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Healthy Twix Bars

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copycat Twix bars!

Lately, things have gotten entirely too healthy around here. Roasted vegetables? Lentil stew? Baked oatmeal? If it is true that this is the Healthy Dessert Blog, where are all the desserts?

Where is all the CHOCOLATE?

Homemade Copycat Twix Bars!

Oh there it is.

When I compiled my candy recipes into the Healthy Chocolates & Candy page, many of you lamented the absence of a healthier copycat Twix bar. I put it on the to-do list, but the list keeps growing longer and longer… Luckily, my incredibly-talented friend Leanne agreed to take on this healthy-Twix-bar challenge, for the benefit of all of us!

Please welcome Leanne and her allergy-friendly, gluten-free Twix bars:

Hi Everyone! My name is Leanne Vogel. I’m a holistic nutritionist and the lady behind Healthful Pursuit – a space where I share my pursuit of self-discovery through allergy-free recipes, travel, and a whole lot of yoga.

I’m super stoked to be here with you guys today. I’ve had to pinch myself multiple times as I prepared this post. Katie is one of my favorite bloggers so to be here sharing a recipe with you is a bit too exciting for words!

vegan twix bars

The food we surround ourselves with has a dramatic impact on the way that we live out our lives. If we feel good about what we’re eating, if food makes us feel like we can accomplish anything and gives us a sense of balance, we’ll be so much more open to the experiences life has for us. And ya, this includes finding a replacement to our favorite candy bars.

What’s more indulgent than creating your very own a vegan and gluten-free homemade Twix bar?

I couldn’t think of anything else either.

healthy twix bars

Healthy Twix Bars

(makes 12 bars)

  • 1/2 cup white rice flour or buckwheat flour or sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup arrowroot or tapioca
  • 2 tbsp evaporated cane juice or regular sugar or coconut sugar
  • 3 tbsp sunflower seed butter (or another nut or seed butter)
  • 2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground flax mixed with 2 tbsp water (Allow to sit for 5 minutes before using.)
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract

Caramel:

  • 100g pitted dates (approximately 6 dates)
  • 3 tablespoons sunflower seed butter (or another nut butter of choice)
  • 1 tsp water
  • pinch salt

Chocolate Coating:

  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. Begin by preparing shortbread. Add first three ingredients to a medium-sized bowl. Whisk to combine. Then add sunflower seed butter, coconut oil, flax mixture and extract. Mix with a hand mixer or stand mixer until fully combined. The dough should stick together well.

Shape dough into twelve 3-inch cookies. To do this, scoop out about 1 1/2 tablespoons at a time into your hand and roll into a ball. Slowly shape into a long tube by rolling back and forth between the palm of your hands until it’s about 3-inches long. Set down on prepared cookie sheet and flatten with fingers. You can make the cookie even straighter by using the side of a knife to press up against the edges. Place cookies in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes until tops are slightly cracked and sides are golden. Set aside to cool. Meanwhile, place caramel ingredients in the bowl of your food processor. Process until smooth. If the mixture will not get smooth, just add a touch more water.

Once cookies are cooled, top with caramel and place on a second cookie sheet that’s lined with parchment paper. To do so, roll caramel like you did the cookies; into 3-inch tubes, and place over top of cookies. Place in the freezer and allow to set for at least 10 minutes. This will make the cookies easier to dip in the chocolate. Melt chocolate chips by dropping into a metal bowl and place over top of a sauce pan filled with water. Bring water to a boil and stir chips until melted. Remove from heat.

Remove the cookie sheet from the freezer and; one by one, coat the bars in chocolate. To do this, drop the bar into the chocolate and coat it with your fingers. Remove access with your fingers and place back on the parchment. Repeat with remaining cookies. Place back in the freezer and allow to set for 15 minutes.

View Nutrition Facts

homemade twix bars

vegan-gluten-free-twix-4

Leanne’s question of the day: How do you create balance in your life?

Link of the Day:

healthy mounds bars
……….Copycat Mounds Bars

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 
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  1. JaLynn says:

    Thanks for posting this! I love Twix bars, but I’m trying to cut back on my processed sugar intake.

