Paleo Samoa Bars

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5 from 2 votes

These Samoa bars have soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut that's dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle for a paleo spin on those Girl Scout samoa cookies!

Paleo Samoa Bars: Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! | stressbaking.com

I got the worst craving for Girl Scout Samoas recently, but there were two problems with that craving:

  1. I didn't have any.
  2. I couldn't get any for at least a couple months (via my friend Google I learned that Girl Scout cookie season out here doesn't start until winter).

I suppose there's also a third problem with that: even if I did have any, they are SO not paleo. Let's take a look at the ingredients, shall we?

Sugar, vegetable oil (partially hydrogenated palm kernel and/or cottonseed oil, soybean and palm oil), enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate [vitamin B1], riboflavin [vitamin b2], folic acid), corn syrup, coconut, sweetened condensed milk (condensed milk, sugar), contains two percent or less of sorbitol, cocoa, glycerin, invert sugar, cocoa processed with alkali, cornstarch, salt, caramelized sugar, dextrose, soy lecithin, carrageenan, leavening (baking soda, monocalcium phosphate), natural and artificial flavors.

Sweetbabyjesus. The first freaking ingredient is sugar, the second is a mystery combination of oils, and the third is flour. So… nope. Not paleo. 

Paleo Samoa Bars: Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! | stressbaking.com

Sometimes I really hate caring about what I eat. You know why? Because if you've ever had a samoa, you know how ridiculously good they are. And you know that if you eat one, you will end up eating an entire package row. Buuuuuut then you'll feel like garbage, but make the same mistake the next day. 

Hence, why I care about what I eat.

Paleo Samoa Bars: Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! | stressbaking.com

Adapted from Bakerita

Despite all of these things, I just needed a samoa. STAT. I did a little Pinterest searching and came across this fabulous recipe from Bakerita.

I made a few changes to her recipe because I wanted a thicker shortbread layer and an exposed toasted coconut topping (instead of stirring it all into the caramel layer).

And if there's a thicker shortbread layer, that means it needs more chocolate coverage on the bottom. Oh darn.

Mine are messier looking than hers, but quite frankly I prefer it that way. This site is called Stress Baking, after all. That doesn't exactly scream “come here for pastry perfection!”, and it shouldn't.

My life isn't perfect, so I don't try to make my desserts look perfect either.

Don't worry about making them perfect!

I feel like if I spent an hour trying to cut them with the upmost precision, and made sure each chocolate drizzle was exactly the same on each one, made sure that the chocolate coating on the bottom was a perfect line all the way around each one… well, for one I'd be exhausted.

And two, it would make me more anxious when I'm editing my photos because I'd be so focused on making sure there's not a crumb out of place.

And if I did all that, it would suck the fun out of it for me, and I would worry that you guys don't think they're pretty enough, and I'd end up projecting my insecurities on a pan of brownies which is just entirely too much pressure for a pile of chocolate and caramel.

Paleo Samoa Bars: Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! | stressbaking.com

I guess the tl;dr here is that Bakerita gets credit for this recipe's origin, and I get credit for making them thicker and messier and adding some more calories to your day.

I'm okay with my lot in baking life.

Paleo Samoa Bars: Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! | stressbaking.com

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Paleo Samoa Bars

5 from 2 votes
Adapted heavily from Bakerita. Soft shortbread, gooey caramel, and toasted coconut are dipped in chocolate and topped with a chocolate drizzle! Paleo, gluten free, and dairy free.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 16 bars

Ingredients
 

Shortbread layer:

Caramel layer:

Chocolate layer:

Instructions

Shortbread layer:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8×8” square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine coconut flour, coconut oil, maple syrup and salt. Stir to combine until it forms dough.
    1 1/3 cups coconut flour
    1/2 cup coconut oil
    6 tablespoons pure maple syrup
    1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Press dough into prepared pan and sprinkle the top with a pinch of salt.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, or until just starting to turn golden brown around the edges – you don't want to overbake them! Let cool completely in pan.

Caramel layer:

  • On a large baking sheet, spread shredded coconut in a thin layer and toast in oven for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown.
    1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut flakes
  • In a medium saucepan, combine almond butter, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla and salt and stir frequently over low heat until completely combined. Turn off heat.
    1/2 cup almond butter
    1/3 cup pure maple syrup
    1/3 cup coconut oil
    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Add 1/3 of your toasted coconut to the pan and stir to combine.
  • Pour caramel filling over your prepared shortbread layer and top with the remaining 2/3 toasted coconut. Add a pinch of salt as well, if desired. Place in fridge to set and cool completely.
  • Cut into 16 squares. Place in freezer while you prep your chocolate.

Chocolate layer:

  • Prep a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Melt 1 1/2 cups of the dark chocolate (in the most shallow bowl you can get away with) in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring after each, until melted and smooth.
    1 3/4 cups dark chocolate
  • Take the bars out of the freezer and dip the bottom of each bar into the dark chocolate, and place on a parchment lined baking sheet to set.
  • Melt the remaining 1/4 cup dark chocolate, transfer to a small piping bag and drizzle the chocolate over the bars.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge (or freezer). Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 377kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 247mg | Potassium: 257mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 8IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition Disclaimer

The provided nutrition information is generated by an automatic API and does not take variations across specific brands into account. This information is provided as a general guideline and should not be treated as official calculations. Learn more here.

Recipe created by Leslie Kiszka

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36 Comments

  1. I love samoa cookies so thank you, thank you for making a paleo version! That way I can feel less guilty about eating them. And I personally feel that they look beautiful; imperfect things are the prettiest in my book. :)

  2. Honestly I never liked any of those Girl Scout cookies. I was raised in a different country and this treats means nothing to me. But all my friends are going crazy for them! I will make them yours Samoa bars next time, let’s see what they will say !) love the updated ingredient list btw

  3. Oh my word! These look AMAZING! I live in Canada so I have never had the Girl Guide version ya’ll have…may have to try my hand at these bad boys! I wonder if I could do them in tiny squares to add to Christmas trays?! Ooo guess I will have to make many batches to “try” :D

  4. I don’t think I’ve ever had a samoa, but I’m loving what I see here!! Plus, I love Bakerita and her recipes. Thank you!

  5. These definitely look better than the Girl Scout version! and so simple that these are going on the to-make list! ;-)

  6. Oh Wow!!! These look so delicious! I love that they are Paleo. I agree with you that if the first ingredient is sugar, then I always try to find an alternative recipe!! Great job!

  7. This would make my rainy day here today SO BRIGHT! I am definitely saving it in my to-do recipes – thank you so much for sharing it!