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No-Bake Nutella Fudge Bars

Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Servings: 16
Calories: 195kcal
Author: Nisha Vora

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups (195-205g) hazelnuts
  • 1 ¼ cups (~125g) rolled oats*
  • 1 packed cup soft Medjool dates, pits removed (7 ounces)**
  • 1/3 cup (27-30g) raw cacao or cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons melted or softened coconut oil***
  • 1/3 cup (80 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 (28g) cup cacao nibs (optional)
  • 1/2 cup (~85g) vegan chocolate chips (or chopped dairy-free dark chocolate)
  • Flaky sea salt for topping, optional but recommended

Instructions

  • Roast the hazelnuts. Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C. Place the hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and spread out evenly. Roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until browned and very fragrant.
  • While the hazelnuts are roasting.
    1. Line a 8×4-inch (20×10 cm) or 9×5-inch loaf pan (23×13 cm) with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling.
    2. If the Medjool dates are not very soft, cover them with hot water for 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry.
    3. Place the oats in the bowl of the food processor and pulverize them until you have a very fine oat flour. Remove the oat flour and set aside.****
  • Peel the hazelnuts. When the hazelnuts are done roasting, add them to a clean kitchen towel and wrap tightly into a ball. Let them sit wrapped for 1 minute to steam, then rub the towel vigorously to remove the hazelnut skins. It will take a few times, but it’s not necessary to remove all the skins.
  • Place the hazelnuts in the food processor and blend until you have a a finely ground meal, but don’t blend too long, or it will start to turn into hazelnut butter.
  • Make the dough. Return the oat flour back to the food processor, along with the pitted dates, cacao powder, salt, vanilla, coconut oil, and maple syrup. Process until you have a sticky dough that you can press together with your fingers. If using cacao nibs, stir them in by hand with a silicone spatula or your hands (remove the blade from the food processor to make this easy, or transfer the dough to a bowl).
  • Spread the dough out into the prepared pan and smooth the top out evenly, pressing all the way into corners using your fingers or a flat-bottomed steel cup to get the mixture even on top. Place the pan in the freezer for 30 minutes (or longer) to set.
  • Before removing from the freezer, melt the chocolate.
    1. Double boiler method: Add a few inches of water to a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Nestle a large heatproof glass bowl that sits on top of the saucepan without touching the water to create a double boiler. Once the water is simmering, add the vegan chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate to the bowl. Whisk frequently with a spatula until the mixture is just melted.
    2. Microwave method: Add the chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high in 25 to 30-second intervals until the chocolate is almost melted (about 3 intervals). Use a spoon to stir the chocolate until it is melted.
  • Drizzle the melted chocolate over the cold Nutella dough and lightly sprinkle with flaky sea salt. If the chocolate doesn’t immediately harden, return it to the freezer for 5-10 minutes to set, then slice into 8 thick bars or into smaller squares. Store leftovers in the freezer (they’ll stay good for several weeks).

Video

Notes

* If using store-bought oat flour, use slightly less than 1 1/4 cups, about 1 cup + 2 tablespoons.
** After pitting the dates and packing them into a 1 cup measuring cup, you should have about 7 ounces or 200g of dates.
*** I recommend using refined coconut oil so, as unrefined/virgin coconut oil has a coconutty taste that might interfere with the Nutella taste.
**** You can also use a similar-shaped glass storage container or an 8×8-inch square baking pan (if you use the latter, the bars won’t be as thick though).