Pure Piña Colada Bars are a rich and chewy slice of heaven, bursting with pineapple, coconut–and nutrients!
Spring is in the air. My mind is drifting to thoughts of the beach and yummy little fruity drinks. But with a trip to the ocean nowhere in sight, I decided to make my next recipe as a way to bring the beach to me!
If you like Piña Colada (Bars) . . .
Yeah, sorry. Now you’ve got that Rupert Holmes song stuck in your head. Just trying to set the mood! Both nutritious and delicious, these bars serve up everything that fresh pineapple and coconut have to offer. Let’s explore:
Pineapple has a candy-like sweetness that almost seems too good to be healthy. Au contraire! It offers so much in the vitamin and mineral department. Just one cup serves up over 130 percent of your daily value of vitamin C, along with respectable doses of vitamin B6, magnesium, calcium, iron, and fiber.
And coconut — the list of all of the nutritional and health benefits it has to offer seems to get longer every year. It is an excellent source of B-complex vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, pyridoxine and folates. It also delivers hefty amounts of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron and zinc. Health benefits of coconut include: improving heart health, low glycemic index, reducing hypoglycemic cravings, and supporting digestive health by promoting vitamin and mineral absorption while also providing beneficial dietary fiber. Throw in some plant-based protein and what more could you ask for? Whew! That’s a lot.
Pure Piña Colada Bars
I love these bars for so many reasons. Cue waves splashing in the background, vibrant sunshine warming me to my core, and fruity, tropical goodness. But most of all — because they are a fabulously healthy dessert you will want to (and can!) eat for breakfast.
I highly recommend these bars served with a dollop of my Easy Coconut Whipped Cream! And if you’d like to try some other delicious and healthy fruit bars, check out my Berry Bliss Bars and my Fresh Cranberry Crumb Bars. Enjoy!!
Pure Piña Colada Bars are a rich and chewy slice of heaven, bursting with pineapple, coconut, and nutrients!
- 3 tablespoons golden flax seed meal
- 1/2 cup nut milk (I use cashew)
- 1 cup almond meal flour
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/3 cup coconut palm sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup coconut oil (melted)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla
- 1-3/4 cups chopped pineapple divided (reserve 1/4 cup for sprinkling on top) (I used fresh, but canned can be substituted-drain any excess juices)
- 1/2 cup coconut manna (coconut butter)
- 2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla
- 1/4 cup coconut flakes (reserved for sprinkling on top)
- 1) In small bowl, mix together flax seed meal and nut milk. Set aside.
- 2) In medium bowl, combine almond flour, coconut flour, coconut palm sugar and salt.
- 3) Add coconut oil and vanilla to flax mixture and mix well (I use a whisk). Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and mix together with a spoon, pastry blender, or two knives (see picture in post).
- 4) Grease a 9"x 9" baking pan and press crust firmly and evenly onto bottom of pan.
- 1) Place chopped pineapple (reserving 1/4 cup for sprinkling on top) and coconut manna in food processor and blend together. Add coconut palm sugar and vanilla and mix well. (See picture in post)
- 2) Pour topping over crust and spread evenly. Sprinkle remaining pineapple chunks and 1/4 cup coconut flakes on top. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for approx. 35 minutes. Center should appear to be getting slightly firm and not liquidy. Allow to cool before cutting. Best served after refrigeration. Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator.
I highly recommend these bars served with a dollop of fresh coconut whipped cream!
Can we substitute Maple syrup or Honey for the sugar please?
Hi Wendy, That might be a tough substitution as you would be changing the ratio of wet vs. dry ingredients. From a flavor standpoint I think it would be fine but some adjusting will have to be done to keep the topping and the crust from becoming too moist. I haven’t tried it but in the filling (since you would only be replacing two tablespoons of coconut palm sugar) you could probably just add an additional tablespoon of coconut manna/butter to make up for the liquid in the syrup or honey. In the crust, however, you a talking about an additional 1/3 cup of fluid so I would suggest adding more flour too (maybe an additional one or two tablespoons of coconut flour). There are pictures in the post of what the consistency of the crust should look like, so I would add one tablespoon of coconut flour at a time until you have reached the right consistency. Keep in mind you may want to wait a minute or two after each addition to see how much moisture the coconut flour will absorb. I hope this helps. Let me know how it goes! 🙂
Is there a replacement for the manna?
Hi Andrea, Many people are not aware that coconut manna and coconut butter are the same thing. If, by chance, that is the case for you feel free to use coconut butter! 🙂 Otherwise a substitution in this case will be challenging. From a texture perspective you could substitute almond or cashew butter for the coconut butter/manna but that will definitely change the resulting flavor. I’m not saying it will be bad — I’m actually curious as to how that would taste?! 🙂 It won’t taste piña colada-ish but could be good anyway. If you’re up for experimentation give it a try and let me know how it goes. 🙂
Hi Jana, I’m planning to make these today. I wanted to ask how do you measure your flour? By spooning it into the measuring cup and leveling off, or by scooping it out of the bag? I’m used to baking by weight. i want to make sure I can recreate the same results because these look amazing! Thanks!
Hi Shannon! That’s great to hear! I usually spoon it into the cup and level off. In the case of the almond flour, because it has a courser texture, I will gently press it in the cup (just enough to ensure there is no air). One of the great side benefits I have discovered in baking with alternative flours and meals is that they seem to be much more forgiving than traditional wheat-based flours. A little more or less usually won’t ruin the recipe. I hope you enjoy the bars!!
Shannon Cebron says
Thanks for your reply! I’ll let you know how they turn out 🙂
Sure! Happy to help 🙂
hello! do you think i could use brown rice flour instead of almond meal? or quinoa/oat flour??
Hi! I have not tried this substitution myself, but I would suggest trying an equal mix of brown rice flour and oat flour (1/2 cup of each). Then, I would add an additional tablespoon of coconut oil to replace some of the fat lost by not using the almond flour. If your crust still looks drier than the mixture in the bowl (pictured in the post), I would add a little nut milk (one teaspoon at a time) until the texture is right. I think the earthy flavor of the brown rice flour would drastically change the taste of the bar if you used it by itself to replace the almond flour. Combing it with the oat flour should bring more balance to the flavor! I hope this helps!! 🙂
Sarah | Well and Full says
These look so good! I love pina coladas so I bet I’d love these!! 😀
Thanks, Sarah!! A little taste of summer! 🙂
Ilona @ Ilona's Passion says
Can I omit coconut manna? I don’t have it right now and I would like to make these asap.
Until recently I didn’t realize that coconut butter and coconut manna are the same thing. So if you have coconut butter you can use that instead of manna. Or-Do you have coconut flakes? You could make your own coconut manna simply by putting the flakes in the blender or food processor and blending until smooth and creamy. You will probably have to stop it and stir occasionally but other than that it’s pretty simple and should only take a couple of minutes.
Ilona @ Ilona's Passion says
Thank you! I’ll try making my own coconut butter.
You’re welcome! I hope you enjoy them!!
London || Gluten Free with L.B. says
Oh my yumminess!! Such a great idea. I’ve started to crave some healthy lemon bars but I never thought of making pina colada bars! Definitely must try. Pinning!
Thank you!! Isn’t there a quote about inspiration coming from desperation? I am desperate for warm weather and these bars are the closest I can get right now! 😉
These look crazy delicious! I can’t believe there’s no butter in them!! I love the idea of using cashew milk, too. YUMZ.
Thanks! They truly are. Especially with a dollop of whipped coconut cream on top!! The coconut products are a great substitute for butter.