These vegan chickpea cookie dough bars are made from simple, real ingredients and require no baking! With a thick, doughy chocolate chip cookie base and a fudgy chocolate topping they’re pretty hard to beat. The best part— they’re so much healthier than traditional cookie dough! Vegan, gluten free and optionally nut free.
The Key to Smooth Chickpea Cookie Dough
I love chickpeas, so naturally I hopped on the chickpea cookie dough train as soon as I heard about it. The first few times I made it, It tasted good, but I was a little disappointed because the texture was not like traditional cookie dough. It was really grainy and lacked that delicious buttery doughy consistency.
Using a method that I have experimented with making hummus, I found the key to extra smooth chickpea cookie dough. Here it is: boil your chickpeas in baking soda. Not only does the boiling water help soften the chickpeas, the baking soda degrades those fibrous skins and makes them super easy to remove giving you silky smooth dough.
What You’ll Need to Make Healthy Cookie Dough Bars
- Chickpeas: Probably the most important ingredient, I like to use canned chickpeas. Just make sure you drain and rinse them before adding to the boiling water.
- Baking soda: like I said, boiling the chickpeas in baking soda makes the skins super easy to remove, ensuring that the dough isn’t grainy.
- Oat flour: Because raw flour is generally not safe to eat, oat flour is the perfect substitute. It also keeps these vegan chickpea cookie dough bars gluten free. If you don’t have prepackaged oat flour you can make your own by adding 1 cup of rolled oats to a high speed blender or food processor and pulsing until finely ground.
- Nut or seed butter: You can use any nut or seed butter you have on hand such as peanut butter or sunflower seed butter. I personally use Sunbutter to keep these nut free. Just make sure whatever you use has no added sugar.
- Brown and granulated sugar: I originally tested this recipe with maple syrup to keep these refined sugar free, but I found that a mix of white and brown sugar (like in traditional cookies) gives you a taste that is most similar to cookie dough. It also helps give the dough structure so it doesn’t fall apart.
- Dairy free chocolate: For this recipe, you’ll need a good amount of chocolate for the dough as well as the topping. I like to use Enjoy Life semisweet chocolate chunks, but if you prefer something a little less sweet, try dark chocolate.
How to Make Vegan Cookie Dough Bars
The first thing you want to do is boil the chickpeas with the baking soda. You don’t need a whole lot of water, just enough to cover the chickpeas by an inch or two. Cook them for about 15 minutes, until almost mushy and the skins start floating to the top (gross, I know). After they’re cooked, spread them onto a few sheet of paper towel and pat them dry. Remove any skins as best you can. I know this sounds like a lot of work, but the baking soda makes it super easy.
While you’re waiting for the chickpeas to boil, line a loaf pan with parchment paper. I like to grease the pan first so the parchment sticks. Don’t skip this step, it makes the bars easy to remove.
Once the chickpeas are ready, place everything in the bowl of a food processor or high speed blender and blend until smooth and doughy. If the dough seems a little sticky and it’s not coming together, add another tablespoon of oat flour and blend again. Transfer to a bowl and fold in the chocolate chips. Press the dough into the loaf pan and freeze for about an hour.
For the topping, melt a cup of chocolate with a little more nut or seed butter I like doing this in the microwave for convenience but it can also be done over a double boiler, Once the dough is firm, pour over the chocolate and return to the freezer for a few more minutes to let the chocolate set. This will happen pretty fast since the bars are already cold. Once set, lift the bars out of the loaf pan, slice and serve!
How to Store Chickpea Cookie Dough Bars
These bars will keep in the refrigerator for 5-6 days when stored in an airtight container. They’re best served chilled, so I like keeping them in the freezer for a few hours before serving. I wouldn’t recommend freezing overnight or they might become too solid.
Other Healthier Desserts to Try:
- Vegan oatmeal banana snack cake with tofu chocolate ganache
- Orange scented oatmeal cookies
- Vegan sweet potato blondies