Lemon-Ginger Coconut Chia Bars

Today I needed a refreshing bite of lemon & ginger. These bars have a zingy citrus flavor, plus they’re raw and alive with powerful anti-oxidant lemon nutrition. In Chinese medicine lemon is cooling — yes I get it. And ginger moves Qi, the vital force in the body — well, I definitely need that. Super-easy to make, you don’t need any equipment for this recipe, although a food processor is a wee bit quicker. There’s no need to bake these bars, as high-protein Omega-3 chia seeds hold them together.

I used white chia seeds for a light color. Black chia seeds will make them dark, but they’ll tastes just as good. Keep these bars chilled, especially on a warm summer day, as the coconut butter may melt and they’ll be too soft. This recipe won’t spike blood sugar or cause weight gain if you use the suggested zero carb sweeteners. Sweeten to your own taste. I find people’s taste buds vary a LOT. I thought these bars would be too lemony sour, and my mouth would pucker up – but the low sweetness level was rather nice. So you can decide for yourself, and feel free to add more sweetener if you like. To thicken the texture and enrich the flavor, I used 1/2 cup Vegan Coconut Milk Powder, however it is optional. (If you live in Santa Fe, you’ll find it at Natural Grocers or the Coop on Alameda.) Store in the refrigerator about 5 days, or up to 3 months in the freezer. Makes one 9 x 9 inch pan, or about 70 1-inch bars.

Lemon-Ginger Coconut Chia Bars

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Ingredients

  • Coconut butter, 1 cup if soft, or 227 grams if hard. (If mixing by hand, soften it by putting the container in a bowl of warm water.)
  • 60 grams (c. 3 inches) or more fresh ginger root, coarsely chopped. (If mixing by hand, finely grated)
  • Zest of 2 lemons (preferably Meyer’s if available)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons white chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Sweeten to taste. I suggest starting with 1/2 cup Just Like Sugar Table Top natural chicory root sweetener, or 4 teaspoons PureLo Lo Han Sweetener by Swanson, or 1/3 cup raw honey, or your favorite sweetener.
  • 2 teaspoons raw unrefined red palm oil (optional, for a lemon yellow color)
  • 1/2 cup Vegan Coconut Powder (optional)
  • 2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut flakes (add this last)

Instructions

  1. Line a 9 x 9 pan with parchment paper that hangs over 2 sides like handles.
  2. In a food processor or mixing bowl, add the coconut butter and ginger root. Mix well to a smooth paste.
  3. Add all the remaining ingredients except shredded coconut: lemon zest, lemon juice, chia seeds, vanilla, and sweetener. Add red palm oil and coconut milk powder if using. Taste the mixture, add more sweetener if needed, and mix well.
  4. Pulse in the shredded coconut last, and very briefly so it remains chunky.
  5. Spread the mixture into your pan and press flat. Chill at least 3 hours to firm it up. Remove the whole sheet of bars to a chilled cutting board. Cut into 1-inch squares and serve. Keep chilled.