Meet my newest hot weather summer dessert.
and seriously hard to resist! No, make that impossible to resist.
This chilled dessert is a hybrid of two of my favourite desserts in The Oh She Glows Cookbook – the Chilled Chocolate Espresso Torte (p. 241) and my Beat the Heat Frozen Dessert Pizza (p. 269). Now that the temperatures are finally rising here in Southern Ontario (YAY), I knew I had to transform my beloved torte into something that didn’t require turning on the oven.
Because a pregnant lady, humidity, and a hot oven just don’t mix.
Instead of my nut-based baked crust, I used the no-bake chocolate rice crisp crust from the frozen dessert pizza recipe. It’s such a simple swap, but it worked so well. The crispy crust is the perfect contrast to the creamy chocolate filling. Plus, it was so much faster to make. The prep is less than 5 minutes for the crust. Fool. Proof. I will be using this crust again and again this summer. In fact, I’m already planning on serving this as a dessert option at my baby shower. I think it’s going to be a big hit!
I poured on the rich & creamy chocolate filling and let it firm up in the freezer for a few hours. All you do after that is slice it and serve with some coconut whipped cream and chopped nuts, if you wish. I had some toasted hazelnuts leftover from a previous recipe so I just sprinkled those on top. Absolutely divine!
Double Chocolate Crispy Frozen Dessert Bars
15-18 small slices
This creamy + crispy double chocolate dessert is no-bake and perfect for those hot summer days. It's meant to be served chilled, straight from the freezer just like an ice cream cake. I recommend using a high-speed blender like a Vitamix or Blendtec for this recipe because you'll need a machine that blends the soaked cashews super smooth. Less powerful blenders just might not cut it for this one (be sure to let us know in the comments if your brand does a good job!). Also, be sure to soak the cashews in a bowl of water about 8 hours before you plan to make this recipe. This ensures that the cashews are super soft for easier blending and it also has the added bonus of making the nuts more easily digested. Recipe adapted from Chilled Chocolate Espresso Torte and Beat the Heat Frozen Dessert Pizza from The Oh She Glows Cookbook.
FOR THE CRUST:
- 2 cups rice crisp cereal (use certified gluten-free if necessary)
- 4 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 2 1/2 tablespoons brown rice syrup or coconut nectar syrup
FOR THE FILLING:
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water for at least 8 hours
- 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, melted
- 2/3 cup agave nectar or 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder or raw cacao powder
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt, or to taste
- 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts, for garnish
- Coconut Whipped Cream, for garnish (see link below)
- Place cashews in a bowl and cover with 1-inch of water. Let soak for about 8 hours until soft and plump.
- Grab an 8-inch square cake pan and line it with 2 pieces of parchment paper, one piece going each way so it's easy to lift out.
- For the crust: In a large bowl, add the rice crisp cereal and cocoa powder. Stir to combine. In a small pot, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Pour the oil and syrup onto the rice crisp and stir very well until combined. If the mixture seems a bit dry you can add another 1/2 tablespoon of syrup and stir again. Spoon the crust mixture into the prepared pan and smooth out. Grab a small piece of parchment paper and use it to press down the crust until packed and even. Place the pan in the freezer so the crust can set while you prepare the filling.
- For the filling: Drain and rinse the soaked cashews. In a small pot, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Pour into a high-speed blender. Now add in the agave nectar or maple syrup and vanilla, followed by the cocoa powder, melted chocolate, fine grain sea salt, and drained cashews. Starting on low, blend the mixture until it comes together and then gradually increase the speed until the mixture is super smooth. If using a Vitamix use the tamper stick to get it going.
- Remove crust from freezer and pour on all of the filling. Smooth it out with a spatula and then place the pan back in the freezer (uncovered is fine) for about 3 hours (or longer if desired) until the filling is firm to the touch.
- Slice and serve chilled straight from the freezer with a dollop of coconut whipped cream and chopped hazelnuts.
- Store leftovers in an air-tight container in the freezer for up to 3 weeks. I like to freeze the slices, then wrap them in tin foil, and place in a sealed glass container for maximum freshness.
Tips: If your blender is having a hard time blending the filling mixture you can try adding a bit more liquid sweetener or melted coconut oil to help things along. Adding a bit of almond milk might be an option too, but I wouldn't add more than 1/4 cup at most. To make this recipe soy-free, use a soy-free chocolate such as Enjoy Life brand. Looking for a nut-free option for the filling? I haven't tested one for this particular recipe, but you might want to try out this filling recipe using an avocado-based filling (simply swap the almond milk for a nut-free milk and the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter).
Nutrition Information(click to expand)
The added bonus is that you can make this dessert in advance, freeze it, and not have to fuss with it the day of your event. The best kind of dessert if you ask me!
