Vegan & Gluten-Free Fruit & Almond Shortbread Bars from Duff Bakes

Holiday baking season is upon us so we couldn’t think of a better time to share these delicious Vegan & Gluten-Free Fruit & Almond Bars from Duff Bakes, a new cookbook by Duff Goldman. These treats are perfectly light and sweet, and you don’t have to feel too guilty about snacking on them.

Duff Goldman is the New York Times bestselling star of Food Network’s hit series Ace of Cakes and owner of Charm City Cakes and Duff’s Cake Mix. Duff Bakes, on sale now, is full of mouthwatering dessert recipes all using fundamental baking skills. In this cookbook, Duff and Sara give home bakers the down-to-earth essentials they need for baking at home. Purchase a copy today from your favorite retailer.

Vegan & Gluten-Free Fruit & Almond Shortbread Bars

Alpert_HC_DGoldman_AlmondBars_Day70364These are an absolute favorite of everyone in the bakery (I have to yell at them to stop eating them); they can’t believe these light, buttery-tasting shortbread bars are actually vegan and gluten-free. They’re so good. I like to use blackberry or boysenberry preserves for these bars, but I’ve also used homemade cranberry and even store-bought apricot preserves and they all come out awesome! —Sara

Makes 16 bars

  • 2 sticks (1 cup) vegan butter or margarine (we like Earth Balance)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • ½ cup white rice flour
  • ½ cup potato starch
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup fruit preserves
  • Sliced almonds, for topping
  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F and grease an 8-inch or 9-inch square pan.
  2. With a hand or stand mixer, beat the vegan butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and almond extracts.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix the flours, starch, and salt.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the “butter” mixture and mix until just incorporated.
  5. Press two-thirds of the dough into the pan and bake for about 10 minutes, or until the crust is pale light brown. Remove it from the oven.
  6. When the pan has cooled enough to handle, spread the preserves evenly over the crust.
  7. Break the remaining dough into little tiny pieces and drop them evenly over the jam. Top with the almonds.
  8. Bake for another 25 to 30 minutes, or until the top is a nice golden brown.
  9. Cut into bars and serve immediately, while still warm, or store them in the refrigerator.

Options: To make in a non-GF/vegan version, use regular butter and substitute equal amounts all-purpose flour for the rice flour and potato starch.

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