These Date Pecan Caramel Bars are deliciously indulgent yet made with healthy ingredients and require no baking. They have a shortbread cookie base, a layer of medjool dates, nutty pecans and a pumpkin spice nut butter caramel and chocolate top.

If you love all things caramel and want a cosier flavour to celebrate autumn, then these are for you. After seeing the viral date bark all over social media, I was inspired to use dates in these bars and they work so well. They add a lovely chewy sticky layer within the nut butter caramel – it’s hard to remember that these bars are made with wholesome ingredients and are fully plant-based and gluten-free, too.

Bitten Date Pecan Caramel Bar with other bars
Date Pecan Caramel Bars

Why will I love these?

These bars are amazing:

  • Rich, chocolatey and nutty
  • Smooth, creamy and melt-in-the mouth
  • Sweet, sticky and delicious
  • Naturally vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free
  • Require no baking or fancy equipment
  • Last for 1 week in the fridge or longe4r in the freezer
  • Great for easy desserts or snacks
  • Delicious for all the family
  • Wholesome and healthier than shop-bought caramel slices
  • Easy and quick to make
  • Made with wholefood ingredients

If you already love the sound of these bites then skip ahead to the recipe card below. Or, let’s discuss the recipe in more detail.

What ingredients do I need?

The ingredients are simple and you can see my favourites in the “shop the recipe” section as well as the weights in the recipe card below.

For the base:

  • Oat flour: or start with whole oats and blend them into a fine flour.
  • Ground almonds: to make these rich and delicious or you can use more oat flour if making these nut-free. I love the texture the ground almonds add.
  • Vegan vanilla protein powder: for a boost of protein and also a lovely vanilla flavour.
  • Salt: for flavour.
  • Runny smooth peanut butter: to help bind the bars. It works better if the nut butter is smooth and you can also swap this for almond, cashew or pecan butter or sunflower seed butter to make the bars nut-free.
  • Maple or agave syrup: to add stickiness and sweetness to help bind the bars.
  • Coconut oil: to allow the base to set.
  • Thick coconut yoghurt: adds moisture and gut healthy fats to the mix. I always use the Cocos Organic range as it’s really thick and creamy and great for this recipe.

For the middle layers:

  • Dates: medjool dates work best as they are really squishy and soft and are perfect for creating a layer on top of the base.
  • Pecans: I love pecans this time of year as they are crunchy and slightly sweet. You can leave these out if making the bars nut-free or swap for pumpkin or sunflower seeds.
  • Runny, smooth peanut butter: as above for the bubble-less caramel.
  • Coconut oil: to set the caramel firm enough to slice but soft enough to melt in your mouth when you bite into them.
  • Maple or agave syrup: for the sticky sweetness.
  • Pumpkin pie spices: to add a lovely warming cosy flavour. You can make your own pumpkin pie spice blend or buy it, too. If not, use cinnamon.

For the top:

  • Dark chocolate: I use a rich dark chocolate as the rest of the bar is quite sweet with the caramel and dates. You can use a bar of chocolate or chips/buttons and I like to melt mine with some coconut oil so that the chocolate sets more quickly and is less likely to crack when you slice them.
  • Additions: on top I like to swirl some more peanut butter and add on some pecans and flaky salt.

Are these gluten-free and nut-free?

Yes these bars are gluten-free as long as your oats/oat flour are certified gluten-free. To make these nut-free, they’ll no longer be Date Pecan Caramel Bars but still delicious: swap the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter or tahini and swap the pecans for sunflower or pumpkin seeds.

How do I make them?

These no-bake bars are simple to make:

  • Stir together the base ingredients: and press into a lined tin.
  • Destone the dates and layer over the base with the pecans: pressing in slightly.
  • Whisk together the caramel components until smooth: and pour over the base.
  • Chill in the fridge: until firm.
  • Melt the chocolate and coconut oil: and pour over the caramel with some peanut butter swirls and extra pecans.
  • Set in the fridge and then slice: using a sharp, warmed knife to slice into bars.

How long will they last?

These bars will keep for 1 week in the fridge in a sealed container or 1 month in the freezer, wrapped well. Allow to defrost to eat.

What else can I make?

If you are looking for more no-bake recipes:

Three Date Pecan Caramel Bars

Date Pecan Caramel Bars (Healthier)

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

These Date Pecan Caramel Bars are deliciously indulgent yet made with healthy ingredients and require no baking. They have a shortbread cookie base, a layer of medjool dates, nutty pecans and a pumpkin spice nut butter caramel and chocolate top.


For the Base:

  • 75g oat flour
  • 60g ground almonds
  • 15g vegan vanilla protein powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 60g runny smooth peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp maple or agave syrup
  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp thick coconut yoghurt

For the Dates and Pecans:

  • 5 medjool dates, pitted
  • 30g pecans, chopped

For the Caramel:

  • 90g smooth, runny peanut butter
  • 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp maple or agave syrup
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spices

For the Chocolate Top:

  • 120g dark chocolate, chopped small
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 10g pecans, chopped


  1. Line a 9x5-inch loaf tin with parchment paper.
  2. For the base: stir together all of the ingredients to a sticky, crumbly mix that holds together when pressed between your fingers. Tip into the prepare tin and press down firmly to make the base.
  3. For the dates and pecans: tear the dates in half and press onto the base to cover nearly all the top. Now sprinkle over the pecans and chill in the fridge while you make the filling.
  4. For the caramel: whisk together all of the ingredients until smooth. Remove the tin from the fridge and pour over the caramel, spreading into the corners. Chill in the fridge for 1 hour, or until firm to touch.
  5. For the chocolate top: chop the chocolate small and add to a small bowl with the coconut oil and melt until glossy. Remove the tin from the fridge and pour over the chocolate, spreading into all the corners. Spoon over the peanut butter and swirl through with a toothpick. Sprinkle with the pecans and chill in the fridge for 1 hour, until set.
  6. To slice and serve: remove the tin from the fridge and lift out the bars. Use a sharp, warm knife to slice the caramel bars into 8 squares and sprinkle with flaky salt, if you like.
  7. Eat straight away or keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for 1 month and allow to thaw for 20 minutes before eating.

Shop the recipe

Stay in touch

I look forward to hearing what you think of these Date Pecan Caramel Bars so please let me know in the comments below and leave a star review above. If you do make these, I’d love to see so please tag me, I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. I’m also on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest  – please say hello!

With date pecan love x

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