Who can deny the delightful combination of flavors in these Cinnamon Raisin Bars. It's a light but satisfying dessert bar ready for your next family dinner. If you haven't already figured this out, I like desserts. In fact, "like" is probably an understatement. In the whole Dog Whisperer, Myth Busters spectrum of identities, I would be the Sugar Stalker! My favorite dessert recipes are ones that combine something healthy with something incredibly flavorful. Hey, just because we're vegans doesn't mean we're monks! If that's my criteria for a great recipe, this one hits it out of the park. Simple and bold flavors combined with a little sweetness and a little healthy. I guess I'd call that just another Sugar Stalker success story!

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Cinnamon Raisin Bars [Vegan]

Ingredients

  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup vegan butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups flour*
  • 1/3 cup oatmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 - 3 tablespoons soymilk
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Preparation

  1. Begin by heating your oven to 350 and preparing a 9X13 baking dish by giving it light coating of vegetable cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl combine the hot water and raisins. Set aside until the raisins get a little on the pleasantly plump side. That's a nice feature in raisins.
  3. Next add the chickpeas, Earth Balance margarine, sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice to a food processor. Pulse for a few seconds until everything loosens up a little. Add some of the liquid from the soaking raisins and pulse for up to a minute until the chickpeas are pureed.
  4. In a medium bowl combine dry ingredients (flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon).
  5. Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir well.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes.
  7. In the meantime prepare your frosting (see recipe below).
  8. When the Cinnamon Raisin Bars are done, remove from the oven and allow to cool before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Combine the vegan cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla and stir well.
  2. Next add a little bit of soy milk, one tablespoon at a time, until you get a frosting that has just the right consistency. I look for it to be easy to spread, but still firm enough to have some high peaks. Peaks make things more dramatic. Drama is good...in desserts!

Notes

To make this gluten-free, use 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour and 1/2 cup corn or tapioca starch.



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