    1. Hey JaLynn – I’m so happy that you liked my recipe! It’s challenging to lower processed sugar intake, but not when you have treats like this waiting for you in the freezer! Seems to be the story of my life. Good luck with the journey :)

    2. Dates are a great replacement for caramel! Love it!

  2. Michelle says:

    These look so good!

  3. Joy @ Caspara says:

    Actually I’ve really been enjoying the healthy recipes! I made the lentil stew last night, and it was so good, I was just thinking I should look to see if I have enough ingredients to make it again today for lunch!!
    But I’m happy to see the chocolate return, too. 😉

  4. sailorwind says:

    These look amazing! My one question – could I throw some chia seeds in a food processor and use those instead of the ground flax seeds?

    1. Heck yes you could, great question. Just use 2 teaspoons of ground chia instead of 1 tablespoon of ground flax. Mix with the same amount of water and you’re good to go! I’d love to know how you like them when you give the recipe a shot!

  5. I think I’m going to leave work early so I can go to Whole Foods and get arrowroot powder, or do you think cornstarch would wokr? This is a fantstic recipe!!!!!!

    1. Hi Jennifer – I haven’t used cornstarch in a really, really long time so I’m not exactly sure. There isn’t too much in this recipe so you might be okay. Another alternative is making the bars with a no bake cookie bottom. I have a recipe here for them, if you’d like to check it out: http://www.healthfulpursuit.com/2012/10/vegan-no-bake-twix-bars/ Have a fantastic weekend!

  6. Tracy says:

    Can Kit-Kats be next please? These look great!

    1. trajayjay says:

      I’m pretty sure a kit kat is a twix without caramel, so, omit caramel?

      1. Anonymous says:

        Kit kats are wafers..twix are cookies…I love my candy bars lol

      2. Tracy says:

        Yeah, kit kats have wafers. And texture is important to the kids! lol

      3. trajayjay says:

        Thanks for noting the difference. I don’t eat candy too too often, but from my experience, the cookie of a kitkat tastes like the cookie of a twix.

  7. Um these look kind of amazing, and I don’t even like Twix bars.

  8. Alanna says:

    Wow, these look SO yummy, and I love the step-by-step photos on the nutrition page! Twix are definitely one of my favorite candy bars. I’m hoping someone will try this with regular flour and have success, since I’m unfamiliar with the types of GF flours listed!

    1. Hi Alanna – they are pretty darn good! You could make the cookie base with anything you have on hand, or any cookie recipe you’re comfortable with. Shortbread-type recipes are best.

      1. Alanna says:

        Thanks, Leanne — that’s great to know!

  9. My boyfriend loves twix, I wonder if I could sneak these in on him instead

    1. Oh you totally, completely could! My boyfriend loves Twix as well and he went NUTS for these!

  10. Carissa says:

    I cannot wait to make this!!! I absolutely looove twix, and I bet these taste so much better than the original :) Thanks for sharing!

    1. They totally do, Carissa. The best part? You can add as MUCH caramel as you want! When I made these a second time, I made double the caramel and just stacked it all up. Mmm!

  11. Oh my yum!! Twix bars are my FAVORITE candy bar! Thanks so much for sharing! :)

    1. You’re most welcome, Amanda. They were mine too. That and SKOR bars!

  12. I love your blog Leanne!… And this recipe! :)

    I totally agree with you- It would be a dream to guest post a recipe on Chocolate-Covered Katie. Congrats and a job well done!

    1. A total dream. Like I said, major pinching action throughout the whole process! Hope you’re having a great weekend, Madison :)

  13. Carley says:

    Twix bars never sounded so alluring!

  14. Angela says:

    This is so brilliant! I know everyone starts the new year trying to get healthy, and I am no exception. I can’t wait to try these!

    1. And with treats like this, maybe we can last the WHOLE year long!

  15. This is AWESOME! I can see myself tripling or quadrupling the recipe, making a whole batch and then putting in the freezer – it’s probably not something I want to make all the time but that’s the same with any homemade candy bar. When you realize the effort that goes into it, you eat less! Haha. They look amazing!

