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49 Paleo Desserts That Taste Anything But

If dinner has no dessert, is it really a meal? Hell no! But when you’re following a Paleo diet, it can feel like there’s a real lack of dessert options. Don’t stress, sweet fiends, we’ve got you covered. Yes, certain foods aren’t part of the Paleo plate, but that doesn’t mean you’re entering a time without treats. We’ve rounded up some of the best Paleo-friendly desserts to satisfy your prehistoric sweet tooth. So stock up on staples like almond and coconut flours and coconut oil because these desserts are so tasty, you’ll want to eat at least one daily.

Bars and Brownies

blueberry espresso brownies

Photo: Civilized Caveman Cooking

These brownies will have you buzzing. Ground coffee lends extra depth to the brownie base, while fresh berries and pecans add a hint of sweetness and crunch.

paleo lemon bars

Photo: Simply Taylor

Lemon bars are such a classic treat, and this version is Paleo approved. Start by making a simple almond-flour crust. While it sets in the oven, combine eggs, lemon juice, honey, coconut flour, and lemon zest in a food processor. Pour the mixture over the now-golden crust and bake. Easy as pie… err, bars.

flourless zucchini chocolate brownies

Photo: The Comfort of Cooking

Don’t shy away from this recipe because of the zucchini. You’ll get an extra-moist brownie, a sneaky serving of vegetables, and zero “green” taste. No special equipment or ingredients needed to whip up these beauties.

french silk brownies

Photo: Natural Sweet Recipes

Chocolate mousse meets brownies in this light and lovely dessert. And it’s easy enough for novice cooks to tackle. Hint: Try grapeseed oil for the “neutral oil” in the brownie base.

paleo coconut secret bars

Photo: Tessa the Domestic Diva

No baking required, six ingredients, and totally addictive—these bars are pure genius.

Kind Bars 2.0

Photo: Primal Bites

Sweet enough to work as an after-dinner treat but healthy enough to replace your afternoon snack, these bars are made with a medley of seeds, nuts, coconut, and orange zest. They’re the perfect crunchy-sweet combo.

raw almond joy bars

Photo: Rawmazing

Almond Joy fans, make some nooooise! Yes, it’s possible to make a Paleo version of this classic candy bar. A layer of almond butter, vanilla bean paste, and a few other ingredients are topped with sweet coconut and agave nectar for a no-bake version of the childhood favorite.

Cakes and Cupcakes

healthy donuts with cashew glaze

Photo: Odd Bake

These perfectly spiced doughnuts skip the deep-frying mess. Top with this blogger’s amazing cashew-cinnamon glaze or add in some of your own favorite toppings. (We vote bacon!) Tip: While the recipe calls for a doughnut pan, a regular muffin pan will do.

Almond, apple, and blackberry moist skillet cake

Photo: A Tasty Love Story

This cake (or crumble) screams autumn, but it’s perfectly delicious year-round. Apples, blackberries, and spices make up the filling, and the entire dessert is cooked in one pan for speedy cleanup.

Avocado Key Lime Cheesecake

Photo: Bare Root Girl

Fresh avocado combines with zesty lime juice to create this light, festively colored cheesecake. Use puréed fresh berries as a topping or eat as is—either way, it’s delicious.

Lemon Blackberry Cupcakes

Photo: A Healthy Life for Me

These moist lemon cupcakes are topped with a homemade buttercream-blackberry frosting. The recipe might sound complicated, but you’ll be surprised at how many of these ingredients you already have in your pantry.

paleo chocolate cake

Photo: My Natural Family

Grains, dairy, soy, nuts, and refined sugar are left out, but this take on a classic still has that old-fashioned layer-cake flavor, including a double-decker dose of gooey, chocolate frosting. Throw some of your favorite berries on top as a bonus.

Paleo Salted Caramel Cheesecake Bites

Photo: Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind

Don’t go running away from this (slightly) longer list of ingredients just yet. These two-bite minis look—and taste—like something from the Cheesecake Factory, but they’re packed with good-for-you ingredients, like zucchini and cashews. They’re worth every second (and every speckle of coconut sugar). Craving a caveman-size slab instead of these dainty bites? Just add the crust to a pie pan and make one big cheesecake instead.

No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake Jars

Photo: Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind

A cheesecake that doesn’t require baking? Awesome. A cheesecake that doesn’t require baking and is dairy- and gluten-free? Even better! Fresh strawberries and a (gluten-free) graham cracker crust in a jar make these treats both simple and gorgeous.

