Gluten-Free Raspberry Coconut-Almond Bars

Gluten-Free Raspberry Coconut-Almond Bars
Gluten-free almond raspberry bars with coconut are sweet temptation.

Let's Party

Let's be honest. I am here today to tempt you. To coax you. To seduce you with a (gluten-free vegan!) dessert worthy of every single luscious calorie. In full transparency, I am admitting up front these are not fat-free. Or sugar-free. These aren't diet food. They're not proper for breakfast (unless you serve them with Champagne).

And you won't be able to sigh ever-so-wistfully at parties and mention, off hand, how hard it is to eat gluten-free at family gatherings and parties. Because, Darling Reader, you'll score zero sympathy points once people sink their teeth into the luscious raspberry jam filling nestled between buttery toasted coconut-almond crunch topping and tender hazelnut cookie crust. Nope.

In fact, these decadent raspberry coconut-almond bars should come with a warning:  

{Be careful who you share these with.
Because they are sure to fall madly in love with you.}

Raspberry almond bars recipe with coconut and a hazelnut flour gluten free crust
A pan of gluten-free holiday cookie deliciousness.

Karina's Raspberry Coconut-Almond Cookie Bar Recipe

Recipe originally published December 2010.

These luscious little vegan beauties are sticky sweet, buttery and decadent. A truly tempting dessert treat. Go ahead and indulge. Bake up a batch. Make friends.


1 cup ground hazelnut or almond flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch/flour
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon xanthan gum

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
3/4 cup Earth Balance stick, or coconut oil
1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla

Topping ingredients:

14 oz. really good raspberry jam or preserves

For the crumble topping:

1/2 cup sorghum or brown rice flour
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon bourbon vanilla
5 tablespoons Earth Balance

For the coconut-almond topping:

1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
2/3 cup sliced almonds
4 tablespoons Earth Balance
1/2 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract


Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF.

Prepare a 9x13-inch baking pan by lining it with parchment paper. Cut a piece large enough to extend up both long sides of the pan- so you can grip it later, after baking, and lift the cookie bars out in one piece.

First, make the bottom cookie crust. In a large mixing bowl, whisk to combine the flours, sugar, xanthan gum, salt and spices. Cut in the shortening and vanilla- I use the whisk attachment on my Kitchen Aid stand mixer to cut the shortening into the flour blend. You could also use an old fashioned pastry cutter. The dough should be crumbly, a bit sandy, but moist enough that it sticks together when you pinch it.

Scoop the dough into the prepared baking pan and press it out evenly to form a cookie crust.

Bake the crust in the center of a preheated oven for 7 minutes- just to "set" it.

Remove from the oven and set aside. Keep the oven heated.

In a bowl, combine the sorghum flour and brown sugar. Drizzle with the vanilla extract and dabs of the shortening. Rub together with the palms of your hands to create crumbles. Set aside.

To make the coconut-almond mixture- gently melt the vegan butter in a saucepan. Add the flaked coconut, sliced almonds and vanilla and stir to coat. Remove from heat and set aside.

While the crust is still a bit warm, spoon on the raspberry jam and using the back of a spoon spread it evenly over the crust, up to the edges- leaving about 1/4-inch bare crust on all sides.

Sprinkle on the crumble topping.

Spoon on the coconut-almond mixture and spread it evenly all over the top.

Bake in the center of the preheated oven for 22 minutes. The raspberry jam will be bubbling and the crumble topping will be golden and the coconut toasted. The center of the top may still feel a bit soft- that's okay; it will set as as it cools.

Remove the pan to a wire rack to cool. When the cookie bars are completely cool, gently loosen any stuck edges around the sides of the pan. Place a sturdy cutting board next to the pan (at least the same size as the pan). Lift the bars from the pan using the parchment paper as a grip on each side and move the whole big piece to the cutting board. Place the board in the freezer to chill the bars. Say, twenty minutes or so. Remove the bars and slice with a large sharp knife.

Makes 18 generous bars. You could skimp on size to squeeze more serving pieces out of the recipe. But. Then you'll probably end up eating two, anyway.

Wrap leftover bars, bag and freeze.

