Eggnog Nanaimo Bars {Vegan}

Eggnog Nanaimo Bars {Vegan}

Over here on the Pacific side of Canada, there’s a little town on Vancouver Island called Nanaimo. And that town is famous for a specific treat called–you guessed it–Nanaimo Bars.

Why are they good?

Oooooh so many reasons. If you’ve never had one, a Nanaimo Bar consists of three layers: the base layer is made of graham cracker crumbs and nuts, and includes cocoa powder. It’s similar to a graham cracker pie crust, but thicker, and with the addition of chocolate in the form of cocoa. The second layer is custardy and smooth and creamy, and the whole works is crowned with a layer of melted chocolate.

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They are pretty amazing. They were something I grew up eating, but it wasn’t until only fairly recently, when I was visiting Nanaimo, I realized there were loads of variations. There’s a peppermint version with a green middle layer, I’ve had both a peanut butter version and a salted caramel (they have a whole Nanaimo Bar trail if you’re ever there). At Zoe’s Bakery in Ucluelet, they do a blackberry version that is mighty fine.

The cool thing about Nanaimo Bars is that they are actually pretty easy to veganize. I have a base vegan Nanaimo Bar recipe I’ve been working on for a while now (the key ingredient is Bird’s Custard), but I wanted to make a Christmas version, where the secret ingredient is eggnog.

To take it to the next level, I subbed out Biscoff crumbs for the graham crackers and bumped up the nutmeg, and added a smidge of booze, because… it’s Christmas!

These make a great Christmas gift for your friends and family. I’m making batches to bring and drop off to clients and businesses I’ve worked with this year as a thank-you.

Eggnog Nanaimo Bars Vegan

Eggnog Nanaimo Bars {Vegan}

Rebecca Coleman
A delicious Christmas variation on the three-layered bars made famous by a town on Vancouver Island (my vegan version).
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Refrigeration Time 2 hours
Course Dessert
Cuisine Canadian
Servings 12


For the crust

  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup walnut pieces
  • ½ cup coconut flakes
  • 1 ¼ cups biscoff cookie crumbs
  • ½ cup vegan butter melted

For the eggnog filling

  • 3 tablespoons non-dairy eggnog
  • 2 tablespoons vegan custard powder Like Bird's
  • ¼ cup vegan butter softened
  • 1 teaspoon liqueur of choice, like bourbon or rum (alternately, just use vanilla)
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups icing sugar

For the topping

  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons non-dairy milk


To make the base

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare an 8” square pan by lining it with parchment.
  • In a large bowl, place the sugar, cocoa, walnut pieces, coconut and graham cracker crumbs, and toss well to combine. Pour the melted vegan butter overtop and mix well.
  • Press into prepared 8 inch pan and bake for 12-15 minutes, until set. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

To make the filling

  • Place the eggnog and the custard powder in a medium-sized bowl and whisk them well together until combined. Add in the vegan butter and mix to combine. Add the flavouring and the nutmeg, then mix in the icing sugar until it is smooth. Spread this over top of the base layer evenly, smoothing over the top, and then place in the refrigerator to set for at least 30 minutes.

To make the topping

  • Place a large, heat-proof bowl over top of a small saucepan filled with about an inch of water. Bring the saucepan up to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.
  • Place the chocolate chips in the bowl and allow them to melt slowly, stirring occasionally.
  • Once melted, turn off the heat and add the vegan milk. Mix well to combine, making sure the chocolate mixture is smooth.
  • Spread in an even layer over the filling layer. Garnish with a little fleur de sel if desired. Return to the fridge to set for an hour, or overnight.
  • To serve: using the parchment paper, remove the bars from the pan, and cut into 12 or 16 squares.
  • Store for up to a week in an airtight container in the refrigerator, or in the freezer for up to two months.
Keyword bar, cookies, Square, vegan


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