Snickerdoodle cupcakes

Photo: My Natural Family

If you’re a fan of this iconic cinnamon cookie, these cupcakes will be your Paleo dream come true. Everything comes together using coconut and almond flours, and grass-fed buttercream frosting is the icing on the cake. (See what we did there?)

dark chocolate mousse

Photo: The Healthy Foodie

Chocolate mousse sounds complicated, but once you learn how effortless it is to make, you’ll start throwing it together just cuz. The same holds true for this avocado-and-date Paleo version. Toss a few common ingredients in a food processor and then whisk till fluffy. Fancy French restaurants have nothin’ on you.

paleo spiced carrot cake

Photo: Simple Roots

This creamy, spiced carrot cake skips gluten and sugar, but it definitely doesn’t skimp on any of that signature carrot cake flavor. This recipe does include goat cheese, which is an “on the fence” Paleo ingredient, so if you are super strict, go with a 100% dairy-free cream cheese frosting recipe instead.

Molten Chocolate Lava Cake

Photo: Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind

If you’re a chocolate lover, this gooey cake will hit all your chocoholic buttons. And because the cakes are baked in ramekins, portion control is a cinch. Drizzle optional caramel garnish on top to take these little beauties over the edge.

paleo orange raspberry muffins

Photo: Thriving on Paleo

A blend of raspberries and orange juice brings a deep, fruity flavor to these amazing muffins. Make sure to use fresh fruits and juices to get the best flavor.

paleo strawberry shortcake

Photo: Dietitian Debbie Dishes

This recipe will make you regret ever using a boxed mix. Since Paleo is all about real food, this is shortcake distilled down to its roots. Chunks of strawberries and almond extract shine in this straightforward recipe.

Cookies

paleo chocolate chip cookies

Photo: Paleo Running Momma

Life without classic chocolate chip cookies sounds bleak. Thank goodness almond flour, coconut oil, and coconut sugar provide the building blocks to reproduce a Paleo-approved version of Toll House’s greatest hit.

paleo chocolate chip bacon cookies

Photo: A Saucy Kitchen

Question: What could make chocolate chip cookies better? Answer: bacon. That’s exactly why this Paleo recipe is pure gold. Chopped bacon is folded into the dough along with chocolate chips to make the ultimate salty-sweet mix.

flourless cranberry chocolate chip cookies

Photo: Hummusapien

These grain-free and flour-free cookies are mixed with tart cranberries and sweet chocolate chips for the perfect post-dinner treat. The flaxseed + water base may sound weird, but you’ll never know that these Paleo cookies are missing flour.

paleo gingerbread cookies

Photo: Primal Palate

These cookies are not only absolutely adorable, but with spicy seasonings like cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, they also scream, “It’s holiday season!” (Note: We fully support making these year-round while singing carols at the top of your lungs.) And don’t stress if you don’t have cookie cutters to make gingerbread people; just drop spoonfuls on the tray and bake.

paleo peanut butter cookie

Photo: Sally's Baking Addiction

Don’t make us choose when it comes to dessert: We want chocolate and peanut butter, chewy cookies, and a brownie texture. These treats are not only delicious, but they also come together quickly and require just seven ingredients. (Sub in almond butter and coconut sugar if you’re sticking close to the Paleo rulebook.)

paleo thin mint cookies

Photo: Fed + Fit

It’s like Girl Scouts gone grain-free. These delightful cupcakes use mint extract to capture the iconic Thin Mint flavor. And the natural green frosting is courtesy of creamy avocado paired with ingredients you can actually pronounce.

coconut sandwich cookies

Photo: Paleo Running Momma

These lemony sandwich cookies are like Oreos with a healthy (and sweet) upgrade. Feel free to use this easy cream filling for other recipes too.

paleo ginger jam thumbprint cookies

Photo: Beyond the Bite

These adorable cookies get their red color from an easy homemade raspberry jam (made from just four ingredients!). You’d never even know that the recipe uses dates and plantains as sweeteners from tasting this treat.

avocado chocolate cookies

Photo: Sprouted Fig

Not everything with avocado in it turns out green. These amazing (and super chocolaty) cookies replace butter with avocado for a delicious and chewy treat. Tip: These are best served cold.

Fruity

fried honey bananas

Photo: Rachel Schultz

If you’ve had fried plantains, this’ll be familiar turf. Potassium-packed bananas are lightly sautéed in olive oil and then drizzled with honey. Super sweet and a snap to make, these are a great option when late-night munchies hit.

baked almond butter banana

Photo: Fed and Fit

The dessert principle here is K.I.S.S.: Keep It Simple and Sugar-Free. Simply stuff a banana with heart-healthy almond butter, sprinkle with cinnamon, and let it roast for 15 minutes in the oven for a quick single-serving banana split.

slow cooker mixed berry paleo cobbler

Photo: Wicked Spatula

No fresh fruit? Not a problem with this go-to recipe. Cobble together your favorite frozen fruits with a little of this (almond flour) and a little of that (tapioca starch) for a dessert that’s easy to throw together when your sweet tooth strikes. Don’t have a stash of frozen berries? You can also use overripe fruit.

mojito fruit salad

Photo: Spicy Southern Kitchen

This mojito-inspired fruit salad provides that island flavor with some added rum. Just substitute coconut sugar for the powdered sugar if you’re keeping close to the Paleo principles.

paleo plantain crepes

Photo: Camille Macres

The crepe batter here is a base of puréed plantains and egg, which means it’s full of potassium, vitamins A and C, and omega 3s. Cook them with coconut oil, then load with your favorite fillings. Our picks: strawberries and blueberries, peanut butter and chocolate chips, or honey and banana.

