Your whole food, plant-based life.

Raw Dreamy Cacao Walnut Bars

I have been fixated on omega 3’s (more on that in a minute). I have also been fixated on creating a new dessert bar recipe (I think you can understand that one). Two fixations came together and these tasty raw cacao walnut bars were born.




First, lets talk omega 3’s. Why the fixation, you ask? Well, they are critical for brain and heart health, fight inflammation,  and reduce your risk of depression amongst other things. Our bodies don’t make them, we need them and vegan diets tend to be heavy on omega 6 and lacking in the 3’s. In fact, an omega 3 deficiency is prevalent in our diets today because of how our food is processed and the dietary choices we make.

One of the first things we think of for Omega 3’s is fish and fish oil. Interestingly enough, with fish being farmed and fed diets of grain instead of their traditional diet of plants and algae, the levels of omega 3 have been seriously declining. But since a raw, vegan diet doesn’t include fish, where else can you get your omega 3’s? Great sources are flax seeds, chia seeds and walnuts!  It is good to note that greens also contain higher levels of omega 3’s so drink your green drinks!



With it’s own antioxidant properties, cacao (chocolate) makes a great pairing with walnuts. I made a quick raw cashew crust (yes you can find raw cashews here), a lovely walnut filling and topped the whole thing off with a tasty, easy cacao ganache. Delicious and filling, these bars shout bakery case…no one will believe they are a healthy raw snack!



For the crust, I used raw cashews from Navitas Naturals. They use a special process to keep the extraction under low heat so they are truly raw. You can find them here: Raw Cashews .



To get a fine flour, I used the dry container for my Vitamix.



To get the finest flour, process the cashews in batches, sift and reprocess the left over chunks with the next batch. You will get a beautiful, fine cashew flour that will mimic a real pastry crust.

*Note: These are very calorie dense. A small bar goes a very long way. I cut them in 1″ squares and that is plenty!!

Raw Walnut Cacao Dreamy Bars



  • 1 cup cashews
  • 3 tablespoons cacao
  • 1 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar or other liquid sweetener
  1. Process cashews in high-speed blender in three batches. Sift out chunks between batches.
  2. Stir in cacao powder, melted coconut oil and sweetener.
  3. Press into glass 8 x8-inch pan and place in refrigerator.



      • 1/2 cup hulled hemp seeds
      • 2/3 cup dried coconut, unsweetened
      • 1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
      • 1/2 cup coconut butter, softened
      • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (not raw but used in many raw recipes)
      • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  1. Mix all ingredients together, spread over crust layer, return to refrigerator.



      • 1/4 cup cacao
      • 1/4 cup agave (or other liquid sweetener)
      • 1/8 cup coconut oil, melted
  1. Whisk all ingredients together until smooth. Pour over crust/filling mixture. Chill until set.
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  1. Heidi wrote on February 25, 2014

    The coconut oil, is it the extra virgin kind (With coconut flavour), or the “regular” kind without taste and smell?

  2. Indera wrote on December 4, 2013

    I have a 11 year old son that is on Gluten, wheat and Dairy free food and desert, It hard to find sweet snack.
    so glad to know I can make these Walnut Cacao Dreamy Bars and other sweet that do not contain dairy.


  3. Michele wrote on October 27, 2013

    Love these and your site! I made these today, how do you make them so they don’t crumble apart! The bottom is very crumbly. The freezer helps, but wanted to see if you have any other suggestions. Thanks!

  4. Lucy wrote on August 1, 2013

    I made it,but the filling was too crumbly. What did i do wrong? How do u melt the cocoa butter? On a pan or?

  5. Stephanie Mckissick wrote on March 31, 2013

    I just made this for an easter pot luck..I haven’t tasted a full square but I know its going to be great! I tasted each layer individually as I was making it:) I had to substitute half of the coconut oil in the glaze with coconut butter because every place open today only had refined coconut oil not unrefined and I had 1 1/2 table spoons of coconut oil left. It still seemed to turn out great. I also put cacao in the filling on accident and freaked out..only to find that it turned out just fine. Thank you for this great recipe.. i’m sure it will convince my friends that my “bird food” preference isn’t all that bad.

    • Susan wrote on March 31, 2013

      Stephanie, So glad you made this! Sounds like you got quit successfully creative! :-)

  6. yvonne f. wrote on March 28, 2013

    Susan, thanks for the response on the bottom layer. And, I thought about parchment after the fact, thanks for validating. My husband LOVED (let me repeat myself, LOVED) these. Thank you.

  7. laverne rose wrote on March 17, 2013

    I have been raw for a little over 4 years now and most recipes call for the nuts to be soaked 4 hours or overnight and then to dehydrate. I know that soaking is to remove toxins and dehydrate to make crunchy will this method affect the outcome?

    • Susan wrote on March 17, 2013

      If the recipe calls for dry nuts, yes, soaking and dehydrating is fine. I soak and dehydrate all my nuts. I have written about this on the site. Thanks for asking!

  8. Kellie wrote on March 8, 2013

    These bars are delicious!! Big hit for my non-vegetarian, vegan friends too!! Thank you Susan

  9. yvonne f. wrote on March 6, 2013

    These taste fantastic. Just made them and can’t wait for my husband to come home and try them. The only thing is that removing them from the glass dish, I struggled with the bottom crust staying attached to the middle layer. Any tricks or secrets anyone could share. The glaze is delicious. So excited, made your orange cheesecake two weeks ago and really enjoyed it, terrific texture.

    • Susan wrote on March 7, 2013

      Make sure the bottom layer is still quite soft when you add the second layer. Also, A layer of parchment paper doesn’t hurt (on the bottom). Press the mixture in. :-)

  10. carma lamm wrote on October 20, 2012

    Thank you sooo much for this recipe. I love the mix of different nuts & seeds, and I needed a break from dates (as the sweetener). My family loves these bars – we really appreciate your blog!


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