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I created these chocolate flax energy bars, and the chocoholics in my house can’t get enough of them (me included!).  They are the perfect afternoon sweet, or can be prepared without the chocolate for a satisfyingly healthy breakfast option.

INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 cup raw cashews
1 cup pitted dates, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup almond butter
1/2 cup maple syrup (grade B)
2 tbsp ground flax seeds
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup dark chocolate chips (70% or higher cacao)
1 tbsp coconut oil

DIRECTIONS:
In a food processor, grind the raw cashews to a powder.  Add the chopped dates, shredded coconut, coconut flour, almond butter, maple syrup, flax seeds, and vanilla.  Pulse until a dough is formed, being careful not to over-mix (the dates should be in small pieces, not ground into a flour).

Line a Pyrex with parchment paper and form the dough into a rectangular bar 1 inch thick.  Refrigerate a minimum of 4 hours or overnight.

To prepare the sauce, combine the chocolate chips with the coconut oil in a glass or stainless steel bowl and set over a pot of simmering water.  Once the chocolate has melted, remove from heat.  The hot chocolate can be poured directly over the cool bars. Refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours to set.