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Paleo Chocolate Tahini Millionaire Bars

Paleo Chocolate Tahini Millionaire Bars

Paleo + Chocolate + Tahini in an easy recipe? I’m in! This is my new favorite recipe, and there are several versions of it around. These are basically classic Millionaire Bars, adapted to fit into grain free, dairy free, egg free, and no cane sugar parameters. Millionaire Bars have been a favorite in Scotland for years, where they may have originated, and where you might see them with names like Caramel Shortbread, or Millionaire’s Slice. They start with a shortbread crust, have a caramel middle, and chocolate layer on top. Decadent!

The recipe I am using here is adapted from this one which happens to be vegan as well as Paleo. Luckily, it’s easy to adapt Millionaire Bars to a Paleo version. The sweet relies on maple syrup here – a lot of it. That brings up the question of whether maple syrup is Paleo. If it is, how much is ok?

This is a recipe that in itself – in my opinion – is too sugary to be valid as Paleo. We know that native North American tribes made and enjoyed maple syrup – there’s even a legend that it made them lazy and less interested in other food – hmmm! It was indeed in the hunter-gather repertoire, at least in the northeastern US.

But, if you’re looking for a sweet treat for kids who can’t eat peanut, wheat, dairy (including butter), or eggs, and you’re avoiding processed sweeteners, this is an good option for a special occasion or happy after school snack.

I haven’t yet tinkered with the maple syrup to tahini ratio in the “caramel” layer, but there may be some room there to reduce the syrup. This will reduce the volume overall of the caramel layer, unless you likewise up the tahini, or other ingredient. Some recipes use dates and less syrup. It may work to blend in an unsweetened additional nut butter (almond or cashew?) if your child tolerates that, and sweeten with some stevia, to make up for reduced syrup.

Changes in my version include adding some flax (technically a seed, not a grain) to enhance the crust, plus a different source for the chocolate chips (I like Lily’s Stevia Sweetened Dark Chocolate Chips) – yes they have soy lecithin. In my experience, this is not a deal breaker for IgE soy allergy or for soy exorphins potential.

I also suggest a different timing for firming up the middle layer, which took much longer than the 30 minutes suggested in the recipe I worked from. I found that the “caramel” layer needs a good two hours in the fridge to set. I got even better results when I let it set overnight.

Once you’ve got this easy recipe assembled, keep stored in fridge or even the freezer if you like. The tahini-maple caramel will soften to runny texture at room temperature.


Paleo Chocolate Tahini Millionaire Bars
Print Recipe
Easy to make. Just leave time for each layer to set, and you're good to go. Salty chocolatey caramel-y goodness, without the wheat, dairy allergens, or cane sugar!
Servings Prep Time
12 bars 30 minutes
Passive Time
2+ hours
Servings Prep Time
12 bars 30 minutes
Passive Time
2+ hours
Paleo Chocolate Tahini Millionaire Bars
Print Recipe
Easy to make. Just leave time for each layer to set, and you're good to go. Salty chocolatey caramel-y goodness, without the wheat, dairy allergens, or cane sugar!
Servings Prep Time
12 bars 30 minutes
Passive Time
2+ hours
Servings Prep Time
12 bars 30 minutes
Passive Time
2+ hours
Ingredients
Base Layer "Shortbread" Crust
Middle "Caramel" Layer
Chocolate Layer On Top
Servings: bars
Instructions
For The Crust
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line an 8x8 inch square pan with baking parchment (a 9x9 pan will be too big).
  3. Melt the coconut oil (microwave or stove top). In a medium bowl, mix it with the almond flour, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and salt. Use a fork to blend it together so it forms a thick crumb texture. Add to pan, and use your fingers or the bottom of a glass or jar to evenly press it down into the pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven, and allow crust to cool at least 10 minutes before adding caramel mixture. You can place it in the fridge to speed this part up.
For The Caramel Layer
  1. Add the tahini, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla extract and sea salt to a medium pot. Place over medium-low heat for approximately 2 minutes. Stir until evenly blended and smooth.
  2. Pour over the cooled crust. Place in refrigerator for 2 hours or longer, ideally overnight, for a firm, evenly chilled crust. Freezing is not recommended to hasten this part. It can change the texture of your caramel to have icy crystals on top that will melt to water on serving.
For The Chocolate Layer
  1. Melt chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl or on stove top, with the coconut oil. Stir to blend together til smooth. Spread this on your chilled and hardened caramel layer. Place it back in fridge to harden, about 30 minutes or longer.
Recipe Notes