    1. That’s a great way of looking at it, Anna. They do take a bit of time so best to stock up and enjoy slowly. I’m the same way about cake. Totally hate making it, so tedious but man, there’s nothing better!

  16. Kristen says:

    num num num 😉 So just wondering though, can other flours be subbed here? Is the sorghum/rice/buckwheat + arrowroot/tapioca starch combo so it’s gluten free? (So then you could just use 1 cup of other type of flour? Or is a least a little starch needed?) I’m wondering if I could use some spelt or whole wheat flour instead since I don’t have the flours listed and I already have like 5 types of flour!

    1. Hey Kristen – oh for sure, no worries. No sense going out to the store and buying more flours if you already have a bunch on hand. My suggestion would be to find any ‘ol shortbread recipe or if you have cookies in the house, use those. I could imagine digestive or arrowroot cookies working really well with these. The thing with gluten-free recipes is that they don’t always translate so well into gluten-filled recipes. Katie’s sugar cookie recipe may work really well for this too, here’s the link: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2012/12/18/grain-free-sugar-cookies/ Good luck!

      1. Kristen says:

        Thanks Leanne!! Good ideas & info!

  17. Wow, Katie! These look awesome. My 7 year-old is going to love these (so will my 9 and 4 year olds!). Can’t wait to try them.

    1. Hey Stephanie – they’re super popular with the kids, I’m sure they’ll love my recipe! Best to double up… many Mom’s have told me that one batch didn’t leave them with any leftover to snack on 😉

  18. anonymous says:

    These look wonderful! Katie, thank you for highlighting a gluten-free blogger. I’m always interested in new gluten-free recipes, and I like what I see so far from her site. Leanne, you have a new fan in me.

    1. That’s fantastic, welcome to Healthful Pursuit 😉 and enjoy the bars if you give them a go!

  19. michelle says:

    using the dates for caramel sauce is a REALLY good idea. sadly i am either allergic to dates or the mold dust that is on them. lol

    1. Oh no! Are you the same way about all dried fruit? If not, raisins or prunes would work with this recipe, too. If both of those are out, I did a refined sugar-free toffee recipe that may work with this, it’s just honey (if you’re vegan you can use another sugar like maple syrup, agave or coconut nectar), nut butter and a bit of vanilla. Here it is if you’re interested: http://www.healthfulpursuit.com/recipage/?recipe_id=6015328

  20. trajayjay says:

    These look very authentic, could i use oat flour instead of the rice or sorghum?

    1. Christi says:

      don’t use oat flour: oats get either mooshy or spongy when you cook them (think oatmeal) rice and sorghum are much more grainy substances and tend to be crispy and or crumbly like the cookie part of a twix bar. if you have a flour mill or food processor you can make your own rice flour by grinding up uncooked rice. hope this helps!

      1. trajayjay says:

        thanks for saving me from ruining a recipe, I hate when I sub something in for an ingredient because i don’t have the listed ingredient on hand, then the recipe doesn’t come out right.

      2. trajayjay says:

        Actually, I got a magic bullet for christmas, so i should be all set.

      3. Laura says:

        By uncooked rice… Do you think instant rice would work? I got a food processor for my birthday and did not know this!

      4. Christi says:

        I don’t know: the liquids added might make the instant rice cook spongy
        unlike whole uncooked rice (density difference). I wouldn’t try it: but if
        you are the adventurous type, go for it! You might discover something
        awesome! You could always google it: Google knows all! 😉

  21. wog says:

    this is ok, but i want a katie recipe :'( there is a difference!!

    1. Karen says:

      I actually like when Katie does guest posts. I’m interested to see what blogs and recipes from others that SHE likes :).

    2. Harsha says:

      What a mean thing to say…..the recipe looks great and I am sure it will come out really well. Leanne has put so much of effort into making something fabulous for us and you could at least give it a try before making such comments.

  22. Karen says:

    Bookmarking this recipe, and Leane’s blog.

    Her site looks lovely. Thanks for the new find :).

