Lemon Collagen Bars
By now you know that I love fruity desserts, particularly anything that combines sweet and sour. Lemon bars happen to be one of my all-time favorite treats, not only because of their taste and texture, but also because the fruit is in season all year round (yup- lemon is not just a summertime treat!), meaning the bars will taste good no matter what month you desire them.
I haven’t ever had a front porch swing or even lived in a community where people hang out on their front porches for that matter, but lemon bars in my mind are what I like to think of as a “front-porch” dessert. What I mean by this is that every time I eat a good lemon bar, I can picture myself sitting with my grandparents on a swing, surrounded by my loving and chatty neighbors, as we all enjoy the delicious treat. They just feel so traditional and so home-y.
But, you also have probably realized that I love to get creative in the kitchen and revamp traditional recipes with some not-so-traditional ingredients. I’ve tried this with many different kinds of recipes- muffins, cakes, breads, you name it. But for some reason, I had yet to try it with lemon bars. Actually, that’s a lie. Once a few years ago I followed a recipe for “clean” lemon bars (don’t get me started on the name. No food should be labeled as “clean” or “dirty”) and they turned out horribly. As in, nobody could even give me constructive feedback because there was just so much wrong with them!
Anyway, I hadn’t tried doing this with lemon bars in a while, so I really wanted to do them right this time around! And honestly… boy was I not expecting this recipe to work. But it did, and I, along with quite a surplus of taste testers, were pretty dang satisfied with the outcome.
So, I present my Lemon Collagen Bars. Collagen is the most important protein in our bodies, and can be found anywhere from in our bones to in our blood. We all make our own collagen, but our production slows as we age. But, thankfully, this is where supplemental collagen comes in! Collagen supplements can really come from any common source of meat, such as bovine, chicken, fish, and even egg shells. In this case, I used grass-fed bovine collagen from Primal Kitchen. The concept of consuming collagen from other animals does really weird me out if I think about it for too long, but I also know how good it is for you. And trust me, your skin, nails, and hair will thank me later ;)
- 2.5 cups almond flour
- 3 tbs melted coconut oil
- 1 tbs honey
- 1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- ½ cup lemon juice (about 7-8 small lemons)
- ¼ cup coconut sugar
- 4 tablespoons collagen (I used Primal Kitchen’s Vanilla Coconut Collagen)
Preheat the oven to 350ºF and grease a baking pan with coconut oil. As the oven preheats, prepare the crust by mixing together all ingredients. Transfer the dough into pan and press it down until the base is evenly covered. Then, bake the crust for 12 minutes.
While the crust is in the oven, whisk the 4 eggs and then add the rest of the filling ingredients. Make sure to thoroughly whisk so there are no clumps.
After the crust has baked for a bit, remove from the oven and add filling on top. Then, place back in oven and bake for an additional 20 minutes.
Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool for 10 minutes before placing it into the fridge. Chill for at least two hours, then enjoy!