I hope you enjoy cooling down with this summer treat as much as we do. Happy (almost) summer.
THANK YOU for the nut free suggestions :D
No problem, I hope the chocolate avocado filling works out for you if you try it!
It’s been so hot at our farm recently and I need to whip up something cool and refreshing. Bookmarking this recipe and making it asap!!! Yum!
I’m wishing I could come to your baby shower just for a bite of this! And to congratulate you on your baby girl, of course. ;)
We’ve been trying to be “green” and not use the AC as much and it’s been sweltering. This would definitely be a perfect way to cool off!
Yay chocolate!! It’s 80+ degrees now in Florida so this is perfect.
Yummy Angela! I was wondering, do you think it would work to make individual size mason jar ones? I have a tiny freezer and a tray won’t fit in there right now…
Yes I totally think that would work! I thought of doing it myself, but I thought it might be more difficult to photograph so I went with the bars, hah.
These looks amazing, Angela! I already had your Beat the Heat Frozen Dessert Pizza on my list to make this week, so now I’m torn between this one and that one! Deciding between two chocolate desserts is one of the tougher decisions in life :)
Oh my word these look amazing!!! I love the combination of the chocolate ‘rice krispie’ crust and the creamy cashew coconut chocolate layer!!! Yumm – looking forward to trying this this summer! :D
These are amazing! So great for summer!
Oh my goodness! This looks absolutely divine! I’m going to get on this really soon because, as you said, summer is almost upon us here in Canada (the key word is “almost”) and baking isn’t going to be fun anymore! Is it bad that I have the urge to lick my screen right now?? :)
Ohh I LOVED that torte from the cookbook, so I can’t wait to make these!!
The perfect summer deck dessert that looks surprisingly easy! Thanks for sharing
Wow that looks amazing! I just picked up some brown rice crisps and I desperately need a hot weather recipe like this. Thanks for sharing!
I love how dense and fudgy that chocolate layer looks! So refreshing looking on a hot day! pinned
Can you recommend a good brand of rice crisp cereal? It’s not a product I ever buy but I noticed that you use it in some of your recipes like this one and in your book so i have meaning to pick some up! (I live in Ontario). Thanks! Love your blog and loving your cookbook :)
Hi Izabella, I usually buy Whole Foods 365 brand or Nature’s Path rice crisp – hope this helps!
Yes it does, thanks so much!
This looks amazing. Do you think I could substitute almonds for the cashews? We have quite a balancing act at my house: my husband is vegan, I’m gluten-free, and my son is severely allergic to cashews!
That is a challenge for sure! :) In my experience, soaked almonds don’t blend quite as smooth as soaked cashews so I would say it depends on your blender. If you are using a Vitamix it might still be ok to use soaked almonds (but you still might need to add a bit more liquid to get it going). Otherwise, I would suggest using the chocolate avocado filling that I linked to in the recipe note. Hope this helps & good luck!
In my experience macadamias usually work better as a cashew replacement than almonds. Of course they tend to be quite pricy…
Delicious! I love that the ingredient list isn’t too long and all very accessible as well :) a winner all round!
Mmmm, I am drooling over these pics. Will make this sometime during the summer for sure!
Given how hot it’s getting here, I have a feeling I’ll be needing to put these into rotation soon!
These look divine! And perfect for a summer afternoon by the pool…or after work…or during work..or because it’s Tuesday. :)
everything you make is so dang PERFECT! I cant wait to try this. you are the best!!
What could one use instead of brown rice syrup. Honey? Maple syrup?
I have tested coconut nectar syrup and that works, but I haven’t tried anything else yet. You want something fairly thick so it holds together nicely when slicing. Honey might work! It just might crumble a tiny bit more, but I don’t think anyone would complain too much. ;)
Great Angela, thanks for the recipes, I LOVE chocolate!
Oh dear me. I may just have to whip this one out. It’s been in the 90’s here and will be again next week so cool desserts sound fab-u-lous. Thanks for sharing your genius, it’s too darn hot in the kitchen, ideas. This hot flashing girl appreciates it. LOL
Mmmm looks delish!!!
Could you use something other than cashews ? My mummy is allergic…
Macadamias would likely work, if she’s not allergic to them, though I think many people are allergic to all tree nuts.
Frozen chocolate bars?! Oh my goodness, this sounds amazing! It’s perfect since the weather is warming up! I still haven’t tried coconut whipped cream but it sounds delicious!
Well, these look just ridiculous, but they’re going to have to wait, because I am making myself the chocolate layer cake from the cookbook for my birthday next.
Angela, I just made the brownies from the cookbook today, and I’m wondering–what kind of brownie pan do you use? The batter was delicious–haven’t cut into the cooked product yet–but they took at least 20 more minutes to cook than they should have (I kinda lost count), and never developed the nice flaky top crust. Do you think that was because I made them in a glass casserole dish? I have checked the temperature on my oven and it appears to be accurate. Should I get a metal brownie pan? A shiny one or a dark one? Opinion??
