So excited to share these Baklava-Inspired Cookie Bars — we are obsessed!
Inspired by the flavors of Baklava, a popular sweet pastry of Ottoman cuisine, made of layered filo dough with nuts and honey, these cookie bars have a soft cookie base and then are topped with a creamy honey-caramel topping filled with walnuts and pistachios. The combination of the honey, the nuts, the buttery cookie and the spices- there’s nothing that’s not delicious about this dessert.
While I will admit, these were a labor of love while testing, these turned out to be one of my new favorite treats. I also love that they keep so well in the fridge or freezer to enjoy throughout the week!
And before you get to baking these Baklava-Inspired Cookie Bars, be sure to read through all of the directions carefully before you start baking. especially my notes about the caramel! The caramel topping can be fickle but I promise they will be well worth it in the end if you follow the directions closely!
If you love these cookie bars, here are some other healthier desserts to try!
Baklava-Inspired Cookie Bars
For the Cookie Base:
- 3 cups almond flour
- 1 cup tapioca flour
- 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted (sub ghee for paleo and vegan butter for dairy-free)
- 2 egg yolks
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
For the Honey-Caramel Topping:
- ¾ cup honey
- One 13.5-ounce can full-fat unsweetened coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter sub ghee for paleo and vegan butter for dairy-free
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice about ½ a lemon
- ½ cup roughly chopped raw shelled pistachios
- ½ cup roughly chopped raw walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350℉. Line a 9×9-inch baking pan with parchment paper, letting it hang over the sides and spray with non-stick spray. This will make it easy to lift the cookies out of the pan after baking. Set the pan aside.
Make the Cookie Base:
- To a large bowl add the almond flour, tapioca flour, cinnamon, and salt. Whisk out any clumps.
- Add the melted butter, egg yolks, almond extract, maple syrup, and orange zest. Using a rubber spatula, stir to combine until a sticky dough forms.
- Transfer the dough into the prepared pan and press into an even layer using a rubber spatula or damp hands. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes until golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean when pressed in the middle of the pan. Remove from the oven and place in the fridge to cool completely while you prepare the topping.
Prepare the Topping: (See note)
- In a medium saucepan, combine the honey, coconut milk, and vanilla extract. Turn the heat to medium-high and whisk until the coconut milk and honey are well combined. Bring to a rapid simmer and continue to cook, not stirring, undisturbed *see note below, for about 10 minutes, or until it’s reduced by about half, thickened slightly, and darkened in color. An instant read or candy thermometer should reach about 235℉ when the caramel is done. While cooking, if it comes close to bubbling over, reduce heat to medium/medium-low.
- Remove from heat and stir to slightly cool. Add the butter into the saucepan and let it melt without stirring. Once melted, add the cinnamon, salt, lemon juice, pistachios, and walnuts. Stir to combine.
Assemble the Bars:
- Pour over the cookie layer, spreading evenly with a spatula.
- Place in the freezer to cool completely and the caramel has set, about 2 hours. To serve, cut in half then slice into triangles. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer for 2 to 3 days.
Photography and styling by Eat Love Eats.