  23. Alex Katzen says:

    Thank goodness for the chocolate! That looks delicious :)

    1. No kidding. I couldn’t live without it :)

  24. Bethany says:

    Are the nutrition facts for 1 bar?

    1. Hi Bethany – yes, the recipe makes 12 bars and the facts are for 1 bar. Hope that helps!

  25. Mel Boerma says:

    Wow! Yum! It actually looks quite easy (famous last words!) will have to give this a go :)

    1. lol… story of my life! It’s not too bad, I’d give it a 3/5 (5 being stupidly, crazy difficult). It’s more a bit time consuming than anything… but super fun to do with the kids if you’ve got a couple!

  26. Alyx says:

    Wow these are amazing! What a unique set of ingredients. I’m not a huge fan of caramel, so I’m excited to try Leanne’s substitution! Can’t wait! :)

    1. Thanks Alyx. You’ve got to be about the only person I know that doesn’t like caramel… so awesome. Gosh, I could eat that date caramel from a bowl with nothing but a spoon. I hope you like it!

  27. Lissy says:

    I got really excited and then I read the ingredients list. I don’t have any of that stuff. Guess I’m going shopping this weekend!

    1. Hey Lissy – you could use a shortbread or sugar cookie recipe that you’ve used in the past to try to avoid buying all new flours. Hope that helps!

  28. Magen says:

    Ummmm…. we need a SNICKERS recipe!!!!!!! Twix bars look amazing!

    1. Snickers, that’s brilliant. I’d be totally down for that :)

  29. Grace says:

    Hi there! I am a huge fan of Twix and you don’t even know how excited I was when I saw the work “TWIX” in the headlines!! I was wondering though, are the nutrition facts based on the entire recipe of 12 bars? Or is it per serving? And if so, what is the serving and how many bars is the nutrition info based on?

    And I totally agree, more candy bar recipes are needed!! We need more! Kit-kat, snickers, milky way, and cookies’n’creme chocolate are my main thing besides twix! haha :) will you be posting any of those recipes?

    Thanks!
    -Grace :)

    P.S. ChocolateCoveredKatie! You are a lifesaver! Love your blog :)

    1. Hi Grace – so glad that the headline got you all excited! To answer your questions, the recipe makes 12 bars, the nutrition facts are for 1 of those bars.

      I used to love that cookies n’ creme chocolate bar. Oh the memories!

      1. Grace says:

        Thanks! I will definitely be making these soon! This definitely seems healthier since it uses all natural ingredients!

        Do you think you or Katie will ever make a recipe for cookies’n’creme chocolate? You would be my hero if you did!! 😛

        -Grace :)

      2. Oh man, I would LOVE to make it… Katie posted a white chocolate recipe awhile back, did you see that? I bet you could just use that recipe and smash up chocolate cookies inside… the wheels are turning!

  30. Bek @ Crave says:

    I create balance in my life by making sure I slow down and enjoy life- stay happy and whilst I enjoy the healthier substitutes like you have before me, I also indulge in a non healthy substitute every now and again :)

    1. Good on you Bek, it’s all about knowing when to mindfully indulge and be the observer of our lives at time to really pull in that balanced perspective. Hope you’re having a fabulous weekend!

  31. Bernice says:

    Yay!!!!!! Twix are totally my guilty pleasure (and one of my stress comfort foods)!
    I am going to make these right away!!

    1. Oh that’s great, Bernice! Hope you enjoyed the recipe :)

  32. Bernice says:

    That was supposed to include a “thank you,” I hit the submit button too quickly in my excitement:)

  33. Aaaaah…the amazing date caramel again! I love that idea. I *CAN’T WAIT* to try this recipe!

    1. It’s a phenomenon, isn’t it? Hook me up to an IV, I’m a date caramel lady for life :)

  34. Michele says:

    They look good but I just viewed the nutrition facts and I don’t know how many bars they are for but they don’t look that “healthy” to me. Not trying to be mean or snarky because I love a good healthy recipe. I am trying to imagine the dates as “caramel” but am having a hard time doing so. Lastly, I have exactly 3 of the ingredients in the house to make these – water, vanilla and salt so I will not be trying these. I really hope that someone who makes them will report back because I would love to hear how they turned out!

