this is my attempt to sneak one more blueberry recipe in this summer before all of the blueberries are officially (and depressingly) gone. i first made these blueberry crumb bars last summer and i remembered enjoying them, so i thought they’d be a fitting farewell to blueberry season (::tear::). and they’re gluten-free, which is either exciting or vaguely frightening, depending on your dietary situation (but the bars are good, so let’s all just be excited that we can share with our gluten-free friends!).
now, before we get too far underway, i should be clear: i don’t usually eat gluten-free. however. i do like to tinker and try new things. and i have friends who do eat gluten-free or primal, and, like me, they like to cook and eat. so sometimes when they post recipes on facebook and rave about them, i try them, even if they’re adapted for diets i don’t follow.
aaaaand then i tinker (hello real sugar in a formerly primal recipe!). this recipe ended up being one that i adapted quite a bit, mostly because ginger is always better than coconut. (that said, this is your warning that if you *do* follow a specific diet, you’re in charge of making sure that all of the ingredients comply with your needs. i’m definitely not an expert at gluten-free baking! the gluten-free girl is though; check out her site if you’re new or baking for a GF friend.)
i linked to the original recipe below if you want to check it out as written (which is also primal, in addition to gluten-free). after a short-lived and pretty gross experiment with artificial sweeteners a few years ago, i opted to use sugar instead of stevia. i know my conversion is a bit off from quantity in the original recipe but when i first made the bars with the ¾ cup sugar that typical stevia conversions would have you follow, i thought the bars were unnecessarily sweet. so, i prefer ½ of real sugar, but you may do as you please.
along similar lines, if you are avoid lactose or dairy, i have successfully made these using non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening (such as spectrum) in place of the butter (1:1 substitution).
and finally, a note on texture. these bars are very moist. you definitely won’t have anyone complaining that they are too dry. in fact, i recommend storing these in the fridge and i actually prefer to eat them straight from the fridge so that they are not quite as moist. that’s also why i switched from the loaf pan the recipe calls for to an 8” x 8” pan. well, that and the sinking blueberries…
ok, enough warnings! the bars are good and i usually eat baked goods packed full of gluten! the end!
- 4 oz. (114 g. / 1 1/8 cups) almond flour
- 5/8 oz. (19 g. / 1/8 cup) coconut flour
- 3 1/2 oz. (99 g. / 1/2 cup) sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 oz. (57 g. / 1/4 cup) butter or non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice, optional
- 6 oz. (170 g. / 1 cup) blueberries, washed and gently dried on paper towels or a dark-colored towel
- 1 5/8 oz. (45 g. / 6 tablespoons) almond flour
- 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar (a coarse sugar is ideal for crunch but you can sub in granulated sugar)
- 0.5 oz. (14 g. / 1 tablespoon) butter or non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening, softened or melted
- 1 1/8 oz. (31 g. / 3 tablespoons) finely chopped crystallized ginger
- preheat the oven to 350° F.
- in a small bowl, combine the 6 tablespoons of almond flour, the 1 tablespoon of turbinado sugar, and the 1 tablespoon of melted butter. mix with a fork until the butter is distributed and the mixture forms small clumps. stir in the crystallized ginger.
- combine all of the dry ingredients in a medium size bowl and break up any lumps with a fork. set aside.
- in a large bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients.
- add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until combined. add the blueberries and gently fold in.
- spread the batter evenly in an 8″ x 8″ baking pan. spread the crumb topping across the top of the batter.
- bake for 25 – 30 minutes until golden brown on top. i didn’t find a toothpick to be a terribly helpful gauge of doneness but i did notice that the first time i slid the oven rack out to check on the bars, the center was a bit wiggly so i promptly put the pan back in. make sure the center is not wiggly before you take the bars out!
- cool in pan on a wire rack. once cool, cut into 9 squares. i actually prefer the texture of these after they have been in the refrigerator, which is where i recommend storing them. they also keep well in an airtight container in the freezer, for longer term storage.
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