the can in the fridge, and wait for about 12 hours, then scoop out just the cream.
Can I sub for instant oatmeal.. or do you think it would drastically change the consistency of the dessert?
I think you could use that. Let me know if it works!
What brand of coconut cream did you use? This looks delightful!
I prefer the So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk, but any brand of coconut cream should work!
I am ALL about no-bake in the summer but the fact that these are peanut butter has me wanting to make them ASAP. These look so delicious!!
Kristy from Southern In Law
These look incredible! I never would have guessed they were vegan or dairy free! Definitely the perfect cheesecake alternative ;)
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice
I’ve been craving all of the no-bake treats that I can get my hands on this summer, so these look perfect! Love the pb flavor!
These look delicious, I’m going to try subbing sunflower butter!
Kristine | Kristine's Kitchen
These bars look incredible, Kelly! You have so many smart allergy-friendly tricks up your sleeve. I love that you made the crust for these bars with just dates and oats!
these look INCREDIBLE!!! Perfect for the summer!
Umm hello these are my spirit food! They look like chocolate peanut butter perfection!
Love this! pinning for later