    1. Alanna says:

      Have you tried the caramel apple milkshake (older recipe) or samoas fudge babies? I was skeptical at first, too, but they really do taste caramel-y! And healthy can be a bit of a subjective term, but in this case I think it’s a healthier recipe because the ingredients list is shorter and/or less processed than a regular Twix bar, even if it doesn’t work out to be low-calorie. :)

    2. Hi Michele – I appreciate your honest comment and totally understand where you’re coming from. The nutrition facts are for 1 bar, the recipe makes 12. Something that I write about a lot of on my blog is the difference between whole foods based recipes and store-bought gunk. The nutrition facts may look very similar, in some case a “healthy” recipe made with whole foods will look worse. But, when you look at the ingredients and see how much better they are as a whole, it all starts to come together. Also, if you don’t want to go out and buy a bunch of new things, you could try to make the cookie base out of the cookies you already have at home (arrowroot or digestive would work well) that, or Katie’s recipe for sugar cookies would work as a good base: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2012/12/18/grain-free-sugar-cookies/ Hope that helps :)

      1. Michele says:

        Thank you for responding but I have to apologize. When I looked at the NI, I was looking more for low-cal than “healthy.” I realize these are more about healthy ingredients rather than a bunch of processed junk like the regular Twix bars. I was in a crabby mood last night and I shouldn’t have even said anything because I don’t think I sounded very nice in my comment. I’m sure these are delicious. Again, thanks and sorry.

      2. No need to apologize! You brought up some valid points. No hurt feelings! Hope you’re having a great weekend :)

    3. Ruth says:

      They look very healthy to me. There’s nothing unhealthy about fruit and seeds. They look delicious, too.

  35. Stacy K says:

    Seeing this recipe is so ironic…my husband and I are trying to avoid wheat- not b/c we’re allergic, just b/c we want to, and tonight he said he was craving a candy bar. I follow Katie and Leanne’s blog and have tried several recipes already so I gave it a shot and tried these tonight. They turned out really good! I did think the chocolate got too thick on the outside, so the last few I only put some over the top. I really liked the caramel, used cashew & peanut butter- also put in a squeeze of honey & couple drops of stevia.

    1. Awesome Stacy! I’m so happy that you liked the recipe, what perfect timing!

    2. Alanna says:

      I don’t know why, but certain brands / types of chocolate seem to melt (and stay melted) much better than others. In my limited experience, regular chocolate chips melt okay but solidify too quickly if you’re trying to make a larger batch of something! If you can find Bakers brand chocolate (it comes in 1 oz blocks), that melts really evenly in the microwave (no stove required) and doesn’t set back up as fast as some of the other brands. They all taste pretty good, though… Bakers is just a little easier to work with. :)

      1. ~Nilu~ says:

        Thanks Alanna for the tip abt Bakers choc. While melting choc chips i always wondered if one brand melts better than others but never got around to experimenting. Now i know which one to try next time!

  36. Lizzie says:

    I’m looking forward to making them! :)
    PLEASE more copycat candy recipes, like KitKat and Ferrero Rocher!

    BTW: Katie, you should do a series of dessert recipes from all around the world (since you say in your FAQ that you lived in Japan, China,..), like a chocolate covered trip around the world. :)

    1. That’s such a great idea, Lizzie. I second that, an all around the world recipe post would be rather cool! Glad you enjoyed my recipe. Let me know if you have any questions when you give it a shot!

  37. Willow says:

    Sobbing with joy. Blubbering like a baby. And (not) worried (at all) because my tastebuds have an addictive personality and I’m positive this is going to be a new fix. A fix of the very best kind.

    A healthy fix…for vegan Twix. *BOOM*

    Thanks to Leanne and Katie alike!

    1. BOOM is right! I’m positive your little taste buds are going to enjoy this one! Have an awesome weekend, Willow :)

      1. Willow says:

        Thanks! You, too! =D

  38. Willow says:

    PS: Now if you can ever muster up a vegan nougat recipe to make a vegan milky-way bar…well, I can’t even express the joy that would bring me.