Leave time for each layer in the process to set, and you're good to go. Make the base crust ("shortbread") layer, which bakes in just 10 minutes. Let it cool, then spread on your "caramel" layer. This takes longer to set. Ideally, refrigerate the caramel layer overnight for a good hard set. At a minimum, refrigerate it for two hours before adding the chocolate layer (which is a snap to make in microwave). Though the original recipe suggests placing this in the freezer if you're in a hurry to set the caramel, don't. It will change the texture so that ice can form at the top of the caramel. This will become watery at room temp. Once all assembled and firmed up in your fridge, it's fine to store these Paleo Chocolate Tahini Millionaire Bars in your freezer if you like!

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Creamy Dairy Free Paleo Vanilla Pudding

Creamy Dairy Free Paleo Vanilla Pudding

If nobody ever made made scratch pudding for you when you were a kid, you’re in for a treat. This is so deliciously yummy and it’s completely dairy, gluten, and sugar free. Ghee in this recipe is important, even though there are plenty of other fats; ghee is okay for most kids in my practice with dairy allergy (I say “most” because I can’t find any I’ve worked with who couldn’t have ghee due to dairy IgE, but check with your allergist if you’re not sure in your own child’s case). This is also a great option for yogurt, sugar, and smooth-food junkies who need some more nourishing options besides sugary low fat dairy products. But most of all, it is just Really. Good. Pudding.

This recipe isn’t mine. It comes from Our Paleo Life¬†(where you should poke around for even more recipes) – I’ve made it several times. I get perplexing results because sometimes it doesn’t set well, even though I follow the same exact steps. I’ve modified the recipe to enhance ¬†odds for setting better. I’ve also added some stevia to even out the sweetness and removed steps to strain lumps from the pudding. I’ve had no lumps at all each time I’ve made this recipe without straining, so have left that part out. See the variations for other flavors at the recipe’s source link too – chocolate, butterscotch, and peanut butter pudding!

Creamy Dairy Free Paleo Vanilla Pudding
Print Recipe
Really. Good. Pudding. Worth the time it takes to cook and set. Enjoy.
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 3-4 hours
Cook Time Passive Time
30 minutes 3-3.5 hours
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 3-4 hours
Cook Time Passive Time
30 minutes 3-3.5 hours
Creamy Dairy Free Paleo Vanilla Pudding
Print Recipe
Really. Good. Pudding. Worth the time it takes to cook and set. Enjoy.
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 3-4 hours
Cook Time Passive Time
30 minutes 3-3.5 hours
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 3-4 hours
Cook Time Passive Time
30 minutes 3-3.5 hours
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. In a sauce pan, combine the tapioca starch and salt, without heat - do not turn on the stove yet. Blend these dry ingredients with a whisk til evenly mixed.
  2. Slowly add the coconut milk over low heat, and whisk in to dissolve the dry ingredients. This will take 5-10 minutes of steady whisking. Do not boil.
  3. Once the coconut milk is evenly mixed in with no lumps, whisk in the egg yolks evenly, then the honey and vanilla. Continue on medium high heat til bubbles begin to form around the edges, about 5-10 minutes, whisking constantly.
  4. Once bubbling gently, reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking and whisking. Let the pudding become thick enough to plop back into the pot when you lift the whisk, instead of being drippy or runny. This may take 10-15 minutes.
  5. Higher heat may speed this up but you will also need to whisk more quickly to keep the pudding from burning, sticking to bottom of pot, or boiling.
  6. Stir in stevia drops, ghee, and vanilla. Continue whisking til evenly mixed and pudding is thickened.
  7. Pour into individual heatproof glass or ceramic serving dishes. To prevent a skin from forming on the pudding, place plastic wrap directly on the pudding in each dish and seal. I don't mind the skin and prefer to leave the plastic wrap off. Refrigerate for about 3 hours or overnight. Or, eat right away, warm and a little less set - also delicious!
Recipe Notes

You may use arrowroot starch instead of tapioca, but I have not tried this yet; potato starch may work too. For salt, I use Himalayan salt because it has a wider mineral profile than ordinary table salt and because sea salt is now (sadly) under scrutiny for having plastic in it. If the pudding hasn't thickened enough after lengthy heating and stirring, remove 1/4 cup of pudding from the pot into a small Pyrex or ceramic bowl or cup. Stir in 1 Tablespoon of starch and blend til smooth and thick. Add this back to the pot and continue stirring with whisk til smooth and thickened.

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