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Vegan Magic Bars

With layers of sweet coconut and chocolate, these lightened-up and secretly vegan magic bars will be devoured in seconds!

Easy Vegan Magic Bars
magic bars words

Chances are you’ve probably seen at least one version of this traditional potluck favorite dessert, which goes by many names:

Hello Dolly Bars, Coconut Dream Bars, Seven Layer Bars, Magic Cookie Bars, Coconut Magic Squares

Over the years, these bars have been one of the most frequent recipe requests I’ve gotten from readers, and it’s not hard to see why the recipe is so popular!

You May Also Like: Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

healthy magic squares recipe

A soft graham cracker crust topped with layers of coconut and chocolate makes the bars truly as magical as their title suggests.

And while traditional magic square recipes call for sweetened condensed milk, eggs, and at least a third cup of butter, I’ve cut all of that out in this new healthier and vegan recipe… and absolutely no one I’ve ever served them to has noticed a difference!

Still craving chocolate? Try these Chocolate Truffles

vegan seven layer bars

With just five main ingredients, the magic bars are ridiculously easy to prepare.

The question of what to make for your Super Bowl party this weekend?

Solved – you should definitely make these 😉

healthy magic squares

I first made these magic squares for a rooftop party last summer and have been holding onto the recipe ever since, waiting for the perfect time to send it out into the world.

Figured now is as good a time as any, so here they finally are…

I hope you will love them as much as we do!

Vegan Coconut Magic Squares Recipe (7 Layer Bars)
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Vegan Magic Bars

These lightened-up and secretly vegan magic bars will be devoured in seconds!
4.93/5 (15)
Total Time 45 minutes
Yield 12 – 16 bars

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups fine graham cracker crumbs (9 cookie sheets OR for grain free, make these Keto Magic Bars instead)
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup or sugar of choice, or pinch uncut stevia
  • if using stevia, add 2 tbsp water
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped dates OR more chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped nuts, optional
  • 2/3 cup full-fat shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened
  • 1 1/4 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp oil or buttery spread, optional

Instructions

  • *Some of the readers who've made this recipe have loved the bars as-is, but a few readers asked how to make the crust more like traditional Magic Square crust. If you want a crust that is less soft, just include the optional 3 tbsp oil or buttery spread with the graham cracker crumbs before pressing down.
    Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper going a little up each side. Preheat oven to 350 F. In a bowl, toss the graham cracker crumbs with the sweetener (and water if using stevia), then transfer evenly to the bottom of the prepared pan. Press down. Sprinkle the chocolate chips, dates, coconut, and optional nuts over top. Now evenly pour the coconut milk over top. Place in the oven. Bake 33 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit 10-15 minutes to firm up. (If still too soft for some reason, they also get much firmer if you refrigerate overnight.) Slice into bars, wiping the knife after each cut.
    View Nutrition Facts

Notes

Also be sure to try these popular Easy Cinnamon Rolls.
 

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Published on January 29, 2018

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Reader Interactions

80 Comments

Leave a comment or reviewLeave a rating
  1. Lydia says

    5 stars! I had a 7 ounce can of vegan sweetened condensed coconut milk so I used that in the place of the full-fat coconut milk. I didn’t think this through because the bottom of the bar was dry due to the less liquid added (my fault), but these were still absolutely delicious!!! I can’t wait to make again.

  2. Meena says

    Katie, these vegan bars are absolutely heavenly… so addictive. I made it last week & they Turned out so yummy. I kept the van of coconut milk in the refrigerator first . Then I made sure I drained the water away from the cream. Then I beat the coconut cream and poured it over the base. It was so Delicious. The base was dry n crisp on the first day. Must try recipe ladies

  3. Meena says

    Made the bars again at my dinner party 2 nights ago. was a hit. Everyone said ‘ it’s totally out of this world’. Kudos to you Katie.
    For those making it for the first time, a few hints. Add a little vegan butter to the crust. It will remain firm. Also use less coconut milk , just enough to cover the top of the bars. Make sure you put the can of coconut milk in the fridge. Once cold, pour out the water from the can& keeping only the coconut cream for the crust top. I used only less than 1 can of coconut cream. Bake the night before party. The crust will remain firm.

  4. Katie B. says

    I know multiple comments have said a substitution for coconut changes the whole idea of the magic bars- but my mom refuses to eat coconut so is there at least something else I could partially substitute to reduce the amount of coconut? Please help!

  5. Julieane says

    Made a batch…baking in the oven now. I know they’re going to be delicious. (I like the fact the recipe is an 8″ pan of goodies, which is enough for a single person to share with friends or have as a snack throughout the week – or the night???) 😉
    THANK YOU, Katie, for this blog – LOVE your recipes and I mention your website whenever the topic of healthier eating comes up in conversation!

  6. Akanshu Jamwal says

    Hi Katie,
    i love it is the best combination of coconut & chocolate i love it thanks for sharing i try this on weekend

  7. Ashly says

    Any tips on using canned coconut milk ?
    Do I use everything in the can ? The watery stuff or just the creamy stuff or do I shake it all up ??

  8. Teresa McKillop says

    Love! Have you ever tried sweetened condensed Coconut Milk? We make our Magic Cookie Bars with it and it is SO indulgent.

    • Ecfinn says

      That’s what I use! Also, I use corn flake crumbs (with vegan butter and a little sugar) instead of graham crackers. Not a big fan of graham crackers in baked goods…the corn flake crumbs make the crust sort of sweet-and-savory.

  9. Ecfinn says

    I make these but I use corn flake crumbs instead of graham crackers (tastes better, more of a salty/savory thing going on and they are naturally vegan). Also, my recipe calls for sweetened condensed milk poured over the chips and coconut, but sweetened condensed coconut milk works great. It’s a veganized version of an old recipe.

  10. Isabella Amaya says

    LOVE this recipe! I’ve made it many times. It always turns out delicious. I love that I can have a treat without having to feel guilty. A few times I’ve forgotten to add in the sweetener to the graham cracker crumbs, and it still turns out great.

  11. Marcia says

    Guess I’ll have to try the keto crust, unless you can tell me what kind of graham crackers don’t contain honey?

  12. Peyton says

    These were pretty good! The only thing I would do is to add a sweetener to the coconut milk because it was a little overpowering. I love them frozen!

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