Cook time: 22 min

Yield: 24 bars - These babies are sugary and rich.

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Karina's Notes:

Cool before cutting (if you can resist!) to keep them from crumbling.

Store chilled for best texture.

If you prefer using dairy, butter will work.

Coconut oil can be slightly oily, so when I use it in this recipe, I use a little less.

Enjoy sugary treats in moderation. Gluten-Free Goddess advises consuming no more than 2 tablespoons of sugar a day.

Gluten free raspberry coconut almond cookie bars
No apologies necessary for these sweet raspberry cookie bars.

More gluten-free cookie recipes from food bloggers:

Ginger Lemon Girl's Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cookie Recipe
Book of Yum offers a Monster Gluten-Free Quinoa Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
Elana's Pantry bakes up Pecan Shortbread Cookies
Kalyn's Kitchen goes low carb with Sugar-Free Gluten-Free Triple Almond Cookies
Healthy Green Kitchen goes minty with Gluten-Free Chocolate Mint Cookies
The Spunky Coconut's grain-free Chocolate Chip Cookies sound amazing.

xox Karina


Anonymous said...

I plan to make these scrumptious treats TODAY! BUT, since I am not able to find hazelnut flour locally, I'm subbing almond flour!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Karina, can't wait to try theses bars for myself! For friends who can eat wheat how could I substitute the ingredients? said...

Oh you temptress, you! These look fabulous. Mmmmmm.....goooood.

Anonymous said...

I have no words!!!!!!!!!!! Oh.....mmmm

Anonymous said...

Today is a great day to be GF! There was a GF fair at my local farmer's market where I had the most delicious pizza I have ever tasted (even before going GF!) Now, I visit your site at see this fabulous recipe! Raspberries, coconut, almonds, and hazelnut? Yes, please! I am very glad to have stumbled upon your site, Karina, you do an excellent job of it!


dorothy said...

Be still my beating heart! What a perfect collage of flavors and textures. Nirvana.

Kendra (AquaMom) said...

I can't wait to make these for a family christmas party I am attending. Mmmmmmm, I love raspberries!

Amanda Stuckey said...

Uhhh, YUM.

Rach said...

full of win :D

ayjay said...

Oh my goodness gracious! Made this with blueberries and almond flour. Sooo delicious!
Just ordered hazelnut flour online. Can't wait to get it and try the recipe again!
Thank you so much Karina :)

Meagan said...

This is very intriguing. I never would have thought to do raspberry. Maybe the fact that it kinda looks like chocolate is throwing me off!

Joan Marie said...

These look absolutely delicious! Can't wait to try the recipe.

Miss Fauve said...

You were right. I love you.

~Jenn in Forest Grove

P.S. Thank you for sharing with such abandon.

Imp's Mom said...

This looks absolutely Yumm!!

Cant wait to make this..I'd like to know a substitute for Shortening..can I use unsalted butter or olive oil?

Karina Allrich said...

Thanks for the raspberry cookie bar love--- I see a lot of potential in these for flavor variations. xox

As for subbing the shortening and vegan butter- yes, butter would work best. xox


The InTolerant Chef said...

Sooo goood! I love raspberries.Yummm...

Spring said...

I can't wait to make these! I have been sighing for the thumbprint cookies my mom always made for Christmas when I was growing up... maybe this will be my grown-up replacement! :) I am allergic to hazelnuts; can I sub an almond flour?
Oh and thanks for adding the tip about subbing real butter, as I am also allergic to palm oil (and I tend to not do well when I sub things on my own guessing!)

Kalyn said...

They sound just amazing. I think if I bake every day for the rest of my life (not!) I would never have the creativity at baking that you do!

Jackie said...

As always, what a beautiful post and recipe! I've not had experience yet with hazelnut flour, so this is likely to be my first use! Thank you once again for sharing your passion and creativity--you never let us down! :-)

Cheryl Harris said...

I have home made raspberry jam that was apparently destined for this recipe...thanks for sharing!

Andrea Paterson said...

