Vegan Protein Bars

4.98 from 176 votes

These vegan protein bars are a great post workout snack or great for a healthy energy boost. Made with no refined sugar, they are gluten-free and dairy-fee.

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If you are looking for a post workout snack or a mid-afternoon energy boost, these vegan protein bars are so perfect! Quick to make with just a handful of ingredients, they are gluten-free, dairy free and loaded with plant-based protein.

Close up shot of three vegan protein bars on parchment paper

Ingredients to make your own protein bars

  • Rolled oats: Oats are naturally gluten-free and a great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Use rolled oats for the best texture. Quick oats will also work well, but it’s best to avoid steel cut oats as they will be tougher to eat.
  • Natural peanut butter: I prefer to use natural peanut butter as it doesn’t contain any added salt, sugar or oils. You can use peanut butter with oil and cane sugar though. It’s also easy to make your own peanut butter.
  • Dates: Dates provide natural sweetness, eliminating the need for refined sugar and also help to make the mixture sticky and bind well.
  • Almond milk: To keep these bars vegan, I op to make them with almond milk. If you are not vegan, you can use dairy milk. Alternatively other plant based milks like oat or soy will also work well or even just water!
  • Vanilla extract: For a little extra sweetness and to help bring all of the flavors together. Use pure vanilla rather than imitation if you can.
  • Protein powder: I add vegan protein powder to boost each bar to a whopping 13g of protein. I use a plain flavored powder.
  • Ground Flaxseed: I use flaxseeds wherever I can! They are loaded with healthy essential fats as well as a good amount of protein. When ground, flaxseed can actually help bind the way egg whites would.
  • Salt: A little salt helps to balance out the sweetness of the other ingredients.
  • Dark chocolate chips: Because everything is better with a little chocolate! Dark chocolate is also a great source of antioxidants.
Ingredients to make the recipe

How do you make homemade protein bars

  1. In the bowl of a food processor, add the peanut butter, dates, almond milk and vanilla extract. These are the wet ingredients that I like to blend together first.
  2. Blend until the mixture is smooth and consistent. It will look like a super thick nut butter.
  3. Add the oats, protein powder, ground flaxseed and salt.
  4. Pulse a few times until the ingredients are well combined
Process shots for how to make the batter

Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula or your hands. I find it easier to just use my hands.

Batter transferred from food processor to bowl and topped with mini chocolate chips

Press the mixture into the prepared pan and flatten out the top with your hands or the back of a spoon. Place in the freezer until it sets, about 15 minutes.

Remove from the pan and slice into 10 equal bars.

Vegan protein bars after setting in the freezer and cut into bars

Tips for making homemade protein bars

  1. Wet your hands with water or oil when handling the batter. Because of the sticky nature of using dates to sweeten the recipe, it will be very sticky so this tip will help you manage the dough.
  2. Use your hands for mixing the chocolate chips into the batter. Once you pulse everything in the food processor, it helps to use your hands for folding in the chocolate chips because it’s much easier. It also allows you to mix in anything the food processor missed.
  3. Set the batter in an 8×8 baking pan with straight edges. This size and the straight edges will help you form the best looking protein bars that look like the packaged ones.
  4. Soften dates with warm water if necessary. If you have very fresh dates that feel soft, you won’t need to do this. However, if the dates are older or feel more tough, softening them will help them more easily blend and bind to the other ingredients.

Frequently asked questions

How long do vegan protein bars keep?

These bars will last for up to 7 days. Store the bars in the fridge in an airtight container. Don’t store them at room temperature as the natural peanut butter will soften too much.

Why make your own protein bars?

It’s so easy to make a batch of protein bars that you can enjoy all week. It is considerably cheaper to make your own, and it takes no more than 10 minutes to make a batch. You know exactly what goes in to each bite.

When do you eat protein bars?

I like to have a protein bar either 30 minutes before a workout or directly after it to replenish my energy. They are also far better option than reaching for a chocolate bar when you are experiencing a mid day slump in energy. I’ve also been known to grab one of these when I run out the door early in the morning.

Protein bars stacked on top of each other with parchment paper in between

These vegan protein bars are so great for a quick energy boost, whether it’s post workout or for a mid afternoon pick me up. It’s so quick and easy to make a batch and have on hand throughout the week to keep those cravings at bay.

More vegan treats

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Vegan Protein Bars recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

Vegan Protein Bars

These vegan protein bars are a great post workout snack or great for a healthy energy boost. Made with no refined sugar, they are gluten-free and dairy-fee.
5 from 176 votes
Servings 8 bars
Course Snack
Calories 255
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 25 mins

Ingredients
  

Instructions

  • Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhanging paper on the sides. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, add the peanut butter, dates, almond milk and vanilla extract. Blend until the mixture is smooth and consistent, about 1 minute.
  • Stop the food processor to scrape down the sides, then add the oats, protein powder, ground flaxseed and salt. Pulse a few times until the ingredients are well combined. The mixture should have a cookie dough-like texture. If it’s too dry, add a splash of milk. If it’s too wet, add more protein powder and pulse again.
  • Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula or your hands.
  • Press the mixture into the prepared pan and flatten out the top with your hands or the back of a spoon. It helps to spray your hands with oil when pressing down. Place in the freezer until it sets, about 15 minutes.
  • Use the overhanging parchment paper to lift from the baking pan, and slice into 8 bars. Enjoy immediately.

Video

Notes

Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 10-14 days in the fridge.
Freezing Instructions: After cutting the bars, freeze them on a baking sheet until solid.  Once frozen, transfer them to a freezer safe container or bag. You then simply need to thaw them in the fridge overnight.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However, feel free to play around with the ingredients and customize to your liking. Here are some common substitutes:
  • Equal amounts chia seeds instead of ground flaxseed
  • Any liquid instead of almond milk
  • ½ maple syrup instead of the dates
  • Quick oats instead of rolled oats
  • Any nut butter or sunflower butter instead of peanut butter

Nutrition

Calories: 255kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 162mg, Potassium: 287mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 8g, Calcium: 69mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

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Close up shot of three vegan protein bars on parchment paper

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Comments

  1. I just finished making these. Very delicious!!!! I changed the recipe a bit by using some ground pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and ground hemp seeds for the protein and added some desiccated coconut. I omitted the chocolate as did not have any. As they were very sticky I used half of the mixture and rolled them into balls and coated with desiccated coconut to dry them out. The other half remain bars for now! Very lovely flavour. Thank you so much. Will be making again! Next time might add some carob powder 🙂

    1. Thank you! That sounds like a delicious way to switch it up. You’re so welcome! Hope you continue to enjoy it!

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