These little gems were baked up for a special birthday celebration. 

My cousin and foodie partner in crime loves health food and nutrition just as much as I do- in fact, she's a health coach and currently in school to become an RD. This week she was my baking inspiration.

As a person who does not like chocolate (I know, GASP), I try to get creative when baking up something for her. I came across coconut fruit cookie bars and was instantly inspired to make a slightly healthier version using Middle Eastern flavors such as orange blossom, rose, and cardamom. Thus, these cookie bars were born. 

While you might be thinking tahini in a sweet dessert is odd- it is actually delicious! Tahini's nutty flavor profile lends itself to be super versatile in the culinary world. From sauces, to dips, to desserts, tahini is the perfect accouterment. 

Either way, enjoy these sweet treats and I hope you don't bake them at midnight like I do- buy hey, there's nothing better than stress baking! 

Adapted from Tutti Dolci

Servings: 12 bars


  • 1 1/2 cups gluten free flour blend
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest 
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped pistachios
  • For the Tahini Frosting
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon rosewater
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 1/4 cup chopped pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon culinary grade dried rose petals (optional)


  1. Combine the melted coconut oil and coconut sugar in a food processor. Then add in the egg and vanilla extract. 
  2. Next, pulse in the GF flour and corn starch. Next add in the spices and orange zest. Lastly, pulse in the chopped pistachios. 
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degree and spread the batter in an 8x8 pan and bake for 35 minutes. Once a toothpick comes out clean, let the bars sit on a wire rack to cool.
  4. While the bars cool, make the topping.
  5. Combine the tahini and rosewater in a bowl. If it need to be thinned out more, add a touch of fresh orange juice.
  6. Once the bars are cool, spread the tahini mix on top. Finish off with a sprinkle of orange zest, pistachios, and crushed rose petals.
  7. Cut into 12 bars and enjoy!