These look absolutely delicious and I will be whipping up a batch of these for Christmas. For the person who couldn't find hazelnut flour-- if you can get whole hazelnuts you can grind them into flour in your food processor. I make my own almond flour this way and it's much cheaper than buying the flour pre-made. Nut flours are just finely ground nuts, but be careful not to turn them in to nut butter!

consciouslifecafe said...


This is my first time on your page and WOW, I can't keep my eyes off of it nor stop my mouth from watering all over my keyboard.

I am in the process of working with my holistic doc to figure out which foods I can eat while I heal my digestive system and work to get rid of migraines. Already know I am lactose intolerant and am also being tested for Celiac Disease which we are 90% sure is affirmative.

I have been feeling somewhat helpless lately as it seems there is not much I can eat, especially since meat seems to trigger my migraines leaving me currently seeking gluten free dairy free vegetarian foods.

THAT is how I found you, a simple google search has led me to the Goddess, and thank Goddess it did!

I look forward to trying your recipes!

Cheers to you and all that you do : )

Love, Light & Magical Moments,

Carol Chastain said...

Please tell me what jowar flour is!

Karina Allrich said...

Thanks, again, Beauties! As for subbing the hazelnut flour, yes, you can use almond flour-- thanks, Andrea, for sharing how you make your own nut flours. Shortening can be subbed with butter or a solid vegan margarine, softened.

And jowar flour is sorghum flour. Outside the US, sorghum is sometimes called sweet jowar or jowar flour.

Xox Karina

Nisrine | Dinners & Dreams said...

Katrina, these bars are amazing and so are your photos of them. I have bake with millet a lot and love it!! These are right up my alley!

Janis said...

What an amazing website - I love all the recipes. I am off corn and cane sugar and was wondering what a good replacement would be for brown sugar. I would love to make these treats. Thank you!

Carrie said...

thank you SOOO much for the link love today dear girl!! You're the best!!! xxoo!!

Candyce said...

Made these for a party last night . . . astonishing! I was able to find hazelnut flour in my Whole Foods without problem and was delighted to find it's much cheaper than almond flour. I think I like the flavor better, too.

The one caution I have is that the jar of jam I used was 16 ounces rather than 14, and I went ahead and threw it all in. You can never have too much raspberry jam, right? But you can. The bars are just a tad too sweet. Still scrumptious, though!

Candice said...

Oh my. I just made these as part of a cookie box I've been putting together as a gift for coworkers and some friends. They are amazing. I had to do a few substitutions based on what I had available (I ran out of sorghum flour for the topping so I used millet, which worked very well, and I had no coconut flour so I used more almond, which also worked very well!) but they're still amazing.

Thank you for the recipe!

TinaC said...

These are sooooo good! And they freeze very well also. I couldn't find hazelnuts in my local store, so I just ground up some almonds and used those, I can't wait to try them with hazelnuts when I find them! I also subbed coconut oil for the margarine since that is what I had, absolutely divine!!! Thanks so much for the amazing recipes.

Karen said...

These were delish! Making them again for Christmas!

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Oh my, these look good!

Ann said...

I made these for a non gluten free cookie exchange and they were the party favorites!! I read your website several times a week to plan meals and party menus. Thank you Thank you Thank you for this website. Gluten free for 14 months now and your recipes and blogs make it fun :-)

Karina Allrich said...

YAY! I'm so glad this recipe was a hit. I need to bake some more. A certain individual has been dropping hints. ;-) xox Karina

Nicolle Star said...

Is there any alternative to using Brown Suger or sugar in general. Im trying to stay away from Gluten-Dairy and sugar as much as possible.

Thanks love the recipes

Karina Allrich said...

Nicolle- My desserts with sugar rely on sugar for volume, texture, and taste. I hesitate to offer a sub for the sugar in this recipe- it would require experimenting- and quite possibly, developing a new recipe. I post these sweets for readers who love dessert. Personally, I eat very little sugar. Here's my post on Sugar Blues- you might find helpful:

The Cowboy's Wife said...

Thank you! I have been searching for a good gluten free dessert and this is more than I hoped for! Your site is amazing, keep it up )

Anonymous said...

YUMMY!!!!! I didn't have the jam but I had frozen blackberry's and mixed those with my frozen blueberries, But all the rest I followed. This I would serve at ANY get together!


dfox919 said...

