I think I nailed the perfect protein bars guys! Crunchy, not too sweet, and with over 8g of protein per bar! Plus they taste like candy bars! You have a soft and chewy cookie dough on top of a crispy rice chocolate treat. Many of you have been requesting more protein-packed snacks, so there it is!
Making your own protein bars is not only cheaper, but it's also healthier as you know exactly what's inside, plus you can tweak them to your liking. Did I mention these are ready in less than 30 minutes and are no-bake?
The base is rice crisps mixed with melted chocolate, almond butter, and hemp seeds for extra protein. You melt the chocolate over a double boiler and then mix it with the other ingredients. Transfer to a baking dish and let it harden in the fridge or freezer while you prepare the cookie dough layer.
Want to make these bars lower in calories and higher in protein? Simply halve the chocolate crunch layer! You will get more protein-packed cookie dough and less chocolate.
Most of the protein is packed in the cookie dough layer. It consists of almond flour, oat flour, and protein powder mixed with maple syrup, vanilla extract, and chocolate chips. I used Epic Protein from Sprout Living as I found it to have a neutral flavor compared to some other brands. Feel free to use your favorite plant-based protein powder!
My intention at first was to coat the bars with chocolate but I figured the bars were already delicious and didn't need extra coating. Plus it makes them easier and quicker to make.
These bars are super light thanks to the rice crisps, loaded with plant-based protein and taste like candy bars! You will love the combination of the crispy chocolate layer with the chewy cookie dough! Don't buy protein bars anymore, make them yourself!
Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe!
Cookie Dough Chocolate Crunch Protein Bars (Vegan + GF)
Chocolate Crunch Layer
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoon almond butter or peanut butter, hazelnut butter, cashew butter
- 2 tablespoon hemp seeds
- ½ cup puffed rice crisps or chocolate rice crisps
- ¾ cup almond flour
- ⅓ cup oat flour
- 4 tablespoon plant-based protein
- 2 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 and ½ tablespoon chocolate chips
- Line a 4×7-inch baking dish with parchment paper, set aside.
- Melt the chocolate chips over a double boiler over low-medium heat. Once melted, transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in the almond butter, hemp seeds, and rice crisps. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and place in the freezer for 20 minutes. In the meantime, prepare the cookie dough.
- In a mixing bowl, stiff together the almond flour, oat flour, and protein powder. Add the maple syrup, vanilla extract, and mix until a dough forms. If it is too crumbly add one more teaspoon of maple syrup. Stir in the chocolate chips.
- Transfer the cookie dough to the baking dish and spread it in an even layer on top of the chocolate rice crisp layer. Cover with parchment paper and use the bottom of a glass to press down and flatten.
- Carefully remove from the baking dish and cut into 7 thin bars or 5 larger ones. Wrap in plastic film and store at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.
- For slightly lower carb bars, you can substitute the oat flour for more almond flour.
Daryl Grant Lindsay
HOLY CANOLI, Thomas!!! There appears to be NO END to your phenomenal creativity and ingenuity! (And I am SOOOO GLAD ABOUT THAT, and I'm sure all your other fans feel the same way!) I am CONSTANTLY awe-struck by you & your FAAAAAB-ulous recipes.....ALL of them!! You probably think I'm insincere by my comments, especially since I have YET to prepare ANY of your recipes! (I hate to admit that, but I am honest, ALWAYS, to a fault, so I'm forced by my sense of integrity to tell the truth about that!) However, it's NOT for lack of WANTING to try ALL of them out, so PLEASE believe that is ABSOLUTELY the truth! I have so many recipes for my own "apparently never-ending cookbook project" which I have yet to create and/or to perfect, that it just seems I never get around to preparing your recipes (as well as some recipes of a couple other of my ALL-TIME FAVORITE & wonderfully creative vegan chefs/cooks!). But I know enough about food and flavors and textures, especially in this realm of VEGAN/PLANT-BASED recipe creation, that I have ABSOLUTELY ZERO DOUBT that EVERY LAST ONE of your recipes is nothing short of PHENOMENAL in taste, texture, aroma and appearance! (Which is why I ALWAYS go ahead and RATE them even though I've not yet actually prepared them! Because I can TELL from the ingredients you use, and from your often REVOLUTIONARY techniques and processes, that they are ALL 5-start recipes!) One of these days (sometime, "Over The Rainbow"???), I'm gonna get my cookbook project complete and "out there", and then I'm gonna take a "VACATION" and focus on the SHEER JOY & EXCITEMENT I will derive from trying out other people's recipes and FULFILLING the GENUINE LONGING I have to do so! And guess whose recipes will be at the VERY TOP of my list?....YOURS, FOR CERTAIN, BABYCAKES!!!!!....Incidentally, as much as I long to try your SAVORY recipes, INCLUDING all of the various cheeses, I have a feeling your DESSERTS & SWEETS recipes will be FIRST on my list! (My "sweet tooth" is THROBBING with excitement just THINKING about every last one of them and drooling over the ALWAYS GORGEOUS photos!....And, by the way, THESE PROTEIN BARS are absolutely SCREEEAMING OUT MY NAME CONSTANTLY, as I type this!....OH MY GAWWWWD, do they ever sound scrumptious!!!) Anyway, Thomas, it's been so long since I posted a comment, I just had to take a breather from the SHEER DRUDGERY AND FRUSTRATION of working, day after day, on my cookbook project (which, by the way, is HIGHLY COMPLICATED by my original MUSIC composition & recording being an integral part of the actual book!!!) and drop you a few lines here . . . (yeah, OK, I know....it's more like a GAZILLION lines...hahaha!....so WHAT ELSE is new?! ), basically just to let you---the UNDISPUTED "GOD" OF THE VEGAN KITCHEN!---know that I'm still alive AND still (continuously!) blown away by each and every recipe you post! Thank you again, SO MUCH, for sharing your brilliant works of art & culinary magic with me and the rest of us "mere mortals"!!.....Love and admiration, always . . . Daryl
Very tasty and easy to make but with a special twist of having two different layers 🙂 You could probably make it without the added protein as just a healthier treat! I’m not that crazy about protein myself.
Definitely, you can omit the protein powder to make candy bars!
These look soooo freaking good! I’m planning on making them actually right now lol is there anyway I can use a whey casein blend for the protein powder and chia seeds instead of hemp seeds? I know I have hemp seeds somewhere but can’t seem to find them for the life of me lol
Thanks Abby 😉
Yes, both substitutes should work!
This recipe looks interesting, but I calculated the macros with cronometer in metric units (I input soy protein isolate for protein powder) and got only 9.6 grams of protein per bar. I’m interested to know how you got 14 grams per bar, are the metric quantities listed maybe wrong?
Looking forward to trying this recipe anyhow 🙂
I recalculated the macros, and you are right! I'm not sure where I made the mistake before. I'll update it, thanks for the heads up!
These look absolutely incredible, I can't wait to make them tomorrow! Do you think I could replace one of the flours with additional protein powder (I don't mind the taste)?
The problem is that protein powder tends to yield a very crumbly texture, so if you replace for example the oat flour, you might have to adjust the amount of maple syrup to make sure it's not too dry.