Paleo Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Photo: The Iron You

Make use of overripe bananas in this Paleo-friendly remake of an old favorite. Helpful hint No. 1: As oven temperatures vary, keep an eye on your loaf during the last 10 minutes of baking to ensure it’s cooked on the inside and not over-browning on the outside. Helpful hint No. 2: Banana bread totally counts as breakfast.

paleo coconut apples

Photo: Paleo Porn

Say hello to your new favorite midnight snack. A sliced apple gets covered in a tasty choco-coco mix that’s perfect for eating solo or sharing (if you’re feeling generous).

paleo scones

Photo: Lau Sunday Cooks

Apricots and cranberries is a combination that works beautifully in this scone recipe. If you’ve been afraid of baking scones in the past, this recipe will put you at ease—it’s as simple as slice-and-bake cookies.

Pies and Crisps

paleo apple pie

Photo: Sweet as Honey

Back from the orchard with an apple overload? This Paleo version of the all-American apple pie is the answer. Almond meal and cashews are the secret ingredients to achieving crust perfection, and the rest comes together with apple-cinnamon goodness.

bananas foster pie

Photo: Plated with Style

Rum, caramel, and flambéed bananas? Now this is a pie. Start by making a whipped layer full of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cashew butter, and then add a caramelized banana layer. (Tip: Keep your rum handy!) Assemble and refrigerate for at least six hours, then inhale.

paleo cherry crisp

Photo: I Breathe I'm Hungry

Exactly three ingredients make up the core of this sweet cherry recipe, and there’s no additional sweetener aside from fruit. A crumbly topping (hooray for hemp seeds!) finishes off this stupendously simple dessert.

raw chocolate coconut banana tart

Photo: The Healthy Apple

Chocolate and coconut team up in this no-bake pie that’s perfect for warm nights. An almond and date crust is filled with coconut milk, banana, and cocoa powder. The result is creamy perfection.

paleo key lime pie

Photo: Paleo Running Momma

If you can’t make it to Key West, the next best thing is this key lime pie. A creamy filling is topped with a homemade coconut whipped cream for a tropical treat.

paleo key lime pie

Photo: Fed + Fit

If you’re a pecan lover, this pie won’t disappoint. Pecans make up the crust, filling, and topping of this tart. Natural sweeteners like honey keep it indulgent.

paleo sweet potato pie

Photo: Cupcakes Omg

Sweet potatoes in dessert? Believe it. While the prebaking process is a bit long—you’ll have to wait for the crust to chill and sweet potatoes to steam—sinking into a meringue-topped slice after is well worth it.

Candy and Other Deliciousness

dairy-free frozen hot chocolate

Photo: Physical Kitchness

Coconut, raw honey, one egg white, and dark chocolate are all you need for this frozen treat. Heat up a batch of hot chocolate, freeze into ice cubes, blend, and serve for a dessert that’s a perfect summer sweet.

paleo peanut butter cups

Photo: Simple Green Moms

If you are a Reese’s lover, these will knock your PB-lovin’ socks off. Four ingredients combine in mini muffin tins to make a better-for-you version of everyone’s favorite Halloween candy.

toffee caramels

Photo: Tessa the Domestic Diva

While this recipe requires some speedy maneuvers and a candy thermometer, it’s actually not that difficult. These pretty little caramels make a cute prezzie for a fellow Paleo. The only challenge? Stopping yourself from eating the whole pan.

paleo cinnamon roll in a mug

Photo: The Iron You

Who says Paleo peeps can’t eat dessert for breakfast? Give Cinnabon a run for its money with this personal-size cinnamon roll. Spread out the coconut flour dough and fill with dried fruit of your choice. Goodbye, food court. Hello, DIY cinna-roll.

paleo sex in a pan

Photo: Fresh Planet Flavor

Do we have your attention? This decadent, six-layer dessert is grain-, dairy-, and refined sugar-free. Pecans and dates form the first layer, while grated chocolate is dusted as the sixth. What lies between? Pure deliciousness earning that over-the-top title.

Updated: November 7, 2016 — 6:37 pm

1 Comment

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