This gluten-free and vegan blueberry crumb bars recipe was developed exclusively for Nuts.com and our customers by Miryam Quinn Doblas, Registered Dietitian (RD). Miryam inspires others with her passion for creating healthy and delicious recipes on her website, Eat Good 4 Life.
There’s something so comforting about these blueberry crumb bars. They remind me of summertime and the outdoor celebrations that the warmer weather inspires. The delicious gluten-free pastry crust is covered with real blueberries and topped with sweet, crumbly goodness. Make them as a treat for your next picnic, or simply enjoy them at home throughout the week.
For a gluten-free alternative to all purpose flour, I made the crust from a combination of almond flour and coconut flour. The texture they provide is similar to that of wheat flour, to compensate for the lack of gluten. This blend of gluten-free flours achieves the ideal firmness and consistency, and makes a delicious crust. The best part is that almond flour and coconut flour are packed with nutrients you won’t find in white flour.
Almond flour is a powerhouse of protein, fiber, calcium, iron, and vitamin E. It provides 6 grams of protein and 3 grams of dietary fiber per serving so baked goods made with almond flour tend to be quite satisfying. Since it can be used as a one-to-one replacement for wheat flour in baked goods, almond flour is truly a gluten-free baker’s dream come true. For this recipe, I decided that using almond flour in combination with coconut flour would yield the best results.
Coconut flour packs an impressive 11 grams of dietary fiber per serving. High-fiber foods like coconut flour can support the digestive system and help regulate spikes in blood sugar. As an added bonus, coconut flour supplies notable levels of protein and iron. The low-glycemic and grain-free attributes of coconut flour make it an attractive option for low-carb, paleo, and gluten-sensitive dieters. It has a mild flavor that won’t overwhelm your recipes, and tends to be palatable even for people who don’t like coconut. One thing to note about coconut flour is that it is highly absorbent, so recipes using the flour tend to call for more liquid, eggs or oils.
Blueberry season is right around the corner, so take advantage of the fresh, plump and sweet berries in your crumb bars. Many recipes online call for jam in place of real fruit, but there’s no need for that. Even if you don’t have access to fresh blueberries, you can still use frozen ones which retain the same high levels of potent nutrients like antioxidants, vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, and more.
The crumbly topping is absolutely delicious and complements the sweet blueberries perfectly. You could even toss in some chopped pecans or walnuts for a bit of crunch. For a vegan treat, I used coconut oil instead of butter. It works just as well as butter to lends the ideal pastry-like consistency for the crust and topping. Coconut oil is also recognized as a healthy fat, and one in which the body can easily use for energy. Plus, its lauric acid content supports a strong immune system.
These gluten-free blueberry crumb bars are a delight to make and a joy to eat. Whip up a batch to bring to your next potluck or simply store them in the fridge to enjoy as your go-to dessert this week.