I made these bars last weekend! They were amazing, I will be sure to make them again. Yum yum!

Megan said...

Thanks for this lovely recipe. I'm normally not ambitious with multi-step baking projects, but this was for a special gathering and was worth the extra work. Glad I did a lot of the prep the night before.

A few things I learned that might help others:

-I used 1 TBSP unflavored gelatin in place of xanthan gum since we didn't have it. Worked splendidly. (Have heard that 2 tsp. agar-agar powder will do that job for vegans)

-We didn't have sweetened coconut for the topping, so when I used unsweetened, I put it in the melted butter, then added and melted some sugar in the mix until it had a slight sweetness.

-Our house is really cool, so even on the warmed crust the jam wouldn't spread well until I preheated it to get it more liquidy first.

-I didn't pack the sugar for the topping and crust and also used a bit less than listed in the recipe (due to another comment I read about sweetness). It was still plenty sweet due to the jam and I'd reduce it even more next time.

Thanks again!

Unknown said...

I made these yesterday and promptly had to send them to a friend's house so I couldn't devour them all! Fantastic recipe that is sure to become a repeat favorite.

A few alterations that might help other readers:

Almond flour is a great sub, and I didn't have coconut flour so I used millet and the texture was fine.

I used a 50/50 mix of xylitol and brown sugar, it cuts your sugar intake and tastes amazing - I would even say if you were diabetic you could go all xylitol (as I do most of the time) and add a touch more vanilla to make up for the loss of the rich brown sugar.

Thank you for this recipe, I will be experimenting with all sorts of fruit and nut combos soon... I'm thinking apricot pecan...

camrobn said...

Wonderful recipe. I'm subbing stewed apples. Just found out my brother n law is gluten intolerant, so I'm trying to substitute this for his favorite morning snack, apple fritters from Starbucks! Wish me luck!

notjustachick said...

WOW! these look gorgeous! I have my best GF Friend coming over this weekend for dinner - will be trying these for sure!!

...hmmm... maybe a holiday twist with cranberries?!?! hmmmmmmm

LinP said...

Perfect timing, Karina. I have three new gluten intolerant/celiac diagnosed friends.I'm introducing you through this recipe. Once I get my Vita-Mix grain attachment back, I'll grind up some nuts if I can't find nut flour.

The traveling manatees aka Alan and Nancy said...

This sounds and looks amazing. Will definitely be adding this to my Holiday cookie list. Thanks

gfe--gluten free easily said...

What if they already are madly in love with you, like we are with you?? ;-) Love these!


Lisa said...

I made these yesterday and took them to a euchre party with GF & non-GF people - they were an absolute hit with everyone!

I used almond flour & butter. I also tweaked the cookie crust a little - I used 1/2 cup of brown sugar & 1/2 cup of coconut sugar (supposedly has a lower glycemic index). Coconut sugar is very similar in taste to brown sugar but it's not as wet, so it doesn't pack. The texture is more like larger grains of "regular" sugar or turbinado sugar. I wasn't sure how much subbing the entire sugar amount in the cookie crust would change things. It seemed to work just fine with 1/2 & 1/2. I subbed coconut sugar in the rest of the recipe.

Thank you Karina - delicious!!

The InTolerant Chef said...

i think you're right about being careful, so I've decided to play it safe and eat them all myself :-) Why take the risk.?

Catt Geller said...

Karina, I made these yesterday with black cherry preserve instead ... they were terrific and addicting ... and NONE were left on the plate. I plan on trying these again with lemon curd ... doesn't that sound yummy! Or Lord help me lime flavored ... they won't be dairy free but still gluten and tasty.

Thank you so very much!

Melissa said...

These look great! My dad gives us a jar of Lingonberry jam every year to go with Abelskivers (that I won't make cuz I can't eat them!) so I will try that jam!

Essential Oil Momma said...

Im not sure if your "printer friendly" feature is working or if its me that cant work it. I'm getting numerous pages printed out instead of just the recipe.

Karina Allrich said...

Thank you everyone! xox

For printer friendly- open it up via the printer friendly button and hover your mouse over photos, text, to delete what you do not want to print (you'll see a "delete this" appear).


kathydillon said...

