Spring has definitely sprung, at least here in Florida. It is getting hot. I realized spring and summer desserts are some of my favorites. So, I really wanted to share these vegan strawberry lemonade bars with you guys. They are incredibly easy to make, they serve a big crowd, and EVERYONE loves them. They are perfectly sweet and tart, with the best crust to filling ratio in my opinion. Because who doesn’t love a graham cracker crust? This recipe uses simple to find ingredients, nothing crazy. They come together super fast and will probably be what you bring to every spring and summer gathering from now on.
What You Need For These Sweet and Tart Bars:
- Graham Cracker Crumbs: They are the base for the most delicious crust.
- Vegan Butter: Melted vegan butter is the binder for the crust.
- Organic Cane Sugar: A little bit goes in the crust and a good bit goes in the filling.
- Freeze Dried Strawberries: The strawberry part of this filling comes from pulsing freeze dried strawberries in a food processor to make powder.
- Corn Starch: This is the thickener for the filling.
- Lemon Juice and Zest: You really can’t have lemonade without lemons.
- Coconut Cream: To help thicken and make these bars extra creamy.
I get so excited to take these vegan strawberry lemonade bars to people’s houses. I just love to blow people away with how amazing vegan food is. Not to mention, dessert is my jam. I am definitely a sweets type of person, and I always volunteer to bring the dessert to a potluck. These impress every time. With 8 ingredients total, people are also super surprised that there are not a million ingredients in them.
Why Should You Make These Lemonade Treats?
- These are like the best lemon bars, made even greater with the addition of strawberries.
- 8 ingredients? Yes, please.
- They are like almost half crust/half filling and I’m not mad about it.
- They taste like heaven.
- Any excuse to put some vegan whipped topping on things and I’m there for it.
Vegan Strawberry Lemonade Bars
Graham Cracker Crust
- 2 1/2 Cups Graham cracker crumbs, vegan
- 3 Tablespoons Organic cane sugar
- 1 Cup Vegan butter, I used Country crock plant butter(melted)
Strawberry Lemonade Filling
- 1 Cup Organic cane sugar
- 1/3 Cup Freeze dried strawberry powder*
- 6 Tablespoons Corn starch
- 1 Cup Lemon juice
- 2 Cans(14oz. each, 28oz. total) Coconut cream or full fat coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon Lemon zest
- Pinch of Salt
- Make the crust first. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F).
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs and the cane sugar. Then pour the melted vegan butter into the bowl and stir to combine, making sure the butter is evenly mixed in and all the crumbs are saturated with butter.
- Pour the mixture into a 13x9 inch baking dish that is lined with parchment paper or sprayed with non-stick spray.
- Press the crust down evenly into the pan. Then bake for 12-14 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and firm.
- Let the crust cool while you make the filling.
- In a medium sized sauce pan, whisk together the cane sugar, strawberry powder and corn starch. Whisk thoroughly until it is almost all one texture and there are no lumps of corn starch left.
- Pour the lemon juice into the sauce pan and whisk to combine, again making sure there are no lumps.
- Heat on medium, whisking, for about a minute. Then pour in the coconut cream, lemon zest and pinch of salt.
- Whisk to fully combine, and then bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and continue to whisk until the filling is nice and thick. About 5-7 minutes. You should be able to put the filling on the back of a spoon and swipe your finger through it and the line will stay.
- Now, pour the filling on top of the crust and smooth out evenly. Put in the fridge and chill for at least 4 hours or until nice and firm. I usually chill them over night.
- Cut into squares and serve with vegan whipped topping if desired. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.