Ok, I LOVE the way your pregnant lady brain is thinking these days! These looks absolutely fabulous. And rice crisp cereal… isn’t it the best?! I really like the Nature’s Path brown rice crisp cereal and always have one of the bulk bags in my cupboard…. for occasions like this when you post amazing desserts, of course! :)
I just read this recipe while enjoying a square of the two-layer raw chocolate brownies. (Love them so much!) But why not mix things up and try something new? Between the brownies and the cheerful chocolate smoothie recipe in the cookbook, I am getting my chocolate fix. And I AM more cheerful because of it. I will get ingredients for these bars over the weekend and happily add them to my chocolate dessert rotation. Thank you, Angela!
Thank goodness the warm weather has finally arrived here in Canada! :D
Would this recipe work with another light tasting oil instead of coconut oil?
It likely won’t be the same, since coconut oil is very solid in cold temperatures, but still good.
Wow – these look amazing – and remind me of the chilled chocolate torte with strawberry compote that I am planning to make soon! My kids will love this (as will hubby and I!) – and the almond joy looks great too – one of my sons came home telling me he likes almond joys (had never had one until a recent school trip he took). So psyched to make these!
Made the maple tempeh from your book tonight – YUM! It was a hit with everyone except my pickiest who does not like tempeh and does not try things with an open mind ;-)! Had it with roasted sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts – so delicious! And my new favorite dressing that I have been having daily is the cinnamon apple one from the kale salad in the book – you are gifted! Thank you
Oh goodness! These looks amazing! I cannot wait to make these. My birthday is coming up and I think I’ll make these to celebrate! Awesome recipe :)
I just made this recipe using my Osterizer and it blended great, came out creamy and perfect! The blender actually originally belonged to my great-grandfather, who then gave it to my grandfather and then to my dad who gave it to me! Its survived 4 generations and it is still quite the trooper.
wow that’s awesome! Thanks for letting us know :)
This looks great, pity that here in Australia, we’re heading into winter.
You asked for info on other blenders that do a good job. I have a KitchenAid Artisan blender, which here in Australia are less than a third of the price of the wet container only Vitamix, and it does an excellent job on cashews, even without soaking (though I usually do).
I’m filing this recipe away to try in about 6 months time ;-)
Looks so good!
I have to try these!!! Yum!
Its got a rich, fudgy chocolate body and a crisp base and its no-bake! I’m one happy camper! Perfect for summers!
I could have used one of these over the past few days – I can’t believe how hot it’s been! I’m certainly not complaining though. ;) Thanks for including a nut-free substitution!
angela these look amazing. i cannot wait to try these. your peppermint patty slice is one of our favourites. all of your recipes turn out perfect everytime. thankyou!
Can I replace the brown rice syrup or coconut nectar syrup in the crust with syrup? I always have syrup on hand more so than the brown rice syrup or nectar. Thanks!
Have to agree with ALL the comments- these look fantastic! I am going to make them as is, but my partner doesn’t do any refined sugar. Is there anything I can replace the 1/3 dark chocolate chips with? Everything else seems to be OK! Thank you!
Hey Claudia, you can probably leave out the chocolate chips if you want…i think they should still turn out fine!
You had me at crispy! Okay, maybe you had me at double chocolate. Either way, this looks so darn delicious! I just bet your baby shower is going to be full of yummy food! (Although I’m not sure you should be making it yourself. ;)
Do you think I could use Earth Balance in place of the coconut oil? I can’t eat coconut because I’m allergic to it.
Hey Courtney, The coconut oil is used to help the bars get solid when chilled, so I really dont know how they would turn out without it. Sorry I cant be of more help!
I lost words to describe this. You described it best! Love the brown and white contrast in the photo…it’s so appealing :)
While I saw the suggestions to use the avocado filling for another option, I would really like to try the cashew filling. However, I do not own a vitamix or blender. I have used my cuisinart to make sauces and things with cashews. Do you think it would work here? If anyone has had luck doing that please let me know!
I used my food processor and it worked great.
These look so pretty! I can imagine these being a great picnic take-a-long treat.
These look awesome and I’m also loving your cookbook right now!
I would love to make these bars to take to my boyfriend when I visit him next weekend, so I have a couple of questions. Could you use cashew butter (100% cashews) instead of blending your own cashews? and do you think this would last in a cooler with icepacks for 2 hours out of the freezer for the bus commute?
Patiently waiting for the bars to set in the freezer. As bigs fans of the chocolate avocado torte, we couldn’t resist recreating it with a new crispy base.
Any ideas for subbing the coconut oil?? My skin reacts like crazy:(
This looks so good!