Thank you so much for this recipe!! It saved me at Christmas from eating No-No desserts. While everyone was feasting on bread pudding and pecan pie, I pulled out a raspberry bar and was perfectly content!

Anonymous said...

Well these look delightful! I am going to try and make them for Christmas. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

Gluten Free Anna said...

I want. I want to eat these so very much so. YUM

Moriah said...

These bars are like heaven in your mouth! They are absolutely yummy and even non-GFers love them :) Thanks for this fabulous recipe!

Jen Bridges said...

I am allergic to nuts. Would using all sorghum flour be ok? And could I leave the almonds off the top, maybe sub more coconut? These look soooo yummy, and I would love to try them! :)

Sandy said...

I have to make these Soon!!! On another note is there a "basic" GF flour mix I can make to have on hand and store in the kitchen canister like regular wheat flour? Frig/ freezer space is very limited.
Thank you and welcome to CT ( we need snow!)
Sandy R

Jenna DeSantis said...


This looks so yummy. I am definitely going to try this recipe at home :-)

XO Jenna said...

No wonder you have so many comments, these look fabulous, who could resist the combo of raspberry and coconut, delicious!

blossomthyme said...

Time for me to chime in. I just completed making these. OMG! Karina, you are not only a goddess, you are an angel. You definitely are here doing what you were meant to do. For you to come up with this sweet temptation is amazing and quite joyful. For this recipe I used my very expensive GF all-purpose flour (3/4 cup to substitute for the sorghum and tapioca, xanthum gum). I have never purchased sorghum yet, I'm sure I will though. I subbed Pamela's pancake mix for the crumble, coconut oil for the cookie base, and butter for the crumble and topping. You are a darling to share this with us and I am a fan. This was my first recipe I've tried after visiting your blog many, many times. Can't wait to try my next recipe. Happy Holidays!

Toni Snyder said...

I used coconut oil and a little bit of orange extract, and WOW! Love anything with raspberry.

Et tu, tutu? said...

These are AMAZING! Just made them tonight and although they're not cooled yet, I couldn't resist eating a crumbly mess of a piece with a spoon and it was sooooo good! Next time I think I'll try Nutella instead of raspberry jam. :)


joanne said...

Where does everyone buy the gf flours? I can get quite a few at my local food co-op, but not sure if they carry the almond, hazelnut or coconut flours. I love your blog! Your creativity and sense of humor are delightful and I can't wait to try your recipes.

SquishyHumanoid said...

I paleo-ized these and served them to a non-GF/paleo crowd and they were a hit. I had to cut down the sugar as they seemed like they would be too sweet if I used the full amount of sugar. I was right, they were the perfect amount of sweet with my modification.

@Joanne I buy bob's red mill coconut and other GF flours at a regular grocery store. However, I live close to Bob's red mill headquarters and processing plants which probably makes it easier to find their products. I make my own almond and hazelnut flours by grinding the whole nuts (either blanched or unblanched, just not roasted) in a coffee grinder. I then sift the flour to get a fine texture, re-grinding any bits that don't go through the sifter. I find that a coffee grinder works better than a food processor. I don't have a vitamix but hear they make a good fine textured flour. When I see nut flours in the store they are like $10+ per lb. I can make 3 lbs of them on my own for the same price.

Robin Crow said...

These look amazing and I'm choosing to make them for my boss's birthday Friday. I can't find almond flour, but I do have the others, plus buckwheat flour. Do you think buckwheat flour would do?

Thank you so much--I'm off on my first gluten-free culinary experiment! (If it doesn't turn out, I have enough ingredients to make those dark chocolate brownies!!) :-) Thank you.

Robin Crow said...

Hi--I've decided to make these for my boss's birthday Friday, but can't find almond flour. I have the others and also buckwheat flour--do you think that would do in place of almond?

Thank you for posting these lovely recipes. I'm off on my first GF culinary adventure! (And if they don't turn out, I'll try those wonderful-looking dark chocolate brownies!) :-)

Robin Crow said...

Oh! Sorry--I thought my first comment got deleted as I signed in to my account.... :-}

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