Gluten Free Vegan Protein Bars
Two bowls, a food processor, and a parchment-lined baking pan are the only necessities for this recipe. With just a few, fool-proof steps, these come together in under 20 minutes. Chill them for an hour and you’ve got snacks for at least a week’s time.
If you have all of the ingredients on hand, this batch of protein bars rounds out at $1-$1.25 per bar [depending on where you live]. Considering the average protein bar costs $2.50, these are a bargain. And when you factor in the cost of all the questionable, mystery ingredients in most store-bought brands, you’re ahead of the game with these homemade bars.
We like to make ours in an 8×8 baking sheet lined with parchment. That way, after they’re chilled for a bit, the whole slab can easily be lifted out of the pan and cut into bars, squares, bites, or whatever you happen to be craving. I love to portion them into bite-sized bits that I can grab whenever I have a chocolate and/or peanut butter craving.
Throw one of these into a bag for a midday pick-me-up or a post-workout refuel – unless it’s a super hot day, there’s no need to keep these chilled. For day to day storage, I recommend keeping them in the refrigerator to keep them fresher, longer. I love that, unlike a lot of homemade protein bars, these don’t melt as soon as you take them out of the fridge. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
1 hour 20 mins
Easy, no-bake protein bars – vegan and gluten-free! Chewy brownie crust and thick peanut butter layer, with a chocolate drizzle and hemp-seed topping. 16 grams of protein per bar.
- 1½ c. gluten-free oat flour
- 6 dried apricots
- ¼ c. cocoa powder
- ¼ c. brown rice syrup
- 1 c. gluten-free oat flour
- ½ c. gluten-free rolled oats
- ½ c. vegan chocolate protein powder [we use Garden of Life RAW]
- ¼ tsp. sea salt
- 1½ tbsp. chia seeds
- 1½ tbsp. hulled hemp seeds
- ½ c. peanut butter or almond butter
- 1 flax egg [1 tbsp. ground flax + 3 tbsp water, mixed together in a small bowl]
- ¼ c. agave or raw honey
- ½ c. + 2 tbsp. coconut milk [from the carton, not can]
- Topping [optional]:
- ⅓ vegan chocolate chips
- +/- 1 tbsp. hemp seeds
- Combine ingredients for crust in the food processor until a crumbly, thick dough forms. Dump into a bowl and set aside for later.
- In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients for the next layer. Use a fork to mix well.
- Combine flax and water in a small bowl, stir, and set aside for a few minutes until it starts to gel.
- Add agave or honey, peanut butter, coconut milk, and flax egg to the dry ingredients. Mix roughly using the fork, then add mixture to the food processor.
- Blend until the mixture is smooth – adding more coconut milk if it is too dry. It should be thick and sticky when you’re finished.
- Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment. Dump crust into the pan and press it out as evenly as possible. It helps to use a miniature rolling pin or the bottom of a drinking glass!
- Dump the next layer on top the smoothed crust and spread it out. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty – this recipe calls for it!
- Set the pan into the refrigerator for 1 hour.
- If desired, make the chocolate drizzle while the bars chill. Melt ⅓ vegan chocolate chips in a double boiler.
- Lightly drizzle the chocolate across the bars and sprinkle hemp seeds over the top.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.