    1. Grace says:

      Yes!! I agree! A milkyway bar would be amazing. I love my caramel! Haha and chocolate of course! If you make a milky way recipe, please let me know!

      Thanks!
      -Grace :)

  39. Lena says:

    I want to try this so bad, but I don’t think any of those flours are even sold in my country… I’ll just wait to see how it turned out for people who tried with something else. This looks so tasty! Thank you for the recipe :)

    1. Hi Lena – well, we want you to be able to enjoy this recipe no matter where you are! You could use any type of cookie base that you have the supplies for. Katie’s sugar cookie recipe may work out well: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2012/12/18/grain-free-sugar-cookies/ that, or if you have arrowroot cookies or digestive cookies, that would work well too! Heck, graham crackers could suffice. Hope that helps :)

      1. Lena says:

        Yay that’s awesome! I’ll definitely try it with one of those. Thanks so much!

  40. ha ha…I thought this looked like Leanne’s photo when I saw the thumb nail in my reader…and so it was! Good job guys :-)

    1. Very awesome that you caught that, Jo!

  41. What a great recipe! Definitelly gonna try!

  42. Emily says:

    Hi Katie! I was just wondering when your cookbook will be published? And if it’ll be on amazon? I have two gift cards for amazon and I want to make sure I save one for you’re book! You been so inspirational and when I’m having a bad day your site always cheers me up. And you’ve also made my eating disorder a little easier to handle with how you think, this site makes me trust food again.

    1. Thank you so much, Emily. That really means a lot to me. The book will actually not be out until next year, but I will definitely post more info when I know more specific details!

  43. carolyn says:

    Would anyone happen to know if this would work with regular, non-gluten free flour?

    1. Hi Carolyn – No sense going out to the store and buying more flours if you already have a bunch on hand. My suggestion would be to find any ‘ol shortbread recipe or if you have cookies in the house, use those. I could imagine digestive or arrowroot cookies working really well with these. The thing with gluten-free recipes is that they don’t always translate so well into gluten-filled recipes. Katie’s sugar cookie recipe may work really well for this too, here’s the link: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2012/12/18/grain-free-sugar-cookies/ Good luck!

  44. Sarah says:

    Leanne, you are SO lucky! Katie, it would be a dream to be a guest poster on your site. I know you must get a lot of requests, but if you ever need any help I would be happy to step in sometime :).

    1. I know, right? It was literally a DREAM come true. For real!

  45. Leah says:

    No offense, and I am the odd one out here, but there is no possible way that a date- paste “caramel” could possibly taste nearly as good as real caramel. Sure, it might be healthier, but I just can’ t imagine eating it unless I had a dairy allergy. To me, it’ s ok to occasionally indulge in the real thing! Everything in moderation- eating normal caramel a couple times a year never killed anyone or made them suddenly get fat/heart problems!

    1. I totally agree with you Leah, there is a time and a place for indulging mindfully. If I could have dairy and gluten, I’d treat myself to a Twix bar every once in awhile. These types of recipes are great for those with allergies, or those that want to find that balance but know that if they go out and buy that Twix bar it’s a slippery slope to buying another, and another and forming a habit around it. The real thing; in this case caramel, will always taste different than the healthy version but this stuff combined with the cookie and chocolate… it’s really, really the next best thing. I totally appreciate your honesty, thanks for sharing your thoughts!

      1. Leah says:

        Thanks for your reply! If I ever someday am trying really hard to get super-healthy, maybe this recipe will be used (or if I am part of a family with a kid/husband who has allergies).

      2. trajayjay says:

        I’ve tried Katie’s date recipes before, the dates really do give them a caramel flavor. To me, dates taste kind of like 30% prune, 60% brown sugar.

    2. Anonymous says:

      That’s true, but please keep in mind this is a vegan blog :)

  46. I’m definitely going to try this! :)

  47. Anna says:

    I made these today and they were really good. :)

    1. That’s so great Anna, I’m so happy that you liked my recipe!

  48. Hannah says:

    Wow, these look fantastic! Homemade candy is the best :) Thanks for sharing!

  49. Gabriella says